MIRLYN: The U-M Online Public Access Catalog


Where to find MIRLYN

MIRLYN can be accessed through any of the Library's public terminals or from a home or office computer with a modem. It is also available at all campus and Residence Hall Microcomputer Centers on campus. To exit MIRLYN from a non-library location, type stop or select EXIT. For assistance in using MIRLYN, please message mirlyninfo@umich.edu. Information on dialing in to MIRLYN is available at MIRLYN Remote Access.

You may access it directly from this point:

via tn3270
the preferred method
via telnet
if you don't have tn3270 software
via the web
an experimental version

A Brief Guide to the Mechanics of MIRLYN

For some brief help in using MIRLYN, a few instructions and quick tips are provided here.

Database Menu
The initial menu lists the databases currently searchable on MIRLYN. To return to this menu from any screen, type start or choose. Select MCAT to search the University Library's online catalog of books, periodical titles and other materials. Other databases contain indexes to periodical articles and other publications in selected fields. All MIRLYN databases use the same search commands. To select any database, type cho and its four letter code (e.g. cho mcat) & press return.

Search Commands
	Author Search:		a=hardy thomas

	Title Search:		t=color purple

	Subject Search:		s=animation

	Medical Subject Search: sm=mitosis

	Keyword Search:	    	k=homeless

	Call Number Search: 	c=pn 2287 m 39

Quick Tips

Title Searching

To search by title, type t=(title) and press return.


t=to the lighthouse
t=handbook of adult literacy
t=cardiovascular diagnostic testing
t=journal of personality assessment

Quick Tips

Author Searching

To search by author, type a= (author, last name first) and press return.


a=austen jane
a=skinner b
a=darwin charles

NOTE: An organization or institution may be the author of a publication.


a=american medical association
a=brookings institution
a=american society for aesthetics

Quick Tips

Subject Searches

To search by subject, type s=(subject heading) and press return. Subject headings for MCAT may be determined by consulting The Library of Congress Subject Headings (the big red books), available in most University Libraries. Often, references to standard subject headings are provided by MCAT. Index databases may have their own subject heading guide books.


s=morrison toni
s=urban economics
s=professional ethics

Note: Subheadings must be separated from main headings by two dashes (e.g. s=united states--history--civil war)

Call Number Searching

To search by call number, type c=(call number) and press return. For non-book materials, such as videos, sound recordings or microfilm, type co=(call number). Magazines and journals have the same kind of call numbers as books.


c=822.8 m 35
c=ps 3570 o54 c7
co=video 10018
co=micro f 1069

(video and micro f are part of the call number and must be included).

Revising/Editing Searches

MIRLYN now saves the latest ten searches. To review your list of searches, type r and press return. To edit (add and/or delete words or letters) a previous search, type ed and the search number (e.g. ed s1). Saved keyword searches appear in boldface and may be combined into new sets. For more information on saved searches, type exp r and press return.

Keyword Searching

Keyword searches look for a word or a phrase anywhere in a bibliographic record and may find items not located by author, title or subject searches.



A keyword search with more than one word searches each word separately. To search two words as a phrase, use adj for adjacent (e.g. k=cultural adj literacy).

Keyword Truncation
A truncation symbol must be used in a keyword search if variant endings of a word are desired. The symbol is a question mark: ?. For example, k=sociolog? will find sociology, sociological, sociologist, etc.

Combining Keyword Search Terms
Combining terms broadens or narrows a keyword search.

  1. AND

    k=homeless and children

    Finds records with both the words homeless and children anywhere in the record.

  2. OR

    k=atomic or nuclear

    Finds records with with either atomic or nuclear or both anywhere in the same record.

  3. NOT

    k=fusion not cold

    Finds records with the word fusion but eliminates ones that also have the word cold.

Limiting Keyword Searches

A keyword search can be limited to a field, such as author, title, subject or date.


k=shakespeare.su. and 1988.dtl.

For more information on keyword searches, type exp k.

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Last updated 4/2/97