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Libraries Welcome Kit: Education Grad Students: Borrowing

Welcome to CU, new grad students! This guide is to orient you to some of the University Libraries' useful resources and services.

Interlibrary Loan

During COVID and any time, our Interlibrary Loan service is a great option to track down hard to find items. With social distancing still in effect, this free service can help locate PDFs of scholarly articles, or 1-3 chapters of print books that will be sent to you as PDFs.

During regular operations you can check out print books, maps, DVDs, and other physical materials from other libraries around the world.

Libraries in Colorado & Wyoming: Prospector

Prospector: is a group of regional libraries, which gives you access to 32 million books, journals, DVDs, CDs, videos and other materials. With a single search you can find and borrow materials. Most items check-out for 3 weeks with one renewal allowed; most a/v media items check-out for 1 week with no renewal.

Do you have a library card for one of the Prospector participating public libraries? If so, you may request most CU materials through Prospector and have them delivered to a branch near you.

List of Prospector Libraries

Reciprocal Borrowing

University Libraries participates in several reciprocal borrowing programs with other libraries. This means you may borrow materials from their collections as well! Locate a library near you. 

Requirements to obtain an account vary based on the program. Please check the program's website for the most up to date information on participating libraries and registration requirements.

    Association of Research Libraries/OCLC - member institutions
    Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries
    Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA) [Open to faculty, staff and students]




Mail Delivery

When you've located books that you'd like to use, there are a few ways to retrieve the material. You may visit the library space in Boulder, or you might request that the item is mailed to you.


Requesting Library Materials Mailed to You

Keep in mind:

  • All eligible faculty, staff and students can request books and other materials owned by CU Boulder Libraries be mailed to your requested U.S.. address.
  • A return mailing label will be included. Return postage is NOT included.
  • Materials borrowed from other institutions through ILLiad and Prospector are not included in this service at this time.
  • Materials with short-term checkout periods (such as DVDs, CDs, reserves) are not eligible to be shipped due to time constraints.
  • Shipments will be made via U.S.. Media Mail. 
  • We are unable to mail to foreign addresses.

Request it and mail

A few simple steps:

  1. Select request it from the library catalog.
  2. Choose Mail Off Campus
  3. Enter your identikey username and password
  4. Enter your address details