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ISBN Numbers

  • Basic Information

    The ISBN ("Internation Standard Book Number") number is a 10-digit or 13-digit number used to locate an individual book. These may also be identified as ISBN-10 or ISBN-13. Every 10-digit ISBN number has a 13-digit equivalent (starting with "978"), however not every 13-digit ISBN number has a 10-digit equivalent. 10-digit ISBN numbers may have an X at the end.

  • Meaning

    ISBN numbers contain hyphens which denote the country of origin, the publisher, the book number, and a checksum.

  • Similar Numbers

    ISSN, UPC, and Library of Congress values are not the same as ISBN numbers.

  • Uses

    ISBN numbers may be used for books, CD's, packages of books, and other reading materials.

    Locating the ISBN Number

  • Publisher Page

    If you have a book, you should be able to find the ISBN number (or numbers) on the "Publisher Page" of the book. This page is often the first page in the book that has printing on it. It also includes the copyright information, and other printing information.

    Look for a line of text that looks similar to this:

    This may also be known as:


  • Back Cover

    The ISBN may is usually printed on the back cover.

    The ISBN may be accompanied by a bar code. In the following case, a 10 digit ISBN is above the bar code, and a 13 digit ISBN (begininning with "978") is printed below the bar code.

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