Reigate Grammar School Library


Research Skills


Pupil Librarians


The Dewey Decimal System

The library is arranged according to the Dewey Decimal System. In 1876,Melvil Dewey decided to make finding library books easier. Up until then each library had a different system and only librarians could find books because it was so complicated. Dewey believed that everyone should be able to use libraries for themsleves so he organised books into 10 categories according to the questions they answered about the world and gave each category a number. This became known as the Dewey Decimal System, which is still used in libraries across the world today.

Dewey Asked The answers are in books about The Dewey call numbers are
How do we organise information? Reference and Computers 000's
Who am I? Philosohpy and Psychology 100's
How did we get here? Religion and Mythology 200's
Who are the people in the world? World Culture and Governments. The Social Sciences 300's
How can I communicate with others?

Language and Grammar

How can I explain the world around me? Science 500's
How can I control the world around me? Technology 600's
How can I enjoy my free time? The Arts and Recreation 700's
What are the stories of our lives? Literature 800's
What was the world like in the past? Biography, Histroy and Geography 900's


These categories can be be sub-divided further. For example the 340's in the social sciences category have books about law.

Non-fiction books are arranged by their Dewey number, and then by the author's surname.

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