Watch an online video on how to use search

Audio Transcript

This video is a quick demo to get you started using Search, which is a tool to help you with find resources for your research project.

From the library home page, type in keywords into the search box then click on the Go button.

The search automatically shows items with the closest match to your search terms. There is a lot you can do with the search results but here are the main areas to note.

You can further refine your search by using options in the left hand column, for example:

  • You can exclude newspaper articles
  • You can show 'only items in the library catalogue'
  • You can also restrict the results by publication date
  • Or limit the results to a certain campus library.

If you want to show results ordered by date, click on the drop down list and select either date (newest) or date (oldest).

Sometimes a book will have more than one copy. The call number is a way to locate a book in the library. The call number in the result might not be the call number for the book available on your campus. Be sure to click on the heading to show the full list of copies and their matching call numbers.

When you are off-campus and you click on a heading to view online content, you will come across a login screen like this. The username and password is the same username and password stated in our first 'Statement of Account' sent to you from the University.

You can send the search results to your email or put it in EndNote by clicking on the 'save this item' icon. Once you are done saving your items, click on the 'Saved items' link.

To save your results for EndNote, click on the EndNote button and save the file somewhere, then click OK.

To email your results, click on the email button, type in your email address and click 'send'.

Sometimes, you might click on a result and no documents were found for that result. Or you might have a specific item you want but can't find it in the search results. In this case, you can try finding it in the library catalogue which can be accessed from the home page.

If you are still having problems you can get help from a librarian via online chat. You can also check the Frequently Asked Questions or contact the library and give some feedback.

Basic search

Use basic search when you want to find items for your assignment or research.

  1. Type your keywords in the search box.

    Search box

  2. The resulting list of items matching your keywords may include:
    • journal articles
    • books and ebooks
    • theses
    • audiovisual items.
  3. To see the full details of the item, click on the title.
  4. If it is not an electronic item, you can see the location and the call number to locate the item on the shelves
  5. You can also use advanced keyword search or refine your search to reduce your list of results.

Advanced keyword search

If you do not know the exact title of an item, you can use a set of key words to search for your topic. Keyword search will find the search terms anywhere in the record.

Search technique Comments Examples
Phrase Type the exact phrase you need in quotation marks 'teacher education'
Wildcard Use the wildcards as follows:
matches one character
* matches zero or more characters within a word or at the end
Wildcards cannot be used as the first character of a word

ols?n will find olsen and olson
ch*ter will find charter, character and chapter temp* will find temptation, temple and temporary
*pen  would not find anything
Boolean operators Use OR between the keywords to find more items.
Use NOT between the keywords to exclude items.
NB: must be written in CAPS
'teacher education' OR 'educator training'
animal NOT dog - will exclude the term dog in your results
Fields Search for keywords in a particular field using the syntax - field:(query). Searchable fields:
  • Title
  • Subject terms
  • Author
  • Publisher
  • Publication title
  • Volume
  • Issue
  • Language
  • Notes
  • ISBN
  • ISSN
  • DOI
ISSN:(1234-5678) finds records that contain that value in the ISSN field

Refine your search results

You can refine your search if get too many items showing in your results.

Refine your search

You can use the options in the left hand panel to refine your search.

Newspaper articles are automatically excluded when you first do a search.

You can limit your search results by:

  • scholarly or peer-reviewed
  • content type
  • publication date
  • library location
  • subject terms
  • language.

Remember to click on more... to see additional options.




Sort by Date

You can also sort the results so that they are ordered by date (newest) or date (oldest).

Print or email results

When you have completed your search and found the items you want to use, you can save the items and either print or email the details to yourself for future reference or to include in your bibliography.

  • When the results are listed, click on the the button to the right of the items you want to save. Search - save item
  • You will see Saved itemsnext to each item you have saved.
  • When you have added all the records, click on Saved items saved items.
  • Select the style you require. Be aware that these are not in the format of the La Trobe nominated styles. Refer to the library's Academic Referencing Tool. (link)
  • Select either email or print. Search - print or email
    • After clicking on email, you will have to add your email address.
    • After clicking on print, you will have to use your browser's print option.
  • Clear your saved items before doing another search.