Searching the Library Catalogue

Here are some tips to get the most out of the library catalogue. Many of them will work with the library’s subject databases too.

Basic search

A Title and Author search will give you the most specific results (author's surname without initials works best).

Summon basic title and author search

You don’t have to enter the whole title - normally just a few of the important words of the title will do.

If you want to do a general subject search, just use the Keywords field.

Summon basic keyword search

Advanced search

The advanced search gives you many more options to narrow down your search. You can use ISBN or ISSN numbers, for example.

Summon advanced ISBN search

Refine your results

The library catalogue is a huge database of resources, and you’ll often get a long list of search results. Use the filters down the left hand side to quickly refine the results.

For example, you might only be interested in full text online articles from academic journals. So use the Full text online and Journal Article filters.

Refining the search results in Summon to show full text articles

More tips:

  • If you’re looking for a specific phrase (i.e. words in a specific order), use quotation marks around them in the Keywords search box - e.g. "clinical nursing".
  • Use a question mark (?) to match any one character - so Ols?n will find Olsen or Olson.
  • Use an asterisk (*) to match characters within a word or at the end of a word. For example, a search for ch*ter would find charter, character, and chapter. And temp* would find temptation, temple and temporary. (You can’t use * and ? as the first character of a word though).

Saving items from your results list

If you want to save an item from your results list, click on the folder icon to the right of the item.

Results in Summon can be saved using the folder icon on the right

The item’s details will be saved to the folder at the top of the page.

Summon saved items folder in the header

You can email these details to yourself by going into the folder, or you can export them to a reference manager such as RefWorks. The list of saved items is only temporary and will be lost when you close your browser.

If you need more help with searching, contact us.