Skip to Main Content

U.S. Government

Basic guide to get you started in researching the federal government resources both online and in the library.

Welcome

 44 U.S. Code § 1901 defines a government publication as “informational matter which is published as an individual document at Government expense, or as required by law” ( Pub. L. 90–620 , Oct. 22, 1968, 82 Stat. 1283 ). These can be bills and statutes, the U.S. budget, presidential materials, congressional documents, judicial publications (court opinions and independent counsel investigations), executive agency publications, regulations, and many more. 

The Federal Depository Library Program (44 U.S.C. § 19) administered by the U.S. Government Publishing Office was established by Congress in 1813 to ensure that the American public has access to Government information in depository libraries throughout the U.S. and its territories. As a federally mandated depository library, FSU provides free, public access to all tangible and online publications distributed by the Government Publishing Office, and to provide users with assistance using the material. The majority of our United States Government information are electronic and can be searched through the FSU Libraries Catalog. Our collection includes information on health, the military, science, technology, maps, microfiche, journals, and historical publications dating back to the early days of the United States.

Information about the Federal Collection

What is a SuDoc Number?

A SuDoc (Superintendent of Documents) number is a classification system that the Government Publishing Office (GPO) uses to organize Federal Government publications. Publications are grouped together by issuing agency and therefore it is important to understand the structure of the Federal Government in order to find Federal publications. Most SuDoc numbers follow the format below.

Sudoc description image

For more information, check out the GPO's SuDoc Classification System Guidelines.

Core U.S. Government Resources

Vital sources of information about the workings and essential activities of the U.S. Government

Assistance Listings Explore Census Data (also known as data.census.gov)
Ben's Guide to the U.S. Government Federal Register
Budget of the United States Government Govinfo
Catalog of U.S. Government Publications Occupational Outlook Handbook
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Official Congressional Directory
Compilation of Presidential Documents Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States
Congress.gov Social Security Handbook
Congressional Record United States Code
The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation The United States Government Manual
Economic Indicators United States Reports
The Economic Report of the President to the Congress United States Statutes at Large
USA.gov United States Tax Information

For detailed descriptions of these resources, please visit the Core U.S. Government Resources guide here: https://libguides.fdlp.gov/c.php?g=871292

COVID-19

COVID-19 UPDATE

FSU Libraries physical spaces will close beginning Thursday, March 19 at 5:00 p.m. until further notice. We will not be able to provide access to physical items in our Federal, United Nations, and State of Florida depository collections at this time. For more information on how to find resources online, please check out the Searching for Gov Info Online tab on this research guide. 

For U.S Government resources on Covid-19, please visit the following sites:

• U.S. Centers for Desease Control (CDC) Coronavirus Page
• U.S. Government Legislative, Presidential, and Regulatory Documents on COVID-19
• U.S. Government Response to the Coronavirus
• U.S. Homeland Security Digital Library Coronavirus Collection
• U.S. National Institutes of Health: Clinical trials for the Coronavirus
• U.S. National Institutes of Health resources on the Coronavirus

For FSU Libraries COVID-19 Updates and Resources, please see https://lib.fsu.edu/news/covid-19

New Resources

Oversight.gov: (Federal Inspectors General Reports): Reports from across government by the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency from 73 agencies.

United States Congressional Serial Set: Joint digitization effort by the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) and the Law Library of Congress, this first public release contains selected volumes from the 69th Congress (1925–1927), the 82nd Congress (1951–1953), and several 19th century Congresses.

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations: The Office of the Federal Register (OFR) and the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) have formally launched a new eCFR website. Read the "Getting Started" page for a comprehensive introduction to the main features of the new website.

End of Term Presidential Web Archive: Due to increased public interest (between fall 2016 & spring 2017) to preserve and document U.S. Government web content at the end of the Obama Presidential term, the Federal Government’s End of Term (EOT) Web Archive partners, in collaboration with other efforts like DataRefuge, and Environmental Data and Governance Initiative (EDGI), have archived over 200 Terabytes of websites and data. There are current ~ 50,000 available for searching and browsing through the EOT Web Archive project page, and the Internet Archive Collection page.

Coordinator for Government Information

Profile Photo
Mohamed Berray
Contact:
0027P Scholars Commons
Strozier Library
850-645-2709
Website
Social: Twitter Page

Government Information Specialist

The Florida State University Libraries
Library Hours | Employment | Giving to the Libraries | The FSULib Blog | Library Homepage

Florida State University Libraries | 116 Honors Way | Tallahassee, FL 32306 | (850) 644-2706