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What's in our Library

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The primary research collections of the Walter Geology Library include more than 120,000 book and journal volumes and 47,000 geologic maps, among them the publications of the U.S. Geological Survey, most state geological surveys, and geological surveys of many foreign countries.

Regional emphasis of the collection is on the Southwestern United States, Texas, and Mexico.

Subject emphases are sedimentology, stratigraphy, tectonics, structural, economic, marine, and petroleum geology, petrology, paleontology, mineralogy, geochemistry, geophysics, and groundwater hydrology.

Map of the Walter Geology Library

Circulation Desk

Walter Geology Library Circulation Desk

The Geology Library Circulation desk is open for checking-out and checking-in of materials, from the time the library opens until 15 minutes before closing. University of Texas at Austin students, faculty, and staff, and anyone with a valid Courtesy Borrowers card may check out materials at the Geology Library Circulation desk.

Ask for Course Reserves, Permanent Reserves, Software and Media, and Equipment (i.e. rulers, calculators, earbuds, laptops) at the Circulation desk. Course Reserves and Software and Media are shelved by call number, which can be found in the library catalog.

We are also available to answer any of your questions and to help you locate materials in the library or online.


Books Picture

Books in the Walter Geology Library are shelved in the stacks by Library of Congress (LC) call numbers. The Library of Congress call number system is alpha-numeric and allows for classification by subject. Example of an LC call number: QE 75 G756.

Books with a MINCAT call number (for minimal cataloging) are shelved with the M's.

Library Storage Facility (LSF)

Some Walter Geology Library materials are stored off-site in the Library Storage Facility (LSF), at the Pickle Research Center. You may request these materials, and it may take anywhere from 3 to 5 business days after the request for the items to arrive.

There are no items with Dewey Decimal call numbers housed in the Walter Geology Library. Any Geology Library items with Dewey Decimal call numbers will have a Library Storage location. Dewey call numbers start with a numeral, distinguishing them from Library of Congress call numbers which start with a letter of the alphabet. Dewey Decimals look something like this: 557.694 D284g. We no longer have active subscriptions to most journals with Dewey call numbers.

Oversize Folio

Oversized Materials

Books with a library catalog location of Geology Library Oversize are located in the Oversize/Folio area of the Library. Oversize materials also have a designation ofa -Q- or -F- (or -L-) before the start of the Library of Congress call number, e.g. -Q- QE 75 G469 or -F- QE 75 G469.

Due to limited space, not all books with -Q- or -F- designators are in the Oversized/Folio section and may be found in the regular stacks..

In the Oversized/Folio area, there are three divisions of materials and you may have to search all three sections:

1) Items that are small enough to stand upright

2) Materials that are so large they can only fit one on top of each other

3) Materials that are small enough to sit side by side.

Periodicals Reading Room

reading room picture

The recent issues of print journals are held in the Reading Room. They are shelved in alphabetical order by title. Journals are kept as loose issues in the Reading Room until the library receives a complete volume, and then the loose issues are sent for binding. Binding normally takes two or three months, after which the bound volumes are shelved by call number in the stacks.

The room contains several comfortable leather chairs, small tables, and a leather couch. This is a nice place to relax and the windows face the University of Texas tower.

New Book Shelf

New Book Shelf

The Walter Geology Library maintains a New Book Shelf that is rotated on a weekly basis on Friday afternoons. The New Book Shelf is located on the top of the curving atlas stand in the Periodicals Reading Room. New books and journals are designated by a yellow flag and show up in the library catalog with a location of Geology Library - New Book Shelf.

Items remain available to on the New Book Shelf for a week, during which time patrons may place holds on materials by filling out a green hold form. (Green forms can be found at the New Book Shelf or the Circulation Desk.) Once the item is ready to circulate, patrons will receive an e-mail notification to pick-up the item.


Microfiche and Microfiche Readers

Microfiche are located in two filing cabinets along our north wall.

The most important microfiche holdings in the Walter Geology Library are the United States Geological Survey (USGS) Open File Reports. These USGS Open File Reports are almost complete from 1981 to the present. The USGS Open File Reports on microfiche are not individually listed in the online catalog. To access them you must first find the sequential number assigned it by the USGS. Our United States Geological Survey (USGS) Publication Guide, GeoRef and other bibliographic sources can help with this.

A microfiche viewer is located in a study carrel next to the microfiche filing cabinets. The microfiche reader does not have printing capabilities, but microfiche are available for check-out. The PCL has a microfiche/film reader that prints and that can scan to a Flash drive.

The Geology Library's microfilm holdings have been moved permanently to PCL. They include a large number of Theses and Dissertations completed at other universities on the subject of Texas geology. Ask for assistance in the Periodicals and Microforms area of PCL.

Software and Media

Ask at the Circulation Desk by call number for materials at the Geology Library Software and Media location. Software and Media include CDROMS, DVDs, Interactive Media, floppy discs, and instruction books. with a library catalog location of Geology Library Software and Media.