When people hear the word "library" they think -- buildings and books. Sure, we have a lot of books (over 8 million of them) but we have lots more for your research and interests on our website from online journals, magazines and newspapers to steaming documentaries and more. Below is a sample. Contact us if you don't see something you are expecting, needing, or hoping to see. Remember Gold Book also has lots of additional campus resources. Try to Gopher Library Adventure, a choose your own adventure ebook to find out more.
Check the Libraries for your textbooks and readings
In partnership with the University of Minnesota Bookstores, the University Libraries provides you with a list of free U of M required books. All books are free for U of MN - Twin Cities’ students to read online. Books in PDF format are available for download in their entirety.
Check the list to see if the library already has books for your course online, for free. We update it about a month before each semester.
Finding a place to study
The UMN Libraries have a variety of places to study in all of our libraries. Whether you like to study alone or with friends, in a quiet place or in a coffee shop -- the UMN Libraries have a place for you. When you go into a new library, spend a few minutes and walk around to see the options. Ask us if you need a specific kind of space.
- Reserve a study room in one of the UMN Libraries (60+ rooms)
- Study Space Finder - includes libraries and other campus buildings
- Get tips for finding space for zoom classes or meetings
Library Research Guides and Course Pages
Databases help you find relevant articles and sources more quickly than just searching a big tool like Google.
The Libraries Search box at lib.umn.edu searches across many different databases. That means sometimes it brings back TOO many results. One way to save time and focus your results is to search one specific database. To find databases relevant to your topic try looking for a Library research guide or subject guide.
- Subject guides list the best databases for a particular area of study like Astrophysics, Psychology, or Theater.
- Course guides list resources specific to your course like WRIT 1301 or JOUR 3004.
- Topic guides list resources selected to provide information on a specific timely topic like Covid-19 or segregation in housing.
Effective U (Online Tutorials)
As a student, you've probably realized you need new skills for dealing with the many tasks filling up your semester: studying, classes, work, finances, family, friends. Explore these free online tutorials to learn new ways to manage your time, manage stress, take better notes, and prepare for tests.
Think Like a Researcher mini-course
Think like a Researcher is a mini-course designed to help undergraduate students become comfortable with the research skills and tools needed to participate. It is designed to bring students, especially first year and second year students, from different colleges together to learn. Workshop topics are benefits and challenges of research, finding faculty mentors, videos with advice from student researchers, examples of student projects and more. Learn about the wide variety of ways to get started with research including volunteer, taking a course, Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP), Undergraduate Research Scholarship (URS), summer research and more. Learn more about the Office for Undergraduate Research and the University Libraries.
Quotes from student participants:
- "It's quite helpful for learning about the basics of how research works."
- "It was definitely worthwhile. Dense package of useful info."
- "It provided an easy manner for me to feel like I have one foot in the door already."
"Very clear guide to take a first step for research"
To find out more and register go to z.umn.edu/thinklikearesearcher.
Get help from the U Libraries - Online!
Librarians, experts and archivists - ready to help!
The UMN Libraries has a librarian for every department on campus. Librarians do a bunch of different things -- more than just read books! Librarians buy our online and print collections, meet with students and faculty on their research topics and teach classes and workshops. Librarians help students at our service points and on chat 24/7 with research questions, use our equipment like video cameras and 3D printers, and use special software like making maps and data visualizations.
Archivists and curators help students and faculty with our unique and historic collections. They organize and grow these collections along with digitizing materials and objects. They also make exhibits and help researchers from around the country find what they need.
Even more ways to get help!
Getting full text
When using Library resources, the FindIt link is your connection to accessing the full text of articles if a PDF link is not already visible.
This short video will show you how to get to the articles you need for your research paper or other University of Minnesota assignments. Never pay for articles! If we don't have it online, request it and we will get it for you.
Off-campus access to library resources
Current University students, staff and faculty should be able to get full text and online access to the University Libraries from anywhere. Here are three ways to access the library full text from off campus.
- Search the University of Minnesota library website. Log in with your UMN Internet ID and password to access resources.
- Log in using the U of M Virtual Private Network (VPN). You will need to download it VPN software to your computer from campus OIT (Office of Information Technology).
- Install the Libraries' Proxy Bookmarklet to your browser and click it to reload the page with your U of M login to get access to full text. Watch a proxy bookmarklet video (3 min) to learn more.
View examples and learn more on our How to get to full text from on and off campus Guide.
Academic Success Centers (peer tutoring and more)
These services are designed to:
- Boost your confidence as a student
- Help you stay on top of your coursework
- Offer a deeper understanding of the content
- Connect you to peers who know tips and tricks for various courses
- Teach you effective study strategies and time management
Makerspaces: 3D printing, design, and more!
Libraries Makerspaces are open to UMN folks from all majors, programs, and skill levels. Equipment and materials are always free for UMN students, staff, and faculty.
You'll find 3D printers, smart cutters for vinyl stickers and other materials, soldering irons, sewing machines, VR headsets, rotary tools, and software for 3D modelling and embroidery design. Plus, basic supplies for prototyping and crafting.
Find other campus makerspaces, technology, tools, and more by visiting the Makerspaces web page.
Printing, scanning and computers
Printing & photocopying
All University Libraries offer multifunctional devices that accommodate printing, photocopying and scanning in both black & white and color.
- Black-and-white prints and copies are $0.10 per exposure ($0.20 double-sided)
- Color prints and copies are $0.50 per exposure ($1.00 double-sided)
Printing from a library computer
- Add value to your U card at a Cash-to-Gopher GOLD station or online.
- File>Print your document and enter a job name and ID to identify your job
- Go to the print/copy/scan station or UniPrint release station -- staff can assist you in locating them
- Swipe your U card through the card reader at the print/copy/scan station or on the keyboard at the Uniprint release station
- Select your print job from the list that appears on the screen. (The cost to release the job will also appear.) Click Print to accept, and then Log Out.
Printing from the cloud
Navigate to z.umn.edu/mobileprint, upload a file, and release your print job to any University Library print/copy/scan station.
Printing from your mobile device
Printing from your laptop
Wireless printing is available for Mac and Windows platforms. To set up your laptop for wireless printing, download and install one of the printer drivers listed below.
- Download a black and white driver for Mac OS
- Download a color driver for Mac OS
- Download a black and white printer driver for Windows
- Download a color printer driver for Windows
Find out more at lib.umn.edu/services/computers.
Libraries Coffee Shops (in Walter and Wilson)
Fuel up while you study at one of the coffee shops housed in both Walter and Wilson.
- Academic Blend Cafe in Wilson Library (basement level)
- Wise Owl Cafe in Walter Library (basement level)
More information at https://dineoncampus.com/UMN.
Student English Language Support (SELS)
The Minnesota English Language Program offers free, face-to-face English as a Second Language help to international undergraduate students at the University of Minnesota. Our consultants are available for 45-minute appointments.
They provide one-on-one English language support for improving:
- speaking skills for giving presentations, participating in class discussions, communicating with instructors and classmates
- grammar in speaking and writing
- listening comprehension of class lectures and discussions
- reading comprehension of academic texts
- vocabulary development
- any other English as a Second Language need!
Newspapers & magazines you can read online now
Never get stopped by a message asking you to "buy" and article (sometimes that is called a pay wall)! The University Libraries has millions of online journals, magazine and newspapers -- both subscriptions to "browse" or read a current issue and tools to help you search.
Use the links below to reach current articles. Remember this is just a sample of what you have access to -- try the search box on our homepage lib.umn.edu to find more.
Streaming music and video you can access now
You can stream and watch documentaries and many arts focused films including Opera and Theater performances. We have a bunch of online streaming music collections -- primarily these are for the music majors but we all get to take advantage of them.
Keep in mind that any of these sources evens songs can also be used as part of a future research paper or project!