Books in the library, is not just arranged anyhow. There are standard, organised and coherent format or ways that are often employed while arranging library materials, in other to make it very easy for library users to locate their choice of book in the library shelve.

In today's article, i will be teaching you the various ways or formats that are used when arranging and classify library books. This will help every student and researcher to be able to find materials in the library without having any difficulty. So, lets get going!


Because books in the library shelve are classified or arranged in subject order. They have been many arrangement scheme that have been published to guide the arrangement of library books.

There are two main ways of arranging library materials, which are:

  1. Dewey decimal classification scheme
  2. Library of Congress classification scheme.
Now, i will discuss this various classification or arrangement scheme to help you have an explicit understanding of them.

  • Dewey decimal classification scheme

This classification scheme ways developed by an American Liberian and library educator, Malvil Dewey. It was developed in the 19th century, and it is most used in many public library. The Dewey decimal classification scheme uses numbers and decimal fractions  to represent subject of library books. It is based on multiples of ten (the word decimal in the name of the clarification scheme comes from decem, which is the Latin word for "10"). 

The Dewey decimal classification scheme is represented as follows:
  1. 000 - 009 Generalia (Bibliography, Library Science)
  2. 100 - 199 Philosophy (Psychology included)
  3. 200 - 299 Religion
  4. 300 - 399 Social Science
  5. 400 - 499 Language
  6. 500 - 599 Natural science
  7. 600 - 699 Applied science
  8. 700 - 799 Art
  9. 800 - 899 Literature
  10. 900 - 999 History, Geography.

The Dewey decimal classification scheme is the most used classification scheme in the world. Between every discipline or subject in this classification scheme, there are other sub-disciplines that are contained in them.

  • Library of congress classification scheme

The library of Congress classification scheme is another powerful way to arrange books in the library. This type of classification scheme uses 21, out of the 26 letters of the alphabet for arranging library books. It was developed by a group of persons under the guidance of J.C.A.M Hanson, the head of the catalogue division and the Library of Congress and Charles Martel, the library's chief classifier, developed the first part of the clarification scheme.

The library of congress classification scheme is represented as follows:

  1. A - General books 
  2. B - Philosophy, Psychology and Religion
  3. C - Auxiliary science of history (Archaeology)
  4. D - General history
  5. E/F - American history
  6. G - Geography, Anthropology
  7. H - Social science
  8. J - Political science
  9. K - Law
  10. L - Education
  11. M - Music
  12. N - Fine art
  13. P - Language and literature
  14. Q - Science
  15. R - Medicine
  16. S - Agriculture
  17. T - Technology
  18. U - Military science
  19. V - Naval science
  20. Z - Bibliography, Library science

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The library of congress classification scheme is a superb way for arranging books in the library. It is often used in the United state.

Okay, above are the standard and most accepted ways to arrange library books. They are used in different parts of the world by Liberians to ensure that library users locate library books easily. Hope this article was helpful?