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Loyola University Chicago Libraries

New SOE Graduate Student Orientation

Welcome newly admitted Graduate Students to the School of Education!


This fall, we are hoping to have as normal an experience as possible, but some things may be a little different than expected.  Let me assure you that the Loyola University Chicago Libraries’ priority is to serve our students, faculty, and staff while also protecting the health and safety of the community. We continue to provide services and are doing everything that we can to support learning, teaching, and research. While access to buildings and physical spaces may be somewhat limited, our librarians and staff are always ready to help.  I am available via email and by appointment over Zoom throughout the summer and each semester.  Click the "Email Me" or "Schedule Appointment" button to the left to contact me.

Five Things You Need to Know About the Library

The University Libraries are comprised of five libraries and two archives spread across three Chicagoland campuses, plus the Rome Center.  Since Fall of 2020, the Information Commons on the Lake Shore Campus and Lewis Library on the Water Tower Campus have been open for individual study and some limited on-site services.  Quiet study spaces will continue to be available through the summer and fall but must be reserved in advance.  Currently, physical books must be requested and scheduled in advance, and picked up at a designated contactless-pick up location. This may change over the summer, but we aren’t quite sure yet.

Library Spaces - The Information Commons at the Lake Shore Campus and the Lewis Library at the Water Tower Campus are open to allow students to study and attend their courses remotely.

  • Group study rooms have been converted into individual study rooms.
  • Socially distanced individual study spaces including study tables, study carrels, and desktop computer workstations are also available.
  • These rooms are reservable by students to allow for study and participation in online courses at a safe distance from others.  Rooms can be reserved at
  • Contactless pickup for physical books and DVDs is available.  Request the book first in the catalog, then wait for the email to schedule the pickup time.  Click here for instructions -

Some of you may not be in Chicago or on campus and may be concerned about how you will accomplish your research.  Most of our library resources and services are available online.  

Access to books and DVDs — Search our online catalog of one million physical books, including the Popular Reading and Curriculum collections, and DVDs between the Lake Shore and Water Tower campuses.

  • Find scholarly works for research projects and class assignments.  Most education books are at Lewis Library.
  • Read something for fun in our Popular Reading collections at both campuses.
  • Lewis Library at the Water Tower Campus is home to the Curriculum Collection, a collection of textbooks, curriculum guides, lesson planning materials, and children’s literature from Early Childhood to 12th Grade. The Curriculum Collection mainly supports our students in the teacher preparation programs but is open to everyone.
  • Our DVD collection contains both popular films and instructional films.

Access to electronic resources — Loyola Libraries subscribe to over 400 databases for online journal subscriptions for peer-reviewed articles. Our online catalog provides access to thousands of academic ebooks, and streaming video services.

  • Find electronic Course Reserve material that faculty have requested be available for you.  Course Reserves can include journal articles and book chapters that are required reading for your classes.
  • Most electronic books have unlimited use, but some are restricted by the publishers to one or three users.  It will say in the catalog if there is a limit.
  • Keep in mind that we are not always able to get an electronic version of a book, even if it’s available electronically through Amazon or a public library.  The publisher has to offer an institutional license.
  • Loyola Libraries subscribe to almost a dozen streaming video services, including Kanopy.

InterLibrary Loan — Any journal article not available through one of our 400 databases can be requested free of charge from other libraries. You can also request book chapters. 

  • Journal articles and book chapters are sent as a PDF, typically within 48-business hours, but some may take more time right now as some libraries still have limited staff. 
  • We are not currently requesting print books, but we think we might resume this service in the Fall.

Get Help with all of the above! — Ask your personal librarian! I am available for reference and research assistance throughout your academic journey.

  • Send questions by email.
  • Meet with me one-on-one via Zoom web conferencing software.
  • Schedule a meeting with your group projects, or research group.
  • Request a class visit. As an active partner in the teaching and learning process, I teach library research skills to classes and small groups.
  • Assistance is also available 24/7 by clicking on the “Ask a Librarian” link on our website.

Searching for Articles in Education Databases

When you’re looking for articles for an assignment, there’s a whole different process.  The catalog search is ineffective and not comprehensive for keyword or topical searching, particularly for education research.  Instead, I will direct you to the Research Guide for Education (Education Main Research Guide), and a list of education databases you can use for your research.  Below the catalog search box is a box called Research Guides.  There’s a research guide for every discipline at Loyola.  First choose Education, to get to the research guides related to Education.  There are seven guides listed.  The first two will be of interest to students in the Curriculum & Instruction program.  Those two are particularly related to the Curriculum Collection at Lewis Library, that I previously mentioned is a large collection of children’s books and classroom materials to support teaching at PreK-12 levels, and similar resources online.  The third one, the Education Main Research Guide, is of interest to everyone, regardless of program.

So, back to the top of the Education Research Guide.  There’s a tab here that says “Databases (Article Search)”.   Again, Loyola subscribes to over 400 databases and in the center column of this page you can see the over 20 databases related to Education, including the DSM-V online, ERIC, and several psychology databases.  Most of these have full-text, but any article not immediately available online can be requested through InterLibrary Loan. 

Back at the top, there is also a tab for Library Tutorials.  This first one “Library Website Basics” is an orientation video similar to what I’m sharing with you today.  The “Searching for Articles” video will take you through the steps of choosing my Top Five education databases and searching those efficiently. There is also a tutorial on searching the library catalog.