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Classification: Dewey Decimal Classification

In this short course we provide an overview of the structure of Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) and focus on selecting the correct DDC discipline and some DDC number building basics.

Course Overview

Classification is the process of the organising or systematic arranging of things based on shared properties or characteristics. In classification systems, the established groupings are given names or symbols or notation. An example of a classification system focused on a specific area of knowledge can be found in biology. In biological sciences, all species are arranged so that those with similar characteristics are grouped together to show relationships between them.  

Classification systems in libraries are usually broad in scope because they have to encompass more than one area of knowledge. Classification systems may be used in libraries to organise and arrange physical resources on the shelves to facilitate exploring a library’s information resources that are related by subject content. 

One of the most widely used classification systems in libraries in our region is the Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC). In this short course we provide an overview the structure of DDC and focus on selecting the correct DDC discipline and some DDC number building basics. 

This is a four-week professional development course. You will receive a Certificate of Attainment upon the successful completion of this course.

Course Content

Overview of library classification 

Introduction to Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) 

DDC structure, disciplines (Classes) and hierarchy 

Number building: Table 1 (standard subdivisions) 

Number building: Table 2 (geographic subdivisions) 

Number building: quick look at other number building methods

Right for you if...

Work in the library and information sector and / or have an interest in cataloguing, indexing or metadata.

Would like to increase your knowledge of how classification is used to express the subject content of library information resources.

Course Delivery

Contact with facilitators will be through online forums on Moodle (the online Learning Management System used by TAFE NSW for these courses).

Participants will connect with each other through forum discussions.

There are no specific times you need to be available.

The time investment required is approximately 5 hours per week, depending on the individual.

The course is designed to be completed in 4 weeks but as it is developed to be self-paced, it is possible to finish a little earlier or later depending on your learning styles and needs. However, there is a limit to how long a course completion date can be extended so if you wish to vary the usual course time frame, this should be discussed with your course facilitator.

Participants require a computer with internet access.

In partnership with...

Our training partner for this course is TAFE NSW. TAFE NSW is the leading provider of vocational education and training in Australia. Each year, more than 500,000 students enrol in their nationally recognised courses and training.

What to expect once you have registered

Following the close of registrations, which is 15 October (midnight), we will be in contact with you before the course commences to provide you with further information about the next steps of enrolment: TAFE student registration and Moodle login set up.


More information

p.    1800 020 071

e.    [email protected]


Cancellation Policy

Registrations up to 3 weeks prior = full refund
Registrations between 1-2 weeks prior = 50% refund
Registrations cancelled 1 week prior or later = no refund
Registrations can be transferred to other individuals at no cost (in the same registration category).  
Contact [email protected] for information.

22/10/2024 - 18/11/2024


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ALIA is working towards increasing opportunities and removing barriers for our First Nations library and information sector colleagues to participate in our conferences and events, and has established a bursary for First Nations event attendance. If you would like to contribute to this effort, please select a gift amount below. Please note that gifts to the bursary are not eligible for tax deduction.


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