1. Title and cover image - A cover image usually appears next to the title.
2. Publication information - The author's name, what year the book was published, and the publisher's name. A brief summary of the book often appears below this information.
3. Print/E-mail/Citation - Print or e-mail the detailed record to save for later. The Cite/Export link displays citations in several formats, including MLA and APA. Copy and paste the citation for your paper, but always double-check it since computer-generated citations often have errors!
4. Library of Congress Subject Headings - The main subjects describing what the book is about. Click on one of the headings to launch a new search for more items with the same subject heading.
5. Location/Status/Call Number - Which library owns the item, if it is currently available, and where it is shelved. Write down the call number to find it on the shelf. See the box below to learn how to read call numbers!
6. Table of Contents - Scan the table of contents to evaluate whether the book has information you can use for your research.
7. Reviews - Reviews can help you evaluate the book further.
The MSJC Libraries use the Library of Congress call number system, made up of a combination of letters and numbers. It may feel confusing at first but visit our page on Understanding Call Numbers and you will find a full description of what the numbers mean and how to break them down so you can find your book on the shelf.
Still confused? Ask one of the MSJC Librarians, and we will be happy to walk to the shelves with you!
Books from Other Libraries
The default setting in WorldCat limits your searches to the MSJC Libraries. If the MSJC Libraries do not own an item you are interested in, you can expand your search to other libraries worldwide. Use the dropdown menu below the Books search box to select Libraries Worldwide.
You may request an item you find outside the MSJC Libraries by clicking on the Request Item through Interlibrary Loan button. You will be directed to a page where you can fill out an Interlibrary Loan request form. Select the form for the campus where you want to pick up the book. There is a $2.00 fee for this service.
WorldCat is the name of the catalog used at the MSJC Libraries. WorldCat searches for books, articles, videos, and other items available at the MSJC Libraries. The WorldCat search box is located on the MSJC Library Homepage.
Use the Books tab to limit the format of your search to books only. You can also find books using the Everything tab, but your results may be overwhelming because books will be mixed in with numerous other formats.
Type your key search terms in the Books search box and click the Search button.
Tip: Your search will be more successful if you type in only the primary keywords for your topic or main words from a specific book title. Avoid using full sentences and/or common or neutral terms (the, a, an, etc.)
WorldCat will display your results in order of the closest matches to your search terms. That means the most relevant items should appear near the top of the list. Browse your results and click on the title of a book that interests you to get to the detailed record screen.
See the top column on the left for a description of each numbered area.