Visitor and Alumni Services

Books on a shelf

How to Borrow

What you can borrow and how depends on your role.

How to Borrow
Group How to Borrow
Alumni Use your alumni card to borrow
Retired faculty or staff Use your Western ONECard to borrow
General public, organizations Apply for guest borrowing privileges
Faculty, students, staff from a university in Canada or the United States Apply for reciprocal borrowing privileges
Hospital staff Contact staff at your hospital library for borrowing options
College and high school students No options for borrowing at this time

Anyone is welcome to browse our collections and conduct on-campus research.

You may also wish to visit your local public library and investigate their interlibrary loans service.

Research and Borrowing Privileges

You can use most facilities and services, and borrow regular loan items for 28 days at any Western Libraries location, the Affiliated University Colleges Libraries, and St. Peter’s Seminary. You’re also allowed unlimited renewals.

On-Campus Access

While on campus, you may:

Off-Campus Access

If you’re an alumnus, you have remote access to some electronic resources. You can access our Shared Library Catalogue offsite. Please visit our Alumni page on off-campus research to learn more about what you can access from home.

Due to licensing agreements, we’re not able to support remote access to most electronic databases and resources.

Tips for Finding Free E-Resources

  • Use WorldCat, to search a global catalogue of library collections
  • Check our Wikipedia's list of Free online resources and Open-access journals
  • Search Google for "free [subject] databases" or "free [subject] journals"; [subject] is your area of research (e.g. English or Biology)
  • Search Google Scholar for free online articles
  • Search Google Books and look for the "Find in a library" link in the left sidebar to find copies in WorldCat

Renewals and Returns

You may renew items online through My Library Account or in person at any Service Desk.

Items can be returned to any of our library locations or Affiliated University College Libraries in person or by mail.

Recalled Loans

On rare occasions, an item may be recalled by staff for Course Readings or other unique circumstances. You will receive an email notification and must return the item within 7 days of the date of recall. Recall fines accrue at $4 per day.

Fines and Suspensions

Your borrowing privileges may be suspended if your loans are overdue, lost, or if you have over $20 in fines. Visitors and Alumni can pay fines online via credit card.