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COVID -19 | Library closure & service disruptions FAQ

Please check this space often as information is subject to change.

Last updated April 1, 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


Can I visit a McGill Library branch between March 17 - May 1, 2020?

No, all library branches and study/work spaces, including print stations, on both campuses are closed during this period. All workshops, tours and events scheduled to be held in library spaces during this time period are cancelled. Users can access e-resources 24/7 and virtual reference services during service hours (Monday to Friday, 10AM–6PM).

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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 March 16-27 chat, email or text a librarian from Monday to Friday, 10AM–6PM. From March 28-May 1, connect with a librarian Monday to Friday, 10AM-6PM; Saturday & Sunday, noon-5PM.

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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.

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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. In early April, all loans will automatically be extended until June 15, 2020. Until then, you may see your original due date in your account. Please disregard overdue notices during this period.

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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.

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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 offered a one-time retrieval pickup for research print materials from all downtown libraries to members of the McGill community and the deadline for requests was noon on Thursday, March 19. Unfortunately, print materials from Macdonald Campus Library were not included in this retrieval. The Library is accepting requests for purchases from students, staff and faculty for electronic resources during this time (e-books, e-audio, e-video, etc.).

 

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Why can’t I place a hold on an item in the Library Catalogue?

During the physical shutdown of campus, our ability to provide access to print materials is limited. Please see above for instructions to request urgently-needed print materials for research.

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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?

Physical items in McGill special collections that can only be consulted on site are not available at this time. Some digitized materials may be available. 

Although our physical collection is inaccessible, we are 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 from Monday to Friday, 10AM–6PM. Your request will be forwarded to the right person.

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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. If you know what you are looking for visit the catalogue. To learn more about accessing online resources, visit the dedicated webpage.

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I am trying to use VPN to access the Library’s electronic resources but it’s not working. Why?

Due to a projected increase in the usage of the McGill VPN during the campus closure, the VPN is temporarily unavailable as a method to access McGill Library’s electronic resources. Please access e-resources via the Library catalogue or through the Databases A-Z which contain links using EZproxy. Please see our help page on setting up McGill links in Google Scholar.

The following resources function with VPN only and will continue to function:

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

Physical course reserves are not accessible at this time.

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I have an ILL book that is due to be returned before May 1. Can I keep it until the Library re-opens?

Yes. ILL will alert other libraries that McGill users will be unable to return materials during this period of closure.

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

The ILL service will be maintained for article/chapter requests submitted via Colombo at https://www.mcgill.ca/library/services/otherloans/interlibrary. However, requests to borrow physical items cannot be processed until May 1. Please contact colombo.library [at] mcgill.ca if you have any questions.

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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 May 1. 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.

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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.).

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