Skip to Main Content

Using TechCat+: Shortcuts for Advanced Searching

Lawrence Tech's version of WorldCat Local is a window into resources on campus, on the web, and at other libraries...a great place to start research

Seach Examples

au:     the Author field

ti:      somewhere in the title field

su:    appears in the LIbrary of Congress Subject Headings...this is good for books or ebooks but not journal articles

kw:   anywhere in the record.  Any search is a keyword search, but you can use this when combining terms (see below)

bn:    the ISBN number, can be without hyphens

in:     the ISSN number, but do include the hyphen

no:    the OCLC number

You can use Boolean searching using capital letters for  AND - OR -  NOT


au:wright AND architecture    finds wright and architecture in the author field, not what we want

architecture AND au:wright   will work better

au:wright AND (ti:architecture OR su:architecture)
      finds the author Wright if the Title includes "architecture" or if the Subject includes "architecture"

au:wright AND kw:architecture
      finds the author Wright and the word "architecture" anywhere in the record


Symbols or wildcards may help you to search with more precision:

In command line searching these symbols may be useful =   :   " "

a label followed by = will search the words in the exact order in the field

a label followed by :  will search the words in any order in the field

a label followed by : and " " will search for the words in the exact order in the field (quotations may also be used in a basic or advanced search without a label to find an exact phrase)

ti= searches the words in the exact order in the title field
ti:  searches the words in any order in the title field

Wildcards & Truncation

Wildcards # or ? represent characters in a search term. Use them if you are not sure of the spelling, if there is an alternate spelling or if you only know part of the term.

Discovery finds plurals of words automatically (e.g., if you search for "home" it will find "homes" as well.

# represents a single character. Wom#n finds results for woman and women.

any number of additional characters. If you know the maximun number of characters the wildcard will replace use a number, such as ?2. Fine?2 retrieves records that contain the word fine, plus variations of the word with up to two other characters, such as finer, finest.

* you can also use an asterisk for unlimited truncation

Truncation  ? or * allows you to search for a term plus variations. Architect? or architect* would find architects, architectural, architecture. Architectur? or architectur* would find architecture, architectural