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Searching Tips

Doing BOTH Keyword and Subject searches can help you find better results!


Experiment with synonyms and related terms

Use an asterisk to stand in for letter variations  (agro*  = agroecology, agroindustry, agronomy.)

Use quotation marks to "glue together" a phrase  ("government policy")

Photo: Girl with Grain, Tanzania by Rod Waddington


Find one good item? Look at its item record to see if there are Subject Headings. Click on these links to find similar items.

Or search by Subject instead of keyword in CBBCat and other library catalogs.
Examples of Library of Congress Subject Headings.
  • Globalization
  • Globalization - Social Aspects
  • Food sovereignty
  • Poverty -- Developing countries
  • Sustainable agriculture
  •  International economic relations
  • Human rights
  • Freedom of Speech         
  • Emigration and immigration


Find books and articles with one search


Advanced Search

OneSearch is a discovery tool that combines our library catalog, databases and more.

Use it to find both articles and books in one search at Colby and beyond. It is best used as a supplementary tool. Check CBBcat and subject databases first.

CBBCat: Books & More

SEARCH the Entire CBB Collection, or just Colby.


Ordering Books

To order books from the Colby Storage Facility, Bates or Bowdoin:

Click on  

Enter your name and bar code number (omit beginning and ending letters) from your Student ID or Library Card.

You will be notified by email when your request arrives.

Partner Catalogs

Borrow from public and academic libraries in Maine.

Can also access from the Colby Libraries home page > Books and More.

Or from within CBBcat search results. Look for the icons on the right. Orders are usually received in 3 to 5 business days.

Other catalogs:

Search for books and other materials held in libraries worldwide. Order through ILLiad.

ConnectNY (NEW)

Borrow from academic libraries in New York state. Look for widget within NExpress on search results pages.

CRL Catalog
Center for Research Libraries provides another access to research materials found in select universities, colleges and reserach institutions.  It is especially helpful for locating primary resource materials. 

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