Friday, October 16, 2009

Thing #9 - WorldCat

WorldCat lets you search the collections of libraries both locally and thousands more around the world. WorldCat doesn't include every library but it is the largest collection of searchable titles in the world.

Items in WorldCat include

* Books
* Music CDs
* DVDs/videos
* article citations - sometimes with links to full text
* documents and photos of local or historic significance
* digital versions of rare items

WorldCat is a version of what our Interlibrary Loan department uses to find what libraries own items so the items can be requested for our customers.Resources:

About WorldCatWorldCat help and FAQs

WorldCat Advanced Search screen

1. Take a look around WorldCat and search a recent book title. Click on the title for more detailed information and in the Enter location box put in your home zipcode and click go. What's the closest library that owns the title?
2. Click on the different tabs on the screen for a individual title such as Details and Subjects to find what information is hiding under those tabs.
3. Go to the advanced search screen and play around with some searches, then blog about WorldCat. Do you think WorldCat will help you and your customers with the form below?

Optional Advanced Exercise:
1. Use the Ocean County Library catalog and search any New Jersey or Ocean County history topic. Pick a book with an old publication date (the older the better). Now search that title at WorldCat. See how many libraries are listed in WorldCat as owning that book. Can you find a title where OCL is one of 500 or less libraries that own it in the world? Or just search the Pauline Miller title, Ocean County: Four Centuries in the Making to see who owns a copy of our local history.

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