Help with Summon

Getting started

Get hands-on practice using Summon in our interactive Summon tutorial.


Screenshot from Summon search results showing filters for content type, publication date, and discipline.

Use Summon's filters to refine your search and get better results.

You can filter by:

  • Full Text Online
  • Scholarly (Peer Reviewed)
  • Library Catalog
  • Content Type (books, journal articles, newspapers, video recording, etc.)
  • Publication Date
  • Discipline
  • Library Location
  • Language

Selecting "More..." below one of the refining options opens a pane to view additional options. Be sure to close this pane using the X at the top when you have made your selection.

Get to full text

Different items in Summon will display different availability information:

  • For print books, the availability, call number, and location will show in the results list.
  • For online articles, you might see Full Text Online, Check Availability, or Citation Only (if no full text is available).
  • For an ebook, the display might read Full Text Online or Citation Only.


Image of Summon save folders

To save a result, select its folder icon.

To view saved items, select the folder icon to the right of the search box.

This is only a temporary folder. When you leave Summon, folder contents will disappear. It will also timeout and be emptied after 2 hours of inactivity. You will need to export or email items to keep them.

Cite, email, and export

To get a citation for an item, select the quote icon and then choose a citation format.

Image of Summon icons for cite, export, email, and save

To email yourself a citation, choose the email icon. Enter your email address and choose a citation format.

To export a single citation, choose the ellipse next to the other icons to see more actions. Then choose your preferred citation tool.

If you have a list of citations you want to export, print, or email, you need to save the items to your folder first. From the folder of saved items you can then email, print, or export the records. No more than 50 citations can be emailed or exported at a time.

Using Summon off campus

You can use Summon from off-campus computers, but may see limited results. To get the most complete results, log in using your UA NetID from the gray banner at the top of the page.

Known issues in Summon

Summon is an evolving product and some features are still in development. If you run into issues that aren't included on this list, please send us feedback.

  • If you have trouble finding a print book in Summon, try using WorldCat Local instead.
  • Summon's save folder will be emptied after 2 hours of inactivity or if your browser window closes. 
  • No more than 50 citations can be emailed or exported from the save folder at a time.
  • When typing new search terms on the search results page, Summon sometimes overwrites those terms. If this happens, try selecting the Search button rather than using Enter/Return to start the search.
  • Newspaper results may not be current. To get the most recent newspaper articles, use newspaper databases directly, such as ProQuest Global Newsstream, Access World News and Nexis Uni (formerly LexisNexis Academic).
  • Sorting results by date (rather than relevance) may give off-topic results. To limit searches to recent items, it’s better to use the Publication Date filter and sort by relevance.
  • Citations may have incorrect elements so be sure to double-check their accuracy.

Altmetrics in Summon

Summon now displays altmetric data, such as the number of tweets, blog posts, Facebook shares, references in Wikipedia, or readers in Mendeley or CiteULike.

Summon & accessibility

Summon users with screen-reader technology can use navigational elements at the top of the page known as “skip navigation” to allow the focus of the page to go directly to the search results, avoiding the navigation, search box, and filter elements.

A user also can navigate through Summon by using a keyboard.

Keystroke Action
Left arrow
  • Moves the focus left between the Facets pane, Results pane, and Explorer pane.
  • Closes Item Preview when being displayed in the Explorer pane.
Right arrow
  • Moves the focus right between the Facets pane, Results pane, and Explorer pane.
  • Opens Item Preview (in Explorer pane) when focus is on a previewable result.
Down arrow
  • Moves the focus down through the items in the results set (focus initially must be on Results pane).
Up arrow
  • Moves the focus up through the items in the results set (focus initially must be on Results pane).
  • Functions as a regular tab key. Tabs through all clickable items on the screen.
  • Users on a Mac with Firefox or Safari need a particular system setting in order for tab ordering to function properly:
    Go to System Preferences  >  Keyboard  >  Shortcuts tab. Select "All Controls" from the "Full Keyboard Access" section.
  • Executes the associated action when focused on a clickable event.
  • Opens/closes expandable menus.
  • Opens/closes expandable menus.
  • Moves the focus to the search box if no supplemental panes (Preview pane, More Facets pane) are open.
  • Closes supplemental panes.

The library and the UA’s Disability Resource Center work with Summon’s vendor to ensure that Summon fully complies with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. 794d) and that it meets Level AA of Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0. If you have any questions about Summon's accessibility, please call Summon Coordinator Cheryl Cuillier at (520) 310-9874.

Summon & privacy

Summon complies with all University of Arizona privacy and security policies and requirements. It does not solicit or retain user data. No UA data are stored on Summon’s servers. Additionally, Summon complies with 20 USC Section 1232(g), the Buckley Amendment to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.

Need more help?

You can also see our Summon FAQ or ask a question of your own.