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Research Guides

UW Borrower's Card

Washington State teachers are eligible for borrowing privileges at the UW Libraries. To get a borrower’s card, submit a letter stating your need to use the UW Libraries’ collection on official school letterhead. Send, bring or fax the letter to:

Library Cashier
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA 98195-2900
Fax: (206) 685-6972

For more information see the borrowing guide for K-12 Teachers.


  • Check our hours before visiting especially if you plan on using Special Collections.
  • Parking can be expensive -- never visit on a Husky football day.
  • The UW is big. Check out the campus map.
  • Guest computers are limited.  Have students bring laptops if they have one and ask for guest wifi access from an Info Desk.
  • Bring a flash drive for downloading articles.
  • Students will need to buy a DawgPrints card to print.
  • Students can ask for help at any Info or Reference desk.  Staff there can get them started on their research and answer questions.

Workshop Slides

Slide presentations from the 2014 History Day Workshop for Teachers.

Before Bringing Your Class to Visit

  1. Fill in the Planning Your Class Visit form so that we know when you'd like to bring in your class. You can also use this form to arrange a class tour. Keep in mind that certain times of the year are busier than others.
  2. Use local resources first. Take advantage of your school and public libraries. Many of these have specialized history sources specifically aimed at k12 students. 
  3. Arrange for your school librarian to give your students an introduction to basic research skills.  Many students find the UW Libraries overwhelming so it is best to prepare students prior to visiting.
  4. Have students look at the handout Breaking Barriers in History: Sample Topics. These topics have been chosen because the UW Libraries has sufficient primary sources.
  5. Have students fill out a History Day Topic Information Worksheet so that they know essential info about their topic including the date range, key people and the geographic locale of their topic.
  6. Have students use UW Libraries Search for books before visiting the UW Libraries. Use the Finding Primary Sources Using UW Libraries Search handout for instructions. Students should come to campus with a list of book titles with library locations and call numbers. Use optional handout.

    Teachers with borrower's cards should request that items in storage (locations are Auxilliary Stacks and Baker Auxilliary Stacks) or housed in other campus libraries be delivered to the Suzzallo Circulation Desk so that students can use them -- place your request at least 2 days in advance.
  7. Have students scan the checklist that fits the century of your topic. The checklist lists the major digitized primary source collections available at the UW Libraries for the 17th & 18th19th and 20th centuries. Students working on earlier periods should rely on UW Libraries Search.


See the Special Collections K-12 Visitors page if you plan to bring your students to use material in Special Collections.