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Library Research Guides

Green Indigeneities: English 317/AmCult 301

A research guide for Susan Najita's Fall 2013 class.

Catalog Basics

Subject Terms for Types of Primary Sources

You can enhance your searches in Mirlyn by using subject terms that describe materials by format.  For example, if you enter your topic as a keyword (i.e., in the “all fields” field) in Mirlyn’s advanced search, you can also add subject terms that will specify a type of material related to that topic.

 You can also add date ranges (e.g., 19th century) and geographic regions (Africa) as subject terms to focus in on the time period or area you are researching: e.g., biography AND “19th century” AND Norway.

Subject Terms that specify format:

  •  archival resources
  •  archives
  • atlases
  • bibliography
  • biography
  • broadsides
  • case studies
  • charts, diagrams
  • concordances
  • correspondence
  • diaries
  • dictionaries
  • encyclopedias
  • handbooks, manuals, etc.
  • illustrations
  • indexes
  • manuscripts—catalogs
  • maps
  • newspapers
  • periodicals 
  • personal narratives
  • photograph collections
  • pictorial works
  • portraits
  • sermons
  • sources
  • speeches in Congress
  • speeches, addresses, etc.
  • statistics

Searching for Books in Mirlyn: The Basics

In order to find books in the library catalog (Mirlyn), start at

From the basic search screen, you can search by author, title, keyword (all fields), or subject.

From the advanced search screen, you can combine searches.  For example, you can search for a book by a particular author with a specific keyword in the title.  You can also limit by library, publication date, language, etc.

Search Strategies:

  • An asterisk (*) or question mark (?) can be used to truncate search terms, i.e., to find words that have a common root.  Use an asterix for multiple letters (minim* will find minimum, minimize, minimal) and a question mark for single letters (wom?n will find both woman and women).
  • Use quotation marks to search for exact phrases ("ocean tourism").
  • You can use a connector (AND, OR, or NOT) to widen or limit your search.

For even more information about using Mirlyn, visit the Mirlyn Research Guide.

Mirlyn Book Record

All the basic information about an item is included in the Mirlyn record.

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