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Remote Access to Library Resources & Research Help

Information on accessing library resources, research help, and other library services remotely.

In This Guide

This guide provides information on remote library access for students, faculty, and staff.

In this Guide, you'll find information on:

Building Hours

Access to print materials

On-campus students, faculty, and staff may request print books by clicking the "Place Hold" button displayed in the library's online catalog, or by sending a list of titles to Retrieval may take up to one business day. Library users may choose to pick up materials at the library Circulation Desk, or have them delivered to their SPO (students) or office (faculty/staff).  A Hold Shelf notice will be sent by email once items are available.

To request delivery of an electronic copy of a book chapter, use the "Place Hold" button in the online catalog, and select the "Online Delivery" option from the "Pick Up Options" menu. Include the chapter or page range requested in the comment field at the bottom of the form.

If you require access to a scanned article from a print journal owned by Preus Library, please fill out a blank ILL request form as if you were requesting an interlibrary loan, or contact ILL staff can scan and deliver this material to you electronically.

We are unable to ship physical materials to off-campus locations.

Students in Quarantine:
To check out physical materials, use the "Place Hold" button in the online catalog. In the "comments" field at the bottom of the request form, list the person who will pick up the item for you. You, as the requester, will receive an email when the item is available at the Circulation Desk.


Online resources

Research databases and e-books can all be accessed from on- and off-campus. All links to library resources found on the library websitecatalog, and research guides will ask you to log in with your Norse Key if coming from off-campus. If you have problems getting to a resource, contact Ryan Gjerde,

Research Help

Meet with a Librarian

Librarians are available to provide you research help in a variety of ways:
  • Email: You can always email any librarian directly with your questions.
  • Chat: Real-time chat boxes are available on the library home page, in research guides, and in some library databases.
  • By Appointment: Schedule an appointment with a subject expert, or at a time convenient to you.
  • Drop-in: Sunday through Friday afternoons from 1-5 pm, librarians are available to answer drop-in questions. Stop at the Circulation Desk to ask for the reference librarian on duty.



Don’t forget--general research help can be found in the Research Guides created by your librarians for courses and subjects, as well as on the Library Help page, which has tutorials on using the catalog, finding books, and searching some of our most-used databases.

Interlibrary Loan

ILL requests for books and articles may be submitted via the "Request item through Interlibrary Loan" links in catalog records or by filling out a blank request form on your ILL account. Once ILLs have arrived and are ready for check-out, you will receive an email notification to pick up the item from the library Circulation Desk. Off-campus delivery is not available. 

Note: Not all libraries in the United States are offering complete interlibrary loan services during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are requesting an uncommon item that is not held by many libraries, please be aware that there may be significant delays and difficulties locating an available copy for you.

If you have any questions about interlibrary loan services during this time, please email Emily Mineart at


The Archives continues to provide reference and research assistance. Individuals are welcome to email or call (563) 387-1805 during business hours with questions or to schedule a reference appointment, virtually or on-site. 

The Reading Room is closed to drop-in visitors. Please contact the archivist to schedule an appointment for your visit. The archivist will make reasonable accommodations to provide scans of archival documents as needed, providing the originals are stable enough for reproduction. Faculty, staff, and administrators needing to access physical files in the course of their work may make an appointment to visit the Reading Room, or have select files sent to them by email or campus mail. 

If you have any questions about archival services during this time, please contact Hayley Jackson at

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