Library 101

This course informs students how to meet basic library needs, such as finding a book, borrowing a book from another campus or college, and how to use the closed stacks and databases. 

Library Space

What are the library's hours?

Library hours

Library times vary throughout the year, so be sure to check the website for hours!

Can I use the library's resources from home?

Accessing library resources from home

Library resources may certainly be accessed from home! When you find an article or ebook you would like to use and click on the link to access it, you will be prompted to enter a username and password. This information is the same as your MySJU login information. 

Are there quiet or group study areas available?

Quiet and group study areas 

Both quiet and group study areas may be found on the first floor near the cafe. The quiet study area is freely open to students, but the group study rooms must be booked in advance. In order to reserve a group study room, see the circulation librarians at the 3rd floor service desk. The phone number for this desk is 718-990-6850. 

Can I bring food or drink into the library?

Food and drink in the library 

Food is only permitted on the first floor in the cafe area. Covered drinks are allowed in any part of the library. 

Are there current newspapers or magazines available to read in the library?

Current newspapers and magazines

Print newspapers, journals, and magazines are located on the 3rd floor, South side of St. Augustine Hall. 

How do I get a job in the library?

Obtaining employment in the library

Applications are available in the Office of Human Resources (HR), which is located in the University Center, Suite C. 

Checking out books

How do I check out a book? Do I need a separate library card?

Checking out a book

Books may be checked out at the third floor service desk. Your Storm card serves as your library card, though you will need to have your account activated the first time you use it. 

What are the closed stacks? Can I still check out a book if it is located there?

Closed stacks

Just because a book is in the closed stacks does not mean it is off-limits! The closed stacks is where books that are not circulated as frequently are kept to leave room on the shelves for more popular titles. If you find a book marked "closed stacks" in the catalog that you would like to check out, ask a librarian at the 3rd floor service desk and they will retrieve it for you. 

Can I borrow a book if it is located on the Staten Island campus?

Borrowing from Staten Island

Books from Staten Island may be requested at the third floor service desk. It will take approximately 24 to 48 hours for the book(s) to arrive on the Queens campus. 

Can I borrow items from other college libraries?

Interlibrary loan from other universities

Academic materials from other universities may be requested through interlibrary loan. An account will need to be created, if a first-time user, and materials may be picked up from the third floor service desk. It generally takes about one to two weeks for materials to arrive. 

Does the library carry textbooks?

Library textbooks

The library does not buy textbooks. However, some professors put their personal copies of the course text on reserve. If your professor has done so, you may speak with someone at the third floor service desk to use this book. Most reserves are two-hour loans that may not be taken outside the library. Talk to your professors about putting their course texts on reserve! 

Very rarely, a copy of a course text will be in circulation or in the reference area. Check the catalog to see if the book you need is there! 

How many items can I check out at once?

Item limit

You may check out as many as 50 items at a time. 

How long can I check out an item for?

How long can items be checked out for?

  • Undergraduates, Alumni, Staff, Courtesy Library Access card holders:   28 days
  • Full-time & Adjunct Faculty, Administrators, Graduate/Law Students:  120 days

Please be courteous to other patrons and be sure to return all items on time! 

Can I renew materials?

Renewing library items

Most items may be renewed through the library's online catalog. For help doing so, contact the third floor service desk at 718-990-5561. Items may be renewed up to two times. If an item is overdue or has a hold/recall on it, the item may not be renewed. 

What is the charge for returning materials past the due date?

Late fees

Most items have a late fee of 20 cents per day. Reserve items and media have higher fines attached to them. After 30 days, a transcript/registration hold is placed on the patron's account. After 60 days, items are considered lost and a replacement fee is charged. There is a 3-day grace period on most items, with the exception of reserve and media materials. 

What happens if I lose a library book?

Lost items

Library staff should be notified immediately. You will be charged a replacement fee for the lost item. A transcript/registration hold is placed on a patron's account when an item is not returned and the replacement fee not paid. 

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Locating books and articles

How do I locate books?

Locating books

Begin by going to the library's homepage ( Click on the link titled "Library Catalog." From here, you can search for items based on subject, title, author, and so on. 

Items are organized by call number. Call numbers are located on the spines of books. If you need assistance locating an item, or an item is not located where it should be, please request assistance at the 3rd floor service desk. 

What is located in the library catalog aside from books?

Items in the catalog

In addition to books, the catalog holds many other items as well. These items include dissertations and theses, microfiche and microfilm, periodicals, and CDs. 

What do I use the databases for?

Using the databases

The library databases may be accessed from the library's homepage ( There are two links--Databases A-Z and Databases by Discipline. If you are looking for a particular database, the former would be the easiest way of searching for it. If you are unsure which database to use, try searching for your discipline and using the databases recommended there. 

These databases provide access to electronic and online resources such as articles, images,reference materials, reports, data, music,videos, and eBooks. 

Library technology

Does the library have computers I can use?

Library computers

There are 8 public computers in each of the 4 wings of the library, or students may opt to use their personal laptops. For assistance printing items from a laptop, see the 3rd floor service desk. 

Where can I print or scan documents?

Printing and scanning in the library

All 4 wings of the library have print rooms, which contain two wireless printers/copiers each. The print room in the South wing of the 3rd floor also has a scanner. The only color printer in the library is the WEPA printer on the first floor before the turnstiles to enter the library. 

Does the library have WiFi?


The wireless network "SJU Mobile" is available in the library. For help signing on, seek assistance at the 3rd floor service desk. 

Research help and further assistance

Where can I go for research assistance?

Research assistance

During library hours, a reference librarian may be found at the 3rd floor service desk. There are also services available through text, email, and Adobe Connect. One-on-one in-person appointments may be made as well. 

More information on research help can be found under "Research Guidance" on the SJU Library page and in the following library guide:

Library research guides, workshops, and online tutorials are available as well. 

Are there library workshops I can attend for more information?

Library workshops

Information about workshops for each SJU campus can be found here. This link contains a calendar of workshops being held, and each event is color-coded based on which campus is hosting the workshop. All workshops are free to attend! 

What are library subject guides? How do I access them?

Library guides

Library subject guides are created by librarians to assist you in researching a particular subject or discipline; some provide information about how to cite sources and avoid plagiarism. These guides include suggested databases, journals, and resources. 

To access these guides, 

Can I still get research assistance even if the library is closed?

Service outside regular hours

AskUs is a 24-hour email reference service. If you have a question outside regular library hours, email or chat with a librarian!