UMW Libraries FAQ

How do I search for books?

To search for books, use the library catalog. You can access the catalog using the search box on the library home page. Or, if you prefer, you can use the Keyword Search interface, which gives you more options for limiting your search.

If you’re looking for a particular book, try searching for the title, or the author’s name. If you just want to see what books the UMW libraries have on a given topic, try searching for words related to that topic. For example, if you’re looking for books about cats, try searching for the words “Cats” or “Mammals” or “Pets.”

Every book in the catalog is tagged with subject terms that tell you what the book is about. For example, the book Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln is tagged with the terms “Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865” and “Presidents — United States — Biography.” When you notice a subject term that corresponds to your topic, click on the subject term to get a list of all of the books on that topic that UMW owns.

How do I find a book on the shelf?

Each book has a unique call number and each catalog record will list the location of where the book is shelved in UMW Libraries.

A location of “Stacks” indicates items held in the main collection of Simpson Library. Call numbers beginning with letters A through L are located on the Third floor. Call numbers beginning with letters M through Z are located on the Second floor.  Oversized books are located at the north end of the Second and Third floors.  Books with a location of “Reference” or a call number beginning with REFB are located on the First floor, to the left of the Information Desk.

A location of “Stafford Campus” or “Stafford Stacks” indicates items held in the main collection of the Stafford Campus Library.

How do I find the Stacks?

The Simpson Library “Stacks” refers to the main collection of Simpson Library. Call numbers beginning with letters A through L are located on the Third floor. Call numbers beginning with letters M through T are located on the Second floor. Call numbers beginning with the letters U through Z are on the First floor. Stair cases are located straight ahead as you enter Simpson Library, and on the north end of each floor. An elevator is also located on the north end of each floor.

The Stafford Campus Library “Stacks” (items with a location of “Stafford Campus” or “Stafford Stacks” in the Catalog) are located to the right of the computer workstations.

How do I find Microfiche/ Microfilm/ Microcards?

In Simpson Library, the Microfiche are located in the reddish cabinets on the south side of the First Floor. Microfilm is held in the gray cabinets on the south side of first floor. Microcards are shelved behind the stairwell. Readers for the Microfiche, Microfilm and Microcards are also located on the first floor. Please ask for assistance using the readers at the Checkout Desk.

How do I contact the Checkout/Reserve Desk?

The Checkout/Reserve Desk at Simpson Library may be reached by calling 540-654-1125. The Circulation Desk at the Stafford Campus Library may be reached at 540-286-8025 or stafflib@umw.edu.

Hourly changes to the regular schedule during semester, holiday breaks or inclement weather will be available at each specific number. University closings will also be available on the University’s Information Hotline at 540-654-2424.

Please note that Simpson Library’s Checkout/Reserve desk will close 15 minutes prior to the closing of the building.

How do I contact the Information Desk?

Contact the Information/Reference Desk of Simpson Library (540-654-1148 or refdesk@umw.edu) or the Stafford Campus Library (540-286-8025 or stafflib@umw.edu) for research assistance. You may also contact your Subject Librarian/Faculty Liaison with research questions and/or to set up an appointment.

How do I get help with research?

Contact the Information/Reference Desk of Simpson Library (540-654-1148 or refdesk@umw.edu) or the Stafford Campus Library (540-286-8025 or stafflib@umw.edu) for research assistance. You may also contact your Subject Librarian/Faculty Liaison with research questions and/or to set up an appointment. Information on using the Libraries’ resources is also available from the How Do I…? pages.

How do I get help using UMW Libraries?

Contact the Checkout Desk of Simpson Library (540-654-1125) or the Stafford Campus Library (540-286-8025 or stafflib@umw.edu) for assistance with the following areas: