Skip to main content
OCLC Support

OCLC Connexion: Searching WorldCat quick reference

OCLC Connexion interface

Use the Connexion client interface (Windows-based software).

  • To open the Connexion client, click Start > Programs > OCLC Connexion or double-click the client icon (Connexion client icon).

Multiscript support in the client only: The following non-Latin scripts are supported in the client for cataloging and searching: Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Cyrillic, Devanagari, Greek, Hebrew, Japanese, Korean, Tamil, and Thai.

Enter Command Line or Guided Search/Browse

Search the client

Open the Search WorldCat client window:

  1. Client: Click Cataloging > Search > WorldCat or click Connexion client search WorldCat button, or press <F2>.
  2. Enter a complete search or browse in correct search syntax in the Command Line Search box. Type any of these search types:
    • Numérico
    • Keyword
    • Derivado
    • Browse (scan or index)
    Enter a guided search in parts in the Keyword/Numeric area and select an index using text boxes and drop-down lists. Let the system create the correct search syntax. Enter any of these search types:
    • Numérico
    • Keyword
    • Derived search term (no browse)

    For details, General guidelines.

Tip: Collapse or re-expand the Search WorldCat window or screen to show only the Command Line or show the full window/screen:

  • Client: Click Expand/Collapse.

Quick search: Client only

Use the WorldCat Quick Search box on the toolbar to enter a command line search or browse. Click the button to the right to send the search.

Connexion client WorldCat Quick Search box

Guided browsing in the client

Open the Browse WorldCat client window to enter a guided browse term:

  1. Client: Cataloging > Browse > WorldCat, or click Connexion client browse WorldCat button, or press <F2>.
  2. Enter a browse term in the Browse for box.
  3. Select an index in the adjacent list.

For details, see General guidelines.

Batch process searches: Client only

  1. Click Batch > Enter Bibliographic Search Keys or press <Alt><B><B>.
  2. Select a local file to store searches (default: DefaultBib.bib.db).
  3. Select an index in the adjacent list.
  4. Enter a numeric, keyword, or derived search in the Query box, using full search syntax (same as command line search syntax).
  5. Click Add or press <Enter>.
  6. Repeat steps 3 and 4. As you add searches, the client displays them in a list.
  7. When finished, click Save.
  8. When ready, run batch processing (Batch > Process Batch).

General guidelines

Command line (full syntax) search or browse

For a command line search (a complete search in a single string):

  • Precede a browse term with the Scan command (sca) followed by a space, but use no command for a search.
    Example of browsing: sca ti:roots
  • Include index labels followed by correct punctuation to indicate a word, phrase (subfield data), or whole phrase (field data) form of the index.
    • Use a two-letter index label and a colon (:) for word indexes.
      Example: ti:nexus
    • Use a two-letter index label and an equal sign (=) for phrase indexes.
      Example: ti=connected islands new and selected*
    • Use a three-letter index label ending in the letter w and an equal sign (=) for whole phrase indexes.
      Example: pnw=woolf, leonard 1880-1969
    • Exceptions. Index labels are optional for:
      • Derived search if it is the first or only search term
      • ISBN search if it is the first or only search term
      • OCLC number search, if preceded by an asterisk (*) or number sign (#)
  • Options
    • Type Boolean operators and, or, or not to combine multiple terms in different indexes.
    • Type proximity operators with (w) or near (n) with numbers (1 to 25) to find multiple terms in one index that have a specified number of intervening words.
    • Include only one qualifier of any one type.
    • Use slashes or index labels for format, year, microform, or source qualifiers.
    • Use index labels only (cannot precede with a slash) for Internet/non-Internet or language qualifiers.
    • Type symbols for wildcards (# or ?) and truncation (*) in place of characters to retrieve different forms of a word. (Available for Latin script searches only.)
       Note: Precede symbols by at least three characters.
  • Client only—no separate indexes for non-Latin script  search terms: Use the same indexes, operators, and qualifiers as for Latin script searches. Enter search terms in Latin script.

Guided search or browse

For a guided search (entered in parts; system creates the syntax):

  • In the Search WorldCat window or screen, enter a keyword, numeric, or derived search term in any Search for box.
  • (Optional). Enter multiple search terms in a single box to combine search terms in a single index. Between terms, type appropriate Boolean operator(s):
    • andor, or not.
    • with (w) or near (n). (Optional). Add numbers (1 to 25) to specify the number of intervening words.
  • Select an index from the adjacent list.
  • Other options:
    • Enter search terms in additional Search for boxes and select and, or, or not from lists to combine search terns in different indexes.
    • Enter symbols for wildcards (# or ?) and truncation (*) in place of characters or endings in a search term to retrieve different forms of a word.
       Note: Precede symbols by at least three characters.
    • Select or enter qualifiers in lists or boxes.

Tip: Switch between long and short selection lists:

  • Client: Click plus (Connexion client plus button) or minus (Connexion client minus button) to expand or shorten index, material type, or language lists.

 Note: All search examples and guidelines in this document are in command line format (full syntax) only.

Words, phrases, and whole phrases

Índice Searches for ... Ejemplos
Word Word or number anywhere in a field. pn:stansbury
Phrase Words in a single subfield from the beginning, in sequence, including all subfield data. pn=james, henry
pb=Pearson Addison Wesley
Whole phrase All words in a field in sequence from the beginning, including all data across indexed subfields. pnw=james, henry 1843-1916
sew=poetry in public places
  • Enclose multiple words in quotatation marks (") to find records with that exact sequence in a word index.
    Example: ti:"asian crisis"
  • Omit initial articles in titles for phrase and whole phrase searching.
  • Truncate a phrase or whole phrase using an asterisk (*) or use browsing for automatic truncation.
  • The truncation symbol (*) is available for Bengali, CJK, Devanagari, Tamil, and Thai script searching but not for other non-Latin script searching terms.

Search formats

Numeric searches


  • Command line numeric searches: Always precede search term with an index label and punctuation—a colon (:) for numbers or an equal sign (=) for number phrases.
    Exception: ISBN does not require label if it is first or only search.
  • Type all numbers and letters in an ISBN, government document number, publisher number (formerly music publisher), etc.
    Tip for entering ISBNs ending in x: If you use the number keypad, truncate the number using the asterisk (*) key.
  • Omit spaces.
  • In class number searches:
    • Include periods.
      Example: dd:616.46
    • Omit all other punctuation in class numbers.
    • Omit spaces.
  • See notes in the following tables on the treatment of hyphens in ISBN, ISSN, and LCCN searches.

Numeric indexes and search examples

ISBN index Too find this number ... Enter this search ...
Label = bn: 0-85109-130-x 085109130x or bn:085109130x
0-8247-7142-7 0824771427 or bn:0824771427
  • Use an index label if the number is not the first search term.
  • Omit hyphens if no index label; omit or enter hyphens with index label.


ISSN index To find this number ... Enter this search ...
Label = in: 1234-5678 in:1234-5678
0018-165x in:0018-165x
Note: Always include hyphens.


lCCN index To find this number ... Enter this search ...
Label = ln: map32-14 ln:32000014 or ln:32-14
2002-580246 ln:2002-580246 or ln:2002580246
  • Enter with or without the hyphen.
  • Include the year portion (2 or 4 digits).
  • Use a circumflex (^) to exclude LCCNs that have prefixes.


Government document number index To find this number ... Enter this search ...
Label = gn: a 1.2:R31/14/984 gn:a12r3114984
NAS 1.2:SP1/46 gn:nas12sp146
  • Enter all numbers and letters.
  • Omit punctuation.


OCLC Control Number index To find this number ... Enter this search ...
OCLC control number (no:) 10998406 no:10998406 or *10998406 or #10998406
  • Command line/full syntax search: Precede with index label, asterisk (*), or number sign (#).
  • (Optional). Keyword/Numeric guided search: Precede with * or # instead of selecting an index. Do not use the index label.


Publisher number indexes To find this number ... Enter this search ...
Number label = mn: CO 1979-AB5-1 mn:co1979ab51
Note: Formerly called music publisher number.
Number phrase label = mn= BBC 001 mn=bbc 001
Note: You can include spaces in a phrase search.

Keyword searches


  • For searches of the Access Method index (am: or am=)
    • Omit http: and https:.
    • Treat punctuation marks as word divisions.
    • Include stopwords for this index.
      Example: am: his
  • Internet qualifier (mt:) limits results to:
    • Internet-only resources (that is, records with field 856 and second indicator , 0, or 1).
      In the Command Line, type mt:url
    • Non-Internet resources (that is, all other records).
      Type not mt:url.

Keyword index stopwords

The system ignores the following common words in a keyword search:


Enclose any stopword in quotation marks to include it in a search.

Example: To search for the title And Then There Were None, type: ti: "and" then "there" "were" none

Selected keyword indexes and search examples

Keyword index Etiqueta Example
Corp/Conf Name cn: cn:enron
Corp/Conf Name Phrase cn= cn=enron corp
Corp/Conf Name Whole Phrase cnw= cnw=enron corp board of directors special investigative committee
Name au: au:kahlo
Name Whole Phrase auw= auw=kahlo, frida 1910-1954
Personal Name pn: pn:salinger j d
Publisher pb: pb:thousand oaks
Serie se: se:ergonomic
Series Phrase se= se=ergonomic management series
Subject Phrase su= su=aquatic ecosystems
Title ti: ti:gerontological
Title Phrase ti= ti=gerontological nursing

Derived searches

Derived search key limits

Derived index Etiqueta Minimum key Maximum key
Personal Name pd: 4,1,blank 4,3,1
Corp/Conf Name cd: =4,1,blank =4,3,1
Name/Title nd: 4,4 4,4
Title td: none 3,2,2,1
  • For records without 1xx fields, the minimum search key can be blank,4.
  • Even if data has fewer than the required number of words, type all required commas.
    Example: To find Roots, type td:roo,,, or roo,,,
  • For Corp/Conf Names, precede with the index label and a colon or with an equal sign (=).


  • Omit index label if it is the first or only search in the command line.
  • Omit initial articles (a, an, the, and non-English equivalents).
  • Include articles within titles.
  • Include letters and numbers.
  • Exclude all other characters; for example, exclude diacritics and punctuation.
  • Use a circumflex (^) to narrow a search (but do not use the circumflex in a derived title search).
    Example: pd:harv,hen,^ or harv,hen,^
  • For names beginning with Mc or Mac followed by an uppercase letter, type m and omit the c or ac. If followed by a lowercase letter, include the lowercase letter c or ac.
    Examples: For MacDonald, Marion B., type pn:mdon,mar,b.
    For Macdonald, Andrew T., type pd:macd,and,t.
  • For compound or hyphenated surnames, treat all parts of a name up to the first comma as the first derived search element.
    Example: For Li-Marcus, Moying, type pd:lima,moy,.
  • For forenames only, treat each part as separate segments. Treat each part of a hyphenated forename as separate.
    Examples: For White Bull, type pd:whit,bul,.
    To find Li-Min Tau, type pd:li,min,t.
  • Do not use non-Latin scripts in derived searches.

Derived search stopwords

Omit the following words from the first segment of a corporate/conference name when you use the derived search indexes cd: and nd:. Otherwise, include the words.

Great Britain
U. N.
United Nations
United States
U. S.
All names of U.S. states

Examples of omitting initial stopwords

Omit initial stopwords in a search for ... Enter search as ...
Corporate author: Great Britain Forestry Commission (works published in 1985) cd:fore,com,/1985
Corporate author: United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights cd:econ,soc,c
Corporate name and title: Indiana Supreme Court [name] and Race and gender fairness [title] nd:supr,race

Derived search examples

Index (label) To find this data ... Enter this search ...
Personal name derived (pd:) Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus pd:moz,wol,a or moz,wol,a
De Groot, Adriaan pd:degr,adr, or degr,adr,
Kübler-Ross, Elisabeth pd:kubl,eli, or kubl,eli,
Corp/Conf derived (cd:) American Rock Garden Society cd:rock,gar,s or =rock,gar,s
World Energy Conference cd:worl,ene,c or =worl,ene,c
Name/Title derived (nd:) Bergson, The creative mind nd:berg,crea or berg,crea
Clarke, 2001: a space odyssey nd:clar,2001 or clar,2001
Title derived (ti:) Hotel td:hot,,, or hot,,,
Miracle on 34th street td:mir,on,34,s or mir,on,34,s

Browse (scan an index)

Browsing matches your term or phrase character by character, from left to right, across.


  • Include up to 60 letters, numbers, spaces, or these characters: ( ) # &
  • Omit initial articles (a, an, the, and non-English equivalents)
  • Include hyphens or substitute with a space.
  • Type any word to browse a word index (need not be the first word). The system matches any instance of the word in indexed fields/subfields.
  • Begin a phrase or whole phrase with the first word in a field or subfield (exclude initial articles). The system matches the exact term, beginning with the first word, in sequence, across indexed fields/subfields.
  • Use the title whole phrase index (tiw=) to browse for a title proper, or cataloger-constructed title access point. The index excludes 245 ‡b.
  • Use the title phrase index (ti=) to browse for title/subtitle combinations. The index includes 245 ‡b.
  • Browsing provides automatic truncation. Type only as many characters or words as needed.
    Example: For the title Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, type sca tiw=let us now praise
  • Do not combine terms or use qualifiers, truncation, or masking.
  • If you copy text across subfields in a record and paste as a browse term, remove delimiters, subfield codes, and punctuation.
  • If you are unsure of an exact browse term, use a keyword search instead.

Selected browse indexes and examples

Índice Etiqueta Example
Corp/Conf Whole Phrase cnw= sca cnw=hershey chocolate
Dewey Class Number dd: sca dd:151
LC Class Number lc: sca lc:z5063.2.a2
Name Whole Phrase auw= sca auw=dewey, melvil
Personal Name Whole Phrase pnw= sca pnw=james, henry 1843-1916
Publisher Phrase pb= sca pb=macmillan
Series Whole Phrase sew= sca sew=literacy 2000
Subject Whole Phrase suw= sca suw=library science
Title Whole Phrase tiw= sca tiw=birds and beasts
Uniform Title Whole Phrase utw= sca utw=concertos f 44 f major

Qualify, combine, or expand searches

Use qualifiers, Boolean and proximity operators, and wildcard and truncation symbols to qualify, combine, and/or expand searches.


Add qualifiers to limit search results.

Qualifier (label) You type ...
Type/Format (mt:) /bks or mt:bks (Books)

/com or mt:com (Computer Files)

/cnr or mt:cnr (Continuing Resources)

/map or mt:map (Maps)

/mix or mt:mix (Mixed Materials)

/sco or mt:sco (Scores)

/rec or mt:rec (Sound Recordings)

/vis or mt:vis (Visual Materials)


  • /ser or mt:ser (Serial)
  • /int or mt:int (Integrating resource)
    (The broader continuing resources index (cnr) listed above includes these formats.)
Year(s) of publication (yr:) Single year (example: /1980 or yr:1980)

Decade (example: /198? or yr:198?)

Century (example: /19?? or yr:19??)

Single year and all following years (example: /1980- or yr:1980-)

Single year and all previous years (example: /-1980 or yr:-1980)

Range of years (examples: /1980-3 or /1980-3 or /1880-921 or /1990-2005 or precede with an index label instead of a slash)

Unknown dates (code u) (example: for Date1 value 19uu, type /1900 or yr:1900)

No date: Enter zeroes (example: /0000 or yr:0000)
Microform/not microform (mf:) /mf or mf:mic (microform)

/nm or mf:nmc (not microform)
Source (dl:) /dlc or dl:y (records contributed by Library of Congress/Program for Cooperative Cataloging)

 Note: Use the Cataloging Source phrase index (cs=) with an OCLC symbol to find records contributed by a specific library.

Internet/non-Internet (mt:) mt:url (Internet resources only)

not mt:url (exclude Internet resources)
Language (la:) Index label followed by language name or MARC code
Example: la:english or la:eng

 Note: You can also qualify searches by language of cataloging (checks for a language in 040 ‡b):

  • In the command line: Use index label ll: (two lowercase letter “ells” followed by a colon) and a language code. (See a list of codes at
    Example: ti=to the lighthouse and ll:ger
  • In the keyword/numeric search area: Enter a language in one of the Search for boxes and select the Language of Cataloging index in the adjacent list. Combine with another search term.

Qualifier guidelines

  • Use slashes or index labels for format, years, microform, or source qualifiers (called “slash qualifiers”). Use index labels only for Internet/non-Internet and language qualifiers.
  • Use only one qualifier of each type per search.
  • “Slash” qualifiers must appear at the end of a search. Qualifiers with index labels can appear anywhere in a search, combined with a Boolean operator.
  • Type qualifiers in any order.


Use Boolean and proximity operators to combine search terms.

Operador What the operator does
and Find all terms anywhere in a record.
Example: su:wom?n and ti:history and yr:1970-
or Finds any single term or all terms.
Example: pn=woolf, virginia or pn=woolf, leonard and yr:1900-50
not Excludes the term that follows not.
Example: ti=civil war not su:battle not gc=united states
with (w) Finds records containing both terms, in the order typed, or if followed by a number (1 to 25), finds records with no more than the specified number of words between the terms.
ti:aluminum w wiring or alternatively, enclose the phrase in quotation marks: ti:"aluminum wiring"
ti:aluminum w2 wiring
near (n) Same as for with, except that the words can be in any order.
ti:moon n eclipse
ti:chicken n3 egg

Operator guidelines

  • Do not use and, or, not, with, or near for browsing.
  • Do not use with or near for derived searching.
  • Type the maximum number of characters in the segments of each derived search that you combine with and, or, or not.
  • To use and, or, not, with, or near as a keyword in a search, enclose the word in quotation marks.
    Example: To search for the title Neighbors Near and Far, type ti:neighbors "near" "and" far.
  • Qualifiers apply to all parts of combined searches.

Truncation and wildcard symbols

Use truncation and wildcard symbols to expand or focus search results.

Truncado How to use
* (asterisk) Place at the end of a word to retrieve variant endings.
Example: invest* retrieves investor, investment, investment fraud, etc.


Comodín How to use
# Replace one unknown character in a word.
Example: wom#n retrieves woman and women
? Replace multiple unknown characters in a word.
Example: emp?e retrieves empire, empale, emphasize, and emplace
?n Specify the number of characters to replace (n=number of characters, 1-9)
Example: str?3 retrieves street, stream, streak, stride, strait, string, etc.

Truncation and wildcard guidelines

  • Limitation: Precede symbols by at least three characters.
  • Non-Latin script searches: Truncating searches is supported for Bengali, CJK, Devanagari, Tamil, and Thai script search terms only. For other scripts, use browsing for automatic truncation.

Qualified, combined, and expanded search examples

Searches in both keyword/numeric and derived search format:

Keyword/numeric search Derived search
au:rendell, ruth or au:vine, barbara rend,rut, or vine, bar,
pd:rend,rut, or vine, bar,
au:cervantes and mt:vis and yr:1970-80
pd:cerv,mig,d and yr:1970-80 and mt:vis
au:camus and ti:etranger and la:french pd:camu,alb, and td:etr,,, and la:french

More examples of qualified, combined, and expanded searches:

  • su:scotland and mt:map and yr:2000-
  • cn:microsoft and yr:2003 not mt:url
  • su:civil and war not battle/1970
  • dd:880 and la:eng/bks/1960-70
  • ti:bring w2 bacon
  • gon,wi,th,w/bks/19??/mf/dlc or td:gon,wi,th,w/bks/19??/mf/dlc
  • =adri,col,/bks/1970-90 or cd:adri,col,/bks/1970-90

Qualify searches by specific material types

To qualify searches by material type, use a word or phrase qualifier index label (mt: or mt=) with the 3-letter code or name for a material type, as shown in the table below (names are not case-sensitive but must be entered exactly as shown).

Example: To find The Sound of Music in CD audio only, type: sou,of,mu, and mt:cda or sou,of,mu, and mt=cd audio

Material type codes and names below are organized by broad qualifier group and then alphabetically by name within each group.


Code Name   Code Name
Universal types
Books (use mt:bks or /bks) and Mixed materials (use mt:mix or /mix)
shs Adolescent   mss Manuscript
arc Archival material   mmc Original microform
acp Article   mcd Micro-opaque
bio Biography   mfc Microfiche
brl Braille   mfl Microfilm
cnp Conference publication   ngp National government publication
elc Electronic   ejh Pre-adolescent
fic Fiction   pre Preschool
gpb Government publication   pri Primary school
igp International government publication   sgp State or province government publication
juv Juvenile (includes all juvenile types)   deg Thesis/dissertation
lpt Large print   web Web access
lgp Local government publication  
Sound recordings (use mt:rec or /rec)
45s 45 rpm   msr Musical recording
78s 78 rpm   nsr Non-musical recording
cas Cassette   rtr Reel-to-reel tape
cda CD audio   rll Roll
dva DVD audio   wxc Wax cylinder
lps LP   wrr Wire recording
mp3 MP3  
Visual materials (use mt:vis or /vis)
ngr 2-D image   nts NTSC
art 3-D object   oar Original artwork
anm Animation   pal PAL
rep Artwork reproduction   pan Partial animation
ats ATSC   pht Photograph
bta Beta   pgr Projected image
blu Blu-ray   rbj Real object (realia)
cht Chart   rbj Real object (realia)
dio Diorama   scm SECAM
dvv DVD video   sld Slide
mot Película   tch Technical drawing
flm Filmstrip   toy Toy
crd Flash card   trn Transparency
gam Game   umc U-matic
grp Graphic   vhs VHS
kit Kit   vca Videocassette
msl Microscope slide   vdc Videodisc
mdl Model   vid Videorecording
Maps, cartographic materials (use mt:map or /map)
atl Atlas   mcm Manuscript cartographic material
cgl Celestial globe   mmp Model map
egl Earth globe   pgl Planetary globe
gsc Geological section   pcm Published cartographic material
glb Globe   rsi Remote-sensing image
Musical scores (use mt:sco or /sco)
mmu Manuscript music   pmu Published music
Continuing resources (use mt:cnr or /cnr)
*int *Integrating resource   mse Serie
new Newspaper   upd Updating database
per Periodical   upl Updating loose-leaf
*ser *Serial   upw Updating website
Computer files (use mt:com or /com)
312 3.5 in. disc   fnt Font
514 5.25 in. disc   imm Interactive multimedia
bdt Bibliographic data   ndt Numeric data
cdc CD for computer   oss Online system or service
cgm Computer game   pgm Program
cig Clipart images graphics   snd Sound effects
dct Document  

*For integrating resource (int) and serial (ser) material types only, you can either precede with mt: or mt= or add to the end of a search as a slash qualifier (/ser or /int), similar to the main qualifiers.


Contact OCLC Support.

Within the Connexion client:

  • Client: Click Help > Contact Support.