Research paper the central catalog

Each book a library owns is listed in the central catalog, which is usually found near the reference or circulation section in card cabinets, in bound books, or on computer terminals. Online catalogs may also include periodicals indexes and other reference works.

Figure 3 shows a typical screen listing for a computerized catalog. This information can be reached by typing in the command for subject, author, or title. Before you reach the screen with the detailed information about a holding, you will probably see a list of all the holdings by the same author, about the same subject, or following your title in an alphabetical list. After looking at the

Call Number:



Felstiner, John


Translating Neruda: the way to Macchu Picchu/
  John Felstiner.


Stanford , Calif : Stanford University Press, 1980.


284 p.: ill.; 23 cm .


Includes Alturas de Macchu Picchu in English
  and Spanish.


Includes index.


Bibliography: p. [267]-273.


Neruda, Pablo, 1904-1973. Alturas de Macchu


Neruda, Pablo, 1904-1973 – Translating,

Added Entry:

Neruda, Pablo, 1904-1973. Alturas de Macchu
  Picchu. English.
Figure 3 Online-Catalog Screen.

screen about the book you are seeking, you might want to check out the information for the related holdings on the list.

Books are cataloged in three ways: by author, by title, and by subject. ( Author listings are filed by the author’s last name; title listings are filed by the first important word in the title (excluding a, an, and the); and subject listings are filed by the first word of the general subject. All three types of listings include the title, author, publisher, date and place of publication, number of pages, and major topics covered. The listings also note special features, such as an index, a bibliography, and illustrations. They also show other subject headings under which more information may be found on the topic.

Library of Congress Subject Headings. In order to ensure uniformity of subject headings, most libraries use the wording in the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), a multivolume directory usually located near the book catalog or at the reference desk. Consulting the LCSH before starting to look through the catalog can save you a lot of time. For example, instead of “Native Americans” or “American Indians,” LCSH uses the subject heading “Indians of North America.” Because LCSH shows broader, narrower, and related terms with each subject heading, it can also help you focus your topic.

Library Classification Systems. Each book’s location is identified by a call number; the same number is written on the book’s spine. To find books about a particular topic, you can either browse through the shelves housing books with the appropriate call number or you can look through the central catalog entries with that subject heading. Call numbers are usually assigned according to the Library of Congress system or the Dewey decimal system. Ask a librarian for a list of your library’s classifications.

The Library of Congress system uses letters to identify twenty major subject categories.

A general works

B philosophy and religion sciences

C history and auxiliary

Subcategories are represented by a second letter. For example, TL in the technology category (T) represents books about motor vehicles, aeronautics, and astronautics, and TT marks books about handicrafts and arts and crafts.

The Dewey decimal system uses numbers to identify ten major subject categories.


000-099 general works
100-199 philosophy
200-299 religion
300-399 social sciences
400-499 language
500-599 pure sciences
600-699 technology (applied sciences)
700-799 fine arts
800-899 literature
900-999 history

Each of these general categories is divided into ten subcategories. For example, 610- 619 in the technology category (600-699) is for books in medical sciences, and 640-649 is for books about home economics.

Publishing Bibliographies and Interlibrary Loans. If you cannot find a particular book or periodical in your library, consult a publishing bibliography to see if it is still in print and to find out its publication information. These reference books are a useful adjunct to the central catalog, because books and periodicals that are not in your library’s collection may be available from another library through an interlibrary loan. Ask a librarian for more information.

Books in Print( U.S. books indexed by author, title, and subject; issued annually, with supplements)

Cumulative Book Index (all books published in English indexed by author, title, and subject; issued annually, with supplements)

Monthly Catalog oj U.S. Government Publications (nonclassified publications of all federal agencies by subject, author, title, report number, and ordering instructions)

Ulrich's International Periodicals Directory (serial publications throughout the world; issued annually, with supplements)


In addition to the central catalog, periodical indexes, and reference books, many libraries offer a computer search service, such as DIALOG, which can provide a computer printout of citations about your subject. Databases are available in English, education, medicine, business, psychology, biology, management, engineering, environmental studies, and many other subjects. Computer search services are usually located in the reference section of the library, and reference librarians can provide information about the range of subjects in the database, the types and cost of search services, and procedures for using the service.

Documentation and Manuscript Form

Documentation is the giving of credit to sources used or quoted in a research paper, journal article, book, or other document. Full and accurate documentation prevents plagiarism and allows readers to locate and consult the sources cited. All facts and ideas that are not common knowledge should be documented, as should all direct quotations. When you edit your paper, make sure that all quotations and ideas from other sources are documented and that the in-text citations correspond to entries in the list of references or works cited.

The following pages provide examples of the four styles of documentation most frequently used in undergraduate courses: MLA (Modern Language Association of America) style for arts and humanities courses, APA (American Psychological Association) style for social science courses, CMS (Chicago Manual of Style) style for history and humanities courses, and CBE (Council of Biology Editors) style for life sciences. A complete sample research paper in MLA style. The manuscript form for the other three styles is illustrated with sample pages.

Many other professional organizations and journals also publish style manuals that describe documentation formats used in other disciplines. See a list of such style manuals. Ask your instructor which style to use, and follow it consistently, in every detail of order, punctuation, and capitalization.

0 Responses on Research paper the central catalog"

Leave a Message

Skip to toolbar