This course guide was created during a previous semester, and is no longer being actively maintained. Here is a list of current course guides.
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The library website is your gateway to research at UC Berkeley.
call number (let's try it)
A unique code on the spine of a book that tells you where the book is located on the shelves (like an address).
A catalog contains records, with detailed descriptions and location information, of the materials in the library. UC Berkeley Library’s catalog is called OskiCat.
The area where you can check out, return, or renew library materials.
A brief description of a source (book, article, movie...) with specific publication details (such as title, journal, date, publisher, author, etc.)
An area in the library where you can check-out items that your teacher has made available for your specific class. There may also be eReserves available for your class in bSpace.
Refers to a database or other electronic resource which provides the entire text of the works it contains (e.g., journal articles).
Journals usually contain scholarly articles written by professors, researchers, or experts in a subject area, and are published periodically (weekly, monthly).
An item checked out that the borrower has kept past its due date. A library will usually charge a fine for overdue items.
Published on a regular schedule (e.g., weekly or monthly), popular periodicals are called magazines and scholarly periodicals are called journals. Newspapers are also periodicals.
Reference Desk (image)
The place in the library where reference librarians and assistants give you directions, answer your questions, and show you how to find and use library materials.
Areas of a library where books and periodicals are shelved.
Adapted from the University of Maryland's Library Lingo.
Photo of card catalog from OSU Archives on Flickr.
Photo of card catalog index card by dfulmer on Flickr.
Books and journals are arranged on our shelves according to the Library of Congress (LC) classification system. Each is assigned a unique call number based on its subject matter and other characteristics. Items on the same subject will often be grouped together.
Each call number consists of several elements. In using a call number to locate a book on the shelf, consider each element in turn before moving on to the next segment.
These call numbers are arranged as they should appear on the shelves. In each case, the element shown in boldface distinguishes the number from the preceding one:
Use OskiCat to locate materials on the shelves of the UC Berkeley libraries and also to:
Use Melvyl to locate materials at other campuses in the UC system, or worldwide, and also to
The Library gives you access to over 200 article databases covering different disciplines.
Here are some general article databases that cover many different topics and subjects.
Once you've used an article database to find articles on your topic, you may need to use this button: in order to locate and read the full text of the article.
UC-eLinks will link you to the online full text of an article if UCB has paid for online access; otherwise, UC-eLinks will help you locate a print copy on the shelf in the library. If UCB doesn't own the article in print or online format, UC-eLinks can also help you order a copy from another library.
For more information, watch this video tutorial (about 4 min.)
You can also set up UC-eLinks to work with Google Scholar. For more information, watch this video tutorial (about 2 min.)
To use library databases from off campus you have to set up the proxy server: this changes your browser settings.
Plagiarism is a form of academic dishonesty, violating the Berkeley Campus Code of Student Conduct. The campus issues a guide to understanding plagiarism, which states:
"Plagiarism means using another's work without giving credit. You must put others' words in quotation marks and cite your source(s). Citation must also be given when using others' ideas, even when those ideas are paraphrased into your own words."
Plagiarism is a serious violation of academic and student conduct rules and is punishable with a failing grade and possibly more severe action.
In order to avoid plagiarism, you must give credit when
This content is part of the Understanding Plagiarism tutorial created by the Indiana University School of Education.
Go to the research help page to have librarians answer your questions online:
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