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Get Started @ HKUST Library: PowerSearch


For books  & articles (default).  Library Catalog searches books & Primo Central  searches articles. 


The PowerSearch LibGuide will help you learn more about its functions.

PowerSearch Basic

Use PowerSearch to search and find what the Library has and where things are.

Basic Searching

Word/Phrase:  Is the default search, type your search words in any order

Title: All Library materials (books, journals, sound/video recordings, etc.) can be searched by their titles.

  • Articles at the beginning of the title such as "a", "an" and "the" can be omitted.
  • You can enter just the first few words of the title, such as "lion the witch" instead of the full title, "The lion, the witch and the wardrobe".

Call Number

  • Every library item has a call number, except newspapers.
  • Call number represents an item's subject, and is also the shelving number in most cases.
  • Use the EXACT call number (e.g., HD9696.A3 J3245 2008) to find an item. 
  • Use a partial call number (e.g., HD9696) to find materials on similar topics.


  • Subjects are standardized terms assigned to describe the content of library items.
  • Try Word/Phrase search if you do not know the proper subject terms, then identify appropriate subject terms from the retrieved records.

PowerSearch - Advanced

Use PowerSearch to search and find what the Library has and where things are.

Advanced searching in PowerSearch

How to Read a Call number (and find things on the shelf)

This video comes from  Larentian Library at Douglas College in New Westminster BC.  (1 min, 45 seconds)

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