UW–Madison Libraries Services during COVID–19

COVID–19 Library Dashboard
Get the latest information on the status of library spaces and services

COVID-19 FAQ for Library Services

If you do not see your question answered here, feel free to Ask a Librarian.

General Questions

Are there any libraries open? expand_more

Because only essential personnel are allowed on campus, we cannot open any libraries for public use.

The State Street entrance of Memorial Library is open from 12-4 on weekdays but only for laptop check out and materials pick up (for items that were put on hold prior to the COVID-19 emergency.)

Where can I print? expand_more

No buildings are open on campus, but FedEx, UPS, and Insty-Prints (Monona) stores offer printing services. This is obviously a fluid situation, so we recommend you call the locations to determine if they are still open and offering printing.

I have things in a locker or study carrel at Memorial Library. How do I get to them? expand_more

Contact the Circulation Office and if possible, include your locker/carrel location & number, contents of locker/carrel, and needed items. You will be contacted when they are ready to be picked up at Memorial Library.

Can I still deposit my thesis at Memorial Library? expand_more

It is currently not possible to deposit your thesis at Memorial Library. Instead, follow these instructions posted on the Graduate School website.

Circulation of Physical Books/Videos/etc

Can I pick up an item that I put on hold? expand_more

Some items requested prior to last week might be available for pickup at the entrance to Memorial Library.
Check your library account or contact a librarian via chat or email to see if this is the case for your item.
If you do have an item for pickup at Memorial Library, you can do that weekdays from 12-4 p.m through Wednesday April 1.

Can I make a new request to pick up a physical book? expand_more

We are unable to support new requests for item pick up. (Some items that were already on hold might be available for pickup. See the previous question.)

However, we are working to digitize books upon request. If you know you only need some chapters or specific pages, you can place a request using our Interlibrary Loan service. Log in to your account, choose the option to Request an Article, and fill out the form with the book chapter’s information as best you can. (If you are unsure which chapters or pages to request, please Ask a Librarian for assistance.) You will receive an email when the chapter is available online for you to download. We are currently prioritizing items needed for course content at this time, so some requests may take time to fill.

Will you ship books to me as I work remotely? expand_more

At this time the Libraries cannot send physical books to anyone. You can request book chapters using Interlibrary Loan.

I have books that were due recently. How do I return them? expand_more

We encourage everyone to stay home and wait to return items until it is safe to do so.

You do not have to return any items at this time. We have extended due dates for all items and we are waiving any fines that you might incur.

If you want to return an item, it must go to the drop box at Memorial Library’s State Street entrance. Items returned via the book return may remain on your account for some period of time, but fines will not be assessed.

Laptops and Equipment

Can I still check out a laptop from the Libraries? expand_more

Yes, Memorial Library has laptops for students to checkout at their main State Street entrance from 12-4 p.m. on weekdays. DoIT has laptops for faculty and staff to checkout. More detailed information is available here.

I have equipment that was due before the Libraries closed. How do I return it? expand_more

You do not currently need to return items you have checked out to you. Due dates have been pushed out to May 8, 2020 and any fines have been or will be removed. Regardless, we encourage everyone to stay home and wait to return items until it is safe to do so. If you must return an item because you are leaving town, please return it at Memorial Library 12-4 pm on weekdays. Please do not return equipment (laptops, cameras, headphones, etc.) via the book returns.

Textbooks, Reserves, and Instruction

Is my textbook available online? expand_more

Maybe – we provide access to many ebooks, and academic publishers have been making their content freely available during this disruptive time. You can Ask a Librarian to see if your textbook has online availability. You can search our catalog for the book. We are also keeping a list of publishers that have opened up content for free in response to the COVID-19 emergency. If the book is only available in print, course instructors can contact us to see about having it digitized.

How do I access items that were on reserve for my course? expand_more

Students should ask their instructors about how to access course content.

Instructors who need assistance or have questions about replacing their physical reserves (including asking us to digitize items in our physical reserves) can go to our Course Content for Instructional Continuity page and use the “Course Content Support Form.”

Of course you can always contact our experts.

How can Libraries support my online course? expand_more

We support teaching at a distance and are prepared to support instructors with alternative modes of instruction during this disruptive event. Visit the library support for instructional continuity page to learn about course support and instructional services provided by the Libraries.

Troubleshooting Online Access

How do I access articles, ebooks, and databases from home? expand_more

Using the library website, navigate to the resource you want to use. The resource will eventually ask you to log in with your NetID. Once entered, this remains active until you exit your browser or are logged out after 6 hours of inactivity. For more information see our page on Off-Campus Access.

I am using the campus VPN, and I am unable to access full-text journal articles and other library resources. expand_more

The campus VPN does not automatically give you access to library resources. Accessing resources from links on the library website will ensure you get access, on or off the VPN. Note that some publishers block our VPN’s IP address, and so you cannot use the VPN when trying to access their publications.