This page is divided into three sections:
Presuming a researcher knows the title or author of the book she is seeking, searching within the catalog is a simple matter -- she will simply type one or more of these terms in the catalog's search field, where the default search is "Simple Keywords," or use the dropdown menu to select a different search category (in this case, "Title" or "Author").
Finding relevant books for a topic about which the researcher knows little is slightly more complicated, but following these steps is a good start:
Once you've found one or two books that look promising for your research, an additional way to find similar works is to click on the book's call number, which will place the book in an ascending list of the books around it -- the books with call numbers closest to your book will take up similar subjects.
Researchers should also remember to browse around a book in the stacks. As books are arranged by subject according to LC subject classifications, the books physically closest to a book in which you are interested may be germane to your topic.
Don't panic. If you need a Wardman Library book that has been checked out, or if you can't find books that are relevant to your research interest in the Wardman Library catalog, you should use the LINK+ catalog.
LINK+ is a consortium of over forty public and academic libraries in California and Nevada; the LINK+ catalog is essentially a "super catalog" whose contents comprise the records from the catalogs of all of these libraries. Via LINK+, Whittier College students and faculty can request an item not available in Wardman Library electronically and it will be delivered within two to four days. The service is free, easy, and extremely convenient. The loan period is twenty-one days with one renewal.
Google Book Search (below) and the Internet Archive include nearly ten million volumes, with full-text searching capabilities. Full-text searching means researchers can discover books using key words and phrases within the text, instead of having to rely on titles, authors, or subject terms as in library catalogs.
Many of the books in Google Book Search and the Internet Archive (and especially those with older copyrights) are available online in their entirety; others are partially readable online, but in many cases, relevant pages will be viewable.