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Introduction to Databases: WorldCat Discovery

A beginner's guide to using and searching Cressman Library's databases

Filtering Results

Most of the advanced search limits are also available after you click "SEARCH" in a basic search.  They will be located on the left side of the screen on the results page.

Search Tips

Narrow or Broaden Your Search


 use for AND

 use to include terms in your search

 + is assumed between terms

  nursing license

 nursing + license 

 OR   OR must be capitalized  habitat OR environment 

 use for NOT

 use to exclude terms in your search

  Portland - Oregon


Truncation for Plural & Alternate Forms

   #      use for one character        wom#n will return results for woman and women   

 use for multiple characters

 use a minimum of three characters before

habit* returns habit, habitat, habitable, etc.
   ?  replaces a specific number of additional characters  fine?2 returns fines, finer, finest, etc.


Phrase Searching

 "  " 

use for more exact searching

"The Chronicle of HigherEducation"


Proximity Search


used to find words that are immediately before or after each other

Example: Claude NEAR Monet (this is searching for Claude immediately before or after Monet)



 (  )  Using parentheses helps to "nest" complex searches.

Example: dog (walking OR feeding OR grooming)

Basic Search

This is the screen you will see when you click on WorldCat Discovery from Databases A-Z.

This is the type of search you should use when you're just beginning to research a topic, as it is a great starting point. The screen defaults to searching Libraries Worldwide, but you can limit your search to LVAIC or to just Cedar Crest College Cressman Library.

Advanced Search

This type of search should be used when you have a better or more specific idea of what you're looking for. 

Text Fields: these provide a way to narrow down your search, thus providing you with items geared more toward your topic. You can enter terms in any combination of these fields.

                  Keyword: finds the term anywhere in the item record

                  Title: finds the term only in the titles of item records

                  Author: searches for a specific author- enter last name, first name, or both.

                  Subject: finds the term as a subject in the item record.



Bottom half of Advanced Search Screen allows you to limit your search results. This section is optional.

Return only peer reviewed articles

Format: books, audio files, journals, or other items

Year: enter years into one or both of these fields to narrow down a date

Audience: juvenile or non-juvenile

Content: fiction, non-fiction, biography, thesis/dissertation

Language: limit to items in a specific language

Library:: Cedar Crest, LVAIC, or Libraries Worldwide


The Results Page

After you click Search, you will be taken to the results page.  This page will show you the items which were found using your search terms.  On the left side of the screen, you can limit your search results.  You can also change how the items are sorted.  Click on an item to get more information and to find it in the library.


Item Information Page

Once you've clicked on an item to get more information on the results page, you will be directed to the Item Information Page. The right portion of this page shows specific information about the item, including:

         Author: click to see other items by this author

         View eBook: click on the eBook button, when available

         View Description: 

         Browse the Shelf: click to see nearby items on the shelf, when available in print or DVD, for example

         Explore Editions and Formats: click to view all editions and formats


There are also ways to save and share this item:

         Cite: allows you to copy or export a citation in multiple formats

         Link: copies the permalink url of this item for future use 


         Save: adds the title to public or private list of library items



In the lower portion of the item screen:

         Check Availability

         Libraries Worldwide

         Request Item through Interlibrary Loan

If we have a book, the location will be Cedar Crest College Cressman Library, the status will say Available (or checked out and the due date), and the call number will be listed. The example below shows a book that is available in our library.

If we do not have a book, you can request it through Interlibrary loan. That is, if another library has what you're looking for, they will send it to us for you! Ask someone at the Lending Services or Information Services desk to assist you with this.

 Chat with a librarian