Fresh features in the new Franklin Catalog

franklin2If you’ve searched for a title in one of the University Libraries recently you’ve already discovered that Franklin (Penn’s Online Catalog) has undergone a dramatic change.  Over the summer, we replaced the rather tired site with a fresh, easier to use application.

We’re looking for your help in evaluating its many new features.  Please visit the home page and click Complete a few sample searches.  The feedback we receive as you navigate the system will help us continue to improve our new interface.

If you’ve tried it, you know that Franklin doesn’t just have a new look – it is more powerful, accurate and feature-rich than the previous catalog.

Powerful searching

When you enter a word or phrase and click Go, your results will initially sort by relevance.  Sort order can be changed to Publication Date, Date Added to Franklin, Title order, or Author order.

In addition to the default Keyword search, a number of other options are available in the pull-down menu near the input box.  They include Author, Title, Journal Title, Subject, and more.

Advanced options are available via the Advanced Search tab near the top of the screen.  You can either construct your search using the Guided Search input boxes or, if you are familiar with Classic Franklin syntax, try the Boolean custom search box.

Limit your search

limit3One of the biggest differences you will see is the Limit feature on the left-side of the screen.  Filter the resources you wish to retrieve either before you begin searching or after you’ve searched for your term(s).  One of the most popular is the Access Limit which allows you to limit your resulting list to material accessible online!  Limiting to Format, Language, and Specific location are also readily available in the Limit column.  Using Limits is an excellent way to quickly reduce your results to a handful of key resources.

Once you have invoked a Limit, you can always remove it by clicking (redx) next to the limit option listed above your search results.

Better results

For many of our books, you will see a thumbnail image of the book jacket.

While viewing the titles retrieved you can easily see (via color-coded icons)  what’s available (status-green2), what might take some time to retrieve (status-yellow2), and what’s checked out (status-red2).

Franklin allows you to print (print), email (export), or export records (export) retrieved from your search.  Execute these commands for single references or for multiple references by first clicking the check-boxes next to the desired references.

Direct export is available for RefWorks, Zotero, and Mendeley.  You may also download references in RIS format that can then be uploaded into many other citation management programs including EndNote.  To learn more about these programs, visit our Citation Management Tools Guide.

Check your account

Franklin includes a Patron Services area where you can review what you have checked out and renew items that are due.  You can track certain kinds of requests and keep an eye out for any potential fines or fees.

Coming soon!

We’re close to releasing a call number browse feature, providing the ability to scan Libraries holdings by topic across all 16 library locations, all on one screen.  In addition, Franklin will soon allow access to cross-references from Library of Congress authority records for name and subject headings.

The last word

Help is available and especially important if you wish to try your hand at some of Franklin’s more advanced features.  Learn more about truncation, Boolean & proximity searching, field searching, punctuation & symbols, and stopwords used by our system, by exploring our Franklin help pages.

The old Franklin interface still exists.  We call it Classic Franklin.  You can easily slip back into Classic Franklin by following the link that appears at the bottom-right corner of every new Franklin webpage.  However, we do hope that you will enjoy using the new catalog.  Let us know what you think by using our feedback form, also accessible in the bottom left corner of every Franklin page.

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