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Newcastle University

University Library

Subject support guide

Your subject-specific guide to using library resources.

Library Search

Finding Information

When you’re starting to look for information, Library Search allows you to do a broad search across our many subscription databases and special collections. Discover how to find books and articles using Library search...
  Check out our Library Search video to get started...

Finding Books

Library Search defaults to an Everything except articles search. This will find whole publications such as books, e-books, journal titles, theses and database titles. Be sure to log in before you start to search, so that you can see full information about the number of copies available on the shelf. 
You can search using topic keywords or for a known title or author. Use the filters on the left to refine your results to books.  
Library Search search results showing log in

Library Search tells you the library and floor where the book can be found and we have library maps to help you find the correct area to look. You will also be given the shelfmark that will help you locate the exact place on the shelf. 

Make a note of the shelfmark - write it down, take a photograph, use the University App to keep it on your device - so that you are able to find the exact book you want. It's made up of two parts,

 Dewey Decimal number that tells you what the book is about. Books at the same number will be on the same topic, so it is always a good idea to browse the shelf for other titles that might be useful. 

 Three letters (usually from the author's name) which will tell you the exact location of the book on the shelf. Lots of books may have the same Dewey number, but the letters will be different.

It is important to make a note of both parts of the shelfmark as we all forget part of it by the time we get to the shelf. 

Library Search information showing locations and available copies

If a book is out on loan, Library Search will show you the date when the next copy is due back. Be sure to place a reservation, so that you get access to books that are in high demand. 

Finding ebooks

Library Search allows you to refine your results to show books that are available to read as an ebook. Use your keywords or book details to perform a basic search and filter your results by Full Text Online.  

Can't find the books you want?

There will be times when the book that you want is not on the shelf, either because it has been borrowed by someone else, or because we do not have it in the library collection. If all copies of the book are out on loan, make a reservation via Library Search. We'll email you when the book becomes available. If the book is returned on time, it will be with you within 7 days.

If you are a student you can ask the Library to purchase a book by Recommending a book not held by the Library. Complete the form and the book will be reserved for you and added to the Library collection for others to use. This will be especially useful when doing your dissertation or research project. 

If you are a member of University staff, and you would like to recommend a book for purchase, then please complete a Suggest a Book form. If we are unable to purchase a copy of the book, you will be given the option to request an Inter Library Loan and we'll borrow the book for you from the British Library.

Reservations image link

Inter Library loan for journal articles we don't subscribe to

An image showing Recommend a book.

Finding journals and articles

You can search for journals and journal articles in Library Search. Use the Everything search to find articles that match your keywords, or browse for articles in the key journal titles for your subject. 

Refining to peer-reviewed journals will leave you with article results that were published in scholarly/ academic journals. 

Library Search refined to peer-review articles

Not all of our electronic resources are searchable within Library Search and some specialist subject databases may not be included. Library Search does not include data from Westlaw, Compendex, Mintel, and some chemistry databases.