Library‎ > ‎The Research Process‎ > ‎

3: Books

Back to Step 2: Background Info

Find books in the Emmaus Library.

Using the keywords you brainstormed in steps 1 and 2, enter a few search terms into the Koha library catalog to see what Emmaus has on your topic.

If you don't get the results you want, try using different keywords.

When you find a book that looks like it's what you're needing, click on the title and take a look at the Subject Terms assigned to the book. Add those terms to your list of keywords, and use them in future searches.

Google Books

Search Google Books. Using the preview mode, you may be able to find a section of a book you need.


Use WorldCat to find books located in libraries around the world.

If you find a book that looks like the one you're needing, fill out this form with the book details to request the librarian to borrow the book from another library.

(Keep in mind that this borrowing process can take anywhere from several days to several weeks.)

Where do I find this book?

When you find a book you want in the catalog, take a look at the call number. This is the book's "address" and will tell you can find it in the library.

The books in the Emmaus library are organized according to the Dewey Decimal system, which breaks down all knowledge into one of ten categories:

000 Generalities
100 Philosophy & Psychology
200 Religion
300 Social Science
400 Language
500 Natural Science & Mathematics
600 Technology & Applied Sciences
700 Arts
800 Literature
900 Geography & History

Each of these classes has ten divisions, which are broken down further as the subject becomes more specific.

Books in the Emmaus library are shelved based on these numbers, and are then placed in alphabetical order by the author's last name: a book about the Gospel of Mark by Beth Young would have the call number 226.3 YOU.

Books are arranged on the shelves from left to right, top to bottom, according to call numbers and authors.

If you're having trouble locating the book you want, don't hesitate to ask library personnel for help!

Finding Books

Watch a Prezi explaining how the books are organized and how to find a specific book.

Can I borrow books from other Dubuque libraries?


The Emmaus library will meet most of your academic needs. However, you can present your student ID and apply for a borrower's card at the following libraries and colleges (select the name of the institution to search their catalog):

Keep in mind that borrowing from these libraries is a privilege and not a right. Respect the authority of their staff, and see the Emmaus librarian with any problems you encounter.