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Library Subject Guides

Philosophy: Books and ebooks

What Are Call Numbers?

Call numbers explained

High Demand

Textbooks and recommended readings are often put on short-term loan in the High Demand collection.

Search for your course code:

Interloan

If you cannot find it at UC Library or online, request an Interloan and we will get it for you from another library. There is no charge for this service

Google Books

A good way to find out whether the details you seek are located in a book. Search previews of books and some full text of out-of-copyright titles; search terms are highlighted in results.

Google Book Search

Finding Philosophy Books

The main philosophy sections in the Central Library are on Level 11, at B–BD, BH and BJ.

  • Philosophy is related to many other subjects, so philosophy books are also located with those subjects. For example, political philosophy is mainly classified with political science at JC, on Level 8
  • The Library of Congress classification system is used to organise the books. Each Library book has a call number showing where it is located, which can be found by on its Library catalogue record
  • Textbooks and recommended readings for particular courses are placed on High Demand by lecturers and located in the Self-Loan Area on Level 2
    • To see the list for a particular course
      • enter the course code into the Course code search box in the Library catalogue

        Course code search

      • or refer to the course page in Learn
         

Finding ebooks

  • Most ebooks can be found by a normal search in the Library Catalogue , or via MultiSearch , and are identified with an electronic book icon
     

  • Use the search box to find ebooks by subject (the correct options are already chosen: refine your search – “Items with full text online” and Content Type – “Book / eBook”)


Vital Source ebooks

As Vital Source ebooks have limited ‘seats’ (simultaneous readers) and automatically issue for 24 hours, please Return the ebook once you have finished your reading session

  • Click the ebook link and if requrired login with your normal UC username and password
  • Click the Activate button
  • Click the Launch button
    • The book launches in a separate tab in your browser for you to read.
  • When you have finished your reading session
    • Close the tab where you are reading your book (do not close your browser yet)
      Close reading tab
    • The “Bridge” tab appears: Click the Return Now button and then Return
      Return Now button
    • You can now close that tab or your browser

Browse the Library catalogue

To browse Philosophy books by subject in the catalogue

Good starting points for beginners to philosophy are introductory works

To retrieve records for ebooks along with print resources, use the Keywords catalogue search option or MultiSearch.

Subject Categories for Philosophy

Click a main heading or scroll down


Philosophy (general): B (Level 11)

History and systems of philosophy

Modern philosophy and philosophers by nationality: B 850–

Logic: BC (Level 11)

Speculative philosophy: BD (Level 11)

Aesthetics: BH (Level 11)

Ethics: BJ (Level 11)

  Other philosophy and ethics-related classifications

Call Numbers Explained

Find a Book on the Shelf

To find a book on the Library shelves you will need to know its call number. Call numbers are printed on the spine of the book and are also listed in the Library Catalogue. They tell you where the book is located in the library.

The University of Canterbury library, like most academic libraries, uses the Library of Congress Classification system. In this system, the call numbers start with letters of the alphabet.

  • The first letter refers to the subject area, e.g. Q – Science
  • Sometimes another letter is added to refer to a more specific aspect of the subject, e.g. QD – Chemistry

Reading Call Numbers: Library of Congress Classification System

Read the call number line by line:

  • Read the first line in alphabetical order.
  • The first set of numbers that follow are read as whole numbers and are arranged numerically on the shelves.

 

This diagram explains how Library of Congress call numbers work on the library shelves:

 

Call Numbers

(This image was produced by librarians at the University of Maryland Libraries (User Education Services), College Park, MD.)


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