The new look and feel of the University of Toronto Libraries’ library catalogue makes it easy to use on all devices from smartphones to desktops.
- Responsive design - optimized for all screen sizes, including desktops, smartphones, and tablets
- Fully accessible to AA standards
- Clean layout and redesigned icons
- Long scrolling pages
- Option to refine your search by available items
- Condensed view
You may notice some new icons in the refreshed library catalogue. See the legend below for details.
- Magnifying glass – perform a search
- Marked – shows how many records you have marked in one session. This icon will bring you to a page listing all of your marked records.
- Grouped records – similar search results are grouped together; click to expand
- Full List View – lists search results with all details visible (default)
- Text Only View – lists search results with images removed
- Back to Top – jumps back to the top of the current page
- Share – opens links to options below
- View – opens item details page
- Request – opens the Request an Item page for intercampus delivery and/or holds
- Link – produces a permanent link to the item record in the catalogue
- Cite – opens a list of citation styles for the item
- Refworks – export the item record to Refworks
- Email – send an email containing a link to the item record
- Report – notify the Library of a problem with an eresource
- Refine – displays options for refining your search results (on a mobile device)
- Back Arrow – brings you back to your search results
- Item Title Ellipsis – display an item record title that is more than two lines in length
Searching the Library Catalogue
What can you search?
print and electronic copies of journals, magazines and newspapers
microfiche and microform
cartographic material (maps and atlases)
What can you not search?
- electronic articles (choose Articles or Article Finder from the libraries main page)
- databases (choose Popular databases or Subjects A-Z from the libraries main page)
Perform a Search
Watch below to see how to use catalogue functions to refine a search.
Search can be limited to title, journal title, series title, author, subject, or call number. Use quotation marks to find an exact phrase or title, e.g. “MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers”
The Browse option provides a single search box. Search through an alphabetical list, e.g. authors with the surname Foot. Search can be limited to title, author, subject, series, medical subject, journal title, or genre.
Option 1: Multi-field - Click + to add a row for additional fields. Search can be limited to title, author, subject, publication year, publisher, place of publication, or call number. Search can be limited to a category, e.g. to find English language items on mining engineering in Canada at the Engineering library use:
Option 2: Boolean - Between keywords use: AND, OR, NOT, NEAR, ONEAR, ( ), e.g. physics AND (nuclear OR atomic). Use a maximum of 10 keywords.
Narrow your search using AND
Using the Boolean command AND in your search tells the search engine to give you results that contain all of the words you have entered.
- Example: media AND violence. Only those results that contain both media and violence will appear in your search results list.
Expand your search using OR
Using Boolean command OR in your search tells the search engine to give you results that contain any of the words you have entered.
- Example: teenagers OR adolescents. Any results that contain either teenagers or adolescents will appear in your results list.
Narrow your results using NOT
Using Boolean command NOT in your search tells the search engine to give you results that contain the word(s) you entered except the word following NOT.
- Example: Psychology NOT Developmental. Any results that contain the word "psychology" will appear in your results list except those results that also contain the word "developmental".
By using parentheses, you can ask the catalogue to perform several Boolean searches at the same time. It will first perform the search enclosed in parentheses before moving on to the other search terms. This is called nesting.
Example: (England OR Britain) AND (Victorian OR 19th century) AND women
This search will bring hits that contain all of the following criteria:
- either England or Britain
- either Victorian or 19th century
Using Subject Headings to Search the Catalogue
Subject headings are similar to tags or hashtags. They describe the topic of an item in the catalogue, but unlike tags they come from an official, standardized set of terms and are assigned by cataloguing experts.
You can use subject headings to:
- Quickly determine the subject of an article or book
- Search the library catalogue more efficiently
- Discover other items on the same subject
The library catalogue uses Library of Congress Subject Headings.
You will find them in the item's detailed description (see below).
Similar search results are grouped together. Click anywhere on the record to expand the results.
Mobile users click on the grouped records icon.
Refining Your Search
To refine your search, mobile users first click Refine. Click on any item to filter search. Use +More to see more choices. Click X to delete any search steps.
Records Returned Options
Mobile users first click Options. Sort search results by Relevance (default), Title, Author, or Publication Date.
Search results can be reduced to text only. First click View. Then click Text Only View.
From the item record click the Share icon for item options.
View Record Details
To find an item in a library, you need to know:
- Item availability - IN indicates the item is in the library, OUT indicates the item is checked out
- The name of the library
- The location within the library, for example:
- Stacks: the library’s main book shelves
- Course Reserves: high-demand course readings that have short term loan periods, e.g. 3 hours
- Reference: encyclopedias, dictionaries and other materials that must remain in the library
- The call number. Books are shelved by subject. You will find similar items on the same shelf.
Mark an item to save it in your marked records folder. Marked items are temporary and will be lost once you close your browser.
To view your marked items, click "Marked Records" at the top of the search results list. Then select one or more items in the marked records folder to act on:
- Remove – deletes the item you are viewing from Marked Records
- Email – sends an email containing a link to the marked record
- Refworks – exports the marked record to Refworks
- Export CSV – exports the marked record(s) as a CSV file
- Unselect All – deletes all of your selected items from Marked Records
Finding Links to E-resources
From the item record click on the Web icon or the link beside it.
Report a Problem with an E-resource
If you cannot link to an e-resource:
- From the item record click on the Share icon
- Then Select the Report icon
- Fill out and submit the form
How do I borrow items from the library?
Use your TCard to borrow items. Your TCard is your U of T library card. For more about loan services, visit www.library.utoronto.ca. From the Services menu, choose Loan services.
How do I place a hold on an item that is currently out of the library?
Click Options / Request. You will receive a notice when the item is returned to the library.
How do I renew items online?
Click Renew on the library homepage. You can also visit the Circulation desk of the Library or call 416-978-8450 to renew items.
How do I borrow an item from another campus if it is not on your campus?
Click Options / Request to have it delivered in about 2 to 3 business days.
How do I borrow an item from another library if U of T does not have it?
Visit https://www.library.utoronto.ca. From the Quick Links menu, choose RACER (interlibrary loans).
What is a call number?
A call number is an address. It tells you where the book (or DVD or print Journal) is located within the library. A book’s call number appears in the University of Toronto Libraries library catalogue. In the library catalogue, the call number is written horizontally.
On the book spine, it appears vertically, making it easier to find a specific call number on the shelves. Each book (or other item) has its own unique call number, which is taped to the lower outside edge of the book’s spine.
How do I find an ebook in the library catalogue?
- Search for your title or topic in the library catalogue
- Click "Online" under the "Refine your search" column on the left side of the search results screen
- Mobile users, click "Refine" to bring up the "Refine your search" column on the left side of your screen. Then click "Online"
- To open the book, click the link next to "Web" below the cover image
- To filter out e-journals, select the "Books" under the "Format" category in the "Refine your search" column
How do I know if a book cannnot be borrowed?
University of Toronto students, faculty and staff can borrow library materials with a valid TCard. Some items cannot be borrowed, however.
- Periodicals (ie. print journals, magazines, and newspapers)
- Books in a library's reference collection
- Books labelled with a "For use in library only" sticker
Loan privileges may vary at individual libraries.
What does it mean when a book is listed as "out"?
This means that the book is not available, either because it has been checked out by someone else, or it is missing.
If there is a date next to the book, you can place a hold on it to get next in line for it.
If the book is missing and there isn't another copy at U of T, place an interlibrary loan request to get a copy from another library.
How do I create a durable link to books and catalogue pages?
The library catalogue allows you to access a durable link in two ways:
- In the search results screen
- Click the sharing options button in the bottom right corner of the search result.
- Click the link button. This will bring up a small pop up window with the durable link.
2. In book's detailed page view
- Click the options button under the cover image.
- Click the link button. This will bring up a small pop up window with the durable link.