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Step-by-step guide

The Instructional Materials Center (IMC), located on the Lower Level of the Belk Library, uses the Dewey Decimal Classification system to arrange its materials.  The information books are in numerical order, while the fiction books are shelved in order alphabetically by the author's last name.

Overview of Dewey Decimal Classification System

000-099   Generalities (encyclopedias, bibliographies, periodicals, journalism)

100-199   Philosophy and related disciplines (psychology, logic, etc.)

200-299   Religion

300-399   Social sciences (economics, sociology, civics, law, education, vocations, customs)

400-499   Language (language, dictionaries, grammar)

500-599   Pure sciences (mathematics, astronomy, physics, chemistry, geology, biology, zoology)

600-699   Technology and applied sciences (medicine, engineering, agriculture, business, radio)

700-799   The arts (architecture, sculpture, painting, music, photography, recreation)

800-899   Literature (novels, poetry, plays, criticism)

900-999   Geography, history, and related disciplines

Reading a Dewey Decimal Call Number

The Dewey Decimal system divides subjects into ten main groups. If you see a call number and location in the library catalog that looks like this you will find the item in the IMC:

These call numbers are sorted line by line. The first line is sorted numerically by whole number, and the second line is sorted by letter and then by decimal number. They are then sorted by letter, if applicable, and finally by edition (which is indicated by publication date). The following Dewey numbers are in the correct order:

The first line is sorted numerically by whole number:

808      814       821       826

The second part of the first line may also contain a decimal component:

808.12            808.34                808.9

The second line is sorted alphabetically by letter and then by number.  All the numbers in this line are treated as if they were preceded by a decimal:

808            808                808              808    
A435          A5                 M279           P40             

The second part of the second line may also contain additional letters at the end.  These letters are sorted alphabetically:

808            808               808             808  
A435la      A435wo         M279m       M279w     

Finding Fiction Books

The chapter books in the IMC are shelved together in alphabetical order by the author's last name, then in order by the title.  If you see a call number and location in the library catalog that looks this this you will find the item in the IMC:

Reading a Fiction Call Number

'Fic' (short for Fiction) is used at the beginning of the call number as a locator tool.  All the fiction titles are shelved together alphabetically by the last name of the author. 

The first part of the call number is sorted alphabetically by the first letter:

Fic C623rc     Fic C6259fr     Fic L6733chr     Fic L687tf        

The numbers in the call number are read digit by digit, not as a whole number:

Fic C623rc     Fic C6259fr     FIc L6733chr     Fic L687tf   

The last part of the call number contains letters sorted alphabetically:

Fic C623rc     Fic C623rf     Fic L6733chr     Fic L6733pr

How to find an easy book in the IMC 

The picture books, or easies, in the IMC are shelved together in alphabetical order by the author's last name, then in order by the title.  If you see a call number and location in the library catalog that looks like this you will find them on the low red shelves in the IMC:

Reading an Easy Call Number

'E' (short for Easies) is used at the beginning of the call number as a locator tool.  All easies titles are shelves together alphabetically by the last name of the author.

The first part of the call number is sorted alphabetically by the first letter:

E B455ma     E F848co     E W699kn     E Z37al

The numbers in the call number are read digit by digit, not as a whole number:

E B455ma     E F848co     E W699kn     E Z37al

The last part of the call number contains letters sorted alphabetically

E B455ma     E B455mg     E W699kn     E W688Leg

How to find a biography/autobiography in the IMC

The biographies and autobiographies in the IMC are shelved together in alphabetical order by the last name of the person the books are written about. If you see a call number and location in the library catalog that looks like this you will find the item in the IMC:

Reading a Biography Call Number

'92' is used at the beginning of the call number as a locator tool.  all the biography titles are shelved together alphabetically by the last name of the person the biography is about.

The first part of the call number is sorted alphabetically by the first letter:

92 K53ma     92 L479ad     92 S475sc     92 W947di

The numbers in the call number are read digit by digit, not as a whole number:

92 K53ma     92 L479ad     92 S475sc     92 W947di

The last part of the call number contains letters sorted alphabetically:

92 K53ma     92 K53ra     92 W947di     92 W947sc



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