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Government Documents: Locating and Using Gov Docs

Includes links and information regarding Government Documents sites and sources.

Tips on Using Gov Docs

  • Government Documents are arranged by SuDocs
  • The most recent version of a Government Document may be located online
  • See the "citing government documents" tab for information on correctly citing Government Resource Information

Government Documents Media

FedFlix   provides access to more than 1,000 images and audio/visual clips. 

Where to find Gov Docs

Government Documents are located in the Mansbach Memorial Library (College Drive Campus).  The Government Documents collection is a separate collection and is shelved at the front of the library behind the periodicals.

What's a SuDoc Number?

Just as you will need a Library of Congress (LC) call number to help you find books and journals in the stacks, you will need also need a call number to help you locate U.S. government publications.  However, we do not organize our U.S. government publications by LC call numbers.  Instead we use a classification system called the Superintendent of Documents (SuDoc) system.  SuDoc classification numbers are assigned to publications by the Government Printing Office and are based on the department/agency responsible for issuing the publications.  Like an LC number, a SuDoc number is made of letters and numbers .  LC and SuDoc numbers can appear to be very much like one another.  However there are a few things that can help you differentiate between the two.

The period in a SuDoc number DOES NOT represent a decimal point.  Therefore, the proper order for filing the SuDoc numbers below is:

 HE 5.75: N93/2  then  HE 5.123:C30  then HE 5.214: A7

On the other hand, LC call numbers DO treat the period as a decimal.  The proper order for filing the LC call numbers with the same letters and numbers is:

 HE                HE               HE
5                   5                  5
.123              .214              .75
C30               A7               N93/2

Also note the differences in the way the call numbers are recorded.  You will never find a SuDoc number with just a letter or letters alone on the first line.  The agency's letter designation is ALWAYS followed by numbers on the same line.

Finally, note that SuDoc numbers use punctuation like slashes and colons and LC call numbers do not.  

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