Speaking Notes from a Tech Talks Presentation by Nancy Reis, December 12, 2007
- What is WorldCat.org?
- What You Can Do on WorldCat.org Without an Account
- What You Can Do on WorldCat.org With an Account
- Ways We Use WorldCat.org in the Digital Lab
- Comparing WorldCat.org with Open WorldCat and WorldCat via FirstSearch
- More Information
"The Open WorldCat Program and WorldCat.org are both initiatives
designed to make the collections and services of WorldCat-participating
libraries more visible on the open Web, outside of the library
environment."-- From OCLC's Frequently Asked Questions about open-Web access to WorldCat
You can use all of WorldCat.org's basic searching features without registering on the site.
Search for Books and Other Library Materials
- The search is by keyword--not Boolean enabled.
- You can limit your search to selected fields by utilizing the advanced search.
- You can further refine your search by using the facets in the sidebar.
- You can sort the search results list by various criteria: relevance, author, title, date (increasing), or date (decreasing).
View Information About a Library Item
- View details about the item.
- Read user-generated reviews of the item.
- Bookmark the item.
- Generate and/or export a citation.
- Locate a library that has the item.
- Link to services within your own library.
(Only available if you are searching from a computer within your member library's network.)
Search for Public User-Generated Lists
- Search by list name or description.
- You can customize your view of a public list.
- Sort by author, title, published date, or added date.
- View by details and notes.
- View by citations.
Search for Contacts
- Search by user name or first or last name.
After registering on the system, you can do all of the above, plus:
Generate Your Own Public or Private Lists of Library Materials
- Create an unlimited number of lists.
- Add up to 250 items per list.
- Invite other WorldCat.org members and non-members to view your public lists.
- Export lists as CSV (comma-delimited) files or as bibliographic citations.
Contribute Reviews and Factual Notes
Contribute Tables of Contents
Edit the Factual Notes or Tables of Contents Contributed by Other Users
- We obtain information for some metadata record creation from corresponding WorldCat records.
- We locate library materials we may want to borrow for digitization.
- When answering e-reference questions, we often direct patrons to WorldCat.org to locate library materials in their local area.
- For the convenience of our users, we link Portal to Texas History and Digital Collections metadata records with OCLC identifiers to corresponding records in WorldCat.org.
||WorldCat.org||WorldCat via FirstSearch
|Coverage||About 3.5 million records for the most widely owned items in WorldCat.
||Entire WorldCat database. Only items held by FirstSearch-subscribing libraries are displayed in the search results. Simultaneously searches GPO, ArticleFirst, Medline, and ERIC for article citations.
||Entire WorldCat database.
GPO, ArticleFirst, Medline, and ERIC must be searched independently.
|Access||Serendipitous. May find records as part of a regular Web search engine search or a visit to online bookseller.
||Universal. Available to anyone with a Web browser.
||Must use through a subscribing library.
||Web search engine such as Google or Yahoo! or search on partner sites such as Amazon.com or Alibris.
||Keyword with further refinement by facet. Advanced search allows limit by selected fields. Does not support Boolean operators.
||A variety of searchable keyword and phrase indexes. Supports Boolean operators.
||Full cataloging information.
||After 1 hour of inactivity.
||After 15 minutes of inactivity.
For more information about these three versions of WorldCat, see OCLC's Frequently Asked Questions about open-Web access to WorldCat.
For a more extensive comparative table of features of these three versions of WorldCat, see OCLC's Comparison of WorldCat's public views.
WorldCat Help provides an extensive FAQ.
About the Author: Library Associate Nancy Reis works for the UNT Libraries' Digital Projects Unit.