Call Numbers

Books and media at GCC are shelved according to the Library of Congress (LC) call number system.   Think of a call number as the 'address' where the book, DVD, or VHS 'live' in the library.   The call number on the spine of each item corresponds to a record of the item in the library catalog.




This record shows that the 'address' of the book titled "The End of Privacy: How Total Surveillance is becoming a Reality" is JF 1525.I6 W49 1999.The call number is made up of two letters, JF, that signal the book falls under the subject heading of Political Science; a series of numbers 1525 that indicate a sub-category of Public Administration; a decimal point and letter/number combination, .I6, which indicate Intelligence Services or Espionage, followed by the letter W which corresponds to the first letter of the author's last name. Finally, the year indicates when the book was published.

Most students don't bother to try and figure out what a call number means, and in most cases, they don't need to. In order to find a book or media on the shelves in the library, students only need to understand that they should first look for the shelves that hold the first two letters of the call number, then follow the number in ascending order.  


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The call number for a library item (book or media) is basically:


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