For more specialized and in-depth research projects, you don't want to limit your research to what Grinnell's library owns. Here are three ways to look for books beyond our collection:
- search WorldCat (more info)
- search the Center for Research Libraries (more info)
- search other libraries in Iowa
Searching the Center for Research Libraries
Grinnell College is a member of the Center for Research Libraries, a consortium of North American universities, colleges, and independent research libraries. The Center for Research Libraries is an especially good place to look for primary source materials, newspapers, and magazines. The Center responds quickly to interlibrary loan requests with most requests arriving within a week; you may often be able to get more materials and keep them longer than regular ILL.
To find materials that the CRL owns, you can search their catalog, browse their topic guides to find uncataloged materials, or ask a librarian for help determining what they might have that is relevant to your topic. Once you've found something you want, you can request it using ILL.
Searching other libraries in Iowa
For some projects, you may want to browse widely through a set of books, newspapers, or magazines. It is worthwhile to check the holdings of other nearby Iowa libraries to see if something you need is readily available there. Some libraries to try are:
- Drake Community Library (Grinnell)
- the University of Iowa Libraries (Iowa City)
- the Iowa State University Libraries (Ames)
- the University of Northern Iowa Libraries (Cedar Falls)
Checking out books from the State Universities
While most books borrowed from the University of Iowa, Iowa State, and UNI are obtained via Interlibrary Loan, it is also possible -- under certain circumstances -- to travel to those libraries and check out books yourself.
Before you go, however, be sure to check their Library Catalog (refer to links above) to make sure the materials you need are there, and be certain to read the circulation policies of that Library to make sure you are eligible to check books out.
- University of Iowa - Library Cards - Circulation Policies
- Iowa State University (pdf) - Circulation Policies
- University of Northern Iowa (pdf) - Circulation Policies