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Librarian-approved, Time-saving Research Tips, Part 6: Use Preferred Searches and RSS Feeds in the Library Catalog

Note: this is the sixth post in an 8-part series of tips designed to make you a better researcher.

Are you working on a long-term research project? Wouldn't it be great if you could be notified whenever a new book on your topic is added to the libraries?

Actually, it's possible with preferred searches! "Preferred searches" are saved searches of the library catalog. When you create a preferred search, you'll get an email every time a new item that matches your search criteria is added to the libraries' collections.

They're a snap to set up, too. Just make sure that you're logged in to your library account, then do a search in the library catalog. On the search results page, you'll see a button that says, "Save as preferred search." Click it, then follow the prompts to name and save the search. Be sure to check the "Email" box on your preferred search page.

Your preferred searches will send you email notifications of new items, but they're also handy since you can log in to your account and re-run the search any time. That means that you can set up your searches on any computer, and re-run them from any computer--no need to write down or remember your search terms!

Interested in learning about new library items regardless of topic? We've got a handy-dandy RSS feed right on our home page. It's updated every night with all of the new books, videos, and journals that were cataloged that day. Keep in mind that it may take a few days for the new books to appear on the library's shelves--our student workers re-shelve hundreds of books each week, and the new ones may not be at the top of the pile.

The new items feed is displayed on our web site, but you can also subscribe to it through an RSS reader. If you're new to the concept of RSS, check out our LibGuide on RSS. You'll be collecting feeds in no time, and wondering how you ever managed without them. :)

Questions about preferred searches or RSS feeds? Let us know.

In this series: