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FYS - Classifying Books

A guide created for Paul Snell's Fall 2020 FYS Class.

How do we classify information? A Sample Exercise

For your FYS class, Professor Snell has had you read How to Read a Book. Chapter 6 covers how to classify and summarize books quickly. 

This exercise will give us practice in doing this. We will be: 

  • Looking at the books below
  • Quickly trying to classify them (working individually)
  • Comparing our classifications with how information science professionals make classifications
  • Discussing how various types of classification systems may help -- or prevent -- people from accessing information

Sample Books

The e-books below are broken into groups. Please: 

  1. Find your assigned book(s), below
  2. On your own: Click the link(s) for your book(s), then click on the link to "Full Text Available at:"  
    If you are off-campus, you may need to sign in with your PUNetID/password. 

  3. Quickly "leaf through" the book -- using some techniques from How to Read a Book
    Important note: Do not download the whole books. You may see a choice to "read online" vs. "download" -- please choose to read online. Why? Downloading whole books/chapters will slow down the system for everyone, and may also charge extra licensing money to the university if too many people download the books. 

  4. For each book, write down some classifications of the type of book that it is.
    For example: Fiction vs. Nonfiction; Textbook or Non-Textbook; Main Subject(s) = ? ; Popular Audience vs. Academic Audience; etc. Feel free to come up with classifications that are meaningful to you personally.