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Basic Research

Research is a multistep process. The UMSL library provides many kinds of resources.

Locating a Book on the Shelf

There are 3 pieces of information you need about a book to find it on the shelf.

The status: NOT CHECKED OUT means you can get it today.

The call number : LC40.G88 1992

The location : UMSL TJ Level 4.

Reading a Call Number

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LC call numbers are read from left to right, and from top to bottom. The letters at the beginning of the call number are alphabetical. The numbers immediately following are in basic numerical order, i.e., 5 then 6, 50 is after 49 and before 51, and 100 is after 99.

Although it was developed to organize materials housed at the Library of Congress, the Library of Congress Classification system (LCC) is now widely used in academic libraries around the world.  The LCC system begins with 21 categories, each identified by a letter of the alphabet.  Most of the categories are also broken down - to get more specific - and identified by 1 or 2 more letters. For example N contains Fine Arts; ND is Painting, a topic in fine art. 

Individual topics are also delineated by place, time period, etc. using numbers (in ND673 you'll find books on painter Peter Paul Rubens who lived 1577-1640).  A call number may have up to 4 digits (1-9999) in the main part, and then if necessary, decimal places that may have only numbers or both a letter and numbers.  (Library of Congress Classification http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/lcc.html)

Finding Topics by the Library of Congress Call Numbers

Below are the major classes or categories found in LCC:

Library Floor Plans

Explore the Library

 

Floor Description
Level 5 Books QD - Z, Periodicals, Microform, Study Rooms, Curriculum & Children's Books, Scanner, Tables.
Level 4 Books G - QC, Silent Study Area (with Tables and Carrels)
Level 3 Entrance, Public Service Desk (Reference & Circulation), Café TJ, Research Commons/Computer Lab, Copier & Scanner, Instruction Room (Room 315), Tables
Level 2 St. Louis Mercantile Library, COM2, Government Documents, Folio and Oversize Books, Tables, University ArchivesState Historical Society of Missouri Research Center - St. Louis
Level 1 Books A - F, COM1, Additional Mercantile exhibits, Carrels and Tables

 

The St. Louis Mercantile Library is located on Level 1 and Level 2 of the Thomas Jefferson Library.

The State Historical Society of Missouri Research Center - St. Louis & University Archives are located on Level 2 of the Thomas Jefferson Library.

Note: The Ward E. Barnes Library was merged into the Thomas Jefferson Library in May 2014.



Thomas Jefferson Library Level 1

Thomas Jefferson Library Level 1


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Thomas Jefferson Library Level 2

Thomas Jefferson Library Level 2 Floor Plan


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Thomas Jefferson Library Level 3

Thomas Jefferson Library Level 3 Floor Plan


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Thomas Jefferson Library Level 4

Thomas Jefferson Library Level 4 Floor Plan


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Thomas Jefferson Library Level 5

Thomas Jefferson Library Level 5 Floor Plan

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