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ICEAPNS: Finding Books

Your Guide to Cape Breton University Library


book /bʊk/ noun

plural books:
a set of printed sheets of paper that are held together inside a cover : a long written work

  • The shelves in his office are filled with books.
  • ​That's one of the best books I've read in a long time.
  • The library has many dictionaries and other reference books.
  • A hardcover/paperback book — sometimes used figuratively a long written work that can be read on a computer: e-book


Locating print books using call numbers

What is a call number?Each library book has a call number which acts as an address telling you where the book can be found in the library. The call number is attached to the spine of the book.

How do you read a call number?  The CBU Library uses the Library of Congress Classification System to arrange books on shelves by subject. In the image below, the first section of the call number (LB) represents the subject; the letter and decimal (.C) represents the author's last name. The last section (1991) is often the date of publication.

Why is this important to know?  Knowing how to locate books using call numbers will save you time. Also, because books are shelved by subject, you'll be able to find other helpful books by browsing the area.  Each shelving unit in the Cape Breton University Library has a sign detailing the range of call numbers you can expect to see in a row.

Learn more about call numbers.