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B2: Bibliographic Records

The Bibliographic Records Find Tool


Use the Bibliographic Records Find Tool to search for bibliographic records.

Accessing the Bibliographic Records Find Tool


To access the Bibliographic Records Find Tool, select Cataloging and Bibliographic Records from the Polaris Shortcut Bar.  You can also use the keyboard shortcut F12 or click on the dark blue orb and select the Bibliographic Records icon.


Performing a Search


  1. Begin all searches using the General tab.

    Since you have accessed the Bibliographic Records Find Tool directly, the default Object is for Bibliographic Records.  If it is not, you may select it from the drop-down menu.

  2. Next, select your access point in the Search By field.  There are multiple access points from which you can search for bibliographic records.


    While all access points will retrieve data, the All keyword fieldsAuthorBarcodeISBNISSNTitle, and UPC number options will be the most commonly used.


    ISBNs and UPC Numbers are also indexed as keywords, so ISBN and UPC searches can be performed using the All keyword fields access point.

  3. Next, depending on the Search by option you choose, you will see either a Type drop-down menu OR a From/To date drop-down menu.

    1. Type

      If the Type drop-down menu appears, select the appropriate search Type you wish to perform from the drop-down menu. 

      Exact Match (implicitly truncated) – Displays all the records beginning with the letters or numbers in the For field.

      Exact Match (explicitly truncated) – Displays only the records that exactly match the letters or numbers in the For field, unless you use wildcard characters.

      Browse – Displays the specified index headings, beginning with entries that start with text similar to the text in the For field.

      Keyword Search – Displays all records that include the exact search terms you enter in the For field, in any order.

      Phrase Search – Use to perform a keyword search for multiple words in the exact order in which you entered them. 


      A Keyword Search is the most forgiving.

    2. From/To

      If the selected Search by requires a specific date or range of dates, a From/To date drop-down menu will appear from which you can select the appropriate dates.


      If searching for activity on a single date, enter the same date in both the From and To fields.

  4. Next, select an appropriate sort in the Sort by drop-down menu if you want your search results to display in a specific order. 


    It is perfectly acceptable to use (None) as a Sort by option.

  5. Next, enter the search query in the For field.  



    Polaris ignores letter case, multiple spaces, and all punctuation marks (except quotation marks and wildcards) entered in the For field.  The search does consider special characters and diacritics.


    You may also consider using wildcard characters * (asterisk) or ? (question mark) in a search to represent the rest of the word or number in a search.


    If automatic suggestions are available, you will see a list of suggested terms which you may select at any time to execute your search.

  6. If you wish, you can also limit your search to narrow the results by selecting an option from the Limit by drop-down menu.

    Depending on the Limit By option you choose, you will see either a Value field OR a Values menu.

    1. Value Field

      If the Value field appears, enter the relevant text in the Value field.


      You must be precise when entering free text in the Value field because there is no implicit truncation.  When you enter only a part of the value you want to limit by, you must also enter an asterisk (*).

      For example, if you are limiting your search by author, enter the author's name in the Value field using any of the following options:

      Grisham John

    2. Values Menu

      If the Values menu appears, select the appropriate search value(s) you wish to include from the menu.

  7. Confirm that Normal is selected in the Search Mode.

  8. Finally, if you wish to generate only a count of the number of items, you may do so by checking the Count Only check box.

  9. Click the Search button.


The Settings, Scoping, Branches, Collections & Databases tabs can be used to create complex, precise searches allowing you to further limit your searches, use qualifiers, Boolean operators, and select specific libraries.

Working with Your Search Results


Once the search has been executed, the results will appear at the bottom of the Find Tool window.


Bibliographic record searches will yield the following data from which you may discern relevancy:

Title – The title of the item

Author –The person or entity attributed credit for creating the item

Format – The format of the item

Linked Items – The number of items attached to that bibliographic record

Holds -The number of holds attached to that bibliographic record

Publication Date – The year of publication

Call Number - The call number, if any, that appears in the bibliographic record

Control Number – The system generated bibliographic record identifier


You may re-sort the columns by clicking on the headings.  The columns will sort either alphabetically or numerically depending on their content.


The initial display of results will be limited by the size of the window.  However, if you wish to see more results, you can either scroll through the list or enter CTRL+SHIFT+A to see all results.


To view a bibliographic record, double click on an entry from your search results, or select an entry, right-click on your mouse and select Open. 

Setting Default Search Options


The Polaris Find Tool can be set to default to the same selections in the Search by, Type, Sort by and Limit by fields each time you search for the same type of record.  However, you can still change the search criteria at any time. 


To save your settings with the options you have selected, click on Options from the Menu bar and select Save as User Default.


The saved settings are associated with your log-in information and remain the same each time you log in with the same user ID.

Closing the Bibliographic Records Find Tool


To close the Bibliographic Records Find Tool, click on File from the Menu bar and select Close. You can also enter Alt+F4 on your keyboard, or click on the X in the upper right-hand corner of the window.

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