Frequently Asked Questions

FAQS: Library Catalog FAQs

Yes. Most of the children's literature, from picture books and easy readers to young adult novels, are in the PZ section of the library on the Fifth Floor. Most works in English will be found in PZ1 through PZ4 or PZ7. Anthologies start with PZ5.  It is not always true, but mostly books for younger readers will start with PZ3 (such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar). Novels for young adults will most often start with PZ7 (such as the Harry Potter series). Check the PZ8 section for fairy tales. Call numbers higher than PZ8 are foreign language children's literature.

There are few children's non-fiction books in the library's collection, but they have been assigned a call number appropriate to the book's subject matter. For example, it's Perfectly Normal : Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, and Sexual Health, a book intended for young teens (HQ53 .H37 2014) is found side by side with Sexuality After Your Spinal Cord Injury (HQ54 .S4 1985).

The library purchases the annual Caldecott Medal (picture book) and Newberry Medal (story book) every year.
As a general rule, the Library does not collect textbooks for courses offered at the College. This is not because we are trying to make students' financial situations more challenging.  

During a typical academic year, there are approximately 2800 undergraduate and 450 graduate courses taught at IC. Using 3 texts as the average required for each course, this equals approximately 9750 books.  Also, textbooks tend to be frequently updated.

In recent academic years, the Library budget has allowed for the purchase approximately 5,800 new books and ebooks to support the current research needs of all departments and programs on campus.

We  do not have the funds to purchase current textbooks, while at the same time supporting student and faculty research needs.

Faculty sometimes place copies of textbooks or chapters from texts on reserve or ereserve.  If you’re not sure whether your professor has put your course’s textbook on reserve, search the Reserves site to see what is available.

Please note that, as academic libraries generally do not purchase textbooks, they are not available on interlibrary loan.   The IC Library does not fill Interlibrary Loan requests for textbooks in current use at the College.  

The Ithaca College Bookstore provides a rental service and sells textbooks.  Additional rental/purchase sites:
Amazon (also rents textbooks)
BookSpot: Textbooks
Open Access Textbooks
OpenStax College
The Saylor Foundation has opened its Media Library to the public, providing thousands of open educational resources, videos, articles, and full-length textbooks.

Go to the Library homepage and click on "Journals" in the upper left. Type "Scientific American" into the blank and click "Go."

You will see a long list of ways in which you can gain access to Scientific American content.

Go to Scientific American Archive Online. This provides coverage back to 1993 with full articles available as PDF files. When you first enter the site, you will see a search blank. If you want to browse by year, click the "Publication" link at the top left of the page,

then click "Scientific American."

You will see a browsable list of years on the right-hand side of the page.

For material prior to 1993, see our microfilm holdings at T1 .S5. These extend back to 1949.

Finally, some material from the 19th century is available through the links to Making of America Journals and American Memory.

  • Sign in to your account.
  • Select My Account.
  • Tick the box next to the item you wish to renew and click Renew Selected.
  • Refresh the screen to display the new due date.
NOTE: items Not Renewable must be returned to the library to avoid potential fines.
Truncating is taking a short cut when you search. Although you have to be exact when you search the online catalog (or a periodical database, for that matter), you do not have to be complete. As long as the beginning of the search statement matches exactly, you don't have to finish it to make a match.

The online catalog is tricky about truncation, because Author, Title, and Subject searches employ automatic right truncation. For example, if you want to locate a book titled Short History Of Mediaeval Peoples From The Dawn Of The Christian Era To The Fall Of Constantinople, instead of typing out the title in full, possibly misspelling mediaeval, you could truncate your search to short history of medi 

In the online catalog for basic keyword searching or any advanced searching, truncation is not automatic. The online catalog uses a question mark after the last letter. [Just to make things more complicated, most periodical databases require an asterisk (*) after the last letter to truncate instead of a ?.]

Often it makes sense to truncate to a root or stem of a word, so you can expand your search. For example nurs (or nurs?) will retrieve records with the words nurse, nurses, and nursing and the phrases nurse/midwife and nursing home.

You have to be a little careful where you truncate, however, or you might generate hundreds of useless records. For example, if in looking for a book about rock music, you entered the single word "rock" as a subject search statement, several hundred records will be displayed, including records for
  • books about the geology of rocks
  • books about rock climbing and rockets
  • rock music CDs
  • biographies of John D. Rockefeller, Nelson Rockefeller, and Knute Rockne
  • a report of proceedings of a conference considering the Rocky Mountain locust
  • the soundtrack from the movie Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Sign in to your library account to use this function to create lists of items for future review.

Check the box next to the titles to print, email or delete the selections.

NOTE: This function does not place items on hold for pickup.
Recall option will display for items Checked Out:
  1. Locate the item you want from the library search box.
  2. Click Sign in for full features and results.
  3. Click the Request link.
  4. Select the Pickup location from the drop-down menu.
  5. Enter the "Not Needed After" date and comments that may be helpful for library staff.
  6. Click the Request link.

Pickup/Delivery option will display for Available items:   
Click on this option to have an item retrieved from the library stacks and held for you at the Circulation or Multimedia desk as appropriate; items are held for 7 days.

NOTE: faculty may request items to be delivered by selecting the delivery location when requesting an item.

Books and score are delivered Monday - Friday during regular business hours ; multimedia materials are delivered Monday-Friday at 8:30am.
The item has recently been ordered from a vendor. You may request e-mail notification once the item has been received by filling out a Notify Me On Arrival form. Or, a copy can be requested through interlibrary loan.
The item is being reviewed by bindery staff. You may submit a Rush Cataloging Request, or request a copy through interlibrary loan.
The item was purchased and has been received; it is awaiting Acquisitions processing. To speed up processing, use a Rush Cataloging Form, available on the right side bar from the on-line catalog.

The College Archives has books,  journals, and other scholarly work produced by Ithaca College faculty, staff, and students; many are also available in the General Collection.  The College Archives also has media -- audio, video, film -- produced at Ithaca College or with Ithaca College participants (students, faculty, staff, in various roles)

  • For books, search the  Library catalog using the subject  "Ithaca College Authors" - include the quotes - or use this Search-for-Books Link
  • Media, Search the  Library catalog using the subject  "Ithaca College Productions" - include the quotes - or use this Search-for-Media  Link

LAC = the Library of American Civilization - an ultrafiche collection.  The entire collection is found in a cabinet on the fourth floor of the library near the restroom.

To view the ultrafiche with the current microform readers, use the microfilm/fiche reader located on the main floor of the library.

Many items in the Library of America (LAC) collection are now available online. GoogleBooks is the first source to check. 

The College Archives houses Serling television scripts, movie screenplays, stage play scripts, films, published works, and secondary materials. Consult the Archives site for more information.

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