LSU Libraries User Instruction
Online Catalog Tutorials - Basic Searching

Database - Records - Fields

Before we move on to actually searching the online catalog, it would be helpful to know something about how the online catalog works.

For example, LSU has a database of information about all of its students. One record is all of the information available about any one student. Each piece of information is a field - the student's name is one field, the address is another, the grade in that class you hated last semester is another, and so on.

Another example. The old fashioned card catalog is like a database. It contains information stored in such a way that it may be easily searched to find information. Each card in the card catalog is like a record, and each line on that card (author, title, subject, call number...) is like a field.

The online catalog searches certain fields within each record to find the information you need.

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