Borrowing through WorldCat

WorldCat is the most comprehensive online database of resources available to libraries around the globe. “It is astounding that the number of holdings in WorldCat has doubled in less than eight years,” said Jay Jordan, OCLC President and CEO. “This is strong testimony to the power of global library collaboration.”

WorldCat was created in 1971 so that libraries could share cataloging information from a central database, increasing workflow efficiency and the ability to locate and loan materials. It took the OCLC cooperative almost 34 years, from August 26, 1971 to August 11, 2005, to add 1 billion holdings in WorldCat. It has taken just seven years and eight months to add the next billion.

WorldCat spans six millennia of recorded knowledge, from about 4800 B.C. to the present. It encompasses records for books, serials, sound recordings, musical scores, maps, visual materials, mixed materials and computer files.

Did you know that WorldCat is freely available to the UArts community? 625 UArts faculty, students, and staff requested books, videos and articles from WorldCat in 2012. For more information, go to


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