Books are best for getting general information on a topic. Find books and ebooks by searching the Library's Classic Catalogue.
The catalogues's default search setting is a keyword search.
Identify key words or phrases in your research question or topic. For example: I need information on company towns in British Columbia.
"Company towns" and "British Columbia" are our key terms. Search for these key terms in the library catalogue and remember to think of synonyms to broaden your search.
Searching by subject heading ensures that you are able to pull up all of the materials associated with a given subject. Each and every book in the library has a predetermined subject heading assigned to them. These subject headings indicate the different subjects or topics being dealt with in a particular book. Each of the subject headings found in the catalogue is hyperlinked to other materials dealing with the same subject matter.
Do a Subject Heading search and see what you can find.
Begin by going to the library catalogue and selecting subject from the drop-down menu next to the search bar. Searching for "Company towns" will bring up a list of subjects that include that term. Click on a subject heading to see all the books with that subject heading.
|Wildcards/Truncation:||Wildcards/truncation refers to the placement of an asterisk at the meaningful root of a word to retrieve results containing that word and all of its subsequent endings. Use a * at the end of the root word or use a ? in place of a letter.
Examples: environment* polic*, wom?n
|Boolean Operators:||Use "AND" or "OR" or "NOT" to narrow or broaden your search:
Use AND to make your search more specific and narrow your search.
Use OR to search for clusters of related terms enclosed in parentheses to broaden your search.
Use NOT to exclude words to narrow your search.
Example: (First Nations OR Aboriginal OR Indigenous) AND Canada
|Field limits:||Field limits are often set to search for keywords but you can change the field limit to search only the specified field for the specified word(s). For example:
Field limit: Author: Samuel Beckett
Field limit: Title: Waiting for Godot
|Grouping:||Keyword search results are usually grouped by relevance to bring the most likely titles to the top of the list. Each group represents a similar level of relevance and results are sorted within the group by date or title. To get an ungrouped result set, use boolean operators to form a complex query.|