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Research Guides

Welcome to the UW Libraries

Welcome to the University of Washington and the University Libraries! This guide is intended to provide information about basic library services available to support your course of study.

Online Reference Services

In addition to reference support available from me, reference services are provided through two online resources: Q&A Live and email. Q&A Live is the Libraries online, interactive (also known as "chat") reference service. The hours for the live chat service vary depending on the day and time of the quarter.

Library Card

In order to check out books you will use your Husky card, which also serves as your library card.

Connecting to the UW Libraries from off campus

To take advantage of the many resources provided by the Libraries for your research, you will need to be able to connect to the Libraries from your home or office. Although the UW Libraries Catalog can be accessed by anyone, most of the research databases are available only to UW students, faculty, and staff under licensing agreements with publishers. In order to access the databases and electronic journals from off campus you will need to log into the off-campus access link first.

Course Reserve Readings

Reserve material, including electronic reserves, can be found in the UW Libraries Catalog or by accessing the Course Reserves site from the Information Gateway. You can search the course reserves either by course or professor's last name.

Electronic reserves are indicated by an item named "ELECTRONIC READINGS FOR [course number]." Click on that item to get to a link that says "Connect to this title online". Click on that link, then enter your UW NetID to bring up a list of electronic files for the class. The list is in alphabetical order by author.

Borrowing Books and Journals

Your Husky card is your Libraries card. While you are on the UW campus, you can borrow books; some journals also circulate. The loan period for most books is one quarter, with the exception of those in Curriculum Materials, Children's Literature, and Government Publications. Books can be renewed online.

If you are near the UW Seattle, Tacoma, or Bothell campus libraries, you can request books through the Libraries catalog Request/Place Hold function and have them sent to any UW library for pick-up.

Through Summit, the shared catalog of academic libraries in Washington and Oregon belonging to the Orbis Cascade Alliance, you can request books in the collections of the members, as well as the UW Libraries, directly and pick them up at any of the member libraries.

UW students have in-person borrowing privileges at the Orbis Cascade Alliance member libraries. For information on members and services, see

For materials which cannot be requested through the UW catalog or Summit, Interlibrary Loan can provide books and articles for you from the UW Libraries collections. There is generally a fee to have items shipped to you. Books owned at the UW can be sent to you for a $7.00 per item mailing fee. Copies of journal articles may cost $7.00 - $14.00 depending on where they are located and/or if you have it mailed to you. Journal articles can often be delivered to you as Web documents.

However, if you choose to pick up materials on campus you may request materials from Interlibrary Loan without cost.

When you are on the UW campus

When you are on the campus, we hope you will become familiar with the resources and services of the Libraries. The Suzzallo and Allen Libraries houses the collections most applicable to the program, although you will also find many materials in the Foster Business Library. Reference librarians on the first floor of Suzzallo Library will be happy to help you get started on your research, acquaint you with the Libraries online system, and answer questions. However, the librarians at Foster might be better equipped to deal with in depth business research.

Hints for finding information

Performing research and trying to identify and obtain relevant materials is a challenge for all students, but can be particularly so for those in distance learning programs. Below is some advice that might help facilitate the research process:

  • Learn about and take advantage of the services described in this guide.
  • Contact Laura Lillard for library or reference assistance, or to provide guidance as you undertake your research.
  • Obtaining materials for research takes time. Plan ahead as much as possible, allowing the time it will take for materials to be mailed to you.
  • Become familiar with the databases and other resources available to support your research. These are listed on the UW Libraries Information Gateway and on the subject page for EducationThe Services for Graduate Students also provides much of this same information, although not the links to individual subject pages.

Catalyst Tools

Catalyst Tools are customizable web based tools that allow you to post material on the internet. You can do anything from posting online portoloios to creating and managing online surveys to sharing files with a group. 


Deborah Pierce's picture
Deborah Pierce
WInter Office Hours: Mon and Thurs 9:30-11am
Odegaard Room 121

For Zoom meetings or other times, E-mail for appointment

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