Frequently Asked Questions


  1. What is OneSearch?

    OneSearch is an online search portal that helps you find information across a variety of resources from the National Library Board (NLB)'s libraries and archives databases as well as National Heritage Board (NHB)’s museum repository of artefacts and artworks.

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  2. What can I find on OneSearch?

    OneSearch can retrieve a wide range of digital content such as books, magazines, audio-visual materials, eBooks, photographs, films, oral history interviews and maps residing in the NLB's libraries and archives databases and NHB’s repository.

    The libraries' databases include:

    The archives' databases include:

    * Please also refer to Qtn 4 regarding the above records.

    The museum's database includes:

    The gallery’s database includes:

    You can also search various databases subscribed by NLB:


  3. How are the content organized?

    The content has been grouped into nine categories to help you navigate across the various types of content easily.

    The nine categories are:


  4. Can I access all library and archive content from home?

    Due to copyright and permissions policies, access to some content is limited from home.

    Accessing full records from the archives

    NAS holdings where only the metadata is available online include (i) private and overseas records, (ii) Straits Settlements records, (iii) government records and (iv) selected building plans. For such records that cannot be viewed online, researchers are advised to call and arrange with the Archives Reading Room (ARR) at the National Archives of Singapore to view the access copies of the records subject to clearance from donors or transferring agencies. Researchers will also have to visit the ARR to view the full length of audiovisual recordings and listen to selected oral history interviews that are not available online due to copyright restrictions or conditions imposed by interviewees.

    Researchers can also access microfilmed copies of school records and cemetery records at the ARR.

    To find out the opening hours and contact details of NAS's Archives Reading Room, visit here.

    Accessing full records from libraries

    To access the full copies of records from MusicSG and NewspaperSG, please visit any of the Public Libraries or the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library. We have set up dedicated multimedia stations where you may do your research.

    Find out the opening hours and addresses of the Public Libraries and for the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library by following the corresponding links.

    For details on the access of the respective databases you may want to visit our eResources website.


  5. Do I need to login in order to use OneSearch?

    Access to most of the ebook and eJournal databases is restricted to NLB members only. For the best experience, it is ideal that you are logged in so that eJournal and databases subscribed by NLB can be searched. In addition, your book reservation and borrowing experience can be streamlined.

    The search feature will however work even without login. You will be prompted to login as NLB member when you select to view the details of a subscribed ebook/e-journal.


  6. How do I search for items in OneSearch?

    Simply enter your keyword(s) in the search box. The search engine will retrieve results containing your search terms.

    Below are some ways to further specify your search terms:


  7. How do I narrow my search results?

    You may narrow your search results by using the refine search tool located on the left side of the search results page. The refine search tool lists the various result filters (i.e. types, subject, publisher, language, etc) that can be used to narrow search results.

    The refine search tool should be used after you have entered a search term and retrieved a large number of results. To reduce the number of results retrieved, you may select the desired filter(s) available in the list of filters. Each filter provides an indicator of the number of search results which can be narrowed into.

    Upon selection of a filter, the filter will appear in the middle of the results listing. You may apply more than one filter to the results. To remove a filter, simply click on the Remove Filter icon icon beside the filter.


  8. How can I submit a feedback or a question?

    To send us your feedback, simply leave your comments or suggestions in the Feedback page.

    Ask a Librarian is a service that the public can ask (1) questions about their library account, library programmes & facilities, (2) for advice on books to read or (3) for help on research topic on SG/SEA.

    These two links can also be found at the bottom of the OneSearch website.


  9. How can I collaborate with NLB and OneSearch?

    We seek mutually beneficial partnerships with organizations and businesses that will serve our users. Contact us to explore partnership opportunities.

    To find out areas of collaborations, please view our Partnership page.