insider's guide
to the library

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Frequently Asked Questions

Library Facilities and Administration

Library Services

Finding Materials

Library Facilities and Administration

Where is the Library?

The Main Library is located at 1408 W. Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 61801. For more detail about the locations of our other libraries, consult the customized Google Map or this campus map.

Where can I park?

You can read more about parking options at the Parking Department website. You may also wish to view this campus parking map. Please note the metered parking lot to the west of the Main Library.

How is the Library structured?

The Library is made up of more than 20 departmental or subject libraries. Some serve particular academic units, like Social Sciences, Health, and Education Library, while others, like Reference, Research and Scholarly Services, serve all units. All of the libraries share a single online catalog and all contribute materials to the Main Stacks. Some of the departmental libraries are located in the Main Library building, while others are located in other departments on campus.

Can you tell me about the Library and its history?

Read about the history of the Library.

How can I suggest a purchase for the Library?

There are two ways to suggest a purchase: Use the Suggest a Purchase form or contact your subject specialist librarian

Can I donate books or other materials to the Library?

The Office of Collections serves as the contact for book donations. This office handles questions regarding gifts, arranges for pick-up, and issues letters of acknowledgment. For more information on donating materials, see the Office of Collections' Gifts Procedure or call 217-333-0318.

Can I buy books at the Library?

The annual Library Book Sale usually takes place in October or November in the Marshall Gallery (the East Foyer) of the Main Library. Exact dates and times are usually announced in the fall. Contact Tom Teper, Associate University Librarian for Collections at tteper@illinois.edu for more information.

How can I get a job at the Library?

Contact Library Human Resources for information about obtaining employment at the University Library.

Can you tell me more about the Bronze Tablets?

Each academic year, University Honors awards the top 3 percent of college graduates from August to May. Students are notified in April and honored at May graduation. Tablets are generally posted in Nov/Dec for the previous year in hallway of the Main Library. The tablets are sent to the East coast to be cast. More description of the process is available in the Code on Campus Affairs and Handbook of Policies and Regulations Applying to All Students: http://admin.illinois.edu/policy/code/article3_part4_3-404.html.

Admission and Records, Academic Records
901 W. Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: 217-333-9774

You can also view digital images of the tablets: http://images.library.uiuc.edu/projects/bronze/

Library Services 

How do I check out a book, get a Library card, or pay a fine?

Each library space has its own checkout for materials. You'll need your i-card to check out library materials, including books, DVDs, and loanable technology. Central Access Services handles the majority of checking in and out of books and other materials, issuing Library cards, Library fines, and other issues relating to Library accounts. Central Access Services is also in charge of the Main Stacks, the entrance to which is located on the second floor of the Main Library. For questions about the Main Stacks, your account, or other circulation-related questions, please visit the Central Access Services website.

How do I renew my materials online?

Log in to your Library account. You will need to register for an account if you have not done so.

Where can I find the Library's hours and/or locations?

Check this list of the departmental libraries, their locations, and their hours. Here is floor map of the Main Library.

Are there public access computers in the Library that I can use?

There are public access computers throughout the Library. Users do not need a login to use the computers. Computers are include Microsoft Office Suite and include printing capability. The Scholarly Commons includes specialty software packages. The Undergraduate Library also has a CITES computer lab on the Upper Level for use by students, faculty and staff of the University of Illinois. A number of other CITES computer lab sites are also available at various campus locations.

Is there a place where I can watch or listen to media materials in the Library?

The Undergraduate Library has a pool of loanable technology and media viewing booths and the Music and Performing Arts Library has playback options for everything from cassettes to DVDs.

Are there printers available in the Library?

Illinois current affiliates can print items from any public access computer in the Library. Non-affiliated patrons can have their print jobs sent to the Reserves Area of the Undergraduate Library and pay for their copies at that desk. Black & white copies are 10 cents per page and color copies are 30 cents per page. Your University account is charged for printing (the same account that bills you for your tuition).

Color printing is available at the Undergraduate Library, the Grainger Engineering Library, the Funk ACES Library, and the Central Circulation/Information Desk area in the Main Library. The price of color printing is 30 cents per page. 

Printers can print double sided if the user checks the box in the print menu for 2 sided. Patrons will still be charged for each side that has toner, not for each piece of paper printed. The CITES lab in the Undergrad Library also offers double-sided printing.

Printing directly from a laptop is also an option. Learn more here.

How and where can I make copies in the Library?

You can either use one of our scanners or you may use a photocopier. 

Check out our list of publicly available scanners or find more information

Publicly available copiers can be found in these libraries.

Copy cards (Campus Vending Value Card) can be purchased or value can be added to your i-card or your copy card at the following locations: Undergraduate Library (Upper Level), Main Library Circulation Area (2 nd Floor), Law Library, Music Library, Grainger Engineering Library, CCSO Oregon site, CCSO English Building, and Illini Union CCSO Lab.  You can add value to your copy card through photocopiers at these locations: Undergraduate Library (Periodicals Area), Illini Orange, and Vet Med Library. All copies are 20 cents per page. While none of the Library photocopiers copy in color, there is a FedEx/Kinko's near the Library, near the intersection of Green Street and Wright.

How can I have Library materials delivered to my office or campus address?

Faculty and graduate students can have circulating Library materials delivered if they have a campus office address listed in their Library borrower record. To check your borrower record, call Central Access Services at 217-333-8400. (People who do not have a campus office address must pick up materials at a Library.) To request materials be delivered:

  1. Search for the item you want delivered in the online catalog.
  2. Press the Request first Available Copy button located near the holdings information.
  3. Enter your Library ID number (the 14-digit barcode number on your i-card) and your last name.
  4. Choose Campus Mail-Offices Only as the location.
  5. Press Submit Request button.

Does the library have any services for distance education students? 

Students that are registered through a distance education program recognized by the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning are able to receive special library services. For more information, please see our Distance Education guide. 

Is there a phone I can use in the Library?

Pay phones are located on the 1st floor of the Main Library in the East-West hallway and in the lobby on the Undergraduate Library's side of the tunnel connecting the Main and Undergraduate Libraries. Both locations have wheelchair-accessible pay phones.

Campus phones are located on the 1st floor of the Main Library in the East-West hallway and on the Upper Level of the Undergraduate Library near the Reserve Area. These include having books mailed to you and DocExpress copying materials for you. Please view our distance education guide for more information. 

Cell phones should be used in a courteous manner and, preferably, away from others who are studying. Please turn off ringers while in a Library.

What if I lost something at the Library?

"Lost and Found" items are held in each departmental Library and at the Information Services Desk on the 2nd floor of the Main Library, 217-333-2290. Send email inquiries to: reflib@Library.illinois.edu. All found items of value (cell phones, calculators, etc) will be sent to Library Security.

Where can I get more help?

You can find in-person, phone, email, chat and instant messaging contact information on the Ask a Librarian page.

Can a librarian help me if the Library is closed?

Ask-a-Librarian is available to provide reference help to all students, even when particular libraries may be closed. 


Finding Materials

How do I find a specific item?

See this guide to finding specific items.

Where can I look up books and non-print materials?

You can look up print and non-print materials, including all media types, that the University of Illinois Library holds through the Online Catalog. You may also use the Easy Search on the Library homepage.

How do I find electronic resources?

The Online Journals and Databases page allows you to find electronic resources. 

What is microform and how do I use it?

Microform describes formats for storing photographically reduced images on plastic film. Microfiche, microcard, and microfilm are different types of microforms. A microform reader/printer is required to read or copy microforms onto paper. The International and Area Studies Library (321 Main Library), History, Philosophy and Newspaper Library (246 Main Library), and Social Sciences, Health, and Education Library (100 Main Library) have fiche scanners, which allow you to convert fiche documents to PDF files.     

Can I find college catalogs at the Library?

The Library has a subscription to CollegeSource® Online, which features over 9,900 College Catalogs in complete cover-to-cover original page format including 2-year, 4-year, graduate, and professional schools. This web resource provides several years of catalogs, a profile, and a link to the institution's web site.

For older catalogs, the Undergraduate Library holds a microfiche collection of approximately 3600 college catalogs from 2900 universities and colleges, including some foreign institutions. This collection is located in the microfiche cabinets in the Periodicals Area.

For the University of Illinois see the following: Timetables, Course Catalogs, and Programs of Study. The University Archives has the most complete collection of older timetables (1894-present), catalogs (1867-present), and programs of study (1867-present). These materials must be used in the archives (open Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Some older print editions may also be found in the Main Stacks. 

Where can I find copies of Illio, the university yearbook?

Copies of the Illio are available in several places in the Library: University Archives 1895-present and Main Stacks (call number C. IL6UPI) 1895-1989. 

Can I get income tax forms at the Library?

Web sites for tax forms include:

Urbana and Champaign public libraries also have tax forms for other states that can be photocopied, along with the standard IL and federal forms (all forms may be copied from their loose leaf notebooks).