Catalog Searching 101

Search Tips:


Keyword Searching
The catalog is not like Google. You can’t ask library systems a question or type out a full sentence. You need to do pick out the most important words or ideas about what you are trying to find. NOTE: When searching by keyword, the system will look anywhere in the catalog for your term(s). This expands your search capabilities.
Determining keywords:
What effect does use of alcoholic beverages have on the health of college students?
Sometimes just one set of keywords is not enough. You may search multiple places and not get any results. Try thinking of a different way to say something.
teen or adolescent could be used for teenager
Phrase Searches
Search for complete phrases by enclosing them in quotation marks. Words enclosed in double quotes will appear together in all results exactly as typed.
A phrase search:
“spanish civil war “
Boolean Operators (AND, OR, NOT)
This is an advanced search option. Use AND to narrow the results by retrieving only records that include all your search terms. Use OR to expand the results by looking for records with at least one of your search terms. Use NOT to exclude words.
Using Boolean operators:
stocks and bonds
stocks or bonds
stocks not bonds
Field Limits
Field limits may be specified by selecting from the drop-down options in the catalog. These choices appear on both the basic and advanced search screens. A field limit causes the system to search only the specified field for the specified word(s). NOTE: Subject searching involves very specific vocabulary. You may not want to start with a subject search until you work with a librarian to learn more about it.
Field Limits and their meanings:
Author: Search only author fields
Title: Search only title fields
Subject: Search only subject fields

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Instructions: Use the library’s catalog to find books, course reserve items, movies, music and government documents. Conduct a quick search from this box or click on the catalog link for more search options.

Examples: Romeo and Juliet, Popular Culture, Wind Willows Advanced Catalog Search arrow graphic

Instructions: Search for course reserves by typing in your professor’s name in the search box. Materials are usually available electronically or in print. If the reserve item is not available electronically, please write down the call number and give it to the Circulation staff so they can retrieve the item for you.

Examples: Prof. Name, ACCT 221, World Cultures Find More Course Reserves arrow graphic
Ramapo Login Instructions
Login: R Number
Password: Last Name
Non-Ramapo Login Instructions
Login: Library Barcode
Password: Last Name
(All Lowercase)

Instructions: Need a database? Conduct a quick search by typing in the name of the database you are looking for into the search box (ex. JSTOR, Project Muse, Academic Search Premier, etc.) or use the drop-down menu to search for databases in certain subject areas.

The database I'm looking for is:
Browse by Subject:

Instructions: Want to find a source? Search the journal, magazine or newspaper title (source name) to see if the library has full-text print or electronic access and, if so, what date ranges are available.

Browse by Title:  0-9  A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  Other

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