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Library

Using the Catalog: Basics

Watch this video to see the basics of using the NYFA Library catalog.

Welcome to this NYFA library tutorial. In this video, we're going to be going over the basic functionality of the NYFA library catalog. For more information on how to log in to the catalog, or for more advanced searching techniques, please check the other tutorial videos on our website.

So, you can see we're currently logged in to the catalog homepage, and from this homepage there's some basic information you can access. We have our hours listed here on the page, as well as the limits for how many items per section you can checkout and the duration of those checkouts. They do differ to each section of the collection. And you can see here we also have a Recently Added Titles section. So what this section is is basically a running tally of what we're adding to the collection, and as we catalog those materials, they populate into this list. So you can see it populates five items at a time. If you'd like to see more, you can click More and it will bring you to a sort of second five items. So, you know, if there's a new title that's just come out of theaters or just come out on home market release, you can see if we've gotten it in. Ya know, we recently got The Irishman and Parasite into the collection, so those are a couple of kinda good examples of recent releases.

So let's say you see something... oh, before we move on, there is also a series of links across the bottom of the page here to some direct links to our databases as well as some other tutorials and such. So lets say, though, that you see an item in this list that you'd like to check out. You can click the record and it will bring you to a kind of basic information page. You can see the location is listed here, in this case this is a documentary, so it lives in the documentary section of the collection. And over on the right here, you'll see Holdings and Available listed. So Holdings is just the total number of copies of this particular film that we have in the collection, in this case one, and the number of Available copies, in this case also one. Which means that the copy of this film that we have is currently available for checkout. So if you'd like a little more than just basic information, you can of course always click through to the record and get a lot more information usually on what you're looking at. But you can also request a hold directly if this is something you'd like to check out. So, from this page, we would just need a little bit of basic information, you know, we really just need your name and your email address. Please do include your NYFA email address, that's our prefered method of communication and adding this here will make it a lot easier on us when we try to reach out to let you know when the hold is ready for pickup. And, of course, you can add comments to this if you'd like. One of the things that this particularly useful for is if you are looking for like, a Blu-ray copy of a film as opposed to a DVD, or vice versa, you can add that into the comments field here and make sure that, just to make sure that we get that information. And, of course, click Request Hold when you're done. And that will send the request directly to us and let us know that you'd like to check out that item.

So I'm going to go back, though, to the Home page for now. And let's talk a little bit about how to search with the catalog. Just some basic search tips. So, let's say you've logged in to here and you're looking for something. Maybe you don't even know specifically what you're looking for, maybe you have a title in mind, or something like that. You can see we have a dropdown here. An All Words search is just a keyword search. You're going to be searching whatever you put into the bar here against the entirety of the record in the catalog. So, it might come back with the title, it might come back as part of, another part of the record. Usually this will yield the most results, so if you're just starting out with research or you're not exactly sure what you're looking for, sometimes this would be the best option. You can, of course, specify a title, an author; Author also doubles as director for films, and so on and so forth. For the purposes of this demonstration, I'm going to go ahead and just search the film Moonlight. And I did this as an All Words search, and you'll see that I came back with about 28 results and the film Moonlight populates a little bit further down this list. You'll see I got a play, and a book, I actually got the screenplay for Moonlight, which we do have in the collection, and then finally the film populates here. And you'll see, actually, that we have two different records here. And, at a glance, what we usually try to do is we try to include an accurate little thumbnail image for the records based off of the format. So, you can see this top record here looks like a Blu-ray case, and this one looks a little bit more like a DVD case. And that usually is accurate to the type of format. If you're unsure, of course, you can click through to the record, and you'll see listed here that this is, in fact, the Blu-ray copy of this film. It requires a Blu-ray player to play. Now, of course, once you locate what you're looking for, you can see the number of Holdings and Available and of course go through that hold request if you want to hold it.

So, lets say, though, that you know, for a fact, that you're looking for the film Moonlight and you don't want to deal with 28 results, you want to get there a little more quickly. You can, of course, use this dropdown to specify Title, click search. Now, of course, Moonlight does show up in the Title field of a few other items. But, you can see at the top, we only got 9 results back instead of 28, so we have managed to limit down the results of our search by quite a bit. And again, you can get to the record just by scrolling down.

So, yeah, this concludes our demonstration of the basic search functionality and just functionality generally of the NYFA library catalog.
 

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