Using the Library

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The PBC Library is dedicated to the memory of the founding principal of the College Rev Carment Urquhart. The library is located adjacent to the foyer in the main Administration Building. Currently the library holds around 25 000 books, journals, and media, with about 600 books being added annually. The College subscribes to over 40 journals, as well as having online access to many more, and regularly receives news from major missionary agencies and para-church organisations.

The library is well stocked with commentaries on every book of the Bible, as well as volumes covering all areas of Christian doctrine. Christian Biographies, Church Growth, Pastoral Ministry, Preaching, Counselling, Ethics, Church History and Missions are also included in the major classifications in the library. The Reference collection contains, in addition to Bible Commentaries, various Bible versions, Concordances, Dictionaries, Encyclopaedias and other research tools.

The library is divided into 5 main areas (see Library Floor Plan):

The Foyer

This area contains:

  • current journals and periodicals
  • the issuing and searching, computers and printer
  • a photocopier for library use

The General Collection Area

This area contains:

  • New book display
  • Closed reserve books – key books for current semester – these books are not to be taken from the library.
  • DVD Shelves
  • Sorting Shelves
  • General Collection shelves—the books on the top shelves are old books which have not been entered on the computer
  • Quarto shelves – for larger books
  • The Librarians office – for staff use only

The Mezzanine

This area contains:

  • 10 student study desks
  • A large computer workspace. The computer workspace area is only to be used for private academic related study. This is a quiet area.

The Study Area

This area contains:

  • Reference Collection – these books are not to be taken from the library.
  • Journals, Periodicals and Pamphlet shelves – these are not to be taken from the library.
  • 10 student study desks
  • Lounge area for reading

The library fills a vital role in the work of PBC and every student should take the time to learn how to use it well. It will be needed for writing assignments, preparation of sermons, private research and study for examinations.


The library uses the Dewey Decimal Classification System. At present all general use items are listed on the computer catalogue. Books are classified and allocated a classification number according to their primary subject. This means that all books on the same subject are together, while books on similar subjects will be close by.


Dewey has divided the whole realm of knowledge into the following ten main classes:

000 GENERAL WORKS including general encyclopaedias and general periodicals.
100 PHILOSOPHY including psychology, ethics, etc.
200 RELIGION Christian and Non-Christian.
300 SOCIAL SCIENCE including economics, government, law, etc.
400 PHILOLOGY including dictionaries and grammars in all languages.
500 PURE SCIENCE including mathematics, chemistry, physics, botany, etc.
600 USEFUL ARTS such as agriculture, engineering, medicine, hygiene.
700 FINE ARTS recreation, sculpture, music, amusements.
800 LITERATURE including public speaking, debating.
900 HISTORY including travel, geography and biography.

Each group is broken down decimally into ten sub-groups. As you can imagine, most of our books are in the two hundreds. Because of its specialised nature we use “An expansion of the Religion section of the Dewey Decimal Classification System” as used at Fuller Theological Seminary.


The ten sub-groups within the two hundreds are:

200 RELIGION – GENERAL WORKS including general religious dictionaries
210 NATURAL THEOLOGY – includes Creation, and Religious/Science debate.

Sub-Sub Groups

To give examples of the next stages of sub-division:

220 BIBLE – General
221 O.T. General
222 Historical Books
223 Poetical Books
224 Prophetical Books
225 N.T. General
226 Gospels and Acts
226.1 Harmonies of the Gospels
226.2 Matthew
226.21 Sermon on the Mount
226.22 Beatitudes
226.3 Mark
226.4 Luke
226.5 John
226.52 Johannine theology, etc.
226.6 Acts
226.7 Miracles
226.8 Parables
226.9 The Lord’s Prayer
227 Epistles
228 Revelation
229 Apocrypha

Library Use

The library is open (to full time students) from 8.30 a.m. to 10.00 p.m every day. Access outside these hours can be arranged with the office. Please maintain silence while in the library since others will be studying there too. No food may be taken into the library.

All books used in the library must be placed on the sorting shelves. Do not try and put the books back on the original shelves. Also do not leave library books on the study desks etc; they must be returned to the sorting shelves upon leaving the library.


  • A maximum of TEN books may be borrowed at any one time including two DVDs. Post graduate students may take out TWENTY books.
  • Borrowing time is ONE MONTH. DVD’s can be borrowed for 10 DAYS
  • Return books as soon as you have finished with them.
  • Books may be renewed – log in under your account to do this.
  • Books dealing directly with subjects being studied during the Semester are placed on the “Closed Reserve” shelves. These books cannot be borrowed; they must be used in the library.
  • DVDs are available from the office – you must also issue the item out as per issuing instructions below.


The following items must not be removed from the library without the special permission of a Faculty Member:

  • Reference books
  • Closed Reserve books
  • Journals, Periodicals & Pamphlets


Before a book is removed from the library, you must issue the book under your name on the issuing computer in the library foyer. Scan your library card or enter your library number (normally your student number) then scan the book’s barcode to issue the book.


Returned books must not be re-shelved, or checked in by the borrower, they must be placed in the Return Box located on the immediate left inside the library foyer. DVDs are also to be returned in the Return Box.


Items can be searched using the Searching computer in the library foyer. Items can be searched by, title, author, keyword, subject etc.

Online Resources

The Proquest and Ebsco databases of religious journals can be accessed through your stu-dent library account. Login, choose Proquest or Ebsco and then begin searching. Articles of interest can then be emailed to your email address for your research purposes.

Overdue Items

When an item is overdue an email will be sent to the borrower’s email account. It is the borrower’s responsibility to renew or return all items. If a borrower loses or does not return a book or DVD it must be replaced or the cost of replacement paid.


PBC has a reciprocal borrowing arrangement with Murdoch University. All PBC students may register to borrow from the Murdoch University Library.


While the library exists primarily for the use of College Faculty, Full-Time and Part-Time Students, it is possible for other persons to borrow books. In such cases, an “Application for Use of Library” form available from the General Office should be completed and lodged with the appropriate fee, which is currently $52 per annum. You will then be issued with a library card.

Full time pastors and PBC graduates are able to use the library for free upon completing an “Application for Use of Library” form and being issued with a library card.


To assist smooth running of the library and in consideration of others please keep the following guidelines for the operation of the Library.

  • The library is open from 8:30am to 10:00pm
  • Maintain a quiet atmosphere at all times
  • No food or snacks are to be taken into the library
  • Please turn lights, heaters & fans off if last to leave
  • Do not remove the following from the library:
    • Periodicals, Journals, and Pamphlets
    • Reference Books
    • Closed Reserve books
  • Place items used in the library on the sorting shelves
  • Only have a maximum of 10 items out at one time (post-graduate 20 items)
  • Issue all items correctly on the computer before removing them from the library
  • Items may be borrowed for 1 month (DVD’s 10 days)
  • Place all items being returned in the “Returns Box”
  • Remember the library is to be a quiet study area for everyone.


Rules for the use of computers in the Library:

  • Do not use the computers to download non academic resources (ie. Music, movies, other programs).
  • Do not use the computers for playing games, or any activity unrelated to your studies.
  • Ensure your use of the computers does not create any noise.
  • Log off the computer after you have finished with it.
  • Do not use the College’s paper in the printer. (You can purchase paper for the printer from the office).