Plans for Autumn 2020 at the Library

As the beginning of Autumn Quarter approaches, the Library is making plans to welcome back faculty, students, and staff and reconnect them with Library collections and spaces in new ways that incorporate University practices that protect the health and well-being of both patrons and Library staff. Due to the ongoing need to limit the number of people in our spaces, the Library’s on-site services will be offered only to faculty, students, and staff with a current UChicago ID.

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While bookstacks will remain closed and the collections will continue to be accessible through Paging & Pickup and Scan & Deliver services, the Library will be adding the following on-site services for a limited number of hours:

  • Patrons will be able to book seats in the Library for quiet, individual study or for use of a computer workstation.  Policies and procedures may differ for different Library buildings.
  • Materials that can only be consulted in the Library, such as rare books, archives, and microfilm, will become available for use through pre-booked appointments.
  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL) services will be expanded to include physical items.

These on-site services will be offered in a phased approach.  An initial pilot at the start of Autumn Quarter will allow us to assess demand and the effectiveness of our protocols. Our goal will be to expand the services (e.g. number/types of seats, hours, etc.) over time.  We also stand ready to adapt, change or halt our in-person services and access to Library spaces as the campus or state situation changes.

All of these plans are pending approval from University leadership who will analyze them from a number of perspectives, including an epidemiology analysis and an assessment of space and ventilation issues.  We will publish more detailed information about offerings as it becomes available.