Online Catalog Subject Searching

Authored by: Danny C.C. Poo , Christopher S.G. Khoo

Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science, Fourth Edition

Print publication date:  November  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781466552593
eBook ISBN: 9781315116143
Adobe ISBN:

10.1081/E-ELIS4-120008863

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Abstract

The Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC) is an information retrieval system characterized by short bibliographic records, mainly of books, journals, and audiovisual materials available in a particular library. This, coupled with a Boolean search interface and a heterogeneous user population with diverse needs, presents special problems for subject searching by end users. To perform effective subject searching in the OPAC system requires a wide range of knowledge and skills. Various approaches to improving the OPAC design for subject searching have been proposed and are reviewed in this entry. The trend toward Web-based OPAC interfaces and the developments in Internet and digital library technologies present fresh opportunities for enhancing the effectiveness of the OPAC system for subject searching.

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