Welcome to UVA, all! I’m Maggie Nunley and I’m a Science and Engineering librarian here at UVA. I work as a liaison to Computer Science and STS classes so you’ll see me around a lot. I’ll be your narrator for this library tour.
This is going to be another out-of-the-ordinary semester. So that you know where to go for updates or any changes to Library operations, we have two resources already set up for you. For a quick at-a-glance updates, go to our Status Dashboard [library.virginia.edu/status] and for more detailed information, the Covid-19 Library Resources FAQ is at [library.virginia.edu/news/covid-19/]. BTW – I’m going to include any links I mention below the videos on each of these pages so they’re easy to access!
But first - How should you do this tour? It is up to you! I created it so that it was flexible whether we have a mask mandate (which we do!) or if we end up in quarantine again. For that flexibility, there are a few different formats available. If you find that you need accommodations that require a different format, please let me know. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org or you can schedule a zoom appointment with me at bit.ly/libmaggie
This content can be viewed before exploring the library buildings or they’re also set to work if you start them at the entrance of each library location and work your way through the buildings. So grab a friend, explore the libraries, and get to know all the many ways the Library is here to help you succeed.
Once you’ve watched all ten videos, to get credit for STS 1500 for completing the library tour, there’s a survey in the last tab on the left, titled “STS 1500 Tour Confirmation,” that you need to complete. You have from August 30th until Septmeber 12th to complete the tour.
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out!
I’m going to spoil the rest of this tour a bit. The libraries are way more than you thought when you started this tour. I could talk about the Library for a very long time. But to simplify it, when I say the UVA Library what I’m actually talking about three things that make up the Library.
First, there are the buildings around UVA. And there are a bunch of them! Ten library buildings in total. All of the libraries are public spaces. You are welcome in all of them. And they're designed to be useful and supportive study spaces that range from open, collaborative areas to reservable meeting rooms for group work to silent floors for deep focus.
A link to maps of the libraries as well as floor plans and directions are at [https://www.library.virginia.edu/map/].
Second, there’s the collection – all the stuff that we own and have access to. And that’s not just print materials and books! We have a massive, mountainous amount of everything you can imagine. And then some! And these materials are here for you - we want you to use them! They're here to support you whether that's for your coursework, to help you do research, learn new skills, and so many more things that we'll go into in later videos. If we don't have something, we can borrow it from another library or we’ll buy it. Our goal is to make sure you have everything you need.
The final piece is the Staff. And the staff are the best part in my opinion because the Library is made up of a group of people that are here at UVA to help you. And we do that in a lot of different ways. You can ask on chat for directions, how to find an article, or how to find something like a publicly available microwave. You can take a free workshop to learn iMovie or Zotero or Python or use a 3D printer. And that’s not even a comprehensive list of examples! And you can come to a librarian when you’re not entirely sure what you professor means when they say you should write a literature review, or need to find a peer-reviewed article, or if you just want to talk through your research and see how we can help. You have a lot of support in the Library and this tour will give you a sense of what those resources are and how to access them.
So to get started, if you have any questions, concerns, or would just like to clarify, you’re welcome to contact the Library staff for help and support. You can go to [library.virginia.edu/askalibrarian] to access the Library chat and the Library contact information.
Students use the libraries as places to study, do group work, hold meetings, and generally get things done. In a typical semester, it usually only takes until the second day of classes before the libraries are packed. We love that the libraries are so intensely used by our students. Now that you’re at UVA, feel free to explore and find the space for you.
There are ten libraries in total. All are open to students to use and they’re each unique in their own way – they were built at different time periods, they have different furniture and vibes. Some are open and airy, some are packed with shelving and books, some are loud while others have utterly silent spaces.
Many of the libraries are not only unique spaces but also have unique collections. Here at UVA and many other universities, we have a large collection that we can divide it up into different buildings. And we often do that to keep materials on the same subjects together.
So you’ll find a Music library that has collection of sheet music, CDs, and literature about music, there’s a Health Science Library, a Fine Arts Library, a Physics library and so on. Sometimes they’re not named – the Music Library is just the Music Library.
Some have names – Clemons Library gives no hints of its collection but is where we keep the general literature collection. Brown Library (often called Clark Library because it’s located in Clark Hall) is actually the Charles L. Brown Science and Engineering Library. You can see why we shorten it. It’s where you’ll find the engineering and STEM portions of the collection.
In addition to open study spaces, the libraries also have researvable spaces including group study rooms. You can access a list of those rooms and how to reserve them at [cal.lib.virginia.edu]. This website also lists the variety of resources within the libraries that range from printing stations, charging stations, to materials that are reserved for specific classes, to reference materials, and more. If you need to borrow a bike pump, iPhone charger or USB drive, you can check those out at Clemons and Brown Library.
But the basics are if you need something – help, software, whiteboard markers, whatever. Please feel free to ask the staff at the Library desks and they’ll be happy to see how they can help.
One of the joys of being at an R1 university is that our collection is massive. It’s a huge amount of stuff. I typically tell students that now that you’re at UVA, you have more access to information than you ever have had or maybe will have. It’s a fantastic resource. It can also be really confusing to navigate at first. So again, reach out to the librarians if you need any support. The Ask-A-Librarian chat is great for quick questions about how to find whatever you need in our collection.
As of hitting upload on this video, we have a little over 9 million items in the collection – only roughly 2/3 of that are books. The rest are manuscripts, newspapers, journals, CD and DVDs, we even have things like coins and globes in the collection. My two favorite unexpected items in our collection is a wedding dress from an alumni and a tiny book that’s so small that it’s covers are two halves of a walnut shell.
To search for anything we have in our collection, you can access the catalog, that we call Virgo, at [v4.lib.virginia.edu]. As long as it’s not in Special Collections, you’re welcome to check out any of these materials. As undergrads, you can check out most items for 30 days (DVDs are limited to one week) but you can renew items as many times as you want. You can also check out up to 500 items at one time. You may not need to check out 500 things this but it’s nice to have the option.
You also have access to all of the library’s online resources and you will for as long as you’re a student. These include over 800 databases that can be accessed at any time – breaks and summers included, from anywhere in the world. All you need is an internet connection and to go through the Library’s website to Netbadge in – that’s what we call our login page here at UVA.
To see a list of all of our online materials, there’s a Research tab on the library’s website. This is at <library.virginia.edu/research.> We list our resources several different ways – by a popular list, using Subject Guides – which are essentially research cheat sheets by subject, and with an A-Z list that features every resource with a short blurb about each one.
It’s a lot! An absolute mountain of things that offers everything from streaming movies (that database is called Swank – you can find it in the A-Z list or under the Media Studies guide) to academic articles and e-book, technical reports and engineering standards, data sets, and the list really goes on and on.
Again, reach out to a librarian. There’s so much that it can be overwhelming and we’re here to help with that.
The Charles L. Brown Science and Engineering Library is in Clark Hall and is next to Thornton Hall. It’s also the closest library to most of the dorms.
When you walk into Brown, you walk in on the Main Floor. There are two floors below you – the Intermediate and the Ground. And the layout of Brown consists of a central area and two wings - the East Wing (or what students often call Left Brown because it’s to your left) and the West Wing (or Right Brown). There are stairs behind the desk in the Reading Room and just as you enter each Wing. If you need an elevator, it’s in West Wing, or Right Brown, on your left. The text below this video will outline more details about the layout of each space.
In addition to being the home to the Library’s science and engineering materials, Brown also has a variety of different study spaces. The Main floor includes options from long tables to study pods, reservable rooms and silent spaces. Directly in front of the entrance is where you find the Circulation desk in case you ever need help from the library staff. And the Reading Room, one of the silent spaces in Brown is through the doorways to each side of the Desk. I’ve included links to more details about these spaces as well as how to reserve group study rooms to those in the notes below.
The Intermediate and Ground floors of Brown are where you’ll find spaces that are more what you might have expected from an academic library. These floors are where we house the print collections – both books and journals, and feature study carrels, armchairs tucked into the ends of the bookshelves (or what the librarians call stacks) as well as spaces for group work like the intermediate floor’s west wing.
During this semester, Brown will be starting new hours and will be open from 8am to 2am Monday to Thursday with a weekend schedule for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
For more information about Brown’s hours this semester, reservable spaces, and more go to [library.virginia.edu/hours#science]
You enter the Main Floor of Brown Library from the Mural Room of Clark Hall.
The work desk for the librarians, often referred to as the Circulation Desk, is directly in front of you so you can get help or ask for directions as soon as you walk in.
Going around the Circulation Desk you'll find the Reading Room, a silent student space as well as stairs that lead to the lower floors.
The East Wing (more commonly known as Left Brown because it's on the left) features individual study spaces including popular pod style seating and the UVAPrint station. Learn more about how to use those printing stations and how to use your CavAdvantage account to pay for printing.
The West Wing (or Right Brown) is filled with the more traditional long wooden library tables. It's still a quiet space during the day - there are faculty office above both wings of Brown Library so everyone tries to keep noise to a minimum to respect faculty work times. After 5pm, the noise level rises as everyone turns to more collaborative and group work.
There are three sets of stairs in Brown that will lead you to the lower floors. The central staircase is behind the Circulation Desk in the Reading Room. The other two are in the two Wings - they're both just as you cross under the bridge walkways into the Wings. They're on the right in Left Brown and the left in Right Brown (that's not at all confusing!).
As you explore for the first few times, I recommend using the central staircase in the Reading Room. They're easier to find and you can clearly see the other levels as you move through Brown.
Other Brown Library resources:
After being on the Main Floor of Brown, the Intermediate floors will be a bit more what you expect of an academic library. There are lots of stacks - and stacks is library jargon for areas of shelves to hold print items. The entire Intermediate floor holds print Journals.
It also the floor for the librarians offices.
The final component of the Intermediate floor is study space. Here, you'll find individual study carrels tucked along the walls through the floor. From the central staircase, if you take a left, you'll find a small study area with long tables.
To the right of the central staircase, you'll find the West Wing of the Intermediate floor has been turned entirely into a study space that includes reservable tables, whiteboard partitions, armchairs, and individual study tables.
The ground floor of Brown Library is dominated by stacks. Books on books on books down here.
But there is study space tucked against the walls. You'll find more carrel scattered throughout, armchairs tucked at the end of the rows of shelving, and table areas tucked near windows.
This is the space that many students enjoy because it's both a silent study space with a variety of cozy nooks absolutely surrounded by books.
The easiest way to find Clark Hall and then Brown Library (remember - Brown Library is part of Clark Hall) is to go from Thornton Hall.
So, if you stand on the sidewalk facing Thornton Hall, Clark Hall is on the same side of the road, just over the bridge.
To get to Brown, you'll need to go over the bridge and up the hill to the main entrance to Clark Hall. Once you enter the building, walk straight back through the lobby and Mural Hall, and into the Library.
Research Data Service is a department in the library that you probably didn’t expect. But as there’s more and more interest in the use of big data in research, there has been a new need to find datasets, create, preserve, and share datasets, and learning how to analyze and visualize data. And this is a perfect fit for the library because part of our mission is making information available and teaching our users how to leverage it!
Research Data Services is located in Brown Library and offers a range of support to everyone at UVA. They can help you navigate the collections of data resources that we have in the library, and helping you find data and data sets, work with data, and using data software.
The StatLab, located on the Main Floor in Right Brown, offers free consultation hours where you can go for help and support with statistics, data wrangling, using data analysis, data visualization, and support with a number of statistical software.
There’s even support for research software! There’s a huge list of what’s available at [data.library.virginia.edu/research-software/]. Some you might be interested right now in MatLab and SolidWorks.
It’s not part of our collection but you can also get a free Education License for most AutoDesk software as well. Feel free to email me about how to do that!
If you’d like to learn more about Research Data Services, and you should definitely check out the workshop series, their website is at <data.library.virginia.edu>
Another unique aspect of a research university is that the Library is big enough that there are a variety of departments and teams that focus on different areas of support for UVA. One that’s entirely focused on supporting researchers – and that includes undergrad and grad students as well as faculty – are what are called subject librarians.
The subject librarians serve as library representatives, or liaisons, to specific departments. There are three librarians that are liaisons for the School of Engineering. I’m the liasion for Computer Science and STS but you also have Jenny Coffman who is the liaison for ChemE, BME, and Materials Science, and Erich Purpur who is the liaison for everything else! And any class you take whether that’s History or Physics, there’s a subject librarian for that department.
So why is this important enough that I made an entire video as part of this tour? Because the three of us are your single point of contact to anything you need in the Library or aren’t sure who to ask. All of us are happy to answer question via email or you’re welcome to set up an appointment with us to talk about whatever you need to talk about! That could be stuff about using the Library, finding an article that you need, or having someone to ask when your professor says you need to do a critical analysis and you’ve never done one before.
You could need support now or next semester or not until you’re a fourth year. But know that we’re here when you need us and happy to answer questions, help you find information, and locate resources that will help you succeed.
You can find a list of all the subject librarians at [https://guides.lib.virginia.edu/subjectlibrarians]
Clemons Library, or just Clem, is often referred to as the undergraduate library. Most of Clemons is dedicated to study space so there are a lot of options in this building whether you like a quiet or loud space, need to work solo, or are doing group work and need a reservable room. The general rule with Clemons is it descends in volume as you down down each floor with the Fourth floor, the one that you enter Clemons on, being the loudest and the First Floor being an absolutely quiet space. It’s one of the those library spaces where you can get glared at if you rattle papers too loudly down there.
Clemons also houses the bulk of the media studies collection so there are a few unique items in this library including the DVD collection which includes not only documentaries and more academic titles but also seasons of tv shows and movies. We also have a fantastic collection of graphic novels and comic books in this library as well.
For more information about studying in Clemons’ and accessing their collections, go to [library.virginia.edu/hours#clemons]
In addition to the Library, Clemons also houses the George’s Student Center on the second floor which is not only a study space but home to a number of small meeting rooms with the purpose of hosting a variety of advising hours, workshops and more from office across the University. For more information visit [advising.virginia.edu]
In Clemons Library, you walk into the library at the top floor.
The majority of Clemons is dedicated to study space.
On the fourth floor, you'll find the Circulation desk if you need to ask Library staff any questions, scanners and public computers, vending machines, and a UVAPrint self serve area.
Towards the back of Clemons is the DVD collection.
The elevator and stairs for Clemons is located just to the right of the Entrance when you come into the Library.
Additional Clemons Library resources:
The third floor of Clemons is home to two of the Library's labs - the Robertson Media Center and the Scholar's Lab.
Both of these spaces include publicly available study space as well as reservable space but is also home to a Virtual Reality exploration space, Makerspace, and reservable Mac computers with specialized software.
Learn more about the Robertson Media Center
Learn more about the Scholars' Lab.
The second floor of Clemons is home to the Dathel and John Georges Student Center. This space is "home to a number of small meeting rooms and conference rooms designed for flexible use by faculty, staff, and students. The well-lit space is popular with students looking for a place to study. During normal operations (not impacted by Covid-19 health concerns) approximately 20 different programs make use of the space each week for drop-in advising hours, workshops, and similar programs. These include offices such as Student Financial Services, Pre-Health and Law Advising, the Office of Undergraduate Research, the Office of Citizen Scholar Development, the College Life Skills Coach, the Contemplative Sciences Center, and many others."
The first floor of Clemons is split between stacks (more books on books) housed in compact shelving and study space.
This floor was renovated in 2020 and is a student favorite for absolutely silent study.
The Robertson Media Center, or the RMC, is located on the third floor of Clemons and is a space that supports digital projects whether it’s image, audio, video, animation, or virtual reality. There are a lot of options!
The RMC includes a variety of study spaces, reservable macs that include software like iMovie, and the Adobe suite as well as specialty spaces like a video recording room with professional lighting, camera, teleprompter, and audio, and an audio recording room with two sound booths and mixing station. There’s also a 3D printing lab (and 3D printing is free in the Library) as well as a Virtual Reality station where you can try out equipment like HTC Vives. The RMC also has equipment including cameras, mics, lighting equipment, and speakers that you can check out and use.
There are also a variety of staff that can help you learn how to use the equipment (and the RMC desk is right in front of the entrance to the third floor if you need any help or what to check out equipment), answer questions about software, and help you figure out the scope of a project! They may teach a class for one of your courses or you can attend a free workshop that they teach through the semester. Definitely take advantage of all their expertise.
I also want to note that generally the library staff doesn’t care if something is for a class or an assignment or it’s a passion project and something that you’re interested in. We’ve helped students develop projects for a course and make a music video for their band. If it’s something you want to work on then you’ll find support at the RMC or any of the Library’s labs and departments.
How to use the various studios and checking out equipment is going to change over the course of this year. If any of these studios or tools sound like something you’d like to take advantage of check in with the RMC website at [library.virginia.edu/rmc] for more information.
The Scholars’ Lab is a digital humanities lab located on the 3rd floor of Clemons with the RMC. They support projects asking humanist questions and using technology to answer them. They’re a community lab for the practice of experimental scholarship in all fields informed by digital humanities, spatial technologies, & cultural heritage thinking.
If you have no idea what that means, I like to describe the Scholars’ Lab as a group that helps UVA folks explore new ways to do research. They offer mentoring, collaboration and a safe space for anyone curious about learning new approaches.
One of the popular services in the Scholars’ Lab is their Makerspace, This space is open to everyone at UVA and not only has equipment available like 3D printers, raspberry pi, Arduino kits, and sewing machines but also hosts a fantastic group of folks that can help you with any project that you’d like to tackle. Maple Visconti, featured here, is the official Hound Representative for the Lab.
Learn more about the Scholar’s Lab website at [scholarslab.lib.virginia.edu]
The Lab staff also really love dogs. This is Bofur Grizzle.
Special Collections is a library that you may not have come into contact with before. It’s a library that contains and preserves all of the items in our collection that are rare, fragile, or one of a kind.
Nothing can leave the building because Special Collections has things like Babylonian clay tablets, pieces of papyrus from the 7th century, Thomas Jefferson’s original drawings of UVA, a collection of almost 15,000 tiny books, two original broadsheets of the Declaration of Independence, over 800 pop-up book, so many great things!
Take advantage of the collection that we have here – it’s one of a kind and faculty are always impressed when students take the extra step to find something in Special Collections. And it’s an easy Library to use! You can search for items in Virgo (the collection video will explain what that means) and the lovely staff there will help with everything you need to know and do.
Special Collections also hosts a variety of exhibits. They have two permanent exhibits for the Flowerdew collection and a Declaration of Independence exhibit that includes letter from the Founding Father and a broadsheet for the Declaration that’s only one of 20 or so that still exist. The other exhibits change regularly and are always worth checking out.
To learn more about Special Collections and how to access these collections, go to [small.library.virginia.edu]
You walk into the Harrison Small building on the second floor. There's one floor above and you and one floor below.
This is another one of those add buildings that's a shared space. The Small Special Collections Library is on the lower floor(s). Actually, the gallery and Reading Room are below ground and there is another staff-only level below that!
It's hard to miss the Special Collections Library as you come down the spiral staircase. The Reference Desk and Reading Room are directly ahead and you can learn more about how to use the Special Collection's Library for Fall 2021 here.
But also take moment to explore the spaces before you get the the Library's doors. On the right, there's a window into one of the closed stacks spaces which features an Edison Cylinder Phonograph as well as a portion of the Library's tiny book collection at the end of the shelves.
On the left, you'll find the permanent Declaration of Independence exhibit which features a variety of items from the Library's collection including letters from founding fathers, an original broadsheet of the Declaration, as well as several anniversary and ?? copies of the Declaration.
There are also two sets of exhibit walls that regularly change. You can take a look at past exhibits here.
Remember! The confirmation for the STS 1500 tour is due at 10pm on Sunday, February 13th.
If you need an accommodation or extension, get in touch with your STS 1500 professor (either lecture or lab) for options.
We have 4-5 million books in the UVA Library collection. It's way more than we could possibly put in any single building. So we divide the collection up by subject. Sometimes you know by the name of the library - Music has music, Fine arts is all the arts and architecture, you get the idea.
Alderman, Brown, and Clemons are named so they're a bit confusing. Alderman is the Humanities and Social Science materials. Clemons has Media Studies as well as the graphic novel and comic books collection, and the young adult and children's literature collection. If you're interested in pleasure reading, there's a small browsing collection of books in Clemons library on the 4th floor just past the stairs and elevator. Brown's full name is the Charles L. Brown Science and Engineering Library so technically it tells you the subject of it's books but that's a long name to say a bunch of times.
If you're looking for something specific and you're not sure where to go, search Virgo to find out what books we have and which libraries they're located in. If you haven't used Virgo a lot yet, check out this video with some tips and tricks to finding what you need in Virgo.
Most of you are probably familiar with the Dewey Decimal system. We don't use that! Dewey can't handle massive library collections so we use a system called Library of Congress.
Library of Congress works exactly like Dewey. All the books on the same subject are going to be together on the shelves. The only real complication is that we have so. many. things. (It's a really great problem!)
All you need is the call number and then you can track the book down in the stacks. If you've never done that before, check out this video that will show you how it's done.
There might be some books in Alderman that have some overlap in Engineering and Humanities. But for most of what you're probably looking for, you'll have to go to two different libraries - Alderman for the humanities and Brown for Engineering. Again, Virgo is the only way to know.
You can check out materials for 30 days.
BUT at the end of that 30 days, you'll get an email from the library and one of the options is to renew your books. As long as you renew them every 30 days, you can keep a book for as long as you like. You just might eventually get a Recall Request. This means that someone else needs the book that you have check out and then you have to bring it back to the library. (You also have the ability to recall books so if anything you're interested in is checked out, feel free to click the "Recall Item" button!)
The exception to this rule are DVDS. Those you can only check out for 1 week and you can only renew them 1 time.
Absolutely! For SEAS classes, books will probably be in Brown but it really depends on what you're interested in. To check on where you can find books on any subject, search in our catalog, Virgo.
There are ITS printers at a variety of locations! A complete list is available here.
There are also a few ways that you can print. All your printing questions can be answered here.
If you're learning and you're the type of person that likes to learn by yourself, check out our subscription to Lynda.com and search for 3D printing. You'll need to create an account the first time but there are a variety of results for videos on everything form creating 3D models using a variety of software to setting up and printing on a MakerBot (which is the brand that we have in the Makerspaces).
For the library's 3D printing labs, once you're set up and trained, you can make an appointment to 3D print but, unless you need help, you can use the equipment yourself.
Okay! I'm teaching patent research in the STS 1500 labs on the week of October 22nd so I'll have all the updated information about where and how to get access to them then. I'll make sure to announce the details during each class then and several of the librarians will be there if you have more questions.
Sure! Here's a map to each library. It includes a layout of the entire library as well as a feature that lets you look at different areas within each building.
It changes a bit from year to year. You can usually tell when you walk into the space.
Fun Fact: The library staff doesn't decide the noise levels of the various spaces. That's entirely your peers. You're most likely to be shushed by your peers and almost never by one of the library staff. Students have been known to shush us too!
In Brown, the quiet spaces are the Reading Room behind the library desk, and in the stacks on both the Intermediate and Ground floors. Both wings of the library also tend to be quiet spaces but students do whisper quietly together sometimes. The area around the entrance is a bit louder, and the Brown Classroom (which you're welcome to use if it's not reserved) also tends to be a noisier space most of the time.
In Alderman, Memorial Hall (when you walk in) is a noisy space. Everywhere else is pretty quiet. The McGregor (Harry Potter) Room is a completely silent space. No crunchy snacks in there!
Clemons historically has descended in noise level as you go down each floor with the fourth floor (the one you walk in on) being the noisiest and the first floor being a completely silent space. But the third floor is pretty quiet these days and the second floor is newly renovated so we'll see what it becomes!
There are group study areas in a number of the libraries. They tend to be also the noisier areas of the libraries.
If you're looking for reserveable group study rooms, there's a list by library here.
Library Student Council is a student organization that plans and delivers events at UVA Library.
LibCo programs welcome students to the Library, promote library services, and contribute to community life. Students involved in LibCo will learn more about library and information science, implementing programs, and gain leadership skills.