Does the library have my textbook?

The Brookens Library staff is so excited to begin the semester and help UIS students be as successful as possible this year! While starting classes is exciting, a new semester can also bring up a lot of questions and confusion, especially when it comes to getting the textbooks you need. Today, we’re going to answer the most commonly asked textbook questions that come through the library.

How do I get textbooks from the library?

Unfortunately, the library doesn’t purchase textbooks because they can go out of date very quickly. Despite this, it can still be worth checking the library catalog to see if a copy is available. If the book you need isn’t in the Brookens Library collection, you can also check I-Share.

NOTE: The Library’s Interlibrary Loan (myILL) service will not request textbooks for students.

What is I-Share?

I-Share allows you to check out books from more than 70 different libraries in Illinois. If, after conducting your initial catalog search, you see that Brookens doesn’t have the book you need, you can broaden your search to all I-Share libraries on the results screen. From there, if your book is available, all you need to do is find the correct edition and request it.

Arrow pointing to All I-Share Libraries on the catalog search page

How do I request a book?

If your book is available through I-Share, you just need to click “Request through I-Share” and select UIS as your pickup location. If your book is available at Brookens, you select “Request from UIS.” When your item is ready, you’ll receive an email with instructions on picking up your book. Here’s an online tutorial that can take you through this step-by-step.

Arrow pointing to Request from I-Share on the item record page

How long can I check out a book?

For undergraduate students, most books from Brookens and I-Share can be checked out for 4 weeks, with 3 renewals. This adds up to a maximum of 16 weeks, which means you’ll be able to check out your books for the entirety of the semester.

Graduate/doctoral students, faculty, and staff can usually check out books from Brookens up to 16 weeks with the option to renew for longer. For more info about loan periods and renewals, check our borrowing guide.

What do I do if I can’t find the book I need?

If you can’t find your books for class at the library, you can order them from the UIS Bookstore – which is located on the lower level of PAC.

If you have any questions, contact us at the library main desk or via the library chat box on the library website.

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