- How can I get help researching a topic?
Ask a Librarian. Reference librarians are here to help you with research.
- I need to write a research paper for one of my classes. Can I use Google?
Many good resources are available online, but many are not suitable for academic research. Our librarians have created lists of useful research sources that you can find on the Research Guides pages.
- I need to do some research, where do I begin?
See our guide to Getting Started With Your Research.
- The book or article I want is in a Loyola library on another campus. Do I need to go there?
No. The libraries provide Intercampus Loan service: we will send books and photocopies of articles between campuses for you. Use the Loyola Copy link in the item record from the library catalog to get the item.
- How long does Intercampus Loan take?
Items are usually available in 1-2 business days. Please allow extra time for delivery to or from the Health Sciences campus.
- What if the book I need isn't on the shelf?
Use the Loyola Copy link in the item record from the library catalog to initiate a search for an item that is listed as available but is not on the shelf. You will be notified via email if the item is found.
- What if someone else has the book I need checked out? Can you tell me who has checked it out?
Use the Loyola Copy link in the item record from the library catalog to have the book returned before the due date. We cannot reveal patron circulation information due to legal restrictions.
- Loyola doesn't have a copy of the book or article I need! What do I do?
Request the item via Interlibrary Loan; you can also try other Chicago area libraries.
- How long does Interlibrary Loan take?
The time required for materials to arrive depends upon how close the lending library is to Loyola and how many libraries may own the material. Articles arrive in an average of 3 calendar days and books arrive in an average of 8 calendar days.
- How long can I keep the books I check out?
How long you can borrow library materials depends on your status as well as the type of material (for example, reference books can't be checked out at all). See Borrowing for more information.
- How many books can I check out at once?
Loyola students, faculty, and staff may check out up to 500 books at a time. Alumni and visiting scholars may check out up to 100 items at a time.
- Can I check out periodicals?
No, periodicals (magazines, journals, newspapers) do not circulate.
- Can I renew books without coming in to the library?
Renew items online using My Account. Use your Loyola username and password. Renewals cannot be made by phone.
- Can I get a list of the books I have checked out?
View the items you have checked out using My Account. Use your Loyola username and password, and you'll see a list of books you have checked out.
- How much are fines?
$.25 per day per book; $5 maximum. See Borrowing for more information.
- What happens if I lose a book?
A $100 replacement fee will automatically be placed on items that have not been returned or renewed within 34 days of their due date.
- Can alumni check out books?
Yes. For information on obtaining a library courtesy card, see Services for Alumni.
Citations and Bibliographies
- What is a citation?
A citation is the information needed to identify a book or article: author, title, date, etc. For books, it will include the publisher and place of publication; for articles, it will include the title of the periodical, volume and page numbers.
- How do I format the citations in the bibliography of my paper?
Find out which style manual your professor would like you to use (the most common are APA and MLA), and get a copy of the manual; the library reference desks are one place to find the manuals.
Using DVDs and Streaming Videos
- How do I search for DVDs?
All videos are listed in the Library Catalog. To limit your search to videos only, use the dropdown box and choose "DVD/VHS/Streaming" from the "All Items" menu.
- How do I search for streaming videos?
Our streaming videos are in a variety of databases, and generally are not listed in the catalog. You can see a list of all our streaming services and what types of videos they include here.
- What are the policies for checking out videos?
See DVD/Streaming Services for detailed policies on how to reserve and check out videos.
- How do I arrange use of a VCR, DVD player, or other AV equipment?
- Can I access library databases from my home computer?
Yes. See Off-campus Access for more information.
- I've followed the instructions for off-campus access, and it still doesn't work. Help!
Please send us a message describing the problem, giving as much detail as possible.
- Where can I find an item that is on reserve in the library?
Reserve materials are located behind the circulation desk at each library.
- How do I access electronic reserves?
To access an item that is on electronic reserve, go to the Library Catalog and click on the Course Reserves option from the main screen. Search for reserves by instructor or course; click on the item you wish to view.
- How do I place something on reserve?
See Course Reserves for information for instructors wishing to place items on reserve.
- I'm not a Loyola student, faculty or staff member, can I use your libraries?
- I'm from another university and would like to borrow an item from a Loyola library.
Some libraries in Chicago have reciprocal borrowing agreements with Loyola; ask at one of our circulation desks, or the desk at your library, to see if your institution is one of them. If not, most academic libraries have an interlibrary loan (ILL) department which can help you make a request.
- How do I get to the library?