Estd. : 1881
City College
A Unit of Brahmo Samaj Education Society
NAAC Accredited Degree College. Affiliated to University of Calcutta
Calcutta University

College Library

"City College Library : A Brief Profile" gives an overall view of the library facilities available at City College. With the long tradition of collective efforts of the staff members of the library, we have been striving hard to meet the present day demands of our users by rendering various services. We seek to do in a personalized and hospitable environment in spite of some infrastructural limitations.

The library at present provides services mostly through a manual system. However, keeping in mind the present day requirements, we have started the process of automating the services. An INTERNET facility is available to the users. We are progressing towards fuller automation, but not definitely without human touch.

The College

The City College owes its origin to a widespread educational movement in Bengal towards the later part of the 19th century. The college first started as a High School on 6th January, 1879. In 1881, the school was upgraded to a first grade degree college. From its modest beginning, City College has grown in to a mighty institution during the last 126 years. At present it has 2993 students in 16 departments, served by 101 teachers and 51 non-teaching staff members.

The Library

The Central Library is an integral part of the institution. The library supports the aims of the college towards imparting education and providing the latest information to the students for developing their quest for knowledge and self reliance .It is located in the North-East corner of the second floor having an area of 2300 sq.ft. consisting of Information Display Section, Circulation Desk, Reading Room, Stack Room, Processing Room and Reading Room for faculty members. Apart from the Central Library, the College has 13 departmental libraries under the faculties of Arts, Science and Commerce. The users are mostly students of our college studying degree courses in various disciplines and teaching and non-teaching staff members of the institution.

Library Hours

The Library remains open on all working days as follows : 11:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M.


The membership of the library is open to the teachers, students and non-teaching staff members of the college. The outgoing students can keep books up to university examination. The reading facilities are provided to the ex-students of the college.


Books : The total numbers of books has gone up to 44619 (as on 31.03.2006) on various subjects of Arts, Commerce and Science streams. A good number of text books and reference books are available in the library. The library maintains books under different heads. There is a collection of conventional Reference Books like Dictionary, Encyclopedia, Handbook, Year book etc. for ready reference and general information.

Subject wise breakup of the books :

Arts No. Science No. Commerce No. Reference No.
English 4838 Mathematics 2831 Commerce 3805 Reference 1780
Bengali 6150 Economics 2877        
Sanskrit 1609 Physics 3657        
Hindi 171 Chemistry 3015        
French 105 Biology 278        
Philosophy 2307 Botany 2174        
Political Science 2450 Zoology 1911        
History 2962 Physiology 1670        
Geography 29            
  20621   18413   3805   1780
Grand Total : 44,619

Journals : Journals are the primary source of information and in the present age of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) based system; electronic journals play a major role in providing users with nascent information in the least possible time. Though at present, the library does not subscribe to any e- journal or e-database, we inform our users about the accessibility of e-journals via Internet through UGC-Infonet Portal, J-Gate Gateway Portal, and Ingenta Gateway Portal. At present, the library houses the following newspapers and titles on different subject :
  • Daily Newspapers :
    Title Language
    The Statesman English
    Telegraph English
    Anadabazar Patrika Bengali
    Bartaman Bengali
    Ajkal Bengali
  • Journals :
    Title Language Frequency
    Chartered Accountants Today English Monthly
    Economic and Political Weekly English Weekly
    Resonance English Monthly
    The Journal of the Indian Academy of Philosophy English Monthly
    World Affairs English Quarterly
    Academy Patrika Bengali Yearly
    Darshan Bengali Bi-annual
    Sahitya Parishad Patrika Bengali Quarterly
  • Periodicals :
    Title Language Frequency
    Employment News English Weekly
    Frontline English Monthly
    Japan News English Monthly
    Prabudha Bharat English Monthly
    Prep Talk English Monthly
    Science Reporter English Monthly
    Span English Six issue in a year
    The Vedanta Keshari English Monthly
    Universal Education English Monthly
    Anandamela Bengali Monthly
    Bartaman Bengali Weekly
    Desh Bengali Bi-monthly
    Nabakollol Bengali Monthly
    Samaj Sikha Bengali Monthly
  • Electronic Resources :
    The library possesses 32 CDs of books and other e-documents.
  • Photographs :
    One of the important collections of the library is the age old laminated photographs (35 in number) of the world’s famous places, sculptures and persons along with the description of the subject at the back of the photograph, published by the well known Keystone View Company, New York.
    Addition of books to the library for the last 5 years.
    1st April – 31st March
    No. of books
    Amount spent
    2001-2002 218 100129.30
    2002-2003 56 17708.50
    2003-2004 514 100466.75
    2004-2005 331 86558.25
    2005-2006 98 15397.25

Departmental Seminar Library

To supplement the services provided by the central library, we have 13 departmental libraries accessible to students and teachers alike. The list of the books available in some departmental libraries can be viewed from the computer of the central library.

Technical Works

The books are accessioned serially in different Accession Registers under different heads. The Accession Registers show the overall picture of library collection. Classification and Book number are assigned to each book. For the technical purpose we use the following sources :
  • Classification : Dewey Decimal Classification (18th Ed.) N.Y.: Forest Press Inc.; 1971.
  • Cataloguing : AACR II. ed. by M. Gorman & P. W. Winkler. 2nd ed. Chicago: ALA; 1978.
  • Subject Heading : Sears List of Subject Heading (13th.ed.) N.Y.: H.W.Wilson & Co.; 1986.
  • Author Mark : C.A. Cutter’s Alphabetic Order Table ( for English language)
  • Author Mark : Granthakar Nama (for Bengali Language) Kol.:B.L.A.;1985.

Maintenance of Library Collection

The books are acquired, processed, shelved and displayed for use.
  • Preservation of library materials : As of today, no special technique for preservation of documents is followed in the library except periodic dusting and cleaning of books and spraying pesticides. We have started preserving our rare documents in digital form by scanning and preserving them in CDs.
  • Library Audit : We audit the library purchase of books. The last audit was done on 17.08.2006 for the year ending 31.03.2006. Following are the summaries of the report.
    Fund Number
    College Fund including occasional grant from Govt. of W.B. 28941
    U.G.C. Grant 8287
    P. C. Roy Text Book Library (16.02.1988) 4162
    U.G.C. Text Book Library (27.08.1968) 720
    Book Bank (31.03.1990) 2509
    Total 44619
  • Weeding out of old, torn out books : As a library is a growing organization, in order to make room for new additions, weeding out of old, torn out books of little contemporary relevance or historical value is vital. This is particularly important for an institution like ours. To begin with the task, we have earmarked and made a list of 4403 books for weeding out and are keeping them separately. We hope to begin the process of weeding out very soon.


  • Librarian : Dr. Nitai Ray Choudhury. M.Sc. M.Lib.Sc., Ph.D.
  • Library Attendant : Sri Kalyan Bhadra

Services of the Library

  • Library orientation : In order to familiarize our students with the library layout; we display a Floor Plan of the library, illustrating the arrangement of book shelves according to subject area. This helps the students in identifying their required materials easily and quickly. We also individually meet the students visiting the library and guiding them in selecting their requisite documents.
  • Reference Service : The library holds a good collection of reference books and text books on various subjects. A maximum of 3 (three) books are issued at a time to a student for reading purposes. We provide personal services to obtain the required information from various reference sources available in the library or to satisfy any other queries as requested.
  • Lending Service : The students may borrow 1 (one) book at a time for home use for a period of two weeks and can renew the same for another week.
  • Lending Service to the outgoing students : The students appearing at the university examination may borrow books for home use through special library card system and keep the book till the completion of the examination. The students have to deposit the same within one week after the completion of the examination.
  • Syllabi of different subjects : In the present day of continuously changing frontiers, the syllabi of all subjects have been modified in recent times, in some cases substantially. To serve our readers in a better and fruitful way, we keep the syllabi of different subjects (as followed by our affiliating university).
  • Question papers of previous examinations : To acquaint the students with the demands made by various university examinations, we keep the question papers of the affiliating university for the users’ study. The questions of previous examinations are very important for study and teaching.
  • Information Service : To sensitize our users about the current and latest information in respect of various academic courses, ensuing dates of various competitive examinations, admission procedures of important institutions of higher learning, we display the Newspaper clippings of important announcements, information brochures of various academic institutes and other source materials. Information about the forthcoming seminars/workshops organized by the college is also brought to the notice of the students for their participation.
  • Latest arrivals : To inform the users about our new arrivals, we display the list of new additions along with the jacket of books (if available). Lists of books of renowned and important publishers are kept with us for consultation.
  • Periodical and Newspaper Service : We also issue periodicals and newspapers to the users for use in the library and common room.
  • Internet Service : We have internet connectivity in the library and if required, we help the users to search various information sources available in the net. We are also entrusted with the job of making liaison (through e-mail) with other institutes and personnel on behalf of the college. We have the practice of preparing a list of web addresses of important institutes and organizations and bringing it to the notice of the users. The list is updated periodically.
  • LAN connection with the IT Laboratory of the Commerce Department : We are trying our best to broaden the services of the library. As a part of our endeavour, we have already connected the library computer with the computer of the IT Laboratory of the Department of Commerce.

Amation and Networking

We have started to convert the records of our resources in machine-readable form in SOUL software, designed and developed by INFLIBNET Centre, a statutory body of UGC. The bibliographic information of the books purchased on and from 01.04.2004 is directly entered in the SOUL database. We have more or less completed the process of making master database of our faculty and run the automated circulation system on trial basis. We have also started retrospective conversion of bibliographic records of books.

Bibliographic Database of Special Collection

It is our constant endeavour to identify the rare and valuable documents and preserve them separately. We are preparing the bibliographic records of these valuable wealth of the library in electronic format and making an effort to make people aware of these treasure resources. The bibliographic records of the rare books are being entered in the SOUL database.

Digitization of Old and Valuable Documents

As the first task of our digital preservation we are scanning the title page of our rare documents and copies of the same are displayed for information. We have scanned full text of one of our valuable documents published in 1904 – "Brief History of City College : reported at the silver jubilee of the college held on 23rd January, 1904" and preserved it in CDs for use of the users, keeping the hard copy separately.

Special Activity of the Library

We have donated 333 books to the local Higher Secondary Institutions, namely, Brahmo Balika Bidyalaya and Athenium Institution for Boys as per Director of Public Instruction’s letter no. – 232-UGC dated 16.09.2002 vide G.B. Resolution dated 12.12.2002 and 15.12.2003.

Future Plan

  • LAN of the library computer with other departments : We have given a plan to make a LAN of computers of various departments of the college for accessing INTERNET from the department and for easy access of library database and other resources of the college.
  • Career Guidance section : It is our common experience that most of the students are of hardly aware of various academic courses, different competitive examinations or other information pertaining to their progression in life. To serve our students in a better way, we have planned to procure books, documents, question papers of various competitive examinations and preserve them separately for use in the library. Our ex students may also be allowed to use these resources for their study. We may also guide our students in selecting the appropriate course by experts in this area through counseling.
  • Uploading of the library record to the internet : To computerize our library resources, we use the package developed by INFLIBNET. As a part of our effort, we plan to upload the bibliographic record of the special collection to the college website.
  • Inter-Institutional Membership : We plan to take membership of British Council Library to enable our students and teachers/non-teaching staff to enjoy the benefits of the resources of a library famous for its varied and large collection.
  • Digital library : Last but not least, we are hopeful of getting a limited number of on-line subscription of e-journals from UGC through UGC-Infonet Portal and build our own digital library.

Best Practices

To enhance the academic information environment and usefulness of the library, to create a center of attention of the potential human resources of our college towards library, we try to observe the following practices :
  • Computerization of the library with standard digital software
  • Displaying newspaper clippings on the notice board periodically
  • Career/Employment information service
  • Internet facilities to different user groups
  • Displaying new arrivals


Keeping in mind of the inherent limitations of the 125 years old institution in terms of space and time constraint; age old design of the library; burden of the outdated and torn out books and human resources, we are striving hard to provide better services to our potential user community.

Vision of our Library

An ideal college library will be a repository of printed sources and well as electronic sources. Electronic database, On Line Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) helps the users in getting right document/information in the least possible time. Though digital libraries offer enormous opportunities to provide more and more information in various ways and hold greater promise for improving access to seamless information, they merely supplement the traditional resources, but in no way replace the professional services rendered by the human librarian. Thus the necessity of ‘Direct personal aid within the library’ as emphasized by Rabindranath Tagore, S.R. Ranganathan, and many others still remain worthwhile even in this digital era of today and tomorrow and to the best of our effort, we provide a personal library service.

Notice & Announcements

Important Links

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The alumni of City College are earnestly requested to fill-in the on-line Registration Form and send us.

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