All library branches closed until further notice. Access e-resources & virtual services now.
Find out more »   |   Questions? Ask us! »   |   Frequently Asked Questions »

COVID -19 | Library closure & service disruptions FAQ

Please check this space often as information is subject to change. Last updated September 28, 2020

Spaces

Reference services and teaching/instructional services

Borrowing, returns, course reserves & fines

Rare & Special Collections

Accessing online resources

Interlibrary Loans (ILL) & document delivery

Collections

Law Library

Music Library


Can I visit a McGill Library branch?

No, all library branches on both campuses are closed until further notice. All workshops, tours and events scheduled to be held in library spaces are cancelled. Users can access e-resources 24/7 and virtual reference services during service hours. From August 31 to December 23, chat, email or text a librarian seven days a week, 10AM-6PM.

However, beginning September 8, some libraries will be partially opened to serve as Study Hubs. More information on these Study Hubs is available on our website.

Top ↑


 

I have left personal items in my library locker, carrel or office in the McLennan-Redpath Library Complex. Is it possible for me to retrieve these items?

If you have left personal items in a library building, please contact the library supervisors at hsslloans.library [at] mcgill.ca. Staff will be able to arrange a contactless pick-up time for your personal items as part of the Terrace Pickup Service. Please note that only selected branches are open to staff at the moment, and items left at other branches may not be available at this time.

Top ↑


 

I have left library books in my library carrel or office. These items are checked out to either my personal library account or to my library carrel account. Can I retrieve these books? Is it possible to return them?

If you would like to retrieve library books from your library carrel or office, please contact hsslloans.library [at] mcgill.ca. Staff will be able to arrange contactless pick-up of these items through the Terrace Pickup Service. If you are done with these items, you can also request that they be returned and removed from your account. Please note that only selected branches are open to staff at the moment.

Top ↑


I need help from a librarian. What do I do?

We are here to answer your questions and help you find what you are looking for. From August 31 to December 23, chat, email or text a librarian seven days a week, 10AM-6PM. 

Top ↑


I am a faculty member and need help linking to ebooks, ejournals and other library resources. Where can I go for help?

Visit our Teaching Services page for step-by-step-instructions on how to create persistent links in WorldCat Discovery. Your liaison librarian can also assist in this process and help you locate materials to support your teaching.

Top ↑


I have a book due during the closure. What do I do with the book? Will I get fined?

If you are currently in Montreal, you may hold onto the book or return it in the returns bin on the street level at the McLennan Library Building. If you have left Montreal, you may hold onto the books or mail the books back to the McLennan-Redpath Library Complex (3459 McTavish Street Montreal, Quebec H3A 0C9). No fines will be accrued during the closure. All loans have been extended until January 4, 2021. Please note, returned items will appear on your account until staff can discharge the material.

Top ↑


I have outstanding library fines. Will I be blocked from graduating or from registering for future courses?

While the library is closed, students will not be blocked from graduating or from registering for courses due to outstanding library fines. Outstanding fines can be reconciled when the library re-opens. In the meantime, if you wish to pay a fine over the phone, please email hsslloans.library [at] mcgill.ca to schedule a phone appointment with one of the library supervisors.

Top ↑


Can I return books?

Yes, users can place items in the returns bin on the street level at the McLennan Library Building. If you are out of town, you can mail items back to the McLennan-Redpath Library Complex (3459 McTavish Street Montreal, Quebec H3A 0C9) or hold onto the item until the library reopens.

Top ↑


I have returned my books to the library. When will be they be removed from my account?

On the week of July 6th, library staff at the Humanities & Social Sciences Library and the Law library began checking in materials. Books from those branches will gradually be removed from your account over the month of July. You may find that not all loans are removed from your account on the same day, as items are being checked in by floor/area of the library. Books from other branches may not be checked in until later in the summer. Please direct any questions about returned items to hsslloans.library [at] mcgill.ca

Top ↑


I am a McGill researcher/faculty member/student and I need print materials to do research during the closure. Can I borrow a print book?

The Library began to offer a Terrace Pickup Service mid-July 2020 for print books not available electronically or through the HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service (ETAS). The service currently incorporates materials from the McLennan-Redpath Library Complex, the Nahum Gelber Law Library, the Marvin Duchow Music Library, and the Islamic Studies Library. Materials from other branches are not available during this phase. McGill users can request up to ten items per week using a form. Learn more about the procedure and fill out the request form.

Top ↑


Can I place a hold on an item in the Library Catalogue?

Our ability to provide access to print materials is limited, and the Hold button is not currently enabled. As a result, users cannot place holds on library materials. All requests for print materials must be made via the Terrace Pickup request form. The Library reserves the right to recall items to support digitization for course readings.

Top ↑


I need to consult a primary resource in a special collection (i.e. materials in Rare Books & Special Collections, Osler Library of the History of Medicine, Visual Arts Collection, McGill University Archives). What do I do?

McGill-affiliated individuals can consult physical items in McGill special collections via the ROAAr Rare Materials Consultation Room opening on September 14.  Some digitized materials may be available. 

We may also be able to help you locate alternative sources of historical primary material. Please feel free to contact the appropriate curator listed here: https://www.mcgill.ca/library/branches/rarebooks/staff. Alternatively, please feel free to connect with the general Rare Books Library email account at Rarebooks.library [at] mcgill.ca or chat, email or text a librarian. Your request will be forwarded to the right person.

Top ↑


Is a digitization service available?

A small-scale digitization of rare and special collections is available as of the week of August 3rd, 2020. For details and the request form, click here.

Top ↑


I need to access an e-book and electronic journal article. Can I still do this?

Yes, you can access online resources 24/7 off campus. McGill students have access to millions of electronic resources. The Library has almost 3.5 million books available online (including access to digital copies of McGill's print collection via the HathiTrust Emergency Service); 232,000 e-journals; 111,000 e-videos; more than 1,000 online databases; over 101,000 e-music recordings, and more. Students can access electronic items in the Library’s online catalogue. The Library’s Article/Chapter Scan Service is also available if students need materials from another institution. Lastly, some e-resource publishers have temporarily opened or expanded access to specific resources. If you know what you are looking for visit the catalogue. To learn more about accessing online resources, visit the dedicated webpage.

Top ↑


Can I still use the VPN to access the Library’s electronic resources?

Yes, but to ensure that everyone in the McGill community has a smooth experience, please continue to use EZproxy for accessing e-resources where possible.

Top ↑


I am a McGill student. Can I access print course reserves?

Physical course reserves are not accessible at this time.

Top ↑


I have an ILL book that is due to be returned. Can I keep it until the Library re-opens?

If you would like to continue using the book, please submit a renewal request for it using Colombo. If you are done using the book and would like to return it, you can place it in the outdoor return slot at the street level of the McLennan Library Building.

Top ↑


I would like to submit a request for materials from another institution via McGill interlibrary loans. Is the service available?

Yes. Materials obtained in electronic format will be emailed to you. ILL is also now able to borrow some physical materials from other libraries. Once your requested material arrives, it will be made available to you via the Terrace Pickup Service.

Top ↑


I would like to request a scanned copy of a journal article from the print collections of the McGill Library. Is this service available?

The document delivery service will be suspended until further notice. All requests submitted in the meantime will be filled once the service resumes. Please contact docdel.library [at] mcgill.ca if you have any questions.

Top ↑


Can I still suggest items for the library to purchase?

Yes, we are accepting requests for purchases from students, staff and faculty for electronic resources during this time (e-books, e-audio, e-video, etc.).

Top ↑


Am I able to return books directly at the Gelber Law Library?

Yes, there is a drop-off box available between 9 am And 4 pm at the Library’s entrance. Books can still returned 24/7 at the street level of the McLennan Library, 3459 McTavish Street.

Top ↑


Will I be able to receive books from other Library branches at the Law Library?

No. In order to reduce the shipping, handling and quarantine time and make books available in a timely fashion, only Law books can be picked up at the Gelber.

Top ↑


Will I able to request books directly at the Gelber Library?

No. Books must be requested through the Library Pickup form.

Top ↑


Am I able to return books, scores, CDs and DVDs directly at the Marvin Duchow Music Library?

Users may return materials between 11 am and 2 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Music Library’s pickup location in the Wirth Music Building Lobby. Materials can still be returned 24/7 at the street level of the McLennan Library, 3459 McTavish Street.

*Please note that the Music Library’s equipment can only be returned between 11 am and 2 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Music Library’s pickup location in the Wirth Music Building Lobby.

Top ↑


Will I be able to receive books from other Library branches at the Music Library’s pickup location in the Wirth Music Building Lobby?

No. In order to reduce the shipping, handling and quarantine time, and to make materials available in a timely fashion, this location is devoted to the materials housed in the Marvin Duchow Music Library.

Top ↑


Will I able to request materials directly at the Wirth Music Building Lobby?

No. Books, scores, CDs and DVDs must be requested ahead of time through the Library Pickup form. A/V equipment must be requested through the Music Library’s equipment reservation form.

Top ↑


Questions? Ask us!  Chat • Email • Text • Call            Send feedback    Report a problem

Back to top