Finding Books - An Overview
Bluffton University patrons have a number of options for finding books and other materials. This guide will focus on finding books, but much of the content will be relevant to other formats as well.
Bluffton patrons have several excellent options for locating and borrowing books. Sometimes it’s as easy as finding it here on the shelf at Musselman Library, while other times it means requesting from another library. Here is a simple breakdown of what the process might look like to find the books you need. Librarians would be happy to help you with any part of this process.
o Step One: Search the Bluffton Catalog - to find materials here at our library
o Step Two: Search the OhioLINK Catalog - to find materials at other academic libraries in Ohio
o Step Three: Search the SearchOhio Catalog - to find materials at public libraries in Ohio
o Step Four: Search WorldCat / Interlibrary Loan - usually, the first three steps will enable you to find what you need. But if not, you can search WorldCat to see if it might be available there. WorldCat includes materials from libraries around the world.
NOTE: while the above are described as step one, etc. there will be times when you might go directly to, say, SearchOhio. Or if you’re off-campus and rarely come to Bluffton, you might begin with OhioLINK.
WINDOW is the single search box on the library's homepage.
WINDOW searches many research databases as well as the Bluffton Catalog. It is the place to begin for finding journal articles, but it can also be used for finding books (as an alternative to the methods described in the boxes above and to the right).
You can use the WINDOW search box on the library’s homepage. Enter your search terms and click on the Search button.
This will take you to the main page for WINDOW.
Your results will include both books and articles. To limit your search to the Bluffton Catalog, look at the column on the left-hand side of the screen and check the box for Bluffton Catalog.
To expand your search to OhioLINK, click on the Search button at the bottom of the OhioLINK widget on the right side of the screen.
To expand your search beyond what is available at Bluffton, you want to search the OhioLINK Catalog. This includes the holdings of 90 academic libraries in Ohio, as well as the State Library of Ohio. You can search OhioLINK by clicking on the Search OhioLINK button in the Bluffton Catalog, or by going directly to the OhioLINK Catalog using the link on the library’s homepage.
SearchOhio is a group of public libraries across the state of Ohio that operates much like OhioLINK. Bluffton users can find the link to SearchOhio at the top of the screen when they’re viewing results in the OhioLINK catalog. Users can click on the SearchOhio link to do a search. There is also a direct link to SearchOhio on the library’s homepage. Users can find and request materials in SearchOhio just as they do in OhioLINK.
WorldCat / Interlibrary Loan
WorldCat includes materials from libraries around the world. WorldCat is listed on the library’s Research Databases page. Bluffton patrons can search the Worldcat catalog and if materials are found, patrons can fill out an Interlibrary Loan request form. The library staff will then try to borrow the book from a library that owns the item.
The Interlibrary Loan page can be accessed through the link in the Services category on the library's homepage.