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German Language and Literature: Books

Finding books in the library

The first step is to search the library catalogue, SOLO, to discover if we hold the book. Tips for searching SOLO effectively are available in the SOLO LibGuide.  If there is a copy of the book in the Taylorian, you will need to note:

  • the location (is it in the Teaching Collection or Research Collection?);
  • the shelfmark (call number);
  • the status (is it available, confined or in the closed stack?).

SOLO results

Teaching collection books

Teaching Collection books that are not marked "closed stack" on the library catalogue SOLO are available on the open shelves in the Teaching Collection (Modern Languages Faculty) library, mainly on the ground floor.  There are two classification schemes for German:

  • The new Library of Congress (LC) classification.  For German, these shelfmarks begin PD (for language) and PT (for literature).
  • The old in-house scheme.  The shelfmark range for German begins at AA and goes through to D.

Oversize books are in a separate section at the back of the ground floor.  If you have any difficulty locating the book you need, please ask at the issue desk.  The staff will be happy to help.

Research collection books

Research Collection books are housed upstairs, as well as in the basement. Books can be borrowed by taking them to the issue desk in the Teaching Collection library.

If you are an undergraduate you will need to fill in a slip at the enquiry desk and the book will be fetched for you. 

If you are a final year undergraduate, graduate or researcher, you can access the shelves to fetch books yourself.  There are two main classification schemes in operation for German:

  • The new Library of Congress (LC) classification.  These are in the Lower Stack. For German, these shelfmarks begin PD (for language) and PT (for literature).
  • The old in-house scheme.  These are in the Upper Stack, and the shelfmark range for German begins at DZ and goes through to WQ.

The two schemes can look very similar.  Please note the LC classifications always have a year at the end.

Other schemes are in operation - please ask at the enquiry desk if you are in any doubt.  Staff will be happy to help.

Closed stack

Books with the status "closed stack" are not kept in the library.  They can be requested online by logging into SOLO and using the "Hold" option. Please allow one working day for them to reach the reading room (e.g. if you request a book on Saturday, it should be available on the following Tuesday).  As long as the book is not confined, it can be taken out in the usual way.

SOLO results

As an alternative to requesting the book, you can use the Scan and Deliver service to receive a section, chapter or article from a book as a scanned attachment.  This costs a flat fee, and further details are available on the Bodleian Library website.

Borrowing books

Most books from both the Teaching and Research collections can be borrowed.  Books which cannot be borrowed are usually marked "confined" on SOLO.  To borrow a book, take it to the issue desk, located in the Teaching Collection (Modern Languages Faculty) library.  For more information about borrowing, including number of books, length of loans, fines and reserving books, please consult the Taylor Institution website and the SOLO LibGuide.

What if we don't hold the book you need?

If you can't find the book you need on SOLO, there are three options:

  • use a different library;
  • use interlibrary loan;
  • submit a purchase request.

You can check the union catalogue COPAC to see which UK libraries hold the book.  You would be able to consult the book in the library, and this could be a viable option depending on your circumstances.

An interlibrary loan costs a small fee, but the book is usually available within a few days.  It is a cost-effective way of obtaining a book, particularly if it is on a specialist topic or is out of print.

If the book will be needed for an extended period of time, you feel that it would be a valuable addition to our collection, or it is not available in any other way, you should contact the Subject Librarian to request that we purchase the book.

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