Most recent government documents can be found in the UNT Library Catalog; search just as you would for most library materials. Below are some additional hints to help you find government documents more easily in our libraries.

Please feel free to ask for assistance at the Service Desk in the Eagle Commons Library, or contact us by telephone or e-mail.

How to Read a Government Documents Call Number

Most books in the general collection of the UNT Libraries are numbered according to the Library of Congress Classification System, which groups items according to their subject matter. Government documents call numbers, on the other hand, enable the books to be grouped on the shelf by the agency that authored them, rather than by subject.

United States federal documents use the Superintendent of Documents (SuDocs) Classification Scheme, which can be recognized by the colon in the middle of the call number.

Texas state documents use the Texas Documents Classification Scheme and can be recognized by a TxD placed in front of the call number proper.

Superintendent of Documents (SuDoc) Numbers

Once you have located the FEDERAL DOCUMENTS section in the Eagle Commons Library, check the shelf signs for the shelf containing your document's call number.

To make it easier, break the number into parts divided by its letters, numbers, and punctuation. Then look for one part at a time until you find your document.

For example, ED 1.302:C 43/5/992 becomes:

ED Begin in the "ED" section.
1. Then find the row containing documents beginning with ED 1.
302: Then find the ED 1.302s on that row. (Hint: Read as "three hundred and two, NOT as "point three zero two.")
C 43/ Next, look alphabetically within those documents to find "C 43/ ."
5/ Then find "C 43/5/" within those.
992 And finally look for "992" to find the 1992 edition.

Texas Document Call Numbers

Most Texas Documents call numbers begin with the prefix "TxD." While these TxD numbers look unusual, they are read just like the majority of other call numbers in the UNT Libraries.

Once you have located the TEXAS DOCUMENTS section in the Eagle Commons Library, check the shelf signs for the shelf containing your TxD number.

To make it easier, break your call number into parts divided by the spaces in the call number.

 For example, TxD A900.5 F229po 1996 becomes:

TxD         A900.5         F229po         1996

Then look for one part at a time until you find your document.

For the number above, you would begin in the "TxD" section; then find the shelf containing documents with labels beginning with "TxD A900.5"; then look alphabetically within those documents to find "F229po"; then look for "1996" for the 1996 edition.

A few Texas documents are labeled with Library of Congress (regular) call numbers. Please ask for assistance at the Service Desk if you are unable to locate them on the Texas Documents shelves.

How to Find a Government Document on the Library Shelves

Please feel free to ask for assistance if you need help finding government documents. Assistance is available at the Service Desk in the Eagle Commons Library whenever the library is open.

General Instructions

Be sure to jot down the LOCATION, CALL #, and STATUS information from the library catalog screen (or print out the page). Include all the punctuation in the call number. You will need that information to locate your document.

Locations Explained

Eagle Commons Library US DOCUMENTS

United States federal documents are found on shelf rows labeled FEDERAL DOCUMENTS.

Eagle Commons Library TX DOCUMENTS

Texas documents are found on shelf rows labeled TEXAS  DOCUMENTS.

Eagle Commons Library WILLIS 3FL DOCS MICROFORMS

Government Documents Microforms are stored in cabinets in the basement of the Eagle Commons Library.  If you need help please come to the Service Desk in the Eagle Commons Library.

Click on the following to:

A link below this statement in a UNT library catalog record will connect to an online version of the government publication.

CHECK SHELVES or Error

These are documents which may or may not have been received by the UNT Libraries. If not found on the shelves labeled FEDERAL DOCUMENTS, please inquire at the Service Desk in the Eagle Commons Library. Many of these titles are available in microfiche format; however, some may not be available at the UNT Libraries.

REMOTE STORAGE

These items are housed in an off-campus facility. Request forms are available on the UNT Library Catalog menu page, or at the Circulation desks at the Willis, Eagle Commons, Discovery Park, or Media libraries. Your requested items, if they can be located, should be available within 24 hours on weekdays.

Eagle Commons Library DOCS A&I

Documents abstracts and indexes are found on the Main Floor of the Eagle Commons Library, in front of the Service Desk. These books are not shelved in call-number order; however, signs posted on the ends of the rows provide general guidance. In addition, we have a booklet called A&I List which provides assistance in finding specific titles. Totally confused? Don't worry! If you need help, please ask for assistance at the nearest Service Desk.

Eagle Commons Library DOCS BIB CENTER

Government bibliographies and publication catalogs are located in front of the Eagle Commons Library Service Desk, on the third row to the left.

ECL DOCS CD

Most government CD-ROMs at UNT may be checked out or used inside the Eagle Commons Library. Commercial CDs may be used within the building.

ECL DOCS MAPS
ECL MAP RESERVE
ECL MAPS

Most library maps are kept in a locked area (the "Map Room") in the Eagle Commons Library. These maps are available whenever the ECL is open. Please ask for assistance with maps or atlases at the ECL Service Desk. Most recent atlases are also available elsewhere in the ECL, and some maps and atlases are available online. For detailed information about the UNT Libraries' map, poster, and atlas collections, see our Maps Web page.

ECL DOCS-NOBARCODE

These are documents which may or may not have been received by the UNT Libraries. If not found on the shelves labeled FEDERAL DOCUMENTS, please inquire at the Eagle Commons Library Service Desk. Many of these titles are available in microfiche format; however, some may not be available at the UNT Libraries.

ECL DOCS OVERSIZE

Oversized government documents are shelved on the west end of the north room on the Main Floor of Eagle Commons Library.

ECL DOCS PERIODICA

Commercially published periodicals related to government and the Government Documents collection are located on the Main Floor of Eagle Commons Library, in front of the Government Documents Service Desk (just beyond the stairs). For help in finding your title, check the signs posted on the end of the shelf row, or ask for help at the ECL Service Desk.

ECL DOCS REFERENCE

Documents reference materials are found on the Main Floor of the Eagle Commons Library, just in front of the Service Desk. These items may be difficult to find; if you need help, please ask for assistance at the ECL Service Desk.

ECL RESERVE
ECL SERVICE  DESK REFERENCE

Please request these items at the ECL Desk.

Title Searches

You can search for your title in the UNT Library Catalog. Click on the "Title" button, then type your title in the box. Most government documents published after 1976 can be found in the online UNT Library Catalog.

When you find your title in the UNT Library Catalog, be sure to jot down the LOCATION, CALL #, and STATUS information, or print out the page.

You will need the LOCATION, CALL#, and STATUS to find your publication. (For more help, see How to Locate Your Document's Call Number on the Library Shelves.)

If you don't find your title in the UNT Library Catalog, please ask for assistance at the ECL Service Desk. Some titles published before 1985 may also be found in indexes, or in the Documents card catalog near the entrance of the Eagle Commons Library.

Online versions now available: Many current government documents are now available on the Internet. You can access some of these directly from the UNT Library Catalog.  

If an online version is available, you will see a link in the box below the title.  (For example, "Click on the following to:").

Clicking on that link will take you directly to the online version of that title.

For more information, see Internet (online) documents below.

Article Searches

If you have a journal citation

A journal citation includes the name of the article, the title of the journal, and the number or date of the issue in which the article appears.

You can use the UNT Library Catalog to see if the journal is available in the libraries. Click on the "Title" button and type the name of the journal (not the title of the article) in the box.

Hint: Don't enter abbreviations for your online search; type out the full journal title. If you don't know the full title, please ask for assistance at the ECL Service Desk.

Example:

Potthoff, S., Kane, R.L. and Franco, S.J.: Improving Hospital Discharge Planning for Elderly Patients. Health Care Fin Rev 19(2):47-72 1997.

Health Care Financing Review is the journal title you would enter for your search.

Most government journals are shelved according to their call numbers, although a few titles are shelved with other library periodicals. 

If you need help finding a journal on the shelf, please ask for assistance at the ECL Service Desk. (See "How to Locate Your Document's Call Number on the Library Shelves" below.)

If you don't have a journal citation or title

Even if you don't know the title, you can still search for U.S. government journal articles on your topic in our Catalogs, Indexes, and Databases Web page. 

Many full-text current journals are also available online or via the UNT Libraries' Electronic Resources web site.

The Government Documents reference staff can assist you in selecting appropriate databases and Web sites for your research topic. Please visit our Service Desk or contact us at (940)565-2870 during Service Desk hours. Our Questions and Comments form is also available for your convenience.

Agency Searches

You can search for publications from a particular government agency in the UNT Library Catalog. Click on the "Author" button, then type the agency name in the box. (The Government Documents reference staff can assist you if you are not sure of the agency name. If the government office you are searching for is not listed as an author in the online catalog display, please ask for assistance at our Service Desk on the Third Floor of Willis Library.)

Browsing the shelves: Browsing the shelves to find documents from a particular government office or bureau may be very difficult. The Government Documents collection contains hundreds of print publications from each agency. In addition, many publications are available only in microfiche or other formats, and may not be found simply by looking on the shelf.

If you wish to browse, however, it is helpful to know that most publications from a particular office or bureau are grouped together on the shelf. (Keep in mind that bureau names and call-number symbols may change over the years.) The Government Documents collection of  books and pamphlets is arranged according to "government author." The letters in the call numbers reflect the issuing agency.

Examples:             

A 1.76:575              "A" is for Agriculture Department.

ED 3.223:998          "ED" is for EDucation Department.

TxD I1100.5 C281    "I" is for Insurance Department.

Online versions of government agency publications: Many government agencies now make their publications available on their Web sites.  Links to U.S. federal and state agency Web sites are available from the UNT Libraries' Government Information Connection site.  Many agency publications can also be accessed directly from the UNT Library Catalog

For more information on Internet publications, see "Internet (Online) Documents" below.

Subject or Topic Searches

You can search for government publications about your topic in the UNT Library Catalog. "Subject" from the dropdown menu, then type your subject in the box. (If you don't know what the subject heading should be, try consulting the red Library of Congress Subject Headings volumes located near the public computers on each floor. The Government Documents reference staff can also help you determine the best subject headings for your topic. )

Another way to search by subject or topic is the "Keyword" search. In the UNT Library Catalog, select "Keyword" from the dropdown menu, then type in words related to your topic.

Once you have found a suitable publication, you can search for related works on that subject by clicking on the highlighted "Subject" words at the bottom of the catalog record.

How do you tell if it's an official government document? Government publications are distinguished by their call numbers. Most U.S. federal documents have a colon (:) in the call number. Most Texas state document call numbers have a "TxD" prefix.

Examples:            

A 57.2:F 45                 U.S. federal document

TxD P3500.6 C868      Texas state document

Internet (Online) Documents

Many full-text government documents are now available online. You can access these directly from the UNT Library catalog. If an online version is available, you will see a link in the box below the title (For example, "Click on the following to:").

Clicking on that link will take you directly to the online version of that title.

In addition to the library catalog, the Government Information Connection contains many links to full-text U.S. federal, state, local, and international and foreign documents available on the Internet.

If you need assistance finding government publications online, please visit the Service Desk on the Third Floor of Willis Library. For your convenience, you may also contact us by telephone or E-mail. The UNT Libraries Government Documents Department provides electronic reference assistance to UNT students, faculty, and staff, as well as to the general public.

Legal Materials

The majority of the UNT Libraries' legal collection volumes are shelved in the KF and KFT call number sections on the Third Floor of Willis Library. However, some legal materials are available elsewhere in the library, and some are available in electronic formats. The Government Documents reference staff can assist you in locating the legal materials you need. Please ask for assistance during Service Desk hours, or contact us by telephone or E-mail.

The UNT Libraries Law Finder provides a brief list of the most frequently used items in the legal collection and indicates their legal abbreviation, their call number, and their location on the Third Floor of Willis Library.

For a helpful guide to legal information at UNT and on the Internet, see our Law Subject Guide.