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COVID-19: Library and Archives FAQ

For information relating to symptoms, spread, how to protect yourself and your family, self-monitoring, self-isolation or other information relating to COVID-19, please refer directly to the information provided by Public Health Sudbury & Districts. The City of Greater Sudbury also has a webpage on various services in relation to COVID-19.  Please see other Laurentian University information relating to COVID-19 safety and the status of various campus services.  

This document will be updated as the situation evolves. Last updated: September 24, 2020.

How can I return items to the Library?

You can now return your overdue books borrowed from the J.N. Desmarais and Architecture Libraries, including books that you received through RACER (our interlibrary loan service). Please follow these instructions to return your books.

Please return overdue items by Friday, September 11, 2020. Overdue charges will begin to apply from September 12, 2020. For the period from March 11 to September 11, 2020, you will not be charged additional fines on overdue items. 

When will the libraries reopen?

At this time, we do not yet know when the libraries on campus will fully reopen; however, some Library and Archives services and collections are now available in one form or another. The J.N. Desmarais Library will likely be partially open as a study space in fall 2020. 

How can I get research help?

Research help is available!

How can I access library digital resources when working off-campus?

Start at the library homepage. All of the links from the catalogue search, databases, and research guides lead you through our proxy server, which proves to publishers that you're a Laurentian University community member.

Similarly, the Scholarly Articles search from the library homepage leads to a special Google Scholar search: any article to which we have licensed access will offer a "Get full text" link on the side that leads you through our proxy. You will not have that convenience if you access Google Scholar directly from elsewhere on the Web.

Can I borrow a physical item from the library?

You can now take advantage of our “curbside pickup” service in order to borrow physical books from the J.N. Desmarais and Architecture Libraries.  Please see the library homepage for fuller information. Please note that if a title is available online through the HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service (see below), you will not be able to borrow the physical copy of the book.  


What is HathiTrust and how can it help me?

Laurentian University is now a member of HathiTrust, which facilitates full-text online access to several million public domain and Creative Commons books and also gives temporary online access to about 120,000 in-copyright books, which mirror about a quarter of the titles in Laurentian’s physical book collection. 


Because this Emergency Temporary Access Service (ETAS) allows current students, faculty and staff to read online many print books in our collection that are under copyright, we are required to cease the lending, under our curbside pickup or RACER document delivery services, of all in-copyright physical books that are available to us online under the HathiTrust ETAS.  Those wishing to consult a book that is normally only available in print at Laurentian are now asked to check the HathiTrust catalogue first, where they will have immediate online access if the book is available to us in HathiTrust.  

To search the HathiTrust catalogue, navigate to the HathiTrust website (you may want to bookmark this page), and choose “Laurentian University” as the “partner institution,” and you will be prompted to log in using your regular Laurentian username and password.  In the HathiTrust catalogue records, items marked “Temporary Access” are those available to us specifically under the ETAS program.  Only one person at a time has access to a given ETAS book, so it may occasionally be necessary to “try again later.” 


Can I obtain a scanned image of a book chapter or journal article?

Using the same request form as for curbside pickup, it is possible to request a scanned image of a journal article or a specific book chapter, which we will deliver by e-mail.  If a specific file format is required, you may include a note on the form to this effect.

How can I renew an item?

You can renew items by logging into your library account using your Laurentian ID, selecting the items to be renewed, and clicking Renew items. If you encounter a problem renewing an item, email Borrower Services and ask them to renew the item for you. Please include the barcode of the item in your email. Please note, however, that it is not necessary to renew a loan until August 31, 2020.

Can I access print course reserves?

Physical course reserves are not accessible at this time. You may wish to check the catalogue, however, as certain items may be available online (though often only to one user at a time).

Can I still order an article through interlibrary loan (RACER)?

Yes. Complete your order through RACER as you normally would and the article will be emailed to you. There might be a significant delay and it may not be possible to fulfill some requests.

Can I order books via RACER?

No. At this time, we cannot fulfill requests for print items as most other libraries in Ontario and beyond are not yet lending print items beyond their own campuses.

Can I still access materials in archival fonds?

The Laurentian University Archives are operating, though on-site research in archival fonds remains limited.  Please visit the homepage of the Archives for fuller general and contact information.