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Learning Outcome/Goal

This guide will show you how to get the most out of searching our Library catalog by introducing you to some of the built in filters that help narrow your search down to get the most relevant results.

Step 1

Start on the Library Homepage by entering your search phrase into the All tab.

Pro tip: Put quotation marks around phrases to ensure that the exact phrase is populated in the results and not the individual words. Also use AND to make sure two separate keywords or phrases are connected in the search results. Using AND in your search is an example of a Boolean search operator, click here to learn more about Boolean Search Operators.

Step 2: Source Type

Once you run your initial search, you will notice that there are A LOT of results.

Let's refine those a little bit. First, let's choose only the source types we want to look at. Click on the Source Type drop down and select the source types that you want to look at. Let's go with Articles, Books, and Book Chapters to start. Click Apply Filters

Now, the number of results our search yielded is less daunting.


Step 3: Date Range

Perhaps we can get the number down a little lower though. In most research, it is important to look for what was published most recently or during a specific time period. Luckily, our catalog search allows you to refine your search results by date range. Click on the Year Published drop down to begin.

For this research, let's look at everything published in the last 10 years. Enter the year and click Use this Range


Step 3: Finding e-Resources

Time is everything right? So here's how to find only the results that you can access online, right now. Under Show Only, select Available Online. Simple as that. This will hide any physical books that we have in the Library from the results.

Click here to learn more about how to use our e-book collection.

Step 4: Change the Search

Let's say we want to delete any of the search refinements that we already set. For example, maybe we want to see what those physical books were, maybe those were useful after all. Simply click the x next to any of the Active Filters to remove them.

Then, go back to Show Only, select Physical Items, and click Apply Filters

How about that? In just a few clicks, we went from 150,000 results to 32. The search filters built into our Library Catalog search are a vital tool for helping you find the most relevant sources for your research, so play around with them and see how it can help with your topic!