The Dewey Decimal Classification System
Books, Books, BooksHave you ever wondered how we began to organize all of the books and resources in the library?
The Dewey Decimal SystemThis is the system that puts all of our books into groups or classes.
Cool Idea!The credit for this easy organization system goes to a fellow named Melvil Dewey.
Melvil the LibrarianMelvil was a librarian who got tired of not being able to find the books and information that he wanted. One day he decided to fix this problem and created the Dewey Decimal System.(Named after himself, of course!)
Whos Melvil?Born December 10, 1851 in New York.Created the Dewey Decimal System in 1876.Founded the American Library Association.Founded the first professional library school.Died in 1931.Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melvil_Dewey
How did he do it?Melvil decided to group the books into 10 general classes.The classes are named by number and subject.Books that fit under the same general class have the same call number.000 Generalities100 - Philosophy & Psychology200 Religion300 - Social Science400 Language500 - Natural Science & Mathematics600 - Technology & Applied Sciences700 Arts800 Literature900 - Geography & History
SubclassesThe 10 general classes are then divided into 10 subclasses.This makes 100 subclasses. (10x10=100)The example to the right is how the class for Natural Science and Mathematics, the 500s, is divided. Heres an example:510 Math520 Astronomy530 Physics540 Chemistry550 Earth sciences560 Paleontology570 Life sciences580 Plants590 Animals
Sub-subclassesThe 100 classes are then divided into even more specific sub-subclasses.Each subclass has 10 sub-subclasses.So, that is 1,000 sub-subclasses.(100x10=1,000)The Example to the right is how the Animal subclass, the 590s, is broken down into sub-subclasses.Heres an exampleusing 590 Animals.
590 Zoological sciences 591 Zoology 592 Invertebrates 593 Protozoa, Echinodermata, related phyla 594 Mollusca & Molluscoidea 595 Other invertebrates 596 Vertebrata (Craniata, Vertebrates) 597 Cold-blooded vertebrates Fishes 598 Aves (Birds) 599 Mammalia (Mammals)
How do all of this fit together?Well, as we saw in the previous slides500s Natural Sciences and Mathematics590s Animals596s Vertebrates
SoAll of the books about the very specific subject of Vertebrates would be found in the 596s.
The Call NumbersWe call the specific numbers given to books using the Dewey Decimal System, call numbers.Every book has a three digit call number. (Some books have a decimal point and a few more numbers.)Checkout how the call numbers are assigned to the books.Call Number for a book on Vertebrates
5965-Natural Sciences and Mathematics9-Animals6-Vertebrates5+9+6=596
Call Numbers ContAfter the book is grouped in the correct category, division, and subdivision, the books are placed in alphabetical order by the authors last name.The example to the righthas a call number 596 OHAbecause the authors last name is OHare.
What about the decimal point?Well, the decimal point identifies an even more specific type of vertebrate book.
For example, the book tothe right might have a call number of 596.1HOS because the book is about a specifictype of vertebrates, bears.
Dont let all of these numbers confuse you!Around the library we have Dewey Decimal System signs.They will guide you to the correct class of books. The subclasses and sub-subclasses are in numerical order.Once you find the correct number, look for the first three letters of the authors last name in alphabetical order.
How to find a book using the Dewey Decimal System
Step 1: Find the general class in the media center. (000-900).Step 2: Find the three digit number that is in number order.Step 3: If there is a decimal point and more numbers keep looking in number order.Step 4: Look for the first three letters in the authors last name in alphabetical order.
What about fiction books?They are easy to locate too!Step 1: Find the fiction section. (Its says fiction on the sign. )Step 2: The call number for fiction books is an F.Step 3: The F is followed by the first three letters of the authors last name in alphabetical order.
Now lets give it a shot
ReferencesClip Art Microsoft Clip Art OnlineContent gathered from the following websites:http://sunsite.Berkeley.EDU/KidsClick!/dewey.html http://thrall.org/dewey/ http://www.oclc.org/dewey/resources/tour/