Accessing Library Resources: FAQs

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View of Information Desk inside Leddy Library
Leddy Library contains millions of resources to support your learning and/or work here at the university, but you might not be sure how to access them. We’re here to help. Below are some common questions about how to get your hands on the many resources we offer.  
How do I get a library card, so I can borrow items?

Your UWinCARD is your library card and you can use it to borrow materials from Leddy Library and other university libraries. It also grants you access to Leddy Library’s online resources. 

Contact the UWin CARD office to receive or replace your card.

How do I get access to my course readings?

Your professor may embed a direct link to your reading list within the course website.

If not, you can start at the Quick Links section on the Leddy Library homepage and click on Course Resources. Then choose Students: Browse Reading Lists -- this will allow you to search for your readings by course.

Where do I go to pick up print books or DVDs that are on course reserve?

All print (hard copy) course reserve items and DVDs are kept at the Information Desk on the main floor of Leddy Library. Come to the Information Desk and provide a staff member with the call number of the item that you need. The staff member will then retrieve the item for you.

[A call number is a code applied to each hard copy item in the library, and looks something like this:  HV120.P36 1992. It can be found in the OMNI library catalogue entry for the item.]

Do I need to pay for journal articles I want to use?

No, you don’t need to pay for journal articles. If you come across a journal article that is not directly available at Leddy Library, you can submit an interlibrary loan request and we will try to get the article for you from another library.

Can someone help me retrieve the books I want to use?

In most cases you can get help physically locating books in the library from library staff at the Information Desk.

If accessibility is an issue, please contact Art Rhyno, Accessibility Services librarian ( or 519-253-3000 ext. 3163). The library’s Accessibility Services webpage outlines accessibility services and resources at the library.

How do I find my book in the library? What is a “call number”?

It's easy to get a bit turned around in the book stacks, or to have your eyes glaze over as you stare at a shelf of titles and numbers. Check out Finding Items in Leddy for guidance on physically locating what you need.

A call number is a code applied to each hard copy item in the library, and looks something like this:  HV120.P36 1992. It can be found in the OMNI library catalogue entry for the item, and on the spine of each book. Check out Finding Items in Leddy for guidance on how to use and read call numbers.

Where do I find a book that’s listed as being in “Special Collections” or “Rare Books”?

These unique or rare items are kept in the secure storage areas of Archives & Special Collections. You will not be able to borrow them from the library, but are welcome to make an appointment to consult them in the Archives & Special Collections Reading Room, located in suite G-100 (Main Building basement).

Make an appointment and learn what to expect by visiting the Archives & Special Collections webpages.

Does the library have really old books, photos or documents?

Leddy Library has many such items, and you are welcome to consult them in your research or just come by for a tour, in Archives & Special Collections.

Some of these materials have been digitized and are available to view online through the Southwestern Ontario Digital Archive (SWODA).

Others are featured in digital exhibits hosted by the Centre for Digital Scholarship (CDigS) - choose the drop-down menu "exhibits."

Can the library help me do specialized data analysis?

It sure can. The Academic Data Centre, located on the ground floor of Main Building, offers a wide array of services to support the use of data science tools and methodologies in research and teaching.

Can someone edit my work or help me with my writing?

The Student Success & Leadership Centre offers a Writing Support Desk, which is located on the main floor of Leddy Library’s Main Building. They offer a variety of helpful in-person and remote services.

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