Finding Books

Locating Books in Our Library

To find books in our library you will need to search the library catalog  (

On the catalog search screen you have numerous search options depending on your research needs and the information you already have:

Search Options:

Pinpoint Searches
If you are looking for a specific book and you have some information:

  1. Author Search
    You know the name of the author (or composer, or artist, etc.): This will retrieve books by this person.

  2. Title Search
    You know the title of the book (or work, or the title of a periodical, like a journal or newspaper): This will retrieve the record for the item.

  3. Author / Title Search
    You know the name of the author and the title of the item: This will retrieve the record for the item.

  4. Call Number Search
    Search by call number if the exact call number is known, or to browse a call number area. See below for further information on call numbers.

Topical Searches
If you are looking for books on a given topic and you don't have any specific information on authors or titles:

  1. Keyword Search
    Use a keyword search to find relevant subject terms for a given topic. 

  2. Subject Heading Search
    The best option for effective searching on a given topic.
    All items in the library are not only given call numbers but also so-called subject terms that enable

- faster identification of the various kinds of items for a given topic;


- better retrieval of specific items;


- clustering of of similar items into relevant themes and topics.

Our library uses the Library of Congress Subject Heading system that is commonly used in academic libraries and recognized by many database vendors.

If the subject heading for the topic is unknown start with a keyword search and identify at least one relevant entry from the result list. Use the subject heading at the bottom of the identified catalog entry to find similar items. Many subject headings for individual entries consist of a main heading followed by a sub-heading. Searching only the main heading will broaden your result list with related items. Furthermore, from this broader list you may be able to locate additional sub-headings relevant to the searched topic.

For more information on how Subject Headings are organized click here. Ask at the reference desk for further assistance.

Call Numbers
All books in our library are shelved using the Library of Congress Call Number System (LCCN). They are in alphabetical order followed by a set of numbers.

  • For more information on how the call number letters correspond to individual subject areas please click here.
  • Resources in the Stevens-German Library are arranged as follows: Books with call numbers A-DB are located on the third floor. Books with call numbers DC-Z are on the second floor. Oversize books, musical scores, print periodicals, rare books and the juvenile collection are located on the third floor. Reference books are located on the fourth floor. VHS and DVD's are located on the fifth floor.
  • Locating Books at Other Libraries

If Hartwick doesn't own the item you are looking for, or if you need additional books to what you have found locally please check these additional resources:

SUCO Library (Milne Library)
Check the SUNY - Oneonta Library catalog using the same searches as with our catalog. Bring your Hartwick ID to check out books at the Milne Library.

Short for World Catalog, this FirstSearch database provides information on the holdings of most North American libraries. The database currently has over 60+ million entries.

  • Similar search options as with our catalog, though it is even more important to use appropriate subject headings to avoid over-extensive result lists. You may use the button link Subjects to locate relevant subject terms.
  • If the result list is too large for reviewing use the button link Limits to refine your result list. See in particular entries under Subject Headings for relevant subject terms that are included on the initial result list.
  • Items available at our library or at the SUCO library will be so indicated. For all items not locally available use the ILL button link available with item specific entries to request the book from another library. For more information on ILL proceedures click here.

For further information on locating a specific book or books on a given topic please see a reference librarian (x4440)

Update 6/22/09