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Help searching the Catalogue

Find information about how to use the Library's catalogue including:

Performing Simple Searches

You can use the catalogue to quickly find material from all of the Library's collections. Type in your keywords and phrases and click the Search button.

Note: This is a keyword search and will search for all of the words you have entered. You can use OR or NOT between the words and phrases to make your search more specific. 

You can choose which collection to search from the drop-down list, see the table below for more information about each option.

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You can select which collection to search see the table below for information about the different options.

 

 
Scope Description
Everything except articles
  • Books, journals, newspapers, magazines, ebooks, maps, posters, films and other published material.*

  • Manuscript, Oral History and Picture collections

*Does not search for articles within newspapers, journals or magazines.

Everything
  • Books, journals, newspapers, magazines, ebooks, maps, posters, films and other published material.

  • Manuscript, Oral History and Picture collections

  • Ebooks and newspaper, journal and magazine articles.

Books, journals and maps

Books, journals, newspapers, magazines, ebooks, maps, posters, films and other published material.*

*Does not search for articles within newspapers, journals or magazines.

Manuscripts, oral history and pictures Manuscripts, Oral History and Pictures 
Articles and ebooks Ebooks and articles from newspapers, journals and magazines.
Journal and newspaper titles

Journals, newspapers and magazines.*

*Does not search for articles within newspapers, journals or magazines.

Once you are familiar with the basic catalogue search, you might want to try doing more with the Search panel or use the Advanced Search option.  You can make your searches more precise to get results that are more useful.

How can I do more with the Search panel?

You can do more than just a simple search with the Search panel. Try the following search options to get the best results for your search:

Searching for a phrase

To search for a phrase, type quotation marks around the phrase. You can combine both words and phrases in your search.

Note: If you do not enclose the phrase with quotation marks, the system will find items that contain the individual words in the phrase, regardless of whether these words are located next to each other in the order specified.

For example, to search for global warming as one term, type the following in the search box:

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Use quotation marks to search for a phrase. For example \"global warming\"

Searching for any specified words or phrases

You can search for items that contain at least one of the words or phrases you type in the Search box. To do so, type OR between the words or phrases.

Note: If you search for words or phrases without specifying OR or NOT, it is assumed that you are searching for all the specified words or phrases.

For example, to search for items with the word Irish or the word Celtic, type the following in the search box:

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Add OR between words to search for records with either term. For example irish OR celtic.

Note: To use Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) within search phrases, you must enter them in uppercase letters. Otherwise, the catalogue removes them and performs a simple search that includes all search phrases.

Excluding words or phrases

You can exclude items that contain specific words or phrases. To do so, type NOT and then type the word or phrase to exclude.

Note: If you search for words or phrases without specifying OR or NOT, Search assumes that you are searching for all the specified words or phrases.

For example, to search for items with the word Celtic and exclude any of these items with the word Irish, type the following in the search box:

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To search for results including celtic but not irish, enter celtic NOT irish in the search box.

Searching using wildcard characters

You can include the following wildcard characters in your searches:

  • ?—enter a question mark to perform a single character wildcard search. For example, type wom?n to search for records that contain the terms woman and women.
  • *—enter and asterisk to perform a multiple character wildcard search. For example, type cultur* to search for records that contain strings, such as culture, cultural, and culturally.

Note: The system ignores wildcard characters placed at the beginning of search terms. For example, the system treats the search terms ?aying and *aying as if you had searched for aying.

Grouping terms within a query

You can use parentheses to group terms within a query. For example, to search for Shakespeare and either tragedy or sonnet, type the following in the search box:

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You can use parentheses to group search terms together. For example shakespeare (tragedy OR sonnet).

Using Advanced search

Advanced search lets you determine which fields to search, how to search for your terms (i.e. contains, (is) exact, starts with), and how to combine your search terms. It also gives you other options for limiting the scope of your search.

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Advanced search lets you make your search more specific by selecting how to combine your search terms.

Using Browse

Browse search allows you to browse by subject, author or title to find material. To access Browse, click the Browse Search link next to the simple search box.

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There is a link to browse search under the simple search box.

Choose By title, By Subject or By Author from the drop-down list and type in your search terms. Click an underlined entry from the results to see all of the relevant items. Browse search does not search journal articles or other eresources.

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Click the drop-down arrow to select from browse by subject, browse by title or browse by author.

Why should I sign in?

When you sign into your account, you are able to do the following:

  • Use library services. You need to login to request items and renew your loans.
  • Add items and queries to Mylist. You can save items from your results to your basket and you can also save your queries  to use them at another time.
  • Set alerts for your queries. You can set a query to become an alert, that is, to run automatically and send you an email notification when there are new items answering your search criteria.
  • Change your personal settings. You can change your password and set your default email address and mobile phone number. 

My Account

Go to My Account to check the status of your requests and renew your loans. Once you have signed in you can access My Account from the link at the top of each page. 

Note: Remember to sign out so that your searches remain private and your personal settings and basket are not tampered with by anyone else.

Personal Settings

To update your contact details, click the Personal Settings option on the My Account tab. To change your password click Update Login Credentials. Click UPDATE + to save your changes.

 

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To change your password go to Personal settings and click Update my login credentials.

Using My List

My List allows you to save and organise items that you find. To access My List, click the My List link at the top of the page.

This section includes:

Saving items to My List

Click the box next to a title to add or remove an item from your basket. A checked box indicates that you have already added it to your basket.

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Save items My List in catalogue

Note: You must sign in to save items in My List for future sessions.

Removing items from My List

To remove an item and all of its copies in the various folders in My List, click in the box next to the item in the search results.

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Remove items My List in catalogue

If you do not want to delete all copies of an item in My List, you must remove each copy directly from My List. For more information on removing items from My List, see Managing items.

Viewing items saved in My List

To view items that are saved in My List, click the Basket folder or any of its subfolders. From the list of items, click the item that you want to display.

Managing folders

From the My List tab, you can perform the following operations on folders:

Folder operations
Button Description

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Create folder—click this button to add a new folder under the selected folder.

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Rename folder in catalogue
Rename folder—click this button to rename the selected folder.

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Copy folder—click this button to copy the selected folder into memory. The original folder will not be changed or deleted.

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Paste folder—click this button to paste the last folder placed into memory into the selected folder.

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Delete folder—click this button to delete the selected folder from Basket.

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Add note—click this button to add a note to a folder.

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Modify note—click this button to modify a folder's note.

Managing items

From the My List tab, you can perform the following operations on items:

Item operations
Button Description

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Cut items—Click this button to cut the selected items and to place them into memory.

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Copy items—Click this button to copy the selected items into memory.

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Paste items in catalogue
Paste item—Click this button to paste the last items placed into memory into the current folder.

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Delete items—Click this button to delete the selected items.
E-mail E-mail items—Click this button to email the selected items.
Print Print items—Click this button to print the selected items.

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Save items in catalogue
Save items—Select an option (such as Push to EndNote) from the Save pull-down list and then click this button to save the selected items.

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Add note—Click this button to add a note to an item.

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Modify note—Click this button to modify an item's note.

Understanding your Results

The results list displays all the items that match your search query. Your results are usually sorted by Relevance,  click on the drop-down arrow next to Sorted by to choose Date-newest, Popularity, Author or Title instead.​

Each item in the list includes:

  • Resource type—the icon beside each item indicates whether it is a book, journal, map etc. 
  • Title—clicking the title displays more bibliographic information.
  • Author, creator and date—the item’s author, creator, and publication date.
  • Availability - look for the green dots to quickly find available items. If you need more information about availability check the Request tab or contact us at Ask a librarian
  • Check box—click in the Box next to the title to add or remove the item from your basket. A checked box indicates that you have already added it to your basket.

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Brief results in catalogue

 

Click on the options below each title to get more information about it. You can select from the following options depending on the format of the item:

View It tab

View It displays items that are available online in a new tab. If the item is available from more than one source click one of the links to view the item in a new tab.

Request tab

Request allows you to request physical items (such as books and audio CDs) from our collections. Ask staff for help if the Request tab isn't displayed. You may need to fill in a manual request slip for journals and other material including manuscripts and pictures. 

Note: You have to sign in to your account to make a request. 

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Click the Request link to go to the request form.

Check the request tab to see if there is a copy available in one of our reading rooms. Look for Special Collections, SRL Reference books, Australian Reference or Family History under location. 

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The request tab shows if items are available in the reading room, it could say Special Collections, SRL Reference books or Australian Reference under location on the Request tab.

Details tab

Details displays the item’s full record and links to further information including contents lists and Trove. You can click on the Author or  Subjects links to quickly find related material. 

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Details tab in catalogue

Sources tab

Sources  will open the record  in the Manuscript, Oral Histories and Pictures catalogue. 

Virtual Shelf Browse

You can use Virtual Shelf Browse to quickly find related material, click on a cover to get more information about an item.

Actions Menu

The Actions menu offers options for sharing, saving and citing results. 

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The actions menu gives you options to share, save and print a record.

Refining your results

You can use the facets on the left hand side of the screen to refine your results by Format, Subject, Author/Creator or Date. Click on one of the listed options or MORE OPTIONS to include or exclude multiple options. 

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You can include or exclude options to narrow your results.

Using queries, alerts and RSS feeds

This section includes:

What is a query?

A query is a word or phrase you specify in the search panel to request information. You can do the following with queries:

  • View the current session's queries and results.
  • Save a query from the current session in order to use it later.
  • Activate alerts on your saved queries to have them run automatically at scheduled times to provide you with updated results from queries.
  • Activate RSS feeds to receive updates for your favourite queries. For more information, see Activating RSS Feeds.
Viewing and saving queries

If you are signed in, you can save a query by clicking the Save Search link, which appears below the facets on the Brief Results page. You can access your saved and session queries by clicking either the My List or My Account link and then clicking the Queries tab.

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My Queries in catalogue

This tab contains the following folders:

  • This Session's Queries—this folder lists all of the queries that you have performed in the current session.
  • Saved Queries & Alerts—this folder lists all of the queries and alerts that you have saved.

Note: If you are not signed in, your queries are available only during the current session.

You can run a saved query yourself, or you can set it as an alert that runs automatically at scheduled times and sends you new results by e-mail.

What is an alert?

An alert is a process that runs your query automatically at scheduled times and sends you new results via e-mail.

Viewing and activating alerts

To view the list of alerts, click the Saved Queries & Alerts menu. To configure an alert for a saved query, click the Update link for that query and then specify the alert settings.

Activating RSS Feeds

Syndicated content, otherwise known as Really Simple Syndication (RSS), is a popular way to distribute information from Web sites. For example, using RSS, a news site or a blog can automatically feed its news articles or entries to a group of subscribers.

RSS feeds in the catalogue are used to notify you of new items found by the query. RSS feeds can be activated from either the search results or the Saved Queries & Alerts folder on the My Queries tab. All that you need is to have an RSS reader installed on your computer.

If your browser supports RSS, click the RSS button. A window from which you can subscribe to the RSS feeds opens. Follow the instructions in the window.

If your browser does not support RSS, right-click the RSS button, copy the URL, and paste it into the RSS reader.