The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Restoring Onsite Services

We’re Here to Help.

Our priority is to serve the needs of our students and faculty while protecting the health and safety of all members of our community. Library staff are available Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., via Ask UsChat, and email. Faculty resources and services are on our Remote Teaching & Learning page. Please send us your comments and questions via Ask Us.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: When will the Libraries’ facilities reopen?
A: Library buildings will be closed until further notice. Beginning August 24, the Libraries will offer contactless pickup of requested library materials to members of the UMass Amherst community at the W. E. B. Du Bois and Science & Engineering libraries. Masks are required inside library buildings at all times per campus policy. Services such as research consultations and instruction will continue to be provided remotely. 

UMass Amherst faculty, students, and staff may book in-person appointments for services where remote access is insufficient. Currently, the Seed Library in the Science & Engineering Library, and Special Collections and University Archives (SCUA) in the Du Bois Library are accepting in-person appointments. Upon entering the Libraries, patrons will be asked for identification and contact information to assist if contact tracing becomes necessary. All in-person appointments will observe CDC social distancing guidelines and PPE requirements, include disinfection of spaces after consultations, and be conducted in accordance with space capacity restrictions. Appointment access is limited to UMass students, faculty, and staff.

Q: How do I access library materials?
A: The Libraries Ask Us page has answers to frequently asked questions about how to find resources, such as, How can I get this book? How can I access the New York Times, Boston Globe and other newspapers? Where can I find what databases the Libraries have? Can I get articles from journals and other sources from the Libraries? How do I access an e-book that is available only at Amherst, Smith, and Mount Holyoke online libraries?

If we don’t own the item you are looking for, nor is it available in the Five Colleges, we can connect you to PDFs of articles, e-book options, and chapter scans at other libraries whenever possible. We can also assist in finding or purchasing e-books if available. Please note that some requests may be delayed due to the closure of other libraries.   

Q: What else can I request for contactless pickup? Do you deliver?
A: Patrons with a UMass NetID and password may request UMass Amherst Libraries’ materials via the Library Express service. Through Library Express, you can request that materials from the Du Bois and Science & Engineering libraries be mailed to you anywhere in the United States. Access is limited to our own materials at this time. Request paging of Five College materials for contactless pickup through the “request item” feature of the 5 College catalog. 

Q: Are the Libraries lending equipment, like laptops and digital cameras?
A: The Libraries are unable to lend equipment at this time. We are exploring limited lending of equipment, and will update our website when details are announced.

Q: How can I get research help
A: Get started with your research by connecting with librarians and archivists who are available to meet with UMass faculty, students, and staff for one-on-one research support via email or online. If you are not sure whom to contact, please contact us via Ask Us and we'll connect you to the right person. 

Q: How can I access other services located in the Du Bois Library building? 
A: All of our academic partners normally housed in the Du Bois Library building will be providing remote services this fall. Please check their website for hours and availability of remote services:

Q: Can I print at the Libraries?
A: Yes! Contactless printing (Black & White and Color) is available by appointment at the Science and Engineering Library, located on the second floor of the Lederle Lowrise. Appointments can be made Monday – Friday, 9 AM – 4 PM. Printing costs are currently being waived. 1. Upload a document to UPrint (don’t hit the “Print” button! 2. Make an appointment to pick up your document at SEL: When you arrive, please wear a mask and have your UCard ready, call our staff (545-1370), who will assist you with your document. Email

Q: Does the Library have study spaces available?
A: Unfortunately, not at this time. 

Q: Are there any increased digital resources during this time? 
A: Please see this guide to Electronic Resources Temporarily Available for Research. Many books in our collections are available digitally through the HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Services (ETAS) at (instructions on how to access books). When books are available through HathiTrust ETAS, we cannot share our physical copy without losing digital access to all ETAS materials for all users. For this reason, we ask that patrons use HathiTrust directly when possible. 

Q: Do I need to renew materials I have borrowed? What if I have an item that is overdue?
A: Loans of library materials have been extended through February 3, 2021. You can renew your books online via the online renewal form.  If you are unable to come to campus to return an item, please keep it until you are able to do so safely. We will waive all fines accrued during the time the Libraries were closed.  

Q: Can I return library materials when the buildings are closed?
A: Yes! Books, DVDs, and interlibrary loan materials can be returned to book drops located at the Du Bois Library, Robsham Center, or Lederle Lowrise.  You can  also mail items back to us at no cost by requesting a return mailing label. (Log in to your campus G Suite account first in order to access request form)  We recommend using a trackable method.

Other Campus Resources  

UMass Amherst Fall 2020 Reopening Plans

University Quality Standards: FlexForward to Online Teaching

UMass Information Technology

Learning Resource Center 

Stay Connected: Communication & Collaboration Tools 

Disruption Resilient Instruction  

Assistive Technologies Center

Faculty Research Grants

VitalSource eCampus


Updated: August 13, 2020