IIPS 60209: Global Poltics of Peacebuilding

Catalogs for Books, Docs, Videos, Journals, etc.

  • Finding Books, Documents, Videos, etc. owned by Notre Dame
  • Finding Books, Documents, Videos, etc. owned by anyone -- including Notre Dame
    • WorldCat 
      • items held by other libraries in the U.S, Canada and elsewhere
      • Use FindText link for Interlibrary Loan Requests for items ND doesn't own
      • Give yourself a couple of weeks for delivery, i.e. plan ahead
    • Google Book Search 
      • a growing catalog of books
      • Provides full text for books in the public domain (out of copyright)
      • Provides links to sources for books still in copyright

While WorldCat and Google Books show promise of becoming truly world wide catalogs of books, they have not yet reached that goal. To expand your retrieval try using major library catalogs in appropriate countries. While, there is no universal listing, these two websites are excellent.

Lib-Web-Cats (LIbrary Web Catalogs)
Libweb (Library Servers via WWW)

Search Techniques

Most people are familiar with keyword searching (think Google). However, most library catalogs and commercial, subscription databases also provide a subject headings search option. This approach can be extremely helpful in many cases. Give it a try.

While the following search functions are almost universally available, their specific form will vary from database to database. The examples listed here are the most common forms. If one or more do not work in a given database, look for a Help, Information, Tips, etc. tab or label somewhere on the home page. There are often found in the upper left or right of the screen and sometimes indicated by a ? or I symbol.

  • * -- asterisk -- truncation
  • ( ) -- parentheses -- nesting or grouping of similar terms
  • " " -- quotation marks -- phrases
  • and, or, not -- logical or boolean operators

    (Note: Google requires "OR" to be capitalized.)

In addition to phrase searching with quotation marks, many database offer proximity searching and other special features. This allows you to specify number of words that may appear between two search terms and their order. This feature can be especially helpful if you are searching in the full text of articles. For instance EBSCO databases use the following proximity operators.

  • n# -- where # = the number of words between 2 terms in any order.
  • w# -- where # = the number of words between 2 terms in the order typed.
Last Update: February 01, 2012 14:21