Skip to Main Content

University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

Natural Science: Books

Subject Searching

The basic Library Catalog search is a keyword search--you simply type your search terms into the box, and the catalog retrieves all the items that have your search terms in their catalog records.

Searching by subject is another way to find materials that focus on your topic. Each item in the Library Catalog has one or more subject terms (headings) assigned to it, When you search by subject, you retrieve only the items that have the subject for which you searched. To make a subject heading more specific, subheadings are added after it. A subheading is separated from the main heading by a double dash (--). 

Headings by Discipline

You can search by broad discipline to find books on general topics. These headings will typically produce hundreds of results.







Headings by Organism Type

There are broad headings for general books that discuss different kingdoms, phyla, and classes:









There are also more narrow headings for more specific types of organisms. These are just a few examples:




Subheadings by Topic

Some common subheadings are:






Subheadings for Locations

You can use subheadings to narrow your subject by location. These subheadings can include states/regions, countries, continents, and other geographic locales.


--United States

--North America

Add the Subheading to your subject. For example, to find materials about birds of Oklahoma, use the following:


Once you have your subject terms, to search by subject in the Library Catalog, in the dropdown list under "Search for," select "Subject." 

To find subject headings for a subject you are studying, first use keyword searching to find some books on your general topic. Then look at their records and see what subject terms they have. You can use the subject links in the catalog records to retrieve all the items with the same subject. However, this linking scheme has some quirks, so if it seems like it is returning far too many (or too few) items, try using the Library Catalog (aka Advanced Search) screen and a Subject or Subject Phrase search with your terms.

Call Numbers

If you want to browse the library stacks, you can use these call numbers to find books on health and medicine:

Q Science

QH 1-278.5 Natural History 

QH 301-707.5 Biology (General)

QK Botany

QL Zoology

QM Human Anatomy

QP Physiology

QR Microbiology

R Medicine

S Agriculture

S Agriculture (General)

SB Plant Culture

SD Forestry

SF Animal Culture

SF 600-1100 Veterinary Medicine

SH Aquaculture

These books can be found on the fourth floor of the library stacks. Remember that given the interdisciplinary nature of liberal arts studies, you may find useful books with other call numbers too. 

Interlibrary Loan--WorldCat

To find books from thousands of other libraries and request them through interlibrary loan, use WorldCat FirstSearch. You can search for books, journals, audiovisual materials, dissertations, and many other material types. When you find a resource you think would be useful in your research, you can fill out an interlibrary loan form, and Nash Library will request the book from another library. 

Librarian Endorsed Offerings
Nash Library - University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma