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New to Using the Library

Top tips for using the library

You do not need to login to your “My Library Accounts” to search or access e-resources.

Simply go to Library SearchDatabases, or Journals to search for materials. Once you select a resource (e.g., a database, article, eBook, etc.) to access you will be prompted to login using your Central Authentication Service login credentials

If you run into any issues with access, please contact us at

Frequently Asked Questions

Using Library Search – the big search box on the homepage – allows you to search for books, journals, articles, DVDs (and more) that the library owns.

For more detailed searching for articles on your topic or subject, we recommend using subject databases.

Learn how to virtual browse and explore the collections online using Library Search.

The Claremont Colleges Library uses the Library of Congress Classification System. A Library of Congress call number will contain a combination of letters and numbers, and will typically end with a four-digit year. For example, QL737.P2 C35 2011.

You will find the call number for an item in the Library Catalog, directly from your results page. The record will tell you:

A) If the item is available for check out, and if not, when its due back to the library
B) Where the item is physically located in the library (in this example, 1st floor of Mudd)
C) The call number, which is like the item’s address on the shelf

screen shot of a call number in the catalog

The call number in the catalog is written left to right. The books on the shelf have the call numbers written top to bottom.

Find the shelf with the LBs. Read the 1st line in alphabetical order: J, K, L, LB, M…

Read the 2nd line as a whole number: 1, 2, 3, 32, 100, 101, 2000, 2395

First read the 3rd line alphabetically. Then read the following number as a decimal: .C51, .D49, .T844, .T848

The last line is the year and is read in chronological order: 1989, 1992, 2000, 2016…

Once you’ve found what you’re looking for and want to check it out, you use your campus ID card as your library card. You can check items out at:

  • The Main Services desk at the South entrance, Honnold 1
  • The self-checkout station at the South entrance, Honnold 1

You can renew your items through your library account by clicking View Library Accounts on the top of the library website. Login to view the items you have checked out and renew.

For group work, you may want to check out:

  • The Collaborative Commons, 2nd floor of Honnold
  • Group study spaces, 3rd and 4th floors of Honnold (must be reserved)
  • Study cubes, 2nd floor of Mudd (just behind the Main Services Desk)

The 4th floor is the designated quiet floor. Please use the 4th floor if you want a silent work area.

Check out our spaces page for detailed information about all of the study space available in The Claremont Colleges Library and to reserve a group study space.

Do you need some help knowing where to start your research? Our Subject Librarians have curated Research Guides to help you find the best resources in your discipline or subject.

If you want more hands-on help with research, make an appointment with our librarians.

A few of the most commonly-used interdisciplinary databases are:

Looking for databases specific for your subject? Or databases for a specific format like newspapers or videos? Use our database directory.

Textbook prices got you down? The library has a course readings section, where you can borrow the books assigned for your classes for up to 4 hours at a time. Course Readings are located on the 1st floor of Honnold, next to the Main Services Desk.

You can look up the books you need in Library Search to make sure we have it, and to see if they are currently checked out.

Staff are available at the service desks to answer you questions.

Use Library Search to discover items you wish to read! You can also browse our popular reading collection which includes current bestsellers from our Braxton Collection found on the 2nd floor of Mudd. While you are there, grab a zine or graphic novel.

The library has cameras, audio recorders, virtual reality devices, computer equipment, GPS units, and related accessories that are available to check out. Check out what we have available at Tech Lending.

Have you found a book, article, or book chapter that you just need to have for your project or assignment, but we don’t have it? Fear not! Resource Sharing (sometimes called Interlibrary Loan or ILL) is a service offered by The Claremont Colleges Library to get what you need by borrowing it for you from another library. It doesn’t cost you anything, and you get your items fast!

You can request items through Resource Sharing when you see the GET THIS ITEM button in the item’s record in the catalog. Or, you can submit a request using a form in your Resource Sharing account.

Special Collections is where you can find distinctive and unique resources for study and research. Within the many collections housed in Special Collections, you can find rare books, maps, and manuscripts as well as photographs, ephemera, posters, college archives, and more. You will also find collections available for research, teaching, and study at the Asian Library and the Ella Strong Denison Library at Scripps College.

Students come to Special Collections with their class to examine and use primary sources for their course assignments and research projects. Many also explore its numerous resources on their own or decide to use the unique resources found in Special Collections for their theses or dissertations. They can also view and engage with our rotating exhibitions, on view in the North Lobby of the library, and attend related exhibition programming, or browse our digital collections. Students interested in furthering their engagement with rare books and archives are welcome to apply for work in Special Collections or apply for a Center for Engagement with Primary Sources (CCEPS) Fellowship.

Explore our website, visit us during our open hours, or contact Special Collections for more information.