The APA Thesaurus allows you to select search terms from the APA Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms. Selecting search terms from the Thesaurus will increase the precision, reliability, and comprehensiveness of subject searches across APA databases. The controlled vocabulary of the Thesaurus provides users with a method of structuring the subject matter in a way that is consistent among users. For example, searching for Dysphoria, Melancholia, and Depression can all be achieved by searching the term “Major Depression.

You can search in the Look Up Term box or browse thesaurus terms A-Z.


Select search terms by clicking the box on the left of the term. Selected terms will populate the Selected Terms box. Terms can be combined with Boolean operators in this box. Click Add to Search to send the selected terms to the Advanced Search Screen.


If you click on the plus sign to the left of a term, the term record appears.

If you click on the plus side on the right of the term, you can add the index term and its narrower terms to the Selected Terms box.

For more information on the Thesaurus: