It’s no surprise that our users prefer discovery systems like Summon and EDS. They offer a more Google-like interface, and get users closer to finding what they need, and further from searching for it. But sometimes the everything bucket can overwhelm with results. Sure, facets can narrow down the results into a more manageable number, but we know that most users never do this. So how do we help our users find what they need in the everything bucket?

Scoped searches. That’s how.

A lot of my colleagues work with faculty on putting together research assignments, and so they know what types of sources their students need. If we could present a search box that worked like Google but only returned sources that met the criteria for the assignment, the students would have a better experience.

I wrote a little tool in Javascript a few weeks back that does just this for our Summon installation. (Thanks to John Krull for help making it better.) By preselecting the facets you want to impose on the search, you can ensure that only full-text or peer-reviewed, journal articles or books in French, are returned. It’s easy to use and seamless for the user. All you need to do is copy some HTML and paste it into a Web page or service, like LibGuides.

And because I thought this would be useful to the Library community has a whole, I’ve released the source under the GPL, so you can modify it any way you like. You can grab the source code at