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What is Summon?

Summon is a powerful search engine that provides fast, simple access to scholarly material at the University of Bradford. It provides an integrated single search box for our

  • Library Catalogue;
  • journals and journal articles in print and online;
  • both print and eBooks;
  • Masters Dissertations and research in Bradford Scholars;
  • Multimedia content;
  • Newspaper articles; and
  • citations in our abstracting and indexing databases.

How do I use Summon?

The Summon search box can be found on the Library homepage or visiting the Summon search page directly. The Summon search box replaces the old catalogue search box. Summon is quick and easy to use, a bit like Google Scholar but with access to University of Bradford subscribed resources. You only need to take three steps:

  • Enter search terms into a single search box.
  • Refine results by date, subject, academic journals etc.
  • View results, and link directly to full text or more information.

Although Summon is designed to be intuitive and easy to use, please feel free to get in touch with your Subject Librarian for further information and assistance. 

What if I still want to use an individual database?

You can still type in the name of the database into the Summon search box. This will bring up the link for the database at the top of the results page. In addition, while searching Summon, the built-in recommender service will direct you to selected additional resources related to your search.

Can I still use the library catalogue without Summon?

The Library still offers a catalogue alongside Summon. The traditional catalogue will be available for

  • accessing your library record;
  • renewals;
  • reservations;
  • inter-library loans; and
  • group study table bookings.

Comparing the functionalities of the two library search services:


I want to... Catalogue Summon
Search for books Yes Yes
Search for journals Yes Yes
Search for journal articles No Yes
Search for database content No Yes
Search for Masters Dissertations No Yes
Access my borrower record Yes No
Use Advanced Search Yes Yes
Limit my Search Results Yes Yes
Use Facets to narrow down searching No Yes
Search for full-text online articles No Yes
Search for Bradford Scholars content No Yes
Book a Group Study Table Yes No
Request and Inter-Library Loan Yes Yes
See Related Search options No Yes

If you require this information in an alternative format, please contact our team. You can also read our Website Accessibility Statement.