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Finding Information: Search tools

Finding information

Search tools

Library catalogue


The Library catalogue is a search engine that allows you to find resources in the Library's collection. It includes records for print material (all the books and other items available in the Library building), as well as links to the online content housed in the Library's databases. Like any search engine, you can perform a very specific search in the Library catalogue (like for the title of your textbook), or you can search more broadly using keywords. 


Watch the short video on searching for your textbook in the Library catalogue. 


Library databases


Databases are online libraries, providing a search platform to find and access ebooks, journal articles, newspaper articles, theses, videos and more. They are designed to enable searching for topics or areas of interest, with powerful search functionality and refining options that enables targeted research.


Watch this short video on searching the ProQuest database to learn more about how to perform an effective search using alternative keywords (combined with AND/OR), truncation and phrase searching.     




Searching the Internet through Google or another search engine can be a useful step in the search process. As previously discussed, you can use it to: 


  • discover background information on your topic
  • find effective keywords
  • locate materials not often included in academic databases (such as reports)


It is important that you evaluate any information you find for bias, accuracy and appropriateness before you include it in your assignment.


Tips for effective Google searching


Using AND and OR, phrase searching and truncation (previously covered on the Search strategy page) will all work in Google and other search engines. In addition, there are further ways to improve the performance of your search.