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A Library Cheat Sheet for Students and Faculty

1. Library Website

Use the Library homepage as your launch pad—from here, you may:

  • search our collection of print and electronic resources
  • find tutorials explaining how to use the library and our services
  • explore Subject Guides that lead you to some of the best material in your subject area, saving you time and effort
  • get information on Library hours, policies, and partners

2. Loan Periods for Normal Circulating Materials

  • Undergraduates/staff/alumni: 4 weeks (alumni have access to the AU collection only)
  • Graduates: 6 weeks 
  • Faculty: 6 weeks to 4 months

Read More about loan periods.

3. Remember Your AU ID

A valid AU ID is required to enter the building during overnight hours. You will also need your AU ID to borrow materials.

4. Food and Drink

  • Permitted in most sections of the Library
  • Drinks must have lids
  • Only non-messy, snack foods are allowed

For more details, read the full policy.

5. Student Jobs at the Library

Over 200 students have part-time jobs at the Library. We offer work-study and non-work-study jobs, check our current postings.

6. Library and Research Commons Services

The Library is an academic and research destination that provides access to information and research tools, along with expert and personalized guidance through the entire research process. Read more about the services we offer.

7. Technology Rentals

In our role as a center for innovation on campus, we provide networks and technology to support research, collaboration, and socializing.

8. Print Resources

In addition to the AU Library collection, you may request books from our Washington Research Library Consortium partners—directly through our catalog. Hard-to-find materials may also be requested through our Inter-Library Loan unit

9. E-Resources

In addition to our print collection, the Library offers access to a host of electronic resources, including eBooks; databases; online periodicals; digital collections supporting primary source research; and the AU Digital Repository, a repository for scholarly works, teaching tools, and other literature produced by the AU community.

10. Reference Assistance

For quick research help, you may visit our Research Assistance Desk on the 1st Floor of Bender Library, call (202) 885-3238, or find us on Google Hangouts (

For more in-depth or discipline-specific assistance, our Library Subject Specialists are available for specialized research help. You may also submit a Research Consultation Request through the Library website.

Want to learn more? Check out our Find More Answers Knowledgebase.

We are very proud of our culture of service at the AU Library—and our users have come to expect and appreciate our hands-on, attentive, and personalized services.

If you have any unanswered questions, we invite you to contact us at 202-885-3232 or stop by any of our service desks.