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Library 101: How To Use Western Library In-Person & Online

A quick-start guide to finding library sources for your assignments.

Finding Books at Western Library

library books with call numbers on spine labels

Books located in the subject category - Fine Arts (N) and Drawing Design, and Illustration (NC)

Image Source: Wikipedia Commons

Where is Western's Library?

  • Western Library is located in the Learning Commons on the second floor of the Student Success Center

How do I find a book on the shelves?

  • Our books are organized by subject using the Library of Congress (LC) Classification System 
  • Feel free to ask a librarian to help you find your book

What are those white labels on the spine of all the books?

  • Notice the "code" on the labels on the spines of the books in the photo above. This "code " is the book's Call Number.  A Call Number tells you where a book it is located in the library.
    • Each number and letter refers to details about that the book's subject and it's title and author.
  • Call Numbers start with letters that match up with subject categories.
    • Look at the Call Numbers in the image above. They all begin with NC.
      • The subject category, N, is Fine Arts  and  the subcategory, NC, is Drawing Design, and Illustration 
      • Think of NC like the name of street you live on. 
      • The combination of NC with other numbers and letters gives you the shelf "address" of a specific book.

Subject Categories - Library of Congress Classification System

  • Class A – General Works (including dictionaries, history ofof scholarship and learning, etc.)
  • Class B – Philosophy, Psychology, Religion
  • Class C – Auxiliary Sciences of History (including history of civilization, archaeology, etc.)
  • Class D – World History
  • Class E-F – History of the Americas
  • Class G – Geography, anthropology, recreation
  • Class H – Social sciences
  • Class J – Political science
  • Class K – Law
  • Class L – Education
  • Class M – Music
  • Class N – Fine arts
  • Class P – Language and literature
  • Class Q – Science
  • Class R – Medicine
  • Class S – Agriculture
  • Class T – Technology
  • Class U-V – Military science, naval science
  • Class Z – Library science, general information resources

Learn more about the Library of Congress Classification System at the link below.

Library Catalogs - Search for Books and Other Items.

Western Library Catalog

  • Find  books and eBook. An eBook is the same as a print book, it's just the electronic version and available online.
  • Search by title, author, subject, or keywords.

Library catalog ebook


La Crosse Public Library Catalog

If you can't find the book or ebook you want at Western Library, try La Crosse Public Library or your local public library.

  • Public library cards are free!
    • Check out books and other materials - DVDs, CDs/audiobooks, and more
    • Access the library's online databases , 
    • Download ebooks, audio books, streaming video. 

Links to both Western Tech Library as well as La Crosse Public Library are listed below. Also listed it a link to information about how to acquire a free La Crosse County Public Library Card.

Short Video: Finding and Linking to eTextbooks at Western Library

Finding eBooks in Western Library's A-Z Databases List

Access eBooks Online 24/7

In addition to our collection of print books, Western students and staff have access to an extensive collection of digital books. Search the library catalog (linked above) and limit by format to eBooks or search the library database eBook collections linked below.

A-Z ebooks


Search EBSCO eBook Collection using the Basic Search Box or choose a Category in the list on the left side of the page to browse titles available in that Category .


Credo Reference logo with 3 lines at the left to access list of eBook titlesLink below to access the database, Credo Reference.  Note that when doing a search,Credo Reference lists specific articles from eBooks as the main heading, but the eBook title is listed below. A complete list of eBook Titles can be accessed by clicking on the 3 horizontal lines to the left of the Credo logo at the top left of the page.

Western Technical College
Western Technical College Learning Commons
Student Success Center, Room 201
400 7th Street North
La Crosse, WI 54601
State Relay: 711
EEO Statement

Learn more about Western and the Learning Commons.
The Learning Commons provides library and academic support services on campus and online. The Learning Commons will set you up for success!

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