Introducing Summon, a new kind of library search engine

Summon: One search box... your library discovered.On August 2, Syracuse University Library unveiled a revolutionary new library search engine called Summon to replace Discover. Summon provides a familiar, Google-like searching experience that simplifies the process of finding information in the Library. Summon covers books and e-books, scholarly journals and e-journals, newspaper articles, dissertations, conference proceedings, and much more. Because Summon combines many types of resources in a single search, it’s a great place to start a general or multi-disciplinary search.

“Summon should be especially useful to our undergraduate students, who may be less familiar with the tools and methods for locating the scholarly information required for their academic success,” said Suzanne E. Thorin, Dean of Libraries & University Librarian at Syracuse University.

Summon combines searching the SU library catalog, SU digital collections, and the SUrface repository, plus nearly 80,000 electronic journals, over 500 research databases, newspapers, images, government documents, digital audio and video, and digital repositories from colleges, universities, and other open-access archives on the web. This massive index is a work in progress and new resources are being added continuously.

Also debuting with Summon is a new library homepage design that highlights the new resource. Researchers can enter terms in the simple, library-branded search box or use the advanced search option to specify words in a title, publication title, author names(s), dates, and more.

Summon search results are delivered in a relevancy-ranked list. To target more specific results, searches can be limited to items available online, items from scholarly, peer-reviewed journals, items from the library catalog, or items from outside the library. Users can narrow searches further by using the content type, subject, date, library location, or language facets to the left of the results list.

Saved results can be formatted in a specific citation style (APA, MLA, etc.) and emailed, printed, or exported to citation management software including RefWorks, EndNote, or BibTex.

The Library is very interested in hearing from users about their experiences in using Summon. Send questions or comments using the Feedback link in the upper right corner of the search results page. For more information, see the “About Summon” pages or email

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