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UMKC University Libraries

How Do I Use the Library Catalog? (MERLIN)

How to use local and statewide library catalogs to search for materials, place requests, check on the status of your account and more.

How to Search the Library Catalog

Search the library catalog to find books, media, and more at UMKC libraries. The library catalog also includes materials at all University of Missouri system (MERLIN) libraries.

From here, you have several search options:

  1. Type words or a phrase into the main search box and click 'search.' (This is called a Keyword search.)
    • This search looks for those words anywhere in the record.
    • More words = fewer results.
    • This search may take a few seconds, because the catalog looks everywhere for your words.
  2. Click any of the other types of searches using the radio buttons:
    • AUTHOR: Looks for works by a specific author, organization, composer, artist, etc.
      • Type the author's LAST NAME first (for example: Bronte, Emily).
    • TITLE: Looks for a specific work (book, movie, music recording, etc.).
    • JOURNAL TITLE: Looks for a specific journal, magazine, or newspaper.

To look for items by ISSN, ISBN, Library of Congress call number (used at Miller Nichols Library), National Library of Medicine call number (used at the Health Sciences Library), OCLC Number, or other numbers, use the number tab.

If you get too many results, try the Advanced option to combine or exclude terms and limit your results by year, location, material type, etc. For more information about using this search tool and narrowing your results, check out the Advanced Search guide.

Use the subject tab to find items on a specific topic with pre-assigned Library of Congress Subject Headings or Medical Subject Headings. When you find an item of interest, check its record to see the subjects assigned.

If you don't find what you need, try expanding your search to other schools in Missouri. Check out the Requesting Books guide for instructions on how to search those other schools.

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