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Brief Guide to Research for Philosophy: Catalogs(OPACS)


Two catalogs are recommended: one, the University at Albany Libraries' catalog and provides access to titles in the Libraries; and, two, WorldCat, which is an extensive catalog-of-catalogs and provides access to important titles not owned by the University Libraries, but easily obtained via interlibrary loan(ILL).

Note: the OPAC like many indexes and databases uses specific terms for subject headings (referred to as controlled vocabulary). For assistance, check the Library of Congress Subject Headings volumes [REF Z 695 U4752x] or ask a Reference Librarian.

  • Primo Delivery Service The Library’s OPAC is an excellent resource for finding Philosophy resources. Following are some suggestions for using the catalog:
    • Browse search with “Subject heading begins with...” This allows you to search broader topics. For example, if you were searching for a general topic, you could search on:
      • Metaphysics
      • Note: for exact terms, see Library of Congress Subject Headings volumes [REF Z 695 U4752x] or ask a Reference Librarian
    • keyword search "Subject." For example, if your topic is women and philosophy, possible search terms might be:
      • women and metaphysics
        feminism and metaphysics
      • search related works. When you display a record, open the full record and examine the links listed under “Subjects -- Lib. Cong.;” these will take you to related works.

  • WorldCat: Accessible to University at Albany users only. This is an extensive collection of resources that are available through interlibrary loan. Use the same search strategies mentioned above. If you have an ILL account set up, just click on the "Submit Request to UAlbany" icon, enter your ILLiad username and password, and the request is complete. Remember to start early, because loan items may take up to 2 weeks to arrive.