Help with using search filters

On this page

Bibliography browse and search screenshot


This page explains how to use the filter and search options available for some of the larger datasets

Last things first - remember to click Apply

Don't forget to click Apply

The criteria you enter are not applied until you click the Apply button, found at the bottom of the filter form.

Types of filter

There are 3 main types of criteria you can enter

  1. free-form text boxes
  2. drop-down lists
  3. trees

Free-form text boxes (for fields such as Title, Author, Publisher) will look for records where any text matches the criterion entered, if it is contained in the field you are searching.

The text can be anywhere in the field: at the beginning, at the end, or in the middle of a word. 

Drop-down lists allow you to select individual entries from a predefined list.

You can use your mouse to expand the dropdown and click the entry you want, or you can start typing what you are looking for.

  • If you type slowly, it will highlight entries starting with the latest letter you typed.
  • If you type quickly, it will highlight entries starting with the combination of letters you type.

So in the Language drop-down

  • if you type e n quickly, it will select English and then stay on English
  • if you type e n slowly, it will select English and then highlight Norwegian

Filter trees show a hierarchy of check-box options that you can tick. 

If you click down arrow by the filter name  it shows the top level of the hierarchy and turns into an up-arrow.
If you click the up-arrow it collapses the hierarchy.

Once you have displayed the tree, you can expand higher levels of the hierarchy by clicking the plus sign next to the name of the higher level. And you can collapse it again by clicking the minus sign.

At the lowest level, the plus sign is absent - there's nothing to expand.

Anything you tick then appears in red above the tree.

You can remove the selection by un-ticking the checkbox or by clicking the minus that appears by the red selected item if you hover.

Filter trees allow you to select multiple options.

NB. If you select a parent, then it will look for all the children of that parent. You don't need to click them individually or even expand the tree. Only the name of the parent will appear in the list of selected items.

ANDs and ORs

If you enter criteria in more than one filter, the records found will have to meet the criteria in both filters (=AND).

If you enter more than one criteria in the same filter, the records found can meet any of the criteria you specify (=EITHER, OR)

In the example above, records can have either Video or Audio formats: so both Video and Audio format material will appear in the list.

Sorting: showing records in a different order

You can normally choose to show the records in a different order.
Click the little down arrow by the Sort by box  to see the available options.


If you hover over the tiny question marks by a field, you should get more information about it.

Resetting your criteria

Reset your filters

You can reset your criteria by clicking the Reset button.
Any criteria you set will be removed and you will see the original listing as it was before any criteria were entered.