International Students Library Resources Page

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Please click on the heading to learn about the UC libraries  
Welcome to the University of Cincinnati Libraries!  
Hundreds of international students come to the University of Cincinnati every year. Some of you may have used American libraries before, while others will find out that libraries in the United States are very different from the libraries in your countries. This page is your guide to the University of Cincinnati Libraries. It will help you understand how the libraries work and what services and resources you can find here.  
Library Research in American Universities  

In American higher education, independent research, including library research, is very important. Your professors will often expect you to find books and articles on your topic rather than tell you what you need to read. You will eventually have to present the results of your research, often in the form of a research paper. Writing Research Essays in North American Institutions by William B. Badke will help you understand the research paper requirements. Part of this helpful site talks about plagiarism, using another writer’s words or ideas as your own. Read more about plagiarism policies at UC and avoiding plagiarism.

Our collection includes a book that may be very helpful to you, Beyond the Answer Sheet : Academic Success for International Students by William B. Badke (link to the catalog record).

Your Frequently Asked Questions about Libraries -( this is the txt anchor note url)  

My library account (do I need one? Does my UC ID work here?)

I forgot my library ID. Can I still check out books?

I forgot my library PIN. How can I get it?

Where are the textbooks for my class

How many books can I check out?    

Can I keep the book for a whole quarter?

Where are the reserves?

How do I get a book from another library at UC?

I requested a book from the same library (for example, from Engineering Library to Engineering library) - why didn't I get it?  

How can I get materials we don't have at UC?  

How do I access library electronic resources (databases, e-books, etc.) from off-campus?  

What is CAS?

Finding Print and Electronic Information- (this is the art anchor)


You can't find a separate article in the library catalog. Refer to How Do I Find Articles for tips on finding articles if you have a citation or if you are researching a topic.


Use the Library Catalog to find the books in UC Libraries' collections. The link to the Catalog appears under Quicklinks on most library Web pages. You can search for books by author, title, keyword or subject. The catalog also includes records for maps, videos, music scores, slides and other material types. Consult Tips for Using the Catalog for more information, including finding books not available at UC.

Please note that University Libraries collections generally do not include textbooks. You may try to search the OhioLINK catalog and request the textbook form another institution, if it is available. However, there is no guarantee that you will be able to keep it for a whole quarter, as item are subject to recall after 3 weeks. More information on textbooks in the library.

Your professors may put some important course material on reserve. In addition, many excellent books are available electronically. See tips below on finding electronic resources in the library catalog.

Electronic Resources

A lot of material (articles, encyclopedias and dictionaries, statistics, etc.) is available electronically. Electronic databases can be found through the library catalog or off the UC Libraries' Web pages. To find electronic resources in the library catalog, on any search screen from the drop-down menu next to " Limit all searches to: (optional)" select "Online Books, Databases, and Journals." This limit will be applied to all subsequent searches. To change your limit or go back to the entire collection, make a selection from the drop-down menu or click the “Start Over” button.

UC libraries subscribe to many e-book collections in a variety of disciplines. Not all of those books have individual records in the library catalog. You may go directly into the electronic book collections and search or browse their content.

Journals, Newspapers, and Magazines

The Library Catalog provides Journal Search Tips, which include tips on finding electronic and print versions of periodicals - journals, magazines, and newspapers.

Current periodicals are stored in a designated area in each library. Periodicals for previous years are arranged by call number and stored together with books. Some periodicals are available on microforms. Library staff will help you find the microforms and use them.


Your professor may put some material on reserve for a class. To find this material select the Reserves link in the Library Catalog top navigation bar. The URL is This screen provides links to search of both traditional (print) reserves by instructor's name or course and electronic reserves.

To locate print reserve materials, note the location in the library record (Langsam Reserves, Engineering Reserves, etc.) You need to come to the appropriate library and ask a librarian at the circulation desk to get the reserve item for you. It will help if you give the librarian the title and call number of the reserve material you need.

Note: If you are accessing UC electronic resources from off-campus using an Internet Service Provider other than UC, you need to use the UC VPN client or login to through the library proxy server.

Locating Information

After you find a book or any other item in the UC Library Catalog, you need to locate it in the library. Tips on locating library materials.

If you cannot find the item on the shelf, a librarian at the circulation/service desk will be happy to assist you.

Policies and procedures for using the library

Locating Material

In most UC Libraries you are expected to locate the books yourself. Consult tips on locating material.

Checking out Material

You may borrow all  material that has the Available status in the catalog (some items such as reference books, newspapers and magazines are not available for loan). You must check out the material you wish to borrow at the Circulation desk.

How to Check out

For checking out library material you need your University of Cincinnati I.D. card (see Bearcat Campus Card).
If you forgot your library I.D., you may use any valid picture I.D., such as a driver's license.

Undergraduate students may check out up to 50 books, graduate students and faculty up to 100 books.

When you check out a book, the library staff member will put a stamp in your book to remind you when it needs to be returned. You can also manage your account online (see tips on managing your library record).

Loan Periods

Loan periods vary depending on material and patron type. Please note that all materials can be recalled if they are wanted by other patrons. If you get a recall notice (a request to return the book wanted by another patron), please note that fines will be applied from the day it needs to be returned.

Learn more about the University Libraries' circulation policies and procedures.

At Langsam Library you may borrow videos, DVDs, computer files, and selected equipment at the STRC/Multimedia Services desk.


The security gates are installed to make sure that all materials taken out of the library have been checked out. Sometimes the alarm may ring accidentally. If this happens to you, please let the librarian on duty talk to you to find out what may have caused the alarm to go out.
Please do not leave your personal belongings unattended at any time. You can reserve a locker at Langsam Library to keep your books and other possessions. Please inquire about this free service at Langsam Circulation.


Conversation in study areas disturbs library users. Please cooperate with librarians if you have been asked to be quiet.

If you are working on a group project, you may reserve a group study room available in some libraries. In Langsam Library group study rooms are located on Level 5 in the book stacks area. To use a room, check the sign-up sheet on the door, and, if the room is available, just sign your name. In Langsam please refer all questions and problems pertaining to study rooms to the InfoCommons desk (556-1867) located on Level 4. UCit@Langsam, a 24-hour computer lab on Level 5 of Langsam Library, has a quiet study space and four group study roomse, two with SMART Boards. Group Study rooms can be reserved in advance for up to 3-hour sessions.

Some libraries also have study carrels and video viewing rooms. For detail please ask at the Service or Circulation Desk of the appropriate library.

Eating, Drinking, and Smoking

Eating and using tobacco in any form are prohibited in all University Libraries. Drinks are permitted, but they must be in closed containers.