Nonprofit Sector: Find Books

What is a subject heading?

Subject headings are a formalized way of of searching library catalogs. The right subject heading can help you get to information more quickly.

For example, Nonprofit Organizations can be described using the following terms:

  • nonprofit
  • third sector
  • not for profit
  • volunteer sector

You could search the library catalog for all those keywords. Or, use one subject heading to find all of the library's materials on that subject.

  • Nonprofit Organizations

subject search in advanced search option of P S U catalog

Who determines subject headings? The Library of Congress. Copies of the complete set of the Library of Congress Subject Headings are available at the Reference Desk.

Browse for Books

Sometimes browsing the library stacks can help you find books you didn't even know you were looking for. The following are good areas to peruse.

H: Social Sciences

HD 2769: Nonprofit Corporations

HF: Business, Accounting, Marketing

HG: Finance

HM: Sociology

HV: Social Work

J: International Organizations

Maps of the library are available at the 2nd floor Reference Desk, elevator lobbies, and also online.

Request a Summit Book from the PSU Library Catalog

If a print book is either checked out or not in the PSU Library collection, you can request the book from another library. Be sure to sign in to see your request options! 

request from other libraries option for book

Request Books through ILL

If a book you need is not available from our library, you can request it using the "Request from Other Libraries" option in the catalog record.

Note that course textbooks are often not available to borrow from other libraries.    

PSU Library Catalog - Book Search


Results include both print books and ebooks, available from Portland State Library and other libraries.

Find Books by Subject

P S U library catalog limit options

After you execute a search in the Portland State Library catalog, click on the "Print Books" facet to limit your search results to only books. Click on "eBooks" to limit your results to eBooks.

After you find a useful book, look under the "Details" section of the book's catalog entry at "Subjects." Here you'll find a list of related subjects that you might consider adding to your search. You can also click on a subject link in the record, e.g. clicking on "Social entrepeneurship" would bring up a list of all the Library's books, journals, etc. on that topic.  
subjects hyperlinked in P S U catalog

Subject Headings for Nonprofit & Professional Development

  • Boards of Directors
  • Budget
  • Career Development
  • Collaboration
  • Evaluation
  • Financial Management
  • Fiscal Policy
  • Human Resources
  • Leadership
  • Nonprofit organizations -- Finance
  • Nonprofit organizations -- Management
  • Office Management
  • Personnel Management
  • Program Management
  • Project Management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Time Management
  • Vocational Guidance


Subject Headings for Community Programs

  • Arts & Society
  • Community Development
  • Community Organizing
  • Community Organization
  • Crime Prevention
  • Education
  • Families
  • Health and Human Services
  • Housing
  • Social Justice


Subject Headings for Fundraising & Communications   

  • Business Communication
  • Charitable Giving
  • Communication – Social Aspects
  • Fund Raising
  • Marketing
  • Mass Media – Social Aspects
  • Proposal Writing for Grants
  • Public Relations
  • Public Speaking
  • Special Events


To modify your search to include a useful subject, do an advanced search. With an advanced search you can type in your desired subject and be sure to specify you want to search the "Subject" field.

screenshot of subject search selection

eBook Collections

We collect eBooks whenever possible. After you execute a search in the Portland State Library catalog, click on the "eBooks" facet to limit your search results to only ebooks.
Records for eBooks look like this:
online access link in a book record

We also have a number of eBook collections that you can browse. They are listed below: