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Research Guides


How to search the library catalogue

Start at the library homepage

  • Develop keywords relating to your topic & enter them into the search field
  • Use Boolean operators like AND to link words & ideas together in your search
  • Use quotation marks to search words together as a phrase






To narrow your search results, use some of the options on the left hand side:

  • Scroll down to where it says 'Subjects'
  • Click on 'Show More to view full list of subject headings
  • Go down the list & try some of the subjects


How can Boolean searches improve my results?

How do I search for a specific phrase?

How can I combine simple searches using Boolean?

Reading a sample catalogue record


1. Access the text online by selecting a link below "Full text availability".

2. 'Holdings' you can review the locations where the resource is available, such as online and libraries.

2. You can request a physical copy of the book by selecting "Library Pickup" if the book is marked as "Available".


What does 'stacks' mean?

What floor is my book on in Robarts?

Find e-Books

To limit your results to e-books, select 'Online' in the 'Refine your search' column on the left of your search results.

How do e-books work at U of T?

What kind of e-readers work with your e-books? Kindle? Nook?

Intro to e-books at University of Toronto Libraries

How to locate a book on the shelf

Most University of Toronto libraries use a system called Library of Congress to organize books on the shelf.

To find your book, you will need to know its call number and which library it can be found in.

How to request a book

If the book you're interested in is listed as N/A...

  1. Check to see if there is another copy at another St. George campus library.
  2. If there is, go get it at that library.
  3. If there is not, you can request it online. Here's how:

Finding course reserves

Start at the library homepage. Select "advanced search" and select the box next to "Course reserves".


Click on the reserve item you need. Write down the call number but also take note of the library and the location of the item within the library i.e. (course reserves or stacks).


Robarts Library - 4th Floor - Course Reserves

  • When entering the 4th floor from the escalators or the elevator, head left.
  • Course Reserves is located against the wall behind a set of metal detectors.