Man working on a computer with a face mask on

Hours, Collections, and Services Updates for Fall 2020

Latest Update: Monday, September 21, 2020

The libraries are here to help you succeed. As the University adjusts its posture, so do the libraries with appropriate modifications to services and facilities. Please continue to check this page for updates and additional details.

Safety First!

  • Per University guidelines, masks must be worn at all times, in all library locations, by everyone.
  • Libraries, like all buildings on campus, have reduced occupancy limits – once the limit is reached, entry is on a one-in, one-out basis.
  • Group study rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis, are not reservable, and have reduced maximum occupancies. Please note that Bradford Hanley Library will not have group study rooms available this fall.
  • Access to library spaces is limited to Pitt faculty, students, and staff with a valid Pitt ID. View our current hours.
  • If you have a special borrower card, please request materials via our no-contact pickup services. Scroll down for more information about this service.
  • If you are a visiting researcher not affiliated with Pitt, you may access Archives and Special Collections by scheduling an appointment. To request an appointment, please follow the instructions further down this page. 
  • Masks must be worn at all times, so no food or drink is permitted in the libraries. The Cup and Chaucer café at Hillman Library is closed at this time. Food from the Hanley Library Café must be consumed outside the library space.
  • We're quarantining all returned materials for four days before they’re checked in, so don't be surprised if items still appear on your account for several days after you return them. You will not be charged any overdue fines for this time. It may also take a little longer than usual to receive items that you’ve requested. If you have questions about any of your materials, just Ask Us!

Support for Faculty

Getting Materials from Our Collection 

There are now three ways you can access library materials.

  1. Drop by! All libraries have open hours, occupancy permitting, and you can check out materials as usual at the circulation desk. 
  2. Use our no-contact pickup service, available at all libraries. Just select “no-contact pickup” in PittCat when you request your materials, and someone will email you to set up a time to retrieve your items when they are ready. 
  3. Get materials by mail. If you’re not able to come to campus, we’ll mail up to 15 ULS-owned items to your home address (U.S. addresses only). 

Please note that the emergency electronic access to HathiTrust full-text books has stopped because of copyright restrictions. It is possible that something that was available electronically before, is now only available in print. Print books that were in the emergency access program continue to be available to you via direct access in libraries or no-contact pick up.

Reciprocal borrowing accounts for local/regional University affiliates, including Carnegie Mellon University and PALCI members, are not being issued at this time. Please contact your local college or university library for assistance locating library materials.

No Need to Renew Checked-Out Items

If you still have items checked out from last spring, don’t panic! You do not need to renew or return library materials at this time unless they have been recalled. All library materials (excluding Health Sciences Library System and Barco Law Library) checked out during the 2019-2020 academic year (including E-ZBorrow and Interlibrary Loans) are now due April 30, 2021Ask Us if you have any questions! See our FAQ for more information about returning your materials. 

Our New Library Website and PittCat Library Catalog are Here!

Visit https://newpittcat.pitt.edu for more information and be sure to check out this introductory video! You're welcome to join us for a workshop overview of the new PittCat and introduction to search functionality. Workshop presenters will review basic and advanced features of the system, followed by Q&A. See the upcoming workshop schedule on our event calendar.

Archives and Special Collections Reading Rooms Open by Appointment Only

The Reading Rooms at Thomas Boulevard and Hillman Library (third floor) are open by appointment only. Appointments need to be scheduled at least 48 hours in advance. For the safety of our researchers, visits will be limited to maintain social distancing. All researchers are required to wear a self-provided mask and complete a daily self-attestation form for each visit. We will provide gloves to handle the materials. 

Please contact us to schedule an appointment. A member of Archives & Special Collections will follow-up with you to discuss your research request. 

Using the New Digital Interactive Wall at Hillman Library

The new Digital Interactive Wall is hosted by Archives & Special Collections on the third floor of Hillman Library. While practicing social distancing, please use the disposable styluses provided to interact with the digital wall which is being cleaned on a regular basis. We ask that you please do NOT sanitize your hand to touch the screen since topical hand sanitizer can damage the screen's surface. Please enjoy your visit and contact us with your feedback or questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do with my checked-out materials? 

As stated above, you do not need to renew or return your materials to the library at this time, unless they have been recalled. Please be assured that no fines will be imposed on items that have had their due dates extended. However, all library materials checked out during the 2019-2020 academic year are due by APril 30, 2021. This includes E-ZBorrow and ILL materials. 

If you wish to return physical materials while Hillman Library is closed, you will find an external book drop near the ground floor entrances (Forbes Avenue side) just down the ramp and on the left before you reach the doors. Hillman Library’s book drop is open and available for book drop-offs anytime.

Hillman Library's Bookdrop, located outside of the entrance doors, is highlighted with a red circle. Close-up of someone using Hillman Library's bookdrop

If, however, you would like to return your materials by mail, you can do so to the following addresses:

ALL Oakland Campus libraries:
Hillman Library
Donald S. Wood Service Desk
3960 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
Note: Hillman Library’s bookdrop is open and available for book drop-offs anytime (located at the Ground Floor entrance, Forbes Ave side)

Bradford Campus:
Hanley Library
300 Campus Drive
Bradford, PA 16701
Note: Bradford’s Hanley library has a book drop outside that can also be used for returning books

Greensburg Campus:
Millstein Library
150 Finoli Drive
Greensburg, PA 15601

Johnstown Campus:
Owen Library
450 Schoolhouse Road
Johnstown, PA 15904

Titusville Campus:
Haskell Memorial Library
504 East Main Street
Titusville, PA 16354

How do I search the catalog for full text online books and journal articles?

Enter your query into PittCat search as usual. Then, filter your results by clicking “Available Online” in the “Customize Your Search” sidebar. You will find hundreds of thousands of e-books and e-journal articles, freely available for Pitt affiliates.

For more information about online resources, see our PittCat guide.

How can the print materials currently on reserve for my class get transferred to electronic reserves?

Please complete the E-reserves Request form.

How do I access materials from Archives & Special Collections?

Please contact Archives & Special Collections directly via the Ask an Archivist form.

Can students and staff access lockers and carrels in the library?

Lockers are not available for general use at this time. If you need to access items previously stored in a locker or carrel, please Ask Us. Ph.D. carrels at Hillman Library are accessible to assigned students and graduate students only, following social distancing protocols.

How can I get remote help with my research? 

We have subject specialist librarians for over 70 areas. Click here to find yours. We also provide Digital Scholarship Services and Electronic Theses & Dissertation Support. If you’re a faculty member at one of our regional campus libraries, please contact your library for assistance.

​​​Remote Access to Library Resources

Support for Online Teaching

If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact the ULS Director, Kornelia Tancheva at tancheva@pitt.edu.

What can I expect when I visit Hillman Library?

  • One set of doors to the Ground Floor entrance to Hillman Library is identified for entry, the other for exit.
  • Upon entering the Ground Floor doors, you will come to a security point where you will swipe your Pitt ID and have your temperature taken by a thermal scanner.
  • Masks must be worn at all times throughout the building, even in study rooms.
  • There is no food or drink allowed in the library at this time and the Cup & Chaucer Café is closed.
  • Printers are available on the Ground Floor, as well as at the first floor Computer Lab which is open all hours the library is open.
  • Books may be checked out from the Donald S. Wood Service Desk on the Ground Floor of the library, but any reference questions should be directed through Ask Us.