I’d love to share a few things with you that can help you as a student.
What is an academic library?
An academic library exists to help you with your research. That’s why we are here. If you’ve taken a Communications or English 102 class, you might have met one of us already. We do these sessions with classes to get you started on the research process, and guide you through the rockier moments. We can assist you in person, over the phone, email, and chat.
We have research guides, a collection of quick instructions for researching across multiple topics and classes. These are designed to help you when we aren’t available. These include instructions on things like creating citations,or developing research questions. To get meta, this is a research guide about everything the library offers that isn’t a book.
Finally, if you click on chat it will direct you to the reference librarian on the reference desk who can help you with a research assignment, ask basic questions about campus, or anything else.
And of course, we have books.
What do you wish students knew?
You aren’t interrupting us with your questions; it’s our job to answer them! We are at the circulation desk to check out books and answer questions. We are working to hire more librarians for the reference desk, but have it staffed the bulk of the time we are open. A reference librarian is like human Google. They’ll answer any questions and help you with research.
Please don’t pay for any articles or books while you are in school. Your PSC user name and log in gives you access to a massive collection between our website and the physical library. If we don’t have something, we can probably borrow it from another library using something called interlibrary loan. Simply fill out this form with the article or book that you would like. The process usually takes a few days, but with some changes coming next year will be as short as a day.
We have movies, audiobooks, and music
Kanopy is a collection of movies, as is Feature Films for Education. We have a collection of audiobooks through OverDrive. Using an app called Libby, you can borrow these titles and listen to them over your phone. You can also add your local public library to your Libby app for even more titles. Finally, we have music, mostly classical, and some jazz through Naxos, a collection available with tens of thousands of recordings to stream while you study. And all of this is free with your username and password.
We have study rooms
During the worst part of the pandemic, we were closed, and the next year our study rooms were not available. (That was last year for those of you keeping track.) If you need a completely quiet place to study, our study rooms are back for groups. You can reserve one online, or in person on a first-come, first-served basis from the circulation desk. Right now the library classroom is available for silent individual study as well. We also have things like earplugs and headphones at the reference desk that are yours to keep.
We have programming
We host a book club at least once a semester, typically advertised over your student email and social media. We also have some sort of crafty event where we create something you can take home once a semester.
Immediately after spring break, we are hosting a traveling exhibition called Americans and the Holocaust, which seeks to answer what Americans knew and what more could have been done. You can see the exhibition and attend any programming for free:
Lastly, we are here for you. Please reach out through Ask a Librarian with any questions.