FAQs for Lafayette Faculty & Staff

Below are answers to some questions that are frequently asked by faculty and staff at Lafayette. If your question isn't answered here, please contact a librarian at 610-330-5155 or refdesk@lafayette.edu.

Borrowing materials

For how long may I borrow materials?
Faculty and staff may generally borrow books for one academic year. (Some books have shorter loan periods; loan periods for ILL materials vary and are set by the lending library.) Videos and DVDs circulate for seven days and may be renewed once for seven days. Bound periodicals circulate to faculty for one week and current periodicals circulate to faculty for two days for research/teaching purposes only. If staff need access for research/teaching purposes please consult the circulation desk.

Can my spouse/partner or children borrow materials?
The Libraries extend borrowing privileges to spouses/partners and to children aged 16 and over; visit the Skillman Library Circulation desk for cards. Spouses/partners and children may borrow books for four weeks.

Can I renew my books and DVDs over the web?
Yes. You may use a feature in the Library Catalog to renew the materials you have checked out from Skillman and Kirby. From the Catalog home page, select "Your library record" from the right-hand column and log in using your Network ID and password (or your name and your barcode number). Note that you will not be able to renew an item if someone else has placed a hold on it, if you have already reached the renewal limit for the item or if it's too soon to renew it. To renew materials borrowed via interlibrary loan, log on to the interlibrary loan system and select the option to "View/Renew checked out items" in the right-hand column

How can I get a book that's checked out?
If you need a book that is checked out, you may have it recalled by placing a recall request at the Circulation Desk or by sending an email request to circ@lafayette.edu. The person who has the book will be asked to return it, and you will be notified when it is back in the library. You may also request a copy from another library using interlibrary loan, which is often quicker than waiting for someone at Lafayette to return the book.

May I use my Lafayette ID to borrow materials from other libraries?
With a valid Lafayette ID, faculty and staff (and students) may borrow materials in person from any member library in the Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges (Cedar Crest, DeSales, Lehigh, Moravian, and Muhlenberg). Borrowing privileges for faculty are also available at a number of other Pennsylvania academic libraries that are part of the PALCI consortium. More details are available at the PALCI web site.

Can I have journal articles and book chapters owned by the Libraries sent to me?
Yes. Journal articles and book chapters from Lafayette-owned materials will be scanned and delivered as PDFs to your ILL account. Log into the interlibrary loan system and select the "Document Delivery Request" option from the main page. Requests should be filled within 24 to 48 hours. Due to copyright restrictions, requests for document delivery should be limited to items needed for private study, scholarship, or research (the library cannot scan for course packs or reserves).


How do I request that the Library add a book or film to its collection?
We're happy to get your purchase recommendations, and can usually purchase requested books and films. You may submit them in any way that's easy for you: you can send catalogs or bibliographies to your department's collection liaison (either the faculty coordinator or the librarian) or you can use our online suggestion form.

How do I request that the Library add a journal subscription to its collection?
Periodical subscriptions are reviewed once a year in early fall by each department. Suggestions for changes to your department's periodicals list should be made to the faculty collection coordinator in your department.

Digital repository

How do I make my articles available via Lafayette’s Digital repository?
Send your final draft or the published version of your scholarly articles to the Library by using the digital repository submission form. Library staff will check on publisher policies and deposit articles as allowed. More »

Electronic resources

Where can I find a list of your databases?
From the Library homepage, click the Research Tools tab. For the databases in your field, choose your subject area under Subject Specific Research Tools.

Do you have a list of all of your electronic journals?
Information on all of our electronic journals is in the Library Catalog. Simply do a journal title search for the title you're interested in. If you'd like to browse, we do have a list of electronic journals available at Lafayette, but be aware that's very long.

Does the Library have e-books?
Yes, we have e-books from a number of publishers and vendors. Information about our e-books is in the Library Catalog. If you would like to search across a general collection of academic e-books, try our subscription to Ebook Central. The Library also has Kindle Fire E-readers preloaded with some popular titles that may be borrowed from the Circulation Desk.

Can I access the Library's electronic resources from off campus?
Yes. To log in to subscription resources from off campus, connect to the resource using a link from the Library's web site or catalog, then log in with your Network ID and password (the same credentials you use for email). More >>

How can I use Lafayette's WebBridge in Google Scholar when I'm off campus?
To see WebBridge when you're using Google Scholar off campus, configure your "Library Links" preferences for Lafayette College. More >>

Does the Library subscribe to any bibliographic management program?
Refworks is the program supported at Lafayette. You can import your citations from other bibliographic management programs into Refworks. Detailed instructions for doing this can be accessed at http://www.refworks.com/Refworks/help/Refworks.htm. Select "Getting References into Your Account" from the left-hand navigation bar, then "Converting from Other Bibliographic Management Programs." You also have access to EndNote Web through our Web of Science subscription.


Can I ask a librarian to meet with my class?
Yes, we're happy to meet with any of your classes to instruct them in finding and using the information they need for their assignments. We tailor all our sessions to the individual needs of your students. To learn more or to arrange a session for your class, contact Lijuan Xu, Associate Director for Research & Instructional Services (610.330.5152). More »

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

How long does it take to get something from interlibrary loan?
The time it takes for ILL materials to arrive varies with the difficulty of the request, the proximity of the lending library, and the material type. Book requests that can be filled from Lehigh Valley schools arrive in several working days, while more involved requests can take several weeks. Journal articles are typically delivered within a day or two, but that can vary as well. Keep in mind that requests submitted Friday through Sunday most likely won't get processed until Monday, which will add to the time it takes to obtain the materials.

How can I renew my interlibrary loan materials?
To renew materials borrowed via interlibrary loan, log on to the interlibrary loan system and select the option to "View/Renew checked out items" in the right-hand column

"Processed" books

The Library Catalog says the book I want is being processed. What does that mean?
Items being processed are physically in the Library but are waiting for call numbers and other details to be assigned by Technical Services. If you need an item that is being processed, it can usually be obtained within 24 hours. Fill out the online form that is linked from the item's record in the Catalog or ask at the Research Help Desk.

Reserving rooms

How do I reserve a room in Skillman?
Lafayette faculty and staff may request a reservation for Skillman 206 (the Gendebien Room) for academic events and special programs through the Scheduling Office. During the academic year, requests can be made for the lunch period (11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.) and after 3:50 p.m. Monday through Friday, as well as for weekends. During the summer months and when classes are not in session, requests can be made for any time that the Library is open. Other rooms in the Library are used for library instruction and student study space and cannot be reserved.


How do I place materials on reserve?
To place materials on reserve, you must complete a Course Reserve Book/Media List and/or Photocopy List for each course. (The forms can be filled out online or offline, and either emailed as an attachment to circ@lafayette.edu or sent via campus mail to Skillman Library.)  More »

Will the Library scan my materials to put on reserve?
The Library does not offer scanning services for reserve materials, but faculty may scan their own materials and make them available on their course web site or link to full-text articles available from one of the Library's subscriptions.

Can I reserve films to show in my class?
Yes. You can reserve films for classroom use by contacting Tami Kurzeja, weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (610.330.5149) for assistance. We recommend reserving films well in advance so as to ensure their availability by the date needed.

Saved searches

How can I prepare saved searches to run in the Library Catalog?
You can save searches in the Library Catalog and have them run automatically on a regular basis by using the "save search to preferred searches" feature. More >>

How can I prepare saved searches and alerts to run in Web of Science?
By creating a personal profile in Web of Science, you can receive automatic notification whenever articles of interest are cited in a new article or when new articles on a particular topic, by a particular author, or published within a particular journal are added to the database. For details, see Web of Science's brief video tutorials on Creating Citation Alerts and Saving Your Search and Creating Alerts.


Is there a scanner that I can use?
All of the Macs in the ITech Lab as well as the PCs in the Itech Studio (outside the ITech offices) are equipped with scanners and software for manipulating scanned images.

Storage and Annex materials

The Library Catalog says the book I want is in Storage or in the Annex. What does that mean?
Items with the location "Storage" are in Skillman Library; they can be retrieved for immediate use by requesting them at the Skillman Circulation Desk. Items with the location "Annex" are housed in a remote storage facility. To obtain these materials, click the "Request from Annex" link that appears on the right side of the screen in the item's record in the Library Catalog. Materials requested from the Annex will be available within 24 hours of placing the request, Monday through Friday.

For more information...

Library listserves
If you would like to keep abreast of new library resources and services, subscribe to the Library News mailing list by sending a blank email to LibraryNews-subscribe@mailman.lafayette.edu. More »