Need to hit the books? Check out the University’s numerous libraries

At one of the major research institutions in the country, studying is a must for University students. The comprehensive library system at the University can make students’ lives much easier if used well and can assist with projects, homework and studying for finals.

According to the University library website, there are 63 library resources on campus. These include the Main Library, the Undergraduate Library, as well as virtual libraries, the Ask-A-Librarian service and various college libraries. The vast amount of library resources can become intimidating, therefore students are encouraged to explore them, both through organized library tours and self-guided tours.

“There are librarian-led tours and new student tours offered at the beginning of the Fall semester,” said Heather Murphy, Assistant Director of Advancement for Publications and Public Affairs at the University library in an email. “For students who like exploring on their own, there are a number of self-guided options available, such as cell phone and iPhone video tours of the Undergraduate Library.”

Murphy added that students are also encouraged to check the library website to start on their discovery of the collections and services offered. According to the library website, students can do so through tutorials such as the Library Video Network, where videos can be watched on basic starting tips. There are also resources on citations, bibliographies, searches, using the catalogs and thesis writing tips, among others, available on the tutorials page of the library’s website. All of these can assist in research work as well as homework.

The library offers workshops for researchers and graduate students to become more familiar with the research process and more in-depth resources available.The library’s services page also lists some helpful things that the various libraries can help students with.

These include the subject specialists resource, which helps connect a student with a librarian in his or her field to help with research specific to the class or field of study. Students can also request an interlibrary loan if a resource is not available at the University library. There are also services for users with disabilities, designed to provide effective accommodations and help students make the most efficient use of library services. The library system also allows for purchase requests, which allow students to request the purchase of an item the library does not currently have. Murphy added that in addition to books and other traditional library resources, students can also check out “a variety of computing and technology support, such as loanable laptops, digital cameras, video cameras, digital recorders, and more to assist in the creation of content for classes.” Students can also check out DVD’s, video games, music and other technology.

“Among the Library’s more than 12 million items, there is a wide variety of print and non-print materials students can check out,” Murphy said. “The Library subscribes to thousands of digital resources like the full text of journal articles as well as e-books and electronic reference sources.”

The various library facilities offer good spaces for studying and group work for students, including the Main Library and the Undergraduate Library.

“If students need a quiet place to study, there are good spaces in the Main Library building as well as the lower level of the Undergraduate Library,” Murphy said. “Some spaces in the Undergrad Library and Grainger Engineering Library are configured for group activities and collaboration. The group collaboration rooms in the Undergraduate Library are useful for practicing presentations or sharing work on flat panel displays.”