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Social work, Social care and Community Studies


Many of the books relevant to social work and social care are available at Collegiate Library. 

You will need to use Library Search to find the location and shelfmark of print books. For example the following book is shelved at Collegiate Library and shelved in the Main Collection at 362.84 DO.

There may be other books in the Library related to your subject area and you will need to use Library Search to search the library collections for other subject areas.

You can read eBooks online and they can be found by searching Library Search.

You can access the full text of the eBook by clicking on the book title and following the links to full text in the Find Online section.

How to find eBooks in Library Search

How to find eBooks in Library Search

  • Use Library Search - the online Library search engine.
  • Search for your keywords in Library Search.
  • In the Refine my results section, click on Online and Books / eBooks.
  • You have now limited your results to eBooks.
  • You can now read the eBook by choosing a book and follow the link(s) available under Find Online and click on the name of the eBook provider.

How to use eBooks

How you can use an eBook depends on terms and conditions set by the publisher.  In most cases you will be able to choose between reading online and downloading the eBook for a limited period to your own device. When downloaded eBooks expire you can download them again.

Most eBooks can be read by more than one reader at a time but sometimes you may have to wait if another reader is using the book. You can search within individual eBooks, add notes and print or copy a limited number of pages from most eBooks.

Does the Library have the eBook version of each print book in the collection?

If possible, the Library will stock both the eBook and print versions of books to make sure you can access the book whether you are on or off campus. Unfortunately publishers do not always offer an eBook in a format suitable for library use, or it is not available at the time we order the print version.

You can find more information about using eBooks, Library resources by using the help guides below:

How to find a print book in the Library

You can find a print book on the library shelves by using the books shelfmark and filing letters.

Here are some shelfmarks for social work and social care subjects.

Community Care
Drug use
International social work
Learning disabilities
Mental health
Social work theory
Social work with children and families
Social work with older people
Social work law
Youth work


In the Library, we use the Dewey Decimal system to arrange and classify the library collections.

Dewey is a numerical system which groups a library’s material into ten main areas of knowledge. You can see a break down of Dewey numbers and sections below:

  • 000 Computer science, information and general work

  • 100 Philosophy and psychology

  • 200 Religion

  • 300 Social sciences

  • 400 Language

  • 500 Science

  • 600 Technology

  • 700 Art and recreation

  • 800 Literature

  • 900 History and geography

Each of these ten areas are further divided to create more specific subject numbers. Dewey can be more subject specific by adding numbers after the decimal point. You can see an example of this in a section of the 100s below:

100 is Philosophy and Psychology

170 is Ethics

 174.93613 is Ethics and Social Work

When looking for a print book that has numbers after the decimal point, you need to know that after the decimal point the numbers are filing digit by digit, not by the whole number. For example, 170.15 is before 170.3 as it is a 1 then 5, not 15 and is therefore lower than the 2.

The letters that follow the number are usually the first letters of the author’s surname. Letters are used to break up the quantity of books with the same number on the shelves and make it easier for the user to find the specific book they need.

You can see an example of a book at Collegiate Library below. You can see the shelfmark and the filling letters, You need to use all the information to find the book on the Library shelves.

Put your skills into practice with the game below:

What to do if a book is not available in the Library

If there's a book which you need but which we don't have in stock, we can ask another library to loan you a copy, or to email you a copy of an individual  chapter or section. This can be done through our document supply service.

If you think a book may be useful for other students or staff as well as yourself, you can also request that the Library buys a copy. We can't promise to buy everything, but will do what we can for feasible requests which are relevant to courses at Sheffield Hallam.

Oxford Very Short Introductions

SAGE Research Methods

Study skills books related to Social Work

Multidisciplinary eBook collections

The Library has a range of eBook collections.

You can search Library Search to find eBooks about many different subjects and that approach may be quicker than searching individual collections. You can also browse or search with the collections directly.