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HC Libraries 101

Created by our Peer Research Consultants!

Course Reserve

Course Materials in the Library

There are several different ways that you can use the Library to access your textbooks. Here are a few different places you can get started.

Textbooks in the Library's Collection:

A variety of textbooks are available in the Library's collection. You can access them for free, just like other books in the stacks. Librarians or Reference Assistants can help you find books in the catalog. Please be aware that the libraries do not have many large traditional textbooks. Books of this nature in our possession will likely already be on reserve. 

Course Reserves:

Did you hear your professor say they have a book or a DVD on "reserve" at the library? Here's what you need to know:

  • Print Reserves (books, articles) can be checked out from the Circulation Desk of the library where the material is located (Dinand, Science, etc).
  • If you know the title of what you're looking for, make sure to mention it when asking the Circulation Desk. If not, give your professor's last name and we'll help you find what you need.
  • Reserve materials may be used in only in the Libraries. To borrow Reserve materials, you will need your Holy Cross ID. The loan period is 2 hours; if you keep the item out past its due time, you will get fined (25 cents for the first hour and 50 cents for every hour after that).
  • Please try to return the reserve materials on time, so that other students in your class can use them as well. Keep in mind that you can always renew the reserve material and get another 2 hours added onto your time.

InterLibrary Loan (ILL):

In the same way that you can access books and articles outside of the College's collection through ILL, you can also request textbooks from other colleges' collections. Fill out the ILL request form like you would for any other materials, and you will be able to pick up your textbooks in a few days. If you need more information, the ILL page of this guide may be helpful to you. Remember to be mindful of the due dates of the books you receive. 

Ask a Librarian for Assistance!

If any of the above options don't work for you, you are always welcome to contact a Holy Cross Librarian to discuss how to access your course materials. You can email with questions, or submit a question using our form.

The Office of Multicultural Education

If you are in need of assistance with covering the cost of textbooks and are interested in renting them from an on-campus organization, OME runs a lending library that may fit your needs. There are around 1500 donated books available for student use. To rent from the lending library, you should contact the office. You can email them at:, or you can call 508-793-2669