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Quick Start Guide: What is OneSearch, and when should I use it?

What is OneSearch?

OneSearch is kind of like the "Google" of library resources.  OneSearch searches the library's physical resources, plus most (but not all) of the library's subscription databases, along with a selection of open-source eBooks and articles from trusted web sources.  The results list will contain a wide variety of books, eBooks, videos, images, and articles from newspapers, magazines, and scholarly peer-reviewed journals that you can access with the click of a button.  Websites are NOT included in OneSearch results.


Venn diagram showing that OneSearch contains records for all OC Collections but other online collections are only partially included.


For in-depth searching of ALL of the library's subscribed resources, consider searching our databases individually instead!

When should I use OneSearch?

Use OneSearch if:

  • You are searching for the library's physical resources (books, DVDs, etc.)
  • You want to view a wide variety of material types in a single results list, combining both physical and electronic resources.
  • You only need a little information to get started on your research project, or are in a hurry.
  • You don't need newspaper articles, or local information.
  • You are ok with encountering occasional odd results and broken links.

Use individual research databases if:

  • You want a thorough examination of your topic using electronic resources like journal articles, ebooks, and book chapters.  Searching individual databases will usually yield more thorough results.
  • You need to run a very specific search using specialized filters (e.g. a peer-reviewed article describing evidence based practice, written by an RN)
  • You need newspaper articles or articles on local/regional issues.
  • You do not want to deal with occasional odd results and broken links.
  • Your instructor has told you to watch a film in Kanopy.  Kanopy is not currently included in OneSearch.

Tips and Tricks for better OneSearch-ing

  • For newspaper content, search a newspaper database directly.
  • For local information (ie. Kitsap County), search a newspaper database directly, or search the Internet directly via search engine (ie. Google). You can also consult our list of regional newspaper links.  
  • If the "Available Online" link from your results list FAILS to retrieve the full text of the article, do the following:
    • Go back to the results list and select the link for the article title, instead of the "Available Online" link.
    • Scroll down to the "View It" section of record. If there are multiple database names listed, select the link for the 2nd or 3rd option listed.
    • If there is only one option listed in the View It section, note the database name listed.  Go to the Databases List and search that database directly for the same article title.
  • If you get ZERO RESULTS from your search, do the following:
    • Check your spelling.
    • Limit your search to 3 or fewer keywords, or try searching synonyms of your search terms.
    • If you still get zero results, use our Ask-A-Librarian 24/7 chat service for assistance!
  • Kanopy videos are NOT included in OneSearch. Ask your instructor for a direct link to your assigned Kanopy video.