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Searching for Music Resources: A Step-by-Step Guide

A guide to how to find things in the Music Library - step-by-step, no stress, and online!

Searching in Source

You can access Source from the University Libraries main page by clicking on the Catalog tab and then choosing Search using the classic catalog instead:

An image of the UNC University Libraries search homepage, showing the classic catalog option circled

To run a basic Source search, enter your search term into the box and then choose from the left dropdown menu whether you want Source to look for it in Author, Title, Subject, LC Call Number, or Keyword; if you are not sure which, default to Keyword to make sure you get results. To the right of the search box, choose where you want to search for your item - most music items are held at Skinner Music, but you may also want to use Michener/Skinner to get the most results, or simply leave the default of All Collections.

An image of the Source basic search with the All Collections dropdown menu expanded to show options

Source is different from Summon in that it mostly searches for items held locally at UNC, and different from Encore in that it is the only search that allows you to search directly by call number.

Once you have searched for your item, you will you will be shown a list of results. By default, Source will show items in order of Relevance, or how closely they fit your search criteria, but you can change this by clicking on the options at the top of the page: by Date from most to least recent, or alphabetically by Title.

In order to add filters to your search in Source, click on Modify Search at the top of the results page.

An advanced search in Source showing multiple search fields

The Any Field dropdown menu allows you to search a specific place for Source to search for your items - Author, Title, Subject, or Note. For example, if you set the dropdown menu to Author, then Source will only search for the term(s) next to it under author names, ignoring any mention of those words anywhere else. Keep in mind that not all items have anything entered in the Note field, so searching it may yield fewer results.

Source provides the option to use AND, OR, or NOT in the dropdown menus to the right of each term, allowing you to create more complex searches. AND is chosen by default; if you enter terms in the second field below the first, Source will search using the criteria from the first line and the criteria from the second. Source allows you to search for up to four different terms at once.

So, for example...

A screenshot of the Source search terms box showing a search for subject Renaissance music, author Frank Tirro or Philippe Vendrix, and excluding title Counterpoints

In this search, Source would look for any items with "renaissance music" in their subject and either "Tirro, Frank" or "Vendrix, Philippe" as their author, but excluding anything with the title Counterpoints. You can also choose to check the Limit search to available items box; if you do, Source will only search for items that are currently available (not checked out or on hold) to be checked out at any time.

In the column below the search terms, you can now use Source's limiting tools to narrow down your search and filter out anything you aren't looking for. Each time you choose a limit (other than ANY, which searches everything), Source will remove everything from the search that doesn't match.

A screenshot of the Add Limits area of a Source search, showing options to filter by location, material type, language, publisher, and date

Source has the fewest filtering options of UNC's library searches, falling into five categories:

LOCATION: Choose which call number area of items you would like to se. This is not necessarily the item's physical location, although most Music items will be located at Skinner. Mus CD, Mus Per, Mus Ref, Mus Res, Mus Stks, and Mus Storage are the main locations for music items. MATERIAL TYPE: Choose what type of items you are interested in seeing - for example, if you are looking for a scholarly journal or magazine, you might choose Serial, or if you are looking for a recorded ballet performance, you might choose DVD Recording and Other Video to make sure you cover all the options. LANGUAGE: Choose the language you would like to see items primarily written in. Keep in mind that many works may list more than one language, and that Source does not have a comprehensive list of all languages in the library's collection. If you are unsure, ignore this field or choose ANY.
DATE: The "To" and "From" fields offer you the options to set a date range. Choose what timeframe you would like to see items published during. If you are unsure of the exact dates, overshoot a little on either side to make sure you don't accidentally filter out anything you might need. PUBLISHER: If you know the name of the publisher of the work you are looking for, you can enter it here to further narrow down your search. This is especially useful when you want to find multiple items in a series or see other materials by a publisher who you have already identified as putting out useful materials.  

You can also choose how you would like the search to be sorted ahead of time by making a selection from the dropdown menu next to Search and Sort. Even if you don't, you can still do so from the search results after running the search.

Once you have chosen a limit from these lists, it will be highlighted in blue. You can highlight multiple items by holding down the CTRL key on the keyboard and clicking on each one you'd like to include.

A screenshot of the Material Type limit field with "EJournal" and "Streaming Media" highlighted in blue

Once you have chosen all the search terms and limits you would like, click on the Submit button below the search terms. Source will filter out anything that does not match the criteria you set.

If you would like to be able to make the exact same search again later, with all the same limits and terms, you can click the Save as preferred search button at the top of the results page; once you have logged into your UNC account, the search will be saved so that you can easily run it again later instead of starting over from the beginning.

Advanced Source Search

Source has several specialized search types that can be used instead of one unified advanced search. On the upper right-hand side of every page in Source, the Select new search type dropdown menu allows you to choose which one of these you would like to use:

A screenshot of the Select New Search Type dropdown showing various options for specialized searches

The Advanced Keyword search is the same one reached by clicking Modify Search from a basic Source search like the ones above, but the others are specialized. Most music searches are unlikely to need the Children's Subject, Dewey Decimal No., or Government Documents No. searches since they refer to special collections at Michener, but they may be useful for other projects.

All of Source's specialized searches allow you to choose additional sorting options - alphabetically by Author, alphabetically by Title, from most to least recent by Year or from least to most recent by Reverse Year, alphanumerically by Call Number, or by grouping all items of the same Material Type together.

Screenshot of Source's Title Search Screenshot of Source's Author Search Screenshot of Source's Author and Title Search

The first three options are the Title, Author, and Author/Title searches. Each does exactly what it sounds like - they search only by the author, only by the title, or using both if you choose the combined search.

Screenshot of Source's Journal Title Search Screenshot of Source's Subject Search Screenshot of Source's ISBN/ISSN Search

You can also search by Journal Title if you are looking for a specific periodical, such as The Strad or Journal of Musicology. Keep in mind that this only searches for the whole journal, not individual articles, which are usually easier to search for through Summon.

The Subject search allows you to look for a specific subject, such as "Renaissance music" or "Loretta Lynn", automatically making sure to find items that are about that subject rather than having similar titles or author names.

The ISBN/ISSN search allows you to search for a specific item if you know its unique ISBN (for books and scores) or ISSN (for periodicals). This can be very helpful for checking to see if UNC holds items that you find in searches elsewhere, such as WorldCat or Amazon, but keep in mind that different editions of the same work will have different ISBNs, so it may sometimes make more sense to search by title or author.

Screenshot of Source's Library of Congress Call Number Search Screenshot of Source's Local Call Number Search

If you know the call number of the item you're looking for, you can go straight to it with either the Library of Congress Call Number search or the Local Call Number search. This is especially useful if you already have a call number from your syllabus or a recommendation, or if you found the call number through some other entity that uses them, such as a publisher or WorldCat.

The Library of Congress Call Number search is best for books and scores, which usually have a LoC call number. If you are not sure of the exact call number of your item, choose the broadest general range you can; if Source can't find that call number, it will show you the closest surrounding call numbers in case they might be helpful.

A screenshot of the results page of a Source Library of Congress Call Number search for "ML 538", showing other nearby call number results

The Local Call Number search is best for recordings (CDs, DVDs, LPs), which do not have formal LoC call numbers. Keep in mind that this search will include any search result that begins with the number you search for; for example, if you search for "CD 2", the search will find not only the item with call number CD 2 but also CD 20, CD 200, CD 2000, and so on.

Screenshot of Source's Course Reserves by Name Search Screenshot of Source's Course Reserves by Instructor Search

Finally, you can also search only those items that are on reserve, which can save a lot of time if you are not interested in non-reserve items! Source allows you to perform a Course Reserves Search by either Course Name/Number or Instructor/Professor. In your search by Course Name/Number, you will see all items on reserve for that specific course; if you search by Instructor/Professor, you will see all items that specific instructor has placed on reserve.

A screenshot of a results page from a Source Course Reserves search, showing six items on reserve for MUS 244

In the search for MUS 244 above, the results show all six items on reserve, as well as whether those items are available now, how long they can be borrowed for, and which instructor oversees the course.