Audio Tour Transcript

Station 1

Welcome to the University of Chicago Regenstein and Mansueto Libraries. This self-guided audio tour will provide an overview of the spaces and services available to you in these campus libraries.

This tour begins just beyond the entry control gates on the first floor. Please step into the first floor reading room to make space for other library users to enter.

The Regenstein Library is the largest library on campus and focuses on subjects in the humanities and social sciences, as well as business, divinity, and area studies.

The 1st floor is the busiest location in Regenstein where most of the Library’s services are located. Behind you, in the entryway before the access gate, is the ID & Privileges Office. The ID & Privileges Office manages access to the campus libraries, both online and in person. The IPO issues University of Chicago ID cards and Library day passes for guests. You can also visit this office for passport or visa photos, locker rental in the library, and more.

On the other side of the entry control gates is the Circulation and Reserves desk, where you can check out materials from the Library. Bring items to staff to check out or use the Checkout UChicago app. Remember to complete self-checkout by visiting one of the three deactivation stations as you leave the building. Books that you request through Paging & Pickup and Interlibrary Loan are held for you at this desk.

Some courses have items held on reserve at the Library. These “course reserves” are listed in your Canvas course sites. While most course reserves are online, a few items may require a trip to the circulation desk. Just bring the call number listed in Canvas to the desk, and staff will check out the materials to you. Please note that course reserve items are available on short loan, usually just a few hours, so be sure to check the time each item is due before you leave the Library.

Printers, which also scan and copy, are available throughout the Library. The greatest number are located here on the first floor in front of the Circulation and Reserves Desk. You can also find staff here to help you use the machines.

There is a fee for copying, printing, and scanning, so you must first add value to your UChicago card online using a debit or credit card before you print. Add funds by visiting Once you do this, you can use the machines by just tapping your UChicago ID Card.

To print a file, visit and upload the file from your computer or device. Scanning and copying are also available on these multifunction devices. A select few in Regenstein also provide faxing.

Behind the glass walls beyond the printers is ExLibris Café, one of the Library’s meal zones, where you may eat meals or messy foods. The other Meal Zone is on the A-Level. You can bring snacks and covered drinks to other parts of the Library, with the exception of the bookstacks, Mansueto Library, and the Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center.

The ExLibris Café is a very popular student run coffee shop. It offers a variety of snacks and light meals, and course, coffee. If the ExLibris café is closed, there are also vending machines available in this same area. You may also feel free to bring your own snacks to the Library.

Across the first floor to your left is the Techbar. The Techbar is a drop-in tech support desk and equipment lending service managed by UChicago’s IT Services group. The Techbar provides free tech support, and allows you to check out laptops, iPads, cords, and connectors with your UChicago ID. Talk to the Techbar staff for information about lending times, fines, etc. The Techbar Studio, Room 160, is a space where you can attend workshops on using research tools, University licensed software, and Library resources.

Next, we’ll visit the B-Level. Use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel down two floors to the B-Level.

Station 2

The Library’s collections are distributed throughout all seven floors of Regenstein, but most are held here on the B-Level. About 1/3 of Regenstein’s collections are shelved here in movable compact shelving. Just press the button to move the neighboring shelves to access the range you need. Sensors are built into the floor of the shelving to prevent movement when in use. If a shelf does not open, please visit the Circulation and Reserves Desk on the 1st floor for assistance.

Oversized items, or folios, are located on end shelving that does not move. The B-Level can be confusing, so check the call number guides carefully to locate books. Signs are mounted throughout the floor to direct you. The B-Level also houses the Library’s Nursing and Prayer rooms, as well as several quiet study areas.

Next, we will visit the A-Level. Use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel up one floor to the A-Level.

Station 3

The A-Level houses the Library’s Collaborative Learning Space. This floor offers drop-in group study space and is one of the Library’s meal zones. White boards are mounted around the room and dry-erase markers and erasers may be purchased from the vending machines tucked in the southeast corner.

Free day lockers are also available to use on this floor. Similar to hotel safes, these offer locked storage for your belongings during your visit. There are lockers of different sizes, and some are powered so you can recharge your devices.

IT Service’s “One Button” studio, on the west side of this floor, can be reserved for Skype interviews or to record a presentation. You can schedule the space via IT Services’ website. The A-Level also houses IT Services’ Academic Technology Solutions, staff who support the University’s online course system Canvas, as well as faculty teaching with technology.

Use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel up one floor to the 1st Floor, then take the hallway heading west to Special Collections and the Mansueto Library.

Station 4

The Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center is home to the University of Chicago Library's rare books, archives, and manuscript collections. Special Collections is a wonderful place for students to engage in research using unique and original sources.

Items in Special Collections must be used in their reading rooms, and there are some special restrictions, for example, all bags must be checked. But using special collections is easy. Find Special Collections on the Library’s website to identify items in the collection and to learn how to request them.

A wonderful part of Special Collections is its gallery. The Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center mounts several exhibitions a year that highlight items from the collections, often curated by students and faculty. Many of these exhibits are also available online for those who cannot visit in person.

Next, continue west past Special Collections to the Mansueto Library.

Station 5

The Joe and Rika Mansueto Library is the newest campus library, opened in 2011. Mansueto Library is a unique building, partially due to its stunning architecture. The elliptical glass dome provides a bright and airy study space in its grand reading room and offers unique views during snow and rainfall. The 691 glass panels block out 98% of UV light, and provide a perfect environment to read or study. Because this building holds so many of archival materials, food is not allowed.

Below the reading room is a huge storage facility that holds the equivalent of 3.5 million books. Rather than using traditional bookshelves, there are racks and bins scaling nearly five stories. A crane system automatically retrieves the bin or rack containing requested research material, delivering it to staff at the circulation desk in a matter of minutes.

To check out an item from Mansueto Library, just click the “Request from Mansueto” link in the library catalog record. Items take about 5-10 minutes to retrieve, and they will be placed on hold for you to pick up at your convenience.

Return down the hallway to the main elevators or main stairs. Go up to the 2nd floor.

Station 6

On Regenstein’s upper floors, Floors 2 through 5, the Library has more study spaces, collections, and specialized services. The large open study area in front of you is one of our “reading rooms” with tables and carrels where you can study in quiet. Wireless is available throughout the Library, and the carrels have power outlets to charge your devices as you work.

The bookshelves in the reading room house our reference collections, which can only be consulted within the Library. In the 2nd and 3rd floor reading rooms, you can also find Regenstein’s film collections. Lockers are available in the reading rooms, for rent by the quarter or academic year at the ID & Privileges Office.

You’ll notice that around the floor there are a variety of glass-enclosed group study rooms. You can reserve group study rooms on Regenstein’s upper floors by visiting “Book a Room” on our website. Rooms can be reserved by groups for 30-minute blocks for up to three hours per day.

The far end of the east side of the 2nd Floor Reading Room houses recent issues of journals and magazines that may not available online. The area is also the location of the K-12 curriculum materials collection, which includes children’s books, instructional materials and resources for teachers.

Next, use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel up one floor to the 3rd Floor.

Station 7

On the third floor, which is connected to the second floor through a large center staircase, you will find another reading room. Like the 2nd floor, it also has a reference collection, and Regenstein’s film collection. Librarian offices are located along one wall near the entryway to the bookstacks. Librarians provide specialized research assistance for students, faculty, and staff in specific academic departments or majors, along with other researchers focusing on their fields of study. If you would like to meet with a librarian, make an appointment by visiting the library website.

The Map Collection is located in Room 370 in the northwest corner of the 3rd floor. The Map Collection houses the Library’s large collection of print maps and atlases. Staff are on hand to help you identify and retrieve maps, or help you use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to collect, analyze, and visualize spatial data.

Beyond the reading room on the east side of the 3rd floor is the microform collection. Microforms, which include microfilm and microfiche, require the use of special equipment to read and scan. If you need to use microforms, we recommend scheduling a time to learn how to use the readers, which are supported by staff in the Map Collection.

Now, use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel up one floor to the 4th Floor.

Station 8

Here on the 4th floor, you will find what is normally one of the quietest floors in the Regenstein. Like other floors in the building, there are librarians’ offices, lockers, study tables and carrels, and group study rooms. But there are also some unique collections. The Classics Reading Room, located in room 470 in the northwest corner of floor, contains copies of core texts for the study of the ancient world. Other specialized reference collections, focusing on religion, the Ancient Near East, and Slavic and East European Studies, are also located on this floor. Room 420, the Art Reading Room, houses special materials related to art and photography, along with the East Asian Art Collection.

After exploring the floor, use the main elevators or the main stairs to travel up one floor to the 5th Floor.

Station 9

On each of floors 2 through 5 of Regenstein Library, you will find the bookstacks wing, located on the west side of the building. This is where most of the books on each floor are shelved. There are entrances to the bookstacks on each floor. Look for the sign marked “Bookstacks” just around the corner from the main staircase. Maps are available in the reading rooms to direct you.

When you enter the bookstacks, check the detailed floor map located near the copiers to locate your call number. Once you find the section you need, navigate using the shelf signs on the ends of each row. If you cannot find a book on the shelf, ask our roving student shelvers for assistance. Or place a paging request in the Library Catalog, and staff will search for the missing book.

Next, return the 5th floor reading room if you are not already there.

Station 10

The 5th floor reading room houses staff and collections for Area Studies, collections that focus on specific geographic locations and languages. In the main reading room, you’ll find the librarians, reference collections and journals for South Asia and the Middle East. On the south side of the floor, beyond the main elevators, is the East Asia Collection. Here you will find the East Asia librarians and reference collections. Unlike other Area Studies Collections, materials in Korean, Japanese and Chinese are shelved separately from other materials. Look for books in these languages separated into two parts of the 5th floor bookstacks, one shelved by Library of Congress call numbers, and the other by Harvard Yenching classification. If you need help finding materials, please ask Library staff for assistance.

This concludes the self-guided audio tour of Regenstein and Mansueto Libraries. Thank you for visiting!