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Getting Started: Welcome to the Library, A-Schoolers!

This guide is intended to introduce you to some of the services and resources offered by the LIbrary, as well as to offer some tips for taming the world of information and keeping on top of all the information out there.

What You Should Know About The Library

Some Things to Know About the Library


You Can desk Icon 17159Do Your Work Here

We have spaces to hide from studio chaos, and group study rooms (reservable online) with multiple display screens to help you share ideas.  Explore all our libraries to find the perfect spot!  Hours for each library are posted on the website. We even have a 24 hour library (Clemons) for cram sessions.



maker Icon 18157We’ve Got Stuff for Makers

When you’re in full-on Studio mode, we’re still here for you.  We’ve got subscriptions to Make magazine and Fine Woodworking to help you make your plans a reality. The MADCAD database gives you online, searchable access to major building codes.  You can borrow equipment to take photographs, record podcasts, or experience Virtual Reality. And, if you need a little extra instruction on Illustrator or CAD, you can get some lessons through Linkedin Learning.



knowledge Icon 4480628We’re About Information, Not (Just) Books.

Sure, books and journals are a big part of what we do.  But information is so much more.  We have millions of digital images, huge data sets, streaming video, and a green screen.  We help people use 3-D scanners, aerial cameras, motion capture suits, composition software, content management systems, and maps.  And we’ll help you navigate research from inspiration through publication and design, whether you’re writing an article or building a house.



monitor unlock Icon 340761Our Internet is Bigger Than Yours

The library facilitates access to resources that are unavailable to the general public online because of copyright and licensing.  This includes articles, books, music, film, data, and tons more.  Using the Library’s resources while doing your research is essential to getting the best, most scholarly stuff out there, without having to purchase it yourself.  Pay to read that article you found while Googling? I don’t think so.



retrieve Icon 4326920If We Don’t Have It, We’ll Get It

We have over 5,000,000 books, but sometimes that’s not enough.  If you can’t find what you need in VIRGO (our catalog), don’t worry.  We have an Inter-Library Loan program that allows us to borrow an item from any library, worldwide, that will lend it to us.  All you have to do is place a request and our minions will have the item sent here as quickly as possible.
Or… If you think we really should own that book… place a Purchase Request.  We’ll buy it for the library, and you get first dibs!



bookshelf Icon 2380315Print Is Not Dead

While more and more publications have gone digital, approximately 50% of journal articles about Architecture are still only published in print.  Our databases (like the Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals) help you find articles on your topic whether they’re available as PDFs or not.  We have tons of journals on our shelves that aren’t available online yet, and they may have the best images, plans, and information for your work!



people Icon 50100Our Best Resource?  People.

The library isn’t just full of books, it’s full of expertise. Need to know how to keep your research organized? Want to learn how to work with GIS? Need to figure out copyright issues for that article you need to publish?  Want to make a movie?  We’ve got people that can help, and they’re all happy to work with you. Start with your Architecture Librarian, Rebecca (



quote Icon 149935We'll Help Keep You Honest

We offer support for citing your sources and understanding copyright. We've got tutorials on how to use software like Zotero to wrangle your footnotes and organize your sources. And, we offer a citation guide that has tips and tricks just for you.




ask Icon 2821242Just Ask.

No matter what, just ask.  No one comes to UVa familiar with all the resources we offer, and even if they did, things change quickly.  We are always happy to work with you whether you’re struggling with a research tool, unable to find what you need, or just wondering if there’s a better way to do your work.  Get in touch! 

help Icon 1135552
Research Librarian for Architecture:  Rebecca Coleman (
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