Skip to main content

Place a trace on an item missing from the shelves

Live Help

Placing a trace on an item missing from the shelves

When searching for an item in the library please make sure to take down the complete call # and location information before heading off to the shelves. If you are unfamiliar with library call #’s and locations, please ask for help at the Information Desk.


If you are unable to find an item on the shelf that is not checkedout, you can request a search for the item by selecting SEARCH FOR ITEM MISSING FROM SHELF.

Note: Use this request only for items that are NOT CHECKEDOUT

Steps for placing a trace:

  1. Search for the item in the library's catalogue. If you retrieve more than one item click on the DETAILS button beside the item's corresponding number – this will display the item's full record. If you retrieve only one item you will automatically be taken to the item's full record.

  2. From the DETAILS display (full record) click on the "Search Services" link at the top of the page.

  3. On the next screen (Search Services) click on Search for an item missing from the shelf.
  4. Complete the form, the call # , copy and item ID fields will be filled in by the system

    1. you will need to enter your library card # and the Date Needed By

    2. the Date Needed By can be entered in any date format
    3. your email address is required
  5. Click on the [Send] button at the bottom.
Library staff will place a system hold on the item for you and do a thorough search for the item at periodic intervals up to and including the date specified in the Date Needed By field. If the item is found you will be notified by email – if you have provided the library with an email address – that they have an available hold for the item; otherwise, they will need to monitor your library account to see if the item is available to pick up. You will have 3 days to pick it up at the Library Circulation Desk after which time the item will be returned to the shelves.
Please Note: You may also be able to obtain a copy of the missing item through Interlibrary Loan with the approval of an Information Desk staff person