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Tip: Understanding Rank

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

When you do a search, you can sort the results bibliographically alphabetical or by “rank”. What is Rank?

Rank refers to the search engine’s “best guess” as to the relevance of the result to the search you specified. The exact method of ranking used varies a bit depending on the search. In its most basic level, when you specify a single search term, rank looks at the density of the matches for the word in the document, and how close to the beginning of the document they appear as a measure of importance to the paper’s topic. The documents with the most matches and where the term is deemed to have the most importance, have the highest “relevance” and are ranked first (presented first).

When you specify more than one term to appear anywhere in the article, the method is similar, but the search engine looks at how many of those terms appear, and how close together they appear, how close to the beginning of the document, and can even take into account the relative rarity of the search terms and their density in the retrieved file, where infrequent terms count more heavily than common terms.

To see a simple example of this, search for the words (not the phrase, so no quotes):

unconscious communications

Look at the density of matches in each document on the first page of the hits. Then go to the last page of matched documents, and observe the density of matches within the documents.

A more complex search illustrates this nicely with a single page and only 15 matches:

counter*tr* w/25 “liv* out” w/25 enact*

There are a lot of word forms and variants of the words (due to the * wildcards) above that can match, but the proximity (w/25) clause limits the potential for matching. What’s interesting here though is how easily you can see the match density decrease as you view down the short list.

The end result of selecting order by rank is that the search engine’s best “guess” as to which articles are more relevant appear higher on the list than less relevant articles.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

List of Articles

Volume 21 (1961)

Issue 1
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy: A Round Table Discussion  3
Alexander Reid Martin, M.D.
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy  5
Irving Bieber, M.D.
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy  8
John A. P. Millet, M.D.
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy  12
Thomas S. Szasz, M.D.
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy  17
Frederick A. Weiss, M.D.
The Meaning of Suffering in Therapy  21
Antonia Wenkart
Karen Horney Award
A Critique of Horney's Theory of Anxiety  27
S. Rudolphson, M.D.
On the Nature of Loneliness  34
Arthur Burton, Ph.D.
Group Psychoanalysis with Adult Stutterers  40
Dominick A. Barbara, M.D., Natalie Goldart, M.A. and Caroline Oram, M.S.W.
Existential Psychiatry and Group Psychotherapy  58
Thomas Hora, M.D.
Discussion  70
Louis E. DeRosis, M.D.
The Management of Anxiety in Group Psychoanalysis: A Round Table Discussion  74
Tibor Agoston, M.D.
The Management of Anxiety in Group Psychoanalysis  78
Louis Landman, M.D.
The Management of Anxiety in Group Psychoanalysis  82
Helene Papanek, M.D.
The Unconscious Wish: An Operational Examination  85
N. S. Lehrman, M.D.
A Commentary on Ontic Perspectives  92
John Cowen, DPM, CHB, M.B.
Book Reviews
Zen Buddhism and Psychoanalysis. By Erich Fromm, D. T. Suzuki and Richard De Martino. 180 pp. Harper and Brothers, New York. 1960. $4.  98
Sidney Rosen, M.D.
Prediction and Outcome—A Study in Child Development: Sibylle Escalona, Ph.D., Grace Moore Heider, Ph.D. 318 pp. Basic Books, New York, 1959. $6.50.  101
Alexandra Symonds, M.D.
Adolescence and Discipline—A Mental Hygiene Primer. Rudolph M. Wittenberg. 318 pp. Association Press, 1959, New York. $4.95.  102
Joseph Zimmerman, M.D.
Annual Reports
The Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis  105
Frederick A. Weiss, M.D.
American Institute for Psychoanalysis  105
Nathan Freeman, M.D.
Karen Horney Clinic Report  106
Louis R. Hott, M.D.
The Dean  107
Harold Kelman, M.D.
Candidates Association  108
Ellis Mischel, M.D.
Issue 2 - The Karen Horney 75th Anniversary Issue: A Symposium on Alienation and the Search for Identity
Issue Editor: Frederick A. Weiss, M.D.
Alienation and the Self
Introduction  117
Frederick A. Weiss, M.D.
On Alienated Concepts of Identity  120
Ernest G. Schachtel, Ph.D.
Discussion  128
David E. Schecter, M.D.
Bernard E. Zuger, M.D., New York  130
The Self-Concept, Identity, and Alienation from Self  132
Jack L. Rubins, M.D.
Discussion  142
Alexandra Symonds, M.D.
Alienation in the Light of Karen Horney's Theory of Neurosis  144
Joseph W. Vollmerhausen, M.D.
Discussion  152
Geoffrey F. Osler, M.D.
Alienation and Culture
Self-Alienation and the Loss of Leisure  156
Alexander Reid Martin, M.D.
Alienation: Man's Fate and Man's Hope  166
Helen Merrell Lynd, Ph.D.
Discussion  171
Abe Pinsky, M.D.
Self-Alienation and Self-Confirmation in Modern Art  173
Charles Hulbeck, M.D.
Discussion  179
Helen W. Boigon, M.D.
The Alienated Person in Literature  183
Bella S. Van Bark, M.D.
Discussion  193
Doris V. Falk, Ph.D.
Alienation and Therapy
Alienation: its Historical and Therapeutic Context  198
Harold Kelman, M.D.
Self-Alienation: Dynamics and Therapy  207
Frederick A. Weiss, M.D.
Alienation and the Secret Self: Some Therapeutic Considerations  219
Marianne H. Eckardt, M.D.
Regaining Identity through Relatedness  227
Antonia Wenkart, M.D.
Discussions  233
Walter Bonime, M.D.
Discussions  236
Wanda Willig, M.D.
Discussions  239
Ralph Slater, M.D.
The Therapy of Severe Alienation  242
Sara Sheiner, M.D.
Discussion  251
Harry Gershman, M.D.
Peak Experiences as Acute Identity Experiences  254
A. H. Maslow, Ph.D.
Discussion  261
Silvano Arieti, M.D.
Alienation and Group Psychoanalysis  263
Louis E. DeRosis, M.D.
Alienation and the Group Analytic Process  273
Benjamin J. Ecker, M.D.
Discussions  276
Louis R. Hott, M.D.
Discussions  278
Sidney Rose, M.D.
Book Reviews
Introduction à la Médecine Psychosomatique (Introduction to Psychosomatic Medicine). Medard Boss. Presses Universitaires, Paris, 1959.  280
Jack L. Rubins, M.D.
Existential Psychology. Rollo May, editor. Random House, New York. 126 pages. $0.95.  282
Frank Hladky, M.D.
The Quest For Identity. Allen Wheelis. W. W. Norton, New York. 1958. $3.95.  285
Norman J. Levy, M.D.
The Anatomy of Psychotherapy. Henry L. Lennard and Arnold Bernstein. Columbia University Press, New York, 1960. $6.  288
Joseph W. Vollmerhausen, M.D.
The Psychotherapy Relationship. William U. Snyder, Ph.D., The Macmillan Company, New York. 411 pp.  291
Samuel L. Safirstein, M.D.
Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. Selected Papers of Frieda Fromm-Reichmann. Dexter M. Bullard, ed. Foreword by Edith V. Weigert. University of Chicago Press, 1959.  294
Frank Hladky, M.D.
Normal Children and their Mothers. Irvin D. Harris, M.D. Free Press, Glencoe, Illinois, 1959.  297
Helen A. DeRosis, M.D.
Psychoanalysis and the Family Neurosis. Martin Grotjahn, M.D. W. W. Norton, New York, 1960.  299
Louis A. Azorin, M.D.
Creativity. Emanuel F. Hammer, Ph.D. Random House, 1961. 150 pp. $1.25.  300
Frank Hladky, M.D.
The Myth of Mental Illness: Foundations of A Theory of Personal Conduct. Thomas S. Szasz, M.D. Harper, New York, 1961. $7.50.  302
Jason Miller, M.D.
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