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Library Catalog Help

We encourage you to explore all that your Library Catalog has to offer!

What's new with the catalog system

You Asked for it! - We've done it!

Thank you for your comments and suggestions!
We've been busy trying to implement as many as we can.
Here are the latest, greatest updates and features:

Text items to your cell phone
We've added a new feature which allows you to send the title, call number, location, and status of items directly from our catalog to your cell phone. Just look for the button which reads "Send via Text Message."
Large Print Search

We've created a special search for large print items. Simply complete the search sequence with your desired keyword, title, or author name.

New Catalog Look

Our new catalog look offers consistent navigation links along the right side of the screen, and faster loading pages.

SearchOhio / OhioLink

SearchOhio & OhioLink offer access to Library materials around the state. Click here for more information.

Pay Fines and Fees Online
    We have added an online payment option. Login to your record or click here for more information.
Suggest an Item for Purchase

We have revised our Purchase Request form. Now you can submit requests and provide additional information about the item you would like us to buy. Click here to view the new form.

My Account Features & Settings
    We have enhanced the display of the Login screen:
  • Computer Settings Help information has been added.
  • New format lists features with drop-down descriptions and instructions.
My Lists
    My List features are back and better than ever.
  • Save lists of items you'd like to read with just a few clicks!
  • Keep track of resources for research projects.
  • Multiple lists available to help you organize your items.
  • Create your own list names.
  • Place holds from My List with two mouse clicks!
Holds List Screen
    We've removed the confusing "Cancel All" button from the holds screen.
  • To cancel holds, click in the box to the left of the item title, then click the "Update List" button at the top of the screen.
Patron Login Screen
    We've made the login screen easier to use.
  • Users can now log in with only their barcode and pin. We've removed the name field from the login screen.
  • Users can now see their barcode number as they type.
  • Users can also set their browser to save name and barcode information to automatically complete these fields when they log in next time.
Featured Item Lists

Look here to find for your favorite bestseller lists, as well as new DVDs.
Check back soon for additional list offerings.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Catalog and My Account

What’s happened?

On May 13, 2008, the Library began a new way of searching for library materials, downloadable media, and databases with Encore, which has been called a “search and discovery platform” in that it allows you to pull up more than just physical items that exist on library shelves.
The best way to get a feel for what Encore has to offer is to give it a try!
What is Encore?

The default search Encore uses is Keyword for a quick and simple item search, which provides the most relevant results at the top of the screen. “Did You Mean?” feature eliminates confusion and corrects common spelling mistakes. Google-like relevance ranking ensures that the best answer rises to the top of your search. Quick preselected links to the library’s electronic and Web-based resources.

Has Encore changed since May 2008?

Yes. The library recently update to Encore 3.0. What does that mean?  Encore 3.0 will allow you to place a hold within that platform. Before you would be taken into the Traditional Catalog to place the hold you wanted. You can also at the top of the browser window see information about your library card. If you have holds to pick up, fines owed, or items to return soon.  It will also give you access to “my cart” and rating titles.    

What happens when I click on the “my cart” link?

It will take you to a listing of the items you placed in the cart, who owns those specific items, and the ability to remove items from your cart. You can also export the list of books to an email address if you would like to also. If you are logged into your account you can add the books to your “my list”. You can place multiple requests from “my cart” also.

What are Tag Clouds?

The other unique feature of ENCORE is a display of a Tag Cloud (index terms) that use large or bold type to indicate the most important tags associated with your keyword search. You may just click a tag to refine your search.  If you have ever used “related searches” in our old library catalog (by selecting all other subjects through one of your result items), this Tag Cloud provides you the same function in a better way.  This box indicates the most other important subjects (tags) by using large or bold type letters. You can also add your own tag cloud now.

What is the Traditional Catalog?

We offer access to our collections through a “Traditional Catalog” search box, which is also new and improved. This option offers a more traditional look and functions more like our previous Library catalog. To access the traditional catalog, click where you see “Traditional Catalog” or “Advanced Search.”

ENCORE vs Traditional Catalog:

the Library's new Search
and Discovery platform


Traditional Catalog


  • Simple Keyword Searching
  • Simple searching by Keyword, Title, Author, Subject, Series, Jounal Title.
  • Special Keyword searching of Audio/Video and Children's Materials
  • Advanced Boolean Searching Options


  • Limit your completed search by material type, location/collection, year published, or language.


  • Limit your completed search by material type, location/collection, year published, or language.


  • Results are sorted by relevance, resort your completed search by title or date


  • Results are sorted by relevance, resort your completed search by title or date.

Additional Special Features:

  • Popular Choices link to most popular results
  • Tag cloud to link to other resources

Additional Special Features:

  • Renew Items
  • Featured item Lists
  • Comments
  • Suggest a purchase

Known Issues:

  • Pop-Up Blocker Software may disable My Account Login and Request links from within the Encore system.

Can I suggest a purchase?

If you click on the link “suggest a purchase” at the bottom of the page in the traditional catalog, it will ask you to log in to your account. Once you do that, you will be taken to a screen where you will be asked to fill in information about the book. Enter as much information as you have on the item you would like to be purchased.

My Account

Can I still access “My Account”?

Yes. You can still renew, place holds, and view what you’ve checked out. New features we think you’ll love include the ability to opt-in to save your “reading history”, the ability to “freeze” your holds, and pay fines online.

What if I forget my pin?

Your pin number is usually the last four digits of your phone number. You can modify your pin if you would like, which can be changed through “my account”. It has to be six to thirty mix of alpha and numeric characters.

If you have changed your pin or are not sure which phone number we have on file. Please call your local branch or the circulation department of the Main library. Ask the library staff member to reset your pin. They will reset the pin to the last four digits of your phone number.

What does mean to “opt in” to save your “reading history”?

You can take advantage of a new featured called “my reading history” but the only way to do that is by “opting” in to the system via the button on your “my account” page. Once you have opted in the button will then appear on your screen saying “opt out”, that button changes so you can opt out at anytime.     
Opting into your reading history allows you to view anything you have checked out from the time you have opted into the system. It does not go back past the date you opted in which means it is not retroactive.

With “my reading history” you can opt in or out at anytime, delete part or all of your reading history, see the title, author, and when you checked it out, export your history to a local file or send to your email account.

Can I renew my item online?

Yes, to renew items online:
1. Log into your account.
2. Click link marked "Items currently checked out."
3. You can then select the materials you want to renew by checking the boxes in the RENEW column.
4. Click "YES" to confirm you would like to proceed.

What is “My List?”

“My List” enables you to save lists of items you wish to read, watch, or listen to in the future and is available when you log into “My Account” either through the traditional catalog or Encore with the use of the “my cart” link.  You can also place holds on these items from “my list” via the traditional catalog.  
  1. Log into your account via either the Traditional Catalog or Encore.
  2. Search for items and mark records in search results.
  3. Choose a list (or create a new one) from the dropdown menu above search results.
  4. Click "Save to my lists."

Can I pay my fines online?

Yes, you can pay your fines online. If you follow the link http://www.akronlibrary.org/policy/pay-online.html, you can find answers to the questions you might be having about the process.

    To pay fines online:
  1. Login to your account.
  2. Click the “unpaid fines and bills” link.
  3. Click “Pay Online”.
  4. Choose the Fees/Fines you wish to pay.
  5. Fill out appropriate credit/debit card information.
  6. Click Submit.

Can I place holds on items?

Yes! Using both Encore and the traditional catalog, you have the ability to place multiple holds at one time! You can also place holds using the Encore platform.

What if I have a problem with my holds?

If you have lost a hold, been dropped from a list, or just didn’t get notified, please contact your local branch so that we can try to resolve the problem.

How can I be notified for my holds?

You can be notified that your hold is ready to pick up via email, phone, or postal mail. Just ask your local library staff member to make the change in your record. If you have not chosen a notification preference, the system follows this pattern 1) email 2) phone 3) postal mail.

What is “freezing” your holds?

Going on vacation and don't want to lose your place in line?

If you are going on vacation and won’t be home to pick up your holds but you have been waiting for that bestseller for months and you don’t want to miss it. Then from the holds page you can freeze your holds. This will allow other patrons to get the book but your place in line to be held until you are ready.  Notice:   if the item requested is immediately available at one of our 17 branch locations or Main, the freeze option will not be available to you.  You cannot FREEZE items already waiting for pickup.

    Place a "FREEZE" on your items:
  1. Log into your account.
  2. View your requested items.
  3. Select "FREEZE" and click "UPDATE LIST."
  4. Click "YES" to confirm you would like to proceed.
  5. When you return from vacation, log into your account, deselect your items and click "UPDATE LIST."

What is preferred search?

When you do a search on a particular subject, title, or author, you can save it as a preferred search. If you find a topic that you would like to be able to search repeatedly, then once you do the search you will see a box that says “save as a preferred search” and you want to click on that.

Once you have saved a topic as a preferred search, you can view those searches from your account. The computer categorizes your searches depending on whether you are doing an author, keyword, or subject search. You can mark the search for an email, which means that you will get notified via email that item of your interest has been obtained. You could then place a hold on it or  You can search from the list on that specific topic again

What if I need help?

Context sensitive help screens are available on each screen, and of course, library staff will be happy to help you! We also encourage you to view our Flash demonstration on using the new system. Computer classes are offered that will demonstrate features of the new catalog and also show you some bells and whistles that you might not yet know about!
Please call Electronic Services at 330-643-9145 for more information on class dates and times.


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