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The Fundamentals of Library Classification

The Fundamentals of Library Classification

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Library classification is an aspect of library and information science. A library classification is a system by which library materials are arranged according to subject. Library classifications use a notational system that represents the order of topics in the classification and allows items to be stored in that order. Library classification systems group related materials together, typically arranged in a hierarchical tree structure. A different kind of classification system, called a faceted classification system, is also widely used which allows the assignment of multiple classifications to an object, enabling the classifications to be ordered in multiple ways.

Classification is a procedure of grouping similar items and objects and is essential in formulating groups that is known as classifying which results in Classification. This process helps the user to arrange, organize and make a logical sense of articles which also assists the user to locate them in an easy manner. Classification is the ability to distinguish objects through their similarities and dissimilarities which is distinct in their identities for human beings. Classification systems in libraries generally play two roles. Firstly, they facilitate subject access by allowing the user to find out what works or documents the library has on a certain subject. Secondly, they provide a known location for the information source to be located (e.g where it is shelved). Until the nineteenth century, most libraries had closed stacks, so the library classification only served to organize the subject catalog. In the twentieth century, libraries opened their stacks to the public and started to shelve the library material itself according to some library classification to simplify subject browsing. Librarianship consists of the selection, acquisition, organization and dissemination of knowledge presented in the form of books, periodicals, film, photographs, maps, gramophone records, audio and video tapes, Compact Discs, DVDs, Microfiche and Microforms. Knowledge must be organized in a library in an appropriate manner with the objective of dissemination. The classification of library involves placing together in classes the objects which contain characteristics in common and to separate from them the objects that do not have same characteristics. Classification also forms the basis of an order in handling literature and its records. It reveals the strengths and weaknesses of library collections and it is therefore essential for a systematic, comprehensive and representative book selection, through revision and withdrawal of unwanted stock. It also analyses the contents of books for readers through the medium of catalogue and is extremely helpful in the compilation of Bibliographies. It facilitates book display and can also be used for recording books issued out to the readers and when returned by them which allow an easy return of books to the shelves and in their right places.

Angelique P. Gonzalez

Angelique P. Gonzalez

Angelique Gonzalez studied in Baliuag University with the Degree of Bachelor of Library and Information Science in 2013. She also obtained her Master’s Degree in Library Science in the same University in 2016. She is now currently working in ABS CBN Publishing Inc. as Library and Information Officer with specialization in Document Management System.