Library Search

I want to find this book on the library shelves


I've found the book in Library Search, but how do I know where to find it in the Library?

You will need to look at the call number. CQUniversity has many libraries, but all the libraries use the same call number system. The call number will appear after the title and author of the book.

What is a call number? Why have a call number?

A call number shows you the exact position of a book or other item in the Library. The books are arranged in numeric order. They start at 001 and go up to the number 999 (but there are decimal numbers also).

For example, books on management will be at the number 658.  The other numbers focus in on the subject. For example, 658.4 will be on executive management, 658.4092 will be on great leaders in executive management.

A call number classifies an item by subject. Books and other items on the same topic will be grouped together on the shelf at the same number.

Grouping items by the same numbers makes it easier for you to find items in the same general subject area.

I can see on screen the call number of the book, but how do I know if the book will be on the shelf?

You can see this book is located in Sydney, and directly after is the call number.  You need to click on the call number to get more information and to see if the book is on the shelf. It might be out on loan.

(Remember, if the book is on loan you can always place a hold or request on the book).

Example of where to find the call number


OK. I've clicked on the call number. I can see now that the book is available on the shelf. Why does it say 'loanable'?

Books in the General Collection can always be borrowed.  But some books, such as those in the Reference Collection, are not for loan. So check that the book is loanable, as well as being on the shelf.

Example of item status

OK. So the book is 'loanable' and 'on shelf', but I've never been to Sydney library before. I don't know what floor to go to or where to start looking. What should I do?

Please ask our staff for directions, and remember to check the signage. There are lots of signs to guide you in the Library.

Remember to write down the call number of the book and the title, or take a picture of the call number and book details on your phone. Unless you have a very good memory, you will need to look at this number again to find it on the shelves. 


So now I am in the Library with a picture of the call number and book on my phone.  I've found the books starting with the 658 call number, and now I can't find the book that I want. Library Search said it would be here, and I can't see it. This is driving me crazy, what can I do?

Sometimes it can be hard to find a book when you're not used to searching library shelves. Ask the library staff to help, they will check for you. The book might also be on a return trolley, waiting to be re-shelved. If the book isn't there, that could mean someone has taken it from the shelves and is reading it in the Library, but they haven't checked it out yet.


Hoorah, the library staff found the book. It was there all the time, I just didn't see it. Do I have to check it out?

You will need to check the book out. There will be a self-service check out machine - you will need to have your student card.  Or you can take the book to the service counter and the library staff will check it out.


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Example 1 - Library of Congress call number

Example 2 - Components of a Library of Congress call number

Example 3 - Call number label