COVID-19 Updates on Library Services & Operations

Please visit this page regularly for updates on changes to library hours, services, and operations.

Last updated June 24 2020

Library Spaces

All library locations were closed effective March 18, 2020. We understand this will have a significant impact on many in our community and we will continue to monitor the situation in coordination with the university. Library staff continue to support faculty, students and staff with online learning, teaching and research, accessibility requests, and offers expert help and services that library users can access online as outlined below.

Access to Collections

Online resources (e-journals, e-books, databases, etc.) continue to be available to support the university's academic and research mission. Consult the library’s website, subject guides and off-campus access instructions for more information.

If you require access to specific items in our collections for your research and learning, please contact the library using our Ask Us service or reach out to a subject librarian or archivist directly. We can help to locate and provide access to online versions of many of our print materials, help to identify alternative resources where online versions are not available, and answer questions about the curbside pick-up service. We also continue to purchase and license information resources to meet your needs.

Curbside access to print collections

Note: curbside pickup will be closed from Wednesday, July 1st to Friday, July 3rd due to university-wide holidays

The library is pleased to open our curbside pickup service to all current Queen’s students, faculty, and staff using the Request feature in our Omni search tool. Materials will be retrieved on a first-come, first-serve basis, and users will be notified by email when their item(s) are available for pickup at Stauffer Library. Please see our instructions on how to complete these requests. 

We appreciate your patience with our more limited initial curbside pickup service, which allowed us to fill the most urgent research-related needs for print materials as we established and tested our safety protocols, which are aligned with provincial and federal legislation and local public health directives currently limiting access to Queen’s campus.

Important note: Items available electronically through HathiTrust's Emergency Temporary Access Service are not eligible for the library's curbide pickup service, as per the agreement terms with HathiTrust.


The library is a member of HathiTrust (HT) and has activated the HT Emergency Temporary Access Service (ETAS) for current faculty, students and staff at Queens University.  This service is offered due to the unexpected/involuntary, temporary disruption to normal operations. ETAS provides electronic “read” access via Hathi Trust (HT) to over 860,000 in-copyright items from our print collections through 2003, in addition to the 4.4 million worldwide public domain items already accessible in HT.  This represents 36.4% of our print collection that is now accessible through ETAS.

ETAS access is through the HathiTrust website and authentication is using a Queen’s netid and password (by clicking on the yellow log in button).  For each copy of an item in our collection, one simultaneous checkout is allowed for 60 minutes, with automatic renewals if the user remains active on the site and no other Queen's users are waiting for the item.  Access to the HT ETAS will cease once we resume normal access to Queen's library collections.

Important note:  As per the terms of agreement with HT, items available online through ETAS are not eligible for the library’s curbside pick-up service.

ETAS:  Information for Users

Temporary access to select resources

Several vendors are offering temporary free access to electronic resources, and the library has enabled a number of these offers for Queen’s University. 

Returning print materials

While our book return bins remain open, there is no need to return books to the library at this time. Due dates for any items currently checked out have been extended to September 8, and late fines will not be charged for these materials.

Renewing checked out print materials

The library has extended upcoming due dates to Tuesday, September 8, 2020. You can view materials you have checked out along with their due dates on the MyAccounts page in Omni. If you have any questions, please contact us using our Ask Us service.

Recalls and holds on print materials

Recalls/Holds services are suspended at this time.

Interlibrary Loans

The library continues to provide Interlibrary Loan services for electronic materials only. Borrowing and lending of physical materials is suspended at this time as many of our partner library locations are closed or operating at reduced capacity. Where possible, we will endeavour to obtain the materials through alternative methods, including ebook purchasing. Due dates for materials currently out on interlibrary loan will not be enforced, and late fines will not be charged.

Library Reserves & Copyright

All library eReserves remain available via OnQ. However, library print reserves are not available as our facilities are closed. Faculty members, please email to discuss any changes to your print reserves and options for accessing materials online. Students are encouraged to check with their professors with questions about revised course readings.

Our subject specialists are available remotely to help faculty members find alternative course content, including openly licensed teaching materials such as Open Educational Resources (OERs).

The Copyright Advisory Office has created a Copyright & Remote Instruction guide for instructors who are digitizing course materials. Online consultations are available with Mark Swartz, Copyright Manager at

Remote Instruction Support

The Library has collated resources to help faculty transition to remote instruction. The Library Resources for Remote Instruction guide assembles key tools and services at a glance, including quick tips for ordering online materials, making materials accessible, locating multimedia and freely available teaching resources, getting subject-specific help, and meeting copyright standards.

Research Support 

Subject specialists remain available to provide online research support for undergraduate students, graduate students, post-docs, faculty, staff and clinicians.

Archives & Special Collections

Physical items in the University Archives and W. D. Jordan Rare Books & Special Collections that can only be consulted on site are not available at this time. Some digitized materials are available.  Please see the Archives and W. D. Jordan Rare Books & Special Collections websites to research our holdings online.

Staff are working remotely but can provide some virtual reference services and answer questions about supports for classes and research. Please contact us via email at or At this time, we will be unable to receive archival, rare books, or special collections donations or university records transfers. Please email for more information.

Open Scholarship Services

Open Scholarship Services (OSS) librarians and staff continue to support research data management, open access publishing, copyright and access to statistical, government and GIS information in your teaching and research.

You can email an OSS specialist to schedule a remote consultation, attend an online OSS Information Series session, access the online Researcher Training Program.


The library’s Ask Us service is available to help remotely with library-related questions.

More Information

Please consult this website for up-to-date information on library operations and visit the university's Coronavirus COVID-19 Information website to find up-to-date information from Queen's University.