The library's online catalog is known as WorldCat.
Here you can search for printed books and journals available in the library's collection. You can also search for eBooks, eJournals, and other media available to WVU Tech.
This is a broad search. You will get many results - maybe too many and not-so precise. But this basic search can help in another way. You will see different types of resources in the results, such as, reviews, criticism, biographies, cyclopedias, and other helpful resources.
This is a more refined search if you happen to know the title, parts of a title, or want to search for key terms that may be found in a title.. This type of search strategy will retrieve a matching record and identify the available format and copy held in the library.
If you are doing research on the works of a particular author, you will want to do an author search. The most common search strategy is to place the author's last name first followed by his/her first name. Example: Bronte, Emily. Some newer systems allow for natural order of a person' s name such as Emily Bronte.
Some authors used pseudonyms, so you'll need to include that in your search.
This type of search can help you identify relevant results. Cataloged items (book, journal) have records that contain subject headings. These subject headings describe the primary subjects of a work, as well, as secondary subjects. Often the record includes other entries associated with the book such as the author's name, geographical location, time period, or other significant topics.
First, try a simple keyword search such as American Poets. Keyword searches produce a large amount of results. This type of search is broad and less precise. Fortunately, most online catalogs and databases have features to help you refine your search terms. Refinement features may include author, year, format, content, audience, or sub-topics.
Creating a search strategy:
Next, try Boolean searching. This type of searching allows you to combine keywords using operators AND, OR, and NOT.
To narrow your results use AND with two or more concepts. Example: Edgar Allen Poe AND Purloined Letter AND criticism
To broaden your search use OR with synonymous or related words.Example: Narrative OR Plot - the database will produce results to include one result or the other or both.
Sometimes one of your search terms may produce a list of results that includes articles that are not relevant to your topic. Using the operator NOT eliminates words from your search and reduces the number of results. Example: short story NOT novel . The word Novel will be excluded from the search.
Full-text Databases: refers to electronic resources with access to the complete text of articles in journals, books, newspapers, theses, dissertations, and more..illustrations, graphs, charts, and images may be included.
Books on the following subclasses in American Literature can be found in the following ranges:
PS1-3626 American literature
PS126-138 Biography, memoirs, letters, etc.
PS147-152 Women authors
PS163-173 Treatment of special subjects, classes
PS185-231 By period
PS185-195 17th-18th centuries
PS201-217 19th century
PS221-228 20th century
PS229-231 21st century
PS241-286 Special regions, states, etc.
PS271-285 West and Central
PS370-380 Prose fiction
PS430-439 Wit and humor. Satire
PS(451)-478 Folk literature
PS490 Juvenile literature (General)
PS501-689 Collections of American literature
PS530-536.3 By period
PS537-574 By region
PS561-572 West and Central
PS593 By form
PS601-617 By period
PS642-659.5 Prose (General)
PS651-659.2 By period
PS666-668.2 By period
PS700-3576 Individual authors
PS700-893 Colonial period (17th and 18th centuries)
PS991-(3390) 19th century