Catalogue Hints and Tips

Catalogue Hints and Tips

How do I do a simple search?

The website has a 'search the catalogue' box where you can enter different search criteria such as: author, title, keyword or ISBN. When you search by ISBN you can use either the 10 or 13 digit number. Do not add in the hyphens or spaces when doing an ISBN search.

To combine keywords, use AND, OR, NOT. For example, fish AND cooking.

However, if you don't get the result you expect, try using the advanced search option instead.

How do I do an advanced search?

The advanced search provides additional drop-down options for searching the catalogue. You can choose any of the search options listed. To select multiple options hold down CTRL and select.

You will have a choice of searching a particular library branch or using the default ‘all branches'. It is also possible to search by format, language, or publication year.

Advanced search also offers the opportunity to limit the results to adult, teen readers or young readers.

How do I search for a subject if I don't know the correct spelling?

You can use the asterisk * symbol to truncate a word you wish to search on, for example, *graphy – this is useful if you don't know how to spell a word or can't remember the whole word. You can also use the ~ symbol after a search word to find terms that are similar in spelling, for example, Tchaikovski~ gets the hit Tchaikovsky.

How do I search for an exact phrase?

In the quick search box at the top of the screen you can enclose a string of words inside quotation marks; this will match the search to an exact

phrase, for example, "end of the game".

How do I search by genre?

If you are only interested in searching for items in a particular fiction genre, it is possible to limit your search with the advanced search option.

In the classification box type the abbreviated genre, for instance CRI if you are interested in crime. You can then make further selections to limit your search, for example, by format or library branch.

What are the different fiction genre abbreviations?

ADV – Adventure

AF – Adult fiction

CLA – Classics

CRI – Crime

FAM – Family

FAN – Fantasy

GRA – Graphic novels

HIS – Historical

HOR – Horror

ROM – Romance

SAG – Saga

SCF or SF – Science Fiction

SEA – Sea stories

SHO – Short stories

THR – Thriller

WES – Westerns

How do I search for a particular format?

If you want to search for a particular format e.g. Audiobooks, Large Print, Music Scores, use the 'Select format' drop down menu to select the format that you require. 

How do I search for a music CD by genre?

Go to ‘advanced search'. Select CD from the select format list. Enter one of the abbreviated genre codes into the class box.

BOL - Bollywood

CHILD – Children's

CLASS – Classical

SHOW – Films, Shows

EASY – Easy Listening

FOLK – Folk, Country

JAZZ – Jazz, Blues

"NEW AGE" – New Age

ORCH – Orchestral, Instrumental

POP – Pop Music

SOUND – Sound Effects

VOCAL – Vocal, Choral

WORLD – World

* Genre codes with more than one word must be entered in speech marks, such as, "NEW AGE".

How do I search for a particular genre of DVD?

Enter one of the following phrases into the class search box within the advanced search page and select DVD from the select format list.

CHILDREN – Children's

COMEDY – Comedy

DOCUMENTARY – Documentary

"FEATURE FILMS" – Feature Films

"FOREIGN FILMS" – Foreign Films

"HEALTH AND FITNESS" – Health and Fitness

MUSIC – Music

MUSICALS – Musicals

"T.V. DRAMA" – T.V. Drama

* Genre codes with more than one word must be entered in speech marks, such as, "FEATURE FILMS".

Need more help?

Please see our information about reserving an item.

If we don't have the item that you're searching for, you can request a book using our online form or make a suggestion in your local library.

For any other queries, please email us or call our Digital Support Helpline 0330 222 3455.

Search the catalogue