Library FAQ

Answers to common questions about doing research and using the library.

How do I find books?

  |   0   0   |   Last updated on Jan 25, 2020    research process borrowing books


Start with Library Search, the large search box on the library's homepage, which will retrieve books and ebooks. If you know you only want books (not articles), change the drop-down next to the search box to say "All UW Libraries."

You can use the options on the left of the screen to refine your results. There are limiters for Available at Parkside, dates, and topics. After you have some results, use the drop-down next to the search box to limit to items at Parkside or in UW Libraries.

If a book is available at Parkside, it will say so. Look at the collection (stacks, new books, etc.) listed after the availability message, as well as the call number.



This book's collection is Stacks, and the call number is LB3060.32.C65 W25 2000. The call number is the location of the book on the shelf.

Here are the library collections by floor:

  • L1: Reference books; Journals and Magazines (Back Issues); DVDs; CDs; Friends Reading Room (Browsing collection; Video Games; Graphic Novels); New Books; Current Newspapers; Stacks and GFL/Grand Folio Books (Call Number M)

  • L2: General Stacks (Call Numbers A-L); GFL/Grand Folio Books (Call Numbers A-L); Education collection; Educators professional development collection

  • L3: General Stacks (Call Numbers N-Z); GFL/Grand Folio Books (Call Numbers N-Z)


If a book is available at another UW library, you can request it by clicking on the orange "Use Get It to Request" link. You will have to sign in using your Parkside ID and password. Books from other campuses arrive in about 3 business days.

Finding sources can be complicated. If you've been looking for 5 or 10 minutes and haven't found what you're looking for, contact us for help.

For more information, look at the Find Books & Articles tutorial or contact us.

Click here to view this tutorial in a different window.