In this tutorial, you will learn QuickSearch basics.

After completing this guide, you will be able to:

  • Find articles, books, and other materials using Quicksearch.
  • Filter or limit your search results.
  • Manage your citations.


Use the arrows below to navigate through the tutorial or click the Contents button in the top right to skip to any section. As you proceed you will be asked to interact with the website displayed in the frame to the right. Click on underlined words or phrases to view additional information. At the end of the guide, you may print or email a certificate of completion.


What is QuickSearch?

QuickSearch is a tool that allows you to search most of the Consortium Library's online and print resources using a single search box. You might think of it as Google for the library. 

It does not include the content of some of the library’s specialized databases but does include the library catalog and about 80% of the library's journal articles. Because it searches so many items along with the full text when available, QuickSearch is a great place to start.

QuickSearch can also be used to search far beyond what our library has to include most of what exists at other libraries (this feature is covered in our advanced tutorial).

Where is QuickSearch?

QuickSearch is centrally located on the Consortium Library home page.

Getting Started

Let's say you are doing research on zombies in popular culture.

On the Consortium Library home page to the right:

1. Type the following words into the QuickSearch search box: zombies popular culture.

2. Hit enter or click Search.

You should now see a page of search results.

Limiting Results

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Notice the number of results displayed near the top (your number will vary from this screenshot). "9,087 results sorted by relevance"

Rather than looking through all of these results to find the ones you want to use, let's focus your search with some of the filters on the left. Click here if you don't see the left bar.

Let's say you only want recent journal articles that you can read online right now.

1. Click on Full Text Online under Refine Your Search.

2. Click on Journal Article under Content Type.

3. Under Publication Date use the slider or text boxes to narrow your search from 2011 to present.

Limiting Results

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Now that you have limited your search, it's time to look at your results.

First you will notice that you now have significantly fewer results that are more relevant to your need (your number will vary from this screenshot).

661 results displayed

As you scroll through your first page of results, you will see that your search terms are highlighted within each citation.

Anatomy of a Citation

Let's look closely at a citation. Choose any citation in your results and follow along.

screenshot of item citation

Near the bottom of your citation you will see the item type. Since you limited your search to journal articles that are full text online, all of your items will have the same item type: "Journal Article: Full Text Online."

screen shot showing the label, "Journal Article: Full Text Online"

Also near the bottom is a Preview link.

Clicking here opens up a preview of the full citation that provides you more information about the item. The preview can help you further decide whether the item will be useful for you.

Saving Your Citations

You have several options for capturing the citations you need for your paper. You will notice the following icons on the right side of each citation.

cite this item (quote icon) Cite this item

The quotation mark icon brings up a tool that formats the citation into your chosen style (like MLA, APA, etc.). You can then copy/paste the citation into your paper or print it out.

When using these auto-generated citations in your paper, be sure to double-check them for accuracy. See the Citing Sources guide for more information.

screen shot of the 'email this item' icon Email this item

Use the envelope icon to email the citation. You may choose to email the citation formatted in a particular style or as it appears in the search results. In either case, a link to the item will be included.

screen shot of 'save this item' icon Save this item

This is a handy feature when you want to cite, email, or export multiple citations at once. Click on the icon next to the citations you want to save, then click on the Saved Items folder to view them.

screen shot of ellipses icon for 'more actions' More actions

This icon reveals the export to RefWorks feature for saving and managing citations.

Modifying Your Search

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Let's change the direction of our search and look for books on this topic.

First we need to remove the filters we currently have in place as they are limited to journal articles.

1. Click Clear Filters in the upper left corner of the page.

clear filters to start over

Modifying Your Search

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With the previous filters gone, let's add new filters to our 'zombies popular culture' search. We'd like a recent book that we can get today.

1. Click Book/eBook under Content Type.

2. Under Publication Date use the slider or text boxes to narrow your search from 2011 to present.

3. Click Library Location to view the list of locations.

4. Click UAA/APU Consortium.

At this point, you could browse through the results of books to find items that sound useful to your research.


You have completed the QuickSearch Basics tutorial.

For more in-depth searching tips, continue on to our QuickSearch Advanced Searching tutorial.

You can always get additional help from a librarian.

If you are completing this tutorial as an assignment, be sure to you request a certificate of completion on the next slide.


Please enter your name and email address to retrieve a copy of your completed quiz.

You can enter multiple email addresses separated by commas. If you are doing this for a class, you may need to enter your instructor's email address also.