What does the Library catalogue search?
The Library catalogue allows you to use one search box to find and access the majority of library resources, including:
- All items physically located in the campus libraries (books, CDs, DVDs, sheet music, print journals etc.)
- Electronic books and journals
- Journal articles
- Conference proceedings and papers
- Online videos and DVDs
- Music (online and CDs)
- Music scores
- Theses; including Griffith University theses and dissertations
- Griffith Research Online
- Open access scholarly papers (most of these plus more are also available via Google Scholar)
If your search retrieves a large number of results, you can use the refinement options to find exactly what you need.
When should I use a Library database instead?
The Library catalogue will not find all the content available in the Library's databases! You may still need to search Library databases to find additional information and specialised content such as:
- Case law, legislation and legal commentaries
- Drug information
- Clinical information
- Company information and financials
- Newspaper articles and news broadcasts. Many of these news databases are in the catalogue, however, searching a relevant news database provides best results.
Context of your research topic is also important. Even when searching for journal articles a database specific to your topic may yield targeted results. Australian databases can also assist when searching for topics in an Australian context.
- Use content types (e.g. books/ebooks) to focus your search
- Use double quotes for words in order (e.g. "environmental protection")
- Use author surnames only, avoid first names and initials (e.g. dickens not dickens, c or dickens, charles)
- Search for a combination of author, title and/or publication details (e.g. tolkien "the hobbit")
- If you know an item is in the library, use the Classic library catalogue limit. This will remove articles and the majority of free web resources from your search.
Finding academic or peer-reviewed content
The catalogue has two refinement options, choose the most appropriate for your needs
- Describes the primary audience for the publication. The Academic/Scholarly determination is made by a process combining publisher self-reporting about individual titles and independent editorial research sourced from Ulrich's.
- Refers to the system of critical evaluation of manuscripts/articles by professional colleagues or peers. The content of refereed publications is sanctioned, vetted, or otherwise approved by a peer-review or editorial board. The peer-review and evaluation system is utilised to protect, maintain, and raise the quality of scholarly material published in serials. Publications subject to the referee process are assumed, then, to contain higher quality content than those that are not.
So although the majority of peer-reviewed/refereed publications are also academic/scholarly serials, it is possible for a publication to have one designation but not the other.
Search query help
The library catalogue allows for phrase searching with the use of "inverted commas". For example, the query "teacher education" will find results with that phrase.
The library catalogue searches across many fields automatically. For example, entering an ISBN, ISSN or Call Number will bring back associated records. You can explicitly search a field using the syntax: "field:(query)." For example, the search ISSN:(1234-5678), finds records that contain that value in the ISSN field. Searchable fields are:
By default, all terms in a search are combined with the AND operator. To expand the results set, use the OR operator. For example, "microcircuits OR nanocircuits" will return items that contain either term. This can be combined with quoted terms search "teacher education" OR "educator training".
To exclude items, use the NOT operator or "-" character before a term. When used in the following query "animal NOT dog" the results will not include the term "dog".
Searches within the library catalogue can be performed using the wildcards "?" and "*". The question mark (?) will match any one character and can be used to find "Olsen" or "Olson" by searching for "Ols?n". The asterisk (*) will match zero or more characters within a word or at the end of a word. A search for "ch*ter" would match "charter", "character" and "chapter". Then used at the end of a word, such as "temp", it will match all suffixes "temptation", "temple" and "temporary".
Wildcards cannot be used as the first character of a search.