Watch these two videos to learn how to search for a book using our Online Catalog or OneSearch, and then how to find a specific book on the shelf.
Library Catalog Basic Search
Starting from the Library Catalog Basic Search screen you can search by Keyword, Title, Author, or Subject by selecting the radio buttons and typing search words in the text box.
The default Limits setting will search the entire collection. You may also limit your search to smaller sub-collections: Ejournals (electronic periodicals--not specific articles), Ebooks, NCOD (National Center on Deafness), TCC (Teacher Curriculum Center), Periodicals/Serials (not specific articles), Videos, Reference Room, Special Collections, or Sound Recordings by selecting a collection from the drop-down menu.
Searching for a specific Item
Select an Author or Title search if you know the author (last name, first name) or at least the first few words of the title.
Searching for Items by Topic
There are two ways to search the online catalog for resources on a topic: by Keyword or by Subject.
- A Basic Keyword search will simultaneously look for words in titles of materials, in subject headings, and in notes fields.
- A Subject search will locate materials by Library of Congress Subject Headings, which is a controlled vocabulary or standard list of subject terms. The Oviatt Library assigns Library of Congress Subject Headings to all items listed in the online catalog.
- Another way to find the Library of Congress Subject Heading for your topic is to search the catalog by Keyword, display the record for a relevant title, and select one or more of the Subjects listed for that record.
Viewing Results in the Library Catalog
Select a title to see more information.
Information includes publication information, location, call number and checkout status. Click on the various links to find more items by the same author or in the same subject area.
Find a Book on the Shelves
- Check the Status field of the book's record in the catalog.
- IN LIBRARY - book is available for checkout.
- DUE + date - book has already been checked out.
- The Location field shows the general location of the book.
- Most books are on the 2nd and 3rd floors.
- For other locations, check the location codes table.
- The Call # field gives the book's call number, which serves as the book's address in the library. Each row of books on the 2nd and 3rd floors will have a sign at the end indicating which call numbers can be found on that row.
Placing Holds in the Library Catalog
- You may place a hold on material that is currently checked out. Click the "Place a Hold" button.
- When prompted, type in your CSUN User ID and Password. If you are not a CSUN student, faculty or staff member, type your name and 14-digit bar code from your valid CSUN photo ID in the area provided.
- The library will hold the book at the Circulation Desk for 10 days following notification.
- You may contact the Circulation staff at 818-677-2274 if you need additional support or information.