It is possible to do a quick and dirty, one box keyword search of the contents of the MSU Libraries' web site, starting at the top left of the Libraries' home page. The results will be sorted into several categories to follow up on: articles from journals, books/media from our online catalog, databases, library research guides like this one, other. Watch a short video about it here. To do a more traditional search, read on.
Use Books and Media (online catalog). Search by personal author, corporate author, title of book, author/title combination, title of periodical, keyword(s) that might be found in a title, subject heading, or call number.
Authors may be individuals, organizations or corporate entities. Examples: Richard Dawkins. Royal Society. Templeton Foundation.
Titles may be titles of particular books or particular journals/periodicals. Do not begin a title search with the words “A,” “An,” or “The” but do include these words as they appear in the title phrase after the first word. Examples: Blind Watchmaker. Origins of Modern Science. Isis.
Call numbers can be searched if you have a general or specific call number. In this way one can browse the shelves of the Main Library from the comfort of home. Example: QH 366 is where books about evolution will be found.
Keywords are words that one hopes to find in titles. In keyword searching the computer matches the word or words requested; it has no brain and cannot think. It has no capacity to understand the meaning of the word as you intend it in your search. Recently coined terms and topics may be best searched by keyword because it takes some time for new subject headings to be established by catalogers. Examples: Age. Reason. Revelation. Scientific revolution. Care package. Text box. Flash drive.
Subject headings are standardized words and phrases assigned by catalogers when cataloging library materials. They are published in the Library of Congress' List of Subject Headings, a large set of red books, located in the Reference collection, call number Z 695.... Remember, persons (last name first), organizations, companies, places, and events may all be L.C. subjects even though their names are not in the L.C. List... Subject heading searching usually results in better quality subject retrieval than keyword searching. Examples: Galilei, Galileo (for books about him). Evolution. Atheism. God. Physics. Deism. Science—history. Cosmology, ancient.
Possibly useful subject headings below. Use subject search.
Bible and evolution
Big Bang Theory
Chain of being (philosophy)
Four elements (philosophy)
Harmony of the spheres
Historians of science
|Intelligent design (teleology)
Medicine, magic, mystic and spagiric
Nature in the Bible
Nature in the Koran
Quantum theory—religious aspects
Supernatural (theology)—history of doctrines
Vatican Palace (Vatican City)