Getting Started with Summon


Getting Started with Summon

What is Summon Search?


A brief introduction to basic searching in Summon, a library search engine that includes records for books, articles, conference proceedings, theses and dissertations, videos, music, images, manuscripts, maps, and more.

Video: (Running time: 00:02:33)


Hello, and welcome to Summon, the service that searches many library resources at once. Let's get started with a quick, basic search. We enter our search term [eucharist], click the Search button or press the 'Enter' key, and Summon is now searching for materials relevant to this term, including online resources, items in the library's online catalog, and more.

And here are the results, right down the middle. Before we look at those, the right side of the screen may have several things that could help us as we do our research. There is a Wikipedia entry about our search topic, including a link to read more about the topic, and some related topics we could search in Summon. In the center, at the top of the results list are some database recommendations which may help you uncover more about your topic.

This was a pretty broad search, so over on the left side we can refine and filter the results to match what we're really looking for.

We could choose to limit for certain content types, but I'd rather keep that broad for now. Instead, let's filter for particular disciplines. We click the More link to see a list of disciplines, including how many results match to each discipline. Let's choose "anthropology” and “religion," and see what resources about the eucharist match to those disciplines.

The results list is sorted by relevancy, and the most relevant result is a book. If we hover the mouse pointer over the result, the right side now changes to more information about this item, such as an abstract or summary, the source, subjects, and so on.

If we are looking for journal articles on this topic, we can filter the results further by clicking on Journal Article under Content Type on the left.

If we want to read an article, we just click on the title and the full text of the article will open up, because the journal is available online. If we want to refer to this article later, or keep it as a reference for our research, we can click the folder icon and Summon will save the citation in a temporary folder. We can then export our citations to EndNote, or email them to ourselves, or several other options.

There are a lot more things you can do with Summon, which you'll find out as you start using it. But that's a good, basic introduction to get you started.