Listen to part of a conversation at the information desk in the library.
Librarian: Hi. Can I help you?
Student: Where do I go, besides the computers, to look for books on New Zealand?
Librarian: OK. You mean you don't want to use the computer?
Student: Well, I haven't had any luck on the computers here.
Librarian: OK. I mean the reason I am asking is you pretty much have to go to the computer to find out where a book is.
Librarian: But I can help you find it on the computer if you like.
Student: That would be great. I just spent half an hour and I couldn't find anything.
Librarian: I know how you feel. When I first started working here, I couldn't find anything either.
Librarian: So you are looking for information on New Zealand, is that right?
Librarian: Is it like travel information that you are looking for?
Student: Uh… No. Actually what I am looking for is information on a volcano in New Zealand.
Librarian: Oh. OK. Because I know a travel agency that specializes in tours in New Zealand and Australia.
Student: Oh. I'd love to go. I heard it's beautiful.
Student: Maybe someday.
Librarian: Yup. OK. Let's see …
Librarian: OK. If you want to search the library holdings and don't know the author's name or the exact title of the book or an article, you have to set up a keyword search.
Librarian: It is a special function. Then you can just type in some keywords and let the computer do the search.
Student: I see.
Librarian: OK. Oh, how about if we search for "volcanoes" and "New Zealand"?
Student: Sounds good.
Librarian: It's for a geology class?
Librarian: Ha! You must be from Professor Simpson's class.
Librarian: Oh. Well, he is a volcano expert, so I thought he might be teaching your class.
Student: No, I've heard he is really good though.
Librarian: Yeah. That's what everyone says. Do you know the name of the volcano?
Student: Mount Ruapehu.
Librarian: Can you spell that?
Student: Sure. It is R-U-A-P-E-H-U.
Librarian: OK. Mount Ruapehu. Let's see. So are you a geology major?
Student: Hem. Hardly.
Librarian: Let me guess, you have to take a science course and you don't want to have to deal with biology, chemistry or physics.
Student: Exactly. But it's actually turned out to be a pretty interesting class.
Librarian: Well, that's good. Um… does it have to be a book? Or could you use a journal article?
Student: Mhmm… no, either one would be fine.
Librarian: OK. Well, here's a journal article. Let me check to see if we have it.
Librarian: OK. We have the article, but it is from 2001. Is that OK, you think?
Student: Well, I'd like to have a look at it. The focus is really on eruptions in the last five years, but it might have some useful background material.
Librarian: OK. Well, let's see what else we can find.
Student: Sounds good.