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Finding books

Finding books

Finding books


How to Find Books by Call Number

Kent State University Libraries use the Library of Congress (LC) classification system for organizing and shelving books. Each book as a unique "call number" composed of letters and numbers, which is used to determine the book's placement on the shelf, and to group it among other books on the same subject.

Most books are shelved by their LC call number. (Journals are shelved alphabetically by title, and government documents use a different call number system.)

After searching KentLINK, the online catalog:

Convert the call number from the catalog display to a vertical form (as it appears on the spine or lower front cover of a book):


Follow the model, descriptions and rules below.

  • Periodicals, journals, magazines, and newspapers are shelved alphabetically by title on the 2nd floor.
  • Microformats (microfilm, microfiche, etc.) are available through the Periodical Information Desk on the 2nd floor.
  • Annual reports are filed alphabetically and are located in filing cabinets on the 2nd floor. (Annual reports may also be available online.)
  • Books, monographs, and other material with LC call numbers are shelved according to the following:


Using the first letter line of the the code and this building guide, you can figure out where in the library an item is located.

The following are location codes that may appear on material but are not part of the call number:


("quarto") oversized, shelved upright on shelves at the end of the floor


("folio") oversized, shelved flat on shelves at the end of the floor


located in Government Documents, 10th floor


located in the Reference Center, 1st floor

Gov Doc Ref

located in the Reference Center, 1st floor

Juv Coll

located in Juvenile Collection, 9th floor

Min Cat

Minimal Level Cataloging, located on the 9th floor

Arch Lib

Architecture Library, 110 Center for Architecture & Environmental Design

Fash Lib

Fashion Library, 231 Rockwell Hall


Map Library, 410 McGilvrey Hall

PA Lib, Mus Lib

Performing Arts Library, D-004 The Kent Center for the Performing Arts

A complete list of the codes can be found here.

NOTE: If you cannot locate a book on the shelf where it should be, try these other helpful tips.

Items that you cannot locate may be requested through the KentLINK catalog. Requested items will be retrieved and placed on hold for you. Please ask at the Reference Desk or Circulation Desk for further assistance.