Skip to Main Content

TCC Library: Find a source again

Library "How do I...?"

Welcome to TCC Library "How Do I...?"

Find the information you need. Get your questions answered here.

Table of Contents

Need help? Ask us!

This happens to everyone, and librarians are here to help you track down the information you need!

Need more help? Try using Ask WA, our statewide librarian chat service for reference help. 

Lose that perfect source? Steps to finding a source again

Basic Steps:

  • Don’t worry! This happens to everyone.
  • Figure out what you do know about the source. Academic sources are organized in some consistent ways: by author, subject, title, etc. You can use these pieces of information to find any source again. We call these important pieces of information access points.
  • Some information about your source is very helpful when you’re searching. Pay particular attention to:
    • Title
    • Author
    • Publication
    • Publication date
    • Subject words
  • Try searching from the options below:
  • Start with the most specific piece of information you have. For books, that will be the book title. For articles, the article title.
  • If the title doesn’t work (or if you don’t have it) try the author. If that search brings too many results, add some keywords to your search.
  • If you have a publication date, most search tools will let you narrow to a specific date range.

Library "How do I?" credits

The TCC Library "How do I?" guide is adapted from the Library DIY project created by Meredith Farkas, Amy Hofer, Lisa Molinelli and Kimberly Willson-St. Clair at Portland State University Library. Several Library "How Do I?" pages are adapted from pages within the Portland Community College Library "How do I" project, as well as the Oregon State University Libraries' Library DIY project.

CC BY SA license

Except where otherwise noted, the content in these guides by Tacoma Community College Library is licensed under CC BY SA 4.0.
This openly licensed content allows others to cite, share, or modify this content, with credit to TCC Library. When reusing or adapting this content, include this statement in the new document: This content was originally created by Tacoma Community College Library and shared with a CC BY SA 4.0 license.

Tacoma Community College Library - Building 7, 6501 South 19th Street, Tacoma, WA 98466 - P. 253.566.5087

Instagram logo

Visit us on Instagram!