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Arts 130: Exploring Poetry: Get started


Welcome to Arts 130: Exploring Poetry (Dr Dehgani). This guide provides information on how to use the library for your coursework. The librarian for English is Tom Harding. If you have any questions related to the library, please contact him. He is based at UW's main and arts library, the Dana Porter.

Catalogue search

What is a catalogue

A catalogue is the register of all items owned by a library. This will include books, journals, articles, movies, maps, dissertations, newspapers, and other materials. The catalogue is the best place to start a search for literature.

Waterloo's catalogue (Omni)

Waterloo's catalogue is called Omni. You may access it by going to

Waterloo shares Omni with 15 other Ontario university libraries. As a UW student, you are entitled to borrow print books from any of the libraries in this group, without any additional cost.

How to search

When you're on the Omni homepage, I recommend you use an advanced rather than a basic search. To open an advanced search, click the button at the end of the search line.

At the top of the advanced search builder, you'll see a choice of scope. By default the search will include all 16 libraries in our consortium. If you would like to search Waterloo only, change this setting.

To execute a search, enter your keywords in the first search box and click "search." If you'd like to limit the type of item that appears in the results, change the "resource type" dropdown from "all items" to a specific type.

After you've done a search, you may also use the filters along the left side to narrow your results.

Database search

What is a database?

A database is a bank of information the library subscribes to from an external company. The best-known database providers are ProQuest and Ebsco. Most databases are subject-specific, although there are also some that are interdisciplinary. Databases contain a variety of information, including articles, book chapters, citations, images, and primary sources. The majority of databases contain a mixture of citations and actual items. Some databases, such as Scopus, only include citations.

How to find databases

Waterloo's databases are accessible from several locations. The easiest way to find them is by following these steps:

1. Start at the library home page:

2. In the "quick links" box on the left side of the page, click "databases."

The list on the following page includes all the databases to which we subscribe. You can browse alphabetically, search by title, or filter by subject.

Beneath each databases is a description of its content. Read these descriptions to find one that contains the type of information you need.

One database I recommend for this class is the MLA International Bibliography, which comes from Ebsco.


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Tom Harding
Dana Porter Library
519-888-4567 x 42906