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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

MUS 313: The History of Music I

Catalog Tips

Detailed tips for how to use the catalog to find books, scores, and recordings can be found on the other pages under Finding Books, Scores & Recordings. However, we also wanted to highlight several recommendations specific to your class. Check out the search tips below to browse library material related to your coursework in MUS 313.

There are several ways to find materials in the Library catalog, we've outlined recommended search terms below for the different types of searches you can perform.


Search by Keyword

When you do a simple keyword search, you are searching for words or phrases that can be found anywhere in the text of an item record. This can be a great way to find a large number of results and is often a good way to get a sense for the range of material available. Try keyword searches with the following phrases to perform a general search in the catalog:

  • "renaissance music"
  • "16th century music"
  • "instrumental music" and "15th century"


Search by Subject

Using the Advanced Search feature, you can browse by subject in our Library Catalog. This means conducting a search using a term from a pre-defined controlled vocabulary of headings used to classify materials in our catalog. This will give you more targeted results than doing a simple keyword search. For more information on how to search by subject, refer to the instructions on the Finding Books page. You can perform a subject search for any of the suggestions in bold below:

  • By genre--always use plural to find scores and recordings*
    • Madrigals, English
    • Motets
  • By era
    • Motet - 15th century (when talking about a genre as a subject, then it's singular)
      • could search with motet* to find both "motet" and "motets"
    • Sacred vocal music - 15th century
    • Music - 16th century - History and criticism
  • By topic
    • Performance practice (Music)-500-1400
    • Performance practice (Music)-15th Century


Search by Composer

You can perform a search for a particular composer in several different ways. Use the composer name as an author if you want works by them, or as a subject if you want writings about them.