Finding a Book

  • Finding a book in the library is easy! The first step is to search our collections to see if we have the book you’re looking for.

    Do it Yourself

    • Access our Library Search.

    • Search using the book’s title, author, subject heading, or other keywords.

    • When you see the book you want in the results list, look for a statement like “Available at Stapleton Library Stacks (PN1996 .I38 2001).” The information in parentheses is the call number for the book, which is how you locate it on the shelves.

      • If the book is in our Children’s Collection, it will say “Available at Stapleton Library Children’s Collection” instead of “Available at Stapleton Library Stacks.”
      • “Stacks” indicates our general circulating collection, located on the first and second floors of the Stapleton Library building.
    • Make note of the call number by writing it down, emailing it to your cell phone, taking a picture, or whatever works for you!

    Get Reference Help

    If you want assistance searching, don’t hesitate to get reference help from our skilled librarians. You can get help by visiting the desk, connecting to our chat reference, emailing your question, or giving us a call. When in doubt, Ask a Librarian.

    If the library doesn’t have the book you are looking for, and you are an IUP student, faculty, or staff member, you can order the book through Interlibrary Loan using either PALCI or ILLIAD.

    Getting the Book from our Shelves

    Our main collection uses Library of Congress call numbers to organize our books by subject, and group similar books together. Our Children’s Collection, on the second floor of the Stabley Building, uses Dewey Decimal call numbers instead. The process for finding a book is the same either way. Follow these steps:

    1. Identify which floor the book is on, and what area of that floor:

      • First Floor: call numbers starting with [REF], and items in the Schafer Collections and Popular Reading Collections

      • Second Floor: call numbers starting with A – K, and Children’s Books (located across the breezeway in the Stabley Building)

      • Third Floor: call numbers starting with L – Z and Oversize

    2. Look at the cards on the end of each shelf—they’ll tell you what range of call numbers that side of the shelf holds. Use these to find the shelf holding your book.

    3. Moving from left to right, work your way along the shelf, looking at the spine labels on the books, to find your call number.

    When you have located your book, bring it, with your I-Card, to the Circulation Desk and we will check it out to you. If you have a call number, but can’t find the book on our shelves, please come to the Circulation Desk and we will be happy to assist you.

    Finding an E-Book

    We have a large collection of electronic books as well as physical titles, and sometimes you’ll find the book you’re looking for is available electronically.

    If so, you will see “Check for full text” appear at the bottom of the entry in the results list. Click on that link and look in the “View It” section of the resulting page, where you’ll find a link to take you to the e-book itself.