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RS 360: Ecojustice

Finding Books in the Library Catalog





In the library catalog you can search for books in multiple ways, including using a keyword, an author, a subject, and/or a title. All of these will produce different results in the catalog.



A keyword search produces results for any item in the catalog whose record includes the word or phrase you are searching. So, for example, if your search term is medieval history, you may get results with that phrase in the title, table of contents, summary, etc. Keyword searches are therefore the broadest way to search, oftentimes resulting in many--sometimes too many--results.



College library catalogs usually use Library of Congress subject headings (LCSH) as a means for classifying content. In comparison with keywords, subject headings (which you'll see in each catalog record as clickable links) constitute a highly regimented and consistent system of organization.

If you know an exact subject heading for a given topic, you can conduct a subject search in the library catalog. Here are some examples of Library of Congress subject headings you can use when conducting this kind of catalog search:

  • Biodiversity conservation
  • Climate change mitigation
  • Climatic changes
  • Climatic changes -- Social aspects
  • Conservation of natural resources
  • Ecofeminism
  • Ecology
  • Ecotheology
  • Environmental degradation
  • Environmental ethics
  • Environmental health
  • Environmental justice
  • Environmental policy
  • Environmental protection
  • Environmental quality
  • Environmental responsibility
  • Environmentalism
  • Global environmental change
  • Global warming
  • Globalization -- Environmental aspects
  • Green movement
  • Greenhouse effect, Atmospheric
  • Human ecology
  • Human ecology -- Religious aspects
  • Human ecology -- Religious aspects -- Christianity
  • Nature -- Effect of human beings on
  • Nature conservation
  • Pollution prevention
  • Sustainable development
  • Sustainable living
  • United States -- Environmental conditions
  • Water conservation
  • Wildlife conservation


If you find a book to use that's in the library's circulating collection (2nd floor), you might also want to browse those books on the shelf next to it since they might be on the same general topic.