Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) : COVID-19 Updates

Bush Memorial Library and Central Service Desk questions and answers for Fall 2020 reopening

Library: Ways of Getting Assistance

Q:  How can my student get support with their research questions if they are studying remotely? If they are living or taking classes on campus, can they still meet face-to-face with a librarian?

Students can get assistance a variety of ways. They can call Bush Library’s Research Assistance at the Central Service Desk at (651) 523-2373 or email the desk at Bush Library is part of a worldwide cooperative chat service that students can use. The chat link is available on the library’s homepage. Students seeking more in-depth assistance can request an appointment with one of the Research & Instruction librarians. These appointments will generally be delivered via Google Meet or WebEx. Library users seeking face-to-face support can inquire about varying availability at the Central Service Desk


Library: General Services

QHow do faculty make face-to-face consultations with librarians/technologists?

Faculty can get assistance in a variety of ways. For account or technology questions, they should contact the Central Service Desk. For questions about collection development (reserves, material purchases, course readings for Canvas), or for library instruction requests or faculty research support faculty should be directed directly to the library liaison for their respective department. Faculty can see their liaison contact information on the library’s service page for faculty. The default manner for support will be virtual. 

QWill the library be using online tutorials for the FYSEM again this year?

Yes, but in a much-shortened version from last year. It will now consist of approximately an hour of short videos and tutorials, followed by a short quiz. FYSEM Professors and students have access in their Canvas courses list and/or dashboard.


QWill the library still offer library instruction during class times? Outside of class times?

Yes, Librarians are available to deliver research instruction both in course classrooms face-to-face, via Google Meet or WebEx synchronously during class times, and asynchronously outside of classroom hours, via pre-recorded video content. 


QIf I am out sick and cannot teach a class session, would a librarian be willing to meet with my class in my absence?

The library believes that working in tandem with the classroom instructor is the most effective way to deliver the library’s information literacy curriculum. However, please consult with your library liaison for other possibilities. 


QI’m an adjunct instructor. How soon will my credentials be ready to access library resources, to work in my Canvas course shell? 

As soon as Human Resources has approved their teaching assignment, Workday will alert the registrar to add the instructor to the associated Canvas course. This could take up to 24 hours from approval. 


QWho is available to help me create my course in Canvas?  I usually go to the Central Service Desk and a CSD Agent assists me. 

Please call the Canvas helplineopens new browser tab, or make an appointment with Nicole Nelsonopens new browser tab regarding your Canvas course. Due to social distancing requirements, CSD Agents are not able to offer face-to-face one-on-one consultations.  


QHow can I access the University Archives?

Effective July 8 the University Archives are closed to the users following the elimination of the University Archivist position. For additional information, contact University Librarian, Terry Metz, at (651) 523-2160 or Watch for further updates on the archives webpage.

Library: Building Access

Q: When will Bush Library be open during the school year? 

Consult the library’s hours information on our website and/or the signs on the public entrance doors.

Library: Space Use Guidelines

Q: I have group work to do for a class. How many people can sit together in the library?  Can we use the collaboration stations?

Seating in the library has been reduced. Most tables now accommodate no more than two users simultaneously. A few tables allow three users maximum. Furniture should not be moved nor grouped together because doing so violates social distancing guidelines. Currently there is only one collaboration station available to users on the first floor, near the rear of the building.  

Library: Access to Physical Collections

Q: May I still borrow Bush Library’s materials? What is the process?

Currently: Yes, but, we may choose to substitute your request for a physical library item, with the same item in e-format, instead. You will be notified if we choose this option for you. Our goal is to avoid passing along the COVID-19 virus on any materials we loan from the library. Therefore, to reduce the number of hands that touch an item, the library has placed barriers in our book stacks and started a pulling service. Only library staff will pull physical items off our shelves. Please continue to use the “place a request” option in CLICsearch for Hamline owned content and a staff member wearing gloves will remove it from the shelves and notify you when you may come to the CSD to pick it up. Hamline users are not allowed to walk through the library stacks or handle materials at this time. Consult with a librarian about accessing materials which are considered non-circulating. The library reserves the right to adjust the due dates of items we circulate.

QWill faculty still be able to place physical items on reserve for short term loans to our students?  

 Due to the need to quarantine circulating items between each user, for up to 72 hours, the library has decided to eliminate loaning physical reserves items during fall term 2020. Instead, we recommend replacing your physical content with e-content and linking it in a Leganto reading list, or directly in Canvas. Your library liaison can help you with this process.

Q: May I still borrow technology items (Chromebook/Wi-Fi Hotspot/Webcam) for short term use from the Central Service Desk?

Yes, faculty, staff and students needing short-term equipment loans should check with the CSD for options. Please read the Checkout Technology Equipment page for information on what devices are available and complete this formopens in a new browser tab to request to borrow an item. Walk up service is also available, but to limit interaction time, the CSD would prefer users engage with the formopens in a new browser tab first, and then users will be notified once the item is ready for pick up. Short term loans last two weeks or less, and most items can be renewed once (renewals may be restricted for popular items such as hotspots and laptops). An ITS employee will walk through the options with users to determine if a longer term loan is more appropriate for their needs.

For long-term checkouts, faculty should speak with their Dean to determine if the items they need should be borrowed from the CSD, or if a new long-term lease should be started under their department’s TechSelect program. Faculty needing access to the “iPad teaching collection” for a course session should enter their request on this formopens in a new browser tab. Faculty needing a webcam should visit PiperXpress.


Q: Will the CSD still loan phone chargers, headphones, and HDMI adapters from the CSD?

Yes, but these items have to be quarantined and cleaned between users before they are loaned again, so many of them may be unavailable at any given time. The CSD highly encourages users to purchase personal copies of these items. The Hamline Bookstore has earbuds with microphones for sale for $10. 


Q: Do alumni still have physical book borrowing privileges during COVID?

At this time, we ask alumni to use their local public libraryopens in a new browser tab as their primary library. The university is discouraging any guests on our campus, to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Bush Library is able to share our print collection through Interlibrary Loan services to public librariesopens in a new browser tab. If an alum comes on campus, they will be asked to first visit the Office of Public Safety to get registered (for contact tracing), and be provided a mask.

Library: Databases

Q: Where did all the extra databases we had in spring go? 

The extra access Bush Library had in the spring was temporary, and by June 30th, 2020 most of that free extended access had expired. One exception to this, is JSTOR. This vendor continues to provide expanded access to the content they made available last spring through December 2020.

Library: Borrowing from Other Libraries

Q: May I still borrow physical library items from other CLIC libraries?

Yes, CLIC libraries are willing to loan their physical items to Hamline users via the once daily (M-F) courier delivery service between our schools. Please do not attempt to visit other schools’ libraries directly at this time to borrow items. Please calculate additional wait times to receive items sent from other lenders, as all physical items are quarantined at Hamline for 3 days when they arrive, before getting processed and placed on hold for your pickup. We do not mail physical resources directly to borrowers. Lending libraries determine the due dates of the materials they lend. These due dates could change in a COVID environment.


Q: Why is there a delay in delivery of physical items between CLIC schools or from other providers?

For your safety, and the safety of our staff, all items are quarantined for a minimum of three (3) days upon arrival before any processing is done.  When items are returned to the library, they are also quarantined for the same amount of time.  

This means that there may be a delay in getting an item.  Even if your friend/coworker/professor/student returns it and you’re standing right there with them, we cannot check it back out to you.  All items must undergo the mandatory quarantine.  This applies to books, DVDs, computers, etc. and is non-negotiable.   

Library: Health (Social Distancing, Masks, Cleaning)

Q: How can I tell if the study space I select has been cleaned recently?

The university cleaning crews wipe down high touch areas, such as tabletops, during overnight building cleanings. The university also provides each campus building a supply of spray cleaner and wipes which allows a Hamline user to self-clean a space prior to and after using it.  Look around your study area to locate the nearest “Sanitizing Station” offering the cleaning supplies to self-clean the study space you plan to use. Cleaning supplies are available to end users to wipe down keyboards and mice and digital imagers. 


Q: What do I do if I observe others around me failing to observe social distancing or who are removing their masks when near others? 

All Hamline students and employees are required to wear masksGoogle Doc indoors and social distance as part of their social contract with the universityPDF file format.  You are welcome to remind others of this policy.  


Q: Are your restrooms safe?  How often are they being cleaned?  How are restroom lines going to work if we have to be socially distanced? 

The university cleaning crews do their substantial cleaning overnight. They follow the guidance provided by the Minnesota Department of Health for Institutes of Higher Educationopens in a new browser tab. Look for signage on the doors of the restrooms which suggest the preferred occupancy of each space. Do not queue up inside the restrooms. Wait outside the space, in a socially distanced manner, for the next availability. 


Q: Has the university taken action to review the HVAC and air circulation in the building?

COVID-19 operating procedures have been developed for each campus building, including Bush Library. Details can be found on page 6 of the Hamline COVID-19 Preparedness PlanPDF file format (August 11, 2020 revision). The air changes per hour in the Bush Library building now exceeds the minimum requirements recommended by scientists.


Q: How do I know that the library is doing everything it reasonably can to ensure that my child is safe from COVID? 

In addition to the extensive actions taken by the university, listed in the Hamline COVID-19 Preparedness PlanPDF file format, the library has undertaken the following actions in response to pandemic planning:

  • Building: We are allowing more time for cleaning and fresh air circulation by reducing our operating hours. We’re providing access to more e-content and reducing the spread of the virus on our physical content, by limiting access to our collection stacks and using library staff only to pull and touch materials. We are quarantining physical items between borrowers to allow the virus to dissipate. We have arranged our seating options to comply with social distancing guidelines.
  • Services: We are continuing to offer many library services remotely, for users who wish to avoid coming to campus and visiting our building. We continue to provide 24/7 chat with a librarian support, and offer both on-campus and remote-users’ instruction, and research support appointments remotely. 
  • Employees: We rotate our on-campus employees to reduce the number of people working in our building simultaneously, and to support the university’s work from home options. All employees wear masks when interacting with library users and when in common spaces. We continue to employ student workers both on campus and remotely. 
  • User experience: The library welcomes suggestions from our users to improve their campus and remote learning experiences.   


Q: If my child cannot wear a mask for medical reasons, what are the ADA reasonable accommodations available for them if they need library resources?

Students should contact the Office of Disability Resources for options. The library offers most library services to users who learn remotely. 


Q: Will we be notified if a library staff member (student or full-time staff employee) tests positive for COVID?  What steps will the library take to keep the space open but safe? 

The Hamline COVID-19 Campus Preparedness PlanPDF file format addresses the actions that students and employees should take. 


Information Technology: Ways of Getting Assistance

QCan I get help at the physical Central Service Desk (CSD)?

The CSD is open for business the same hours as the library building. Some of the support staff works in the building and some work remotely. During the first two weeks of fall term, classroom technology support specialists will be focused on helping with classroom technology support issues between 7:30 AM-7 PM. 


QHow do I get help when the CSD is closed?

Outside of normal coverage hours for the CSD we have self-help options: The ITS Self-Help Resources Google Site is a repository of information available to you anytime. It includes Knowledge Base documentation such as how-tos, user guides, and videos and includes direct links to vendor support sites and articles.

Additional resources for finding answers to your technology questions can be found on the “New to Hamline” webpage and the ITS “Services” webpage.

Information Technology: Borrowing Technology

Q: I saw on your Checkout Technology Equipment” web page that you loan various types of technology. Do you clean items between users? I want to know that I’m safe.

All items we loan are quarantined for three (3) days minimum upon being returned to the CSD.  Afterwards, they are wiped down with appropriate cleaning products by someone wearing gloves and a mask before being made available to be checked out again.


Q: Are campus computer labs still open and available for use?

The seating in all campus computer labs has been reduced to meet social distancing guidelines. Check 25Live to see when courses might be scheduled in those spaces. Cleaning supplies are available to allow end users to clean mice, monitors, and keyboards. 


Q: How can a student borrow a Chromebook, Wi-Fi Hotspot or both for long-term use?

PiperXpress will be the distribution point for these devices, and where the devices will be returned. A student needing a device will first email the CSD at and will be directed to a form to fill out.


Q: How can a current Hamline faculty or staff member borrow a Chromebook or Wi-Fi Hotspot?

For long-term use, submit a TechSelect request order, and the device should reach them within 2 weeks from the point of approval from their budget authority. Hotspots for short-term use (2-week loan period, limited availability) will be available at the CSD.


Q: I am a faculty or staff and need a device with a built-in screen, camera and mic. Where should I go?

A Chromebook can be made available through the CSD for short-term use (2-week limit), on a first-come, first-served basis, but the individual making the request will need to assess if the limits of the operating system, available apps and screen size will be adequate. If a Chromebook does not meet their needs, a limited number of laptops are available for short-term loan. Otherwise, a TechSelect request will need to be made for long-term use. The TechSelect request will need to be approved by the end user’s budget authority before the asset will be ordered. Requests for short-term loans for faculty and staff can be made by contacting the CSD or via the Equipment Checkout FormGoogle Doc.


Q: How can students borrow a Webcam for short-term use? 

The CSD will be the distribution point for this device, and where the webcam would be returned. A student needing a device will first email the CSD at and will be directed to a form to fill out.  Please be aware that webcams are subject to the same three-day quarantine as all other items, and may not be immediately available.   


Information Technology: Accounts and Access

Q: Who needs to have Two-factor authentication (2FA) enabled to use Hamline services?

Here is the self-help page on 2-step verification.


Q: I took my Hamline equipment home and am returning. What needs to be done when I return to campus? 

Here is a self-help articleGoogle Doc


Q: Data must be backed up! How do I backup my data? Where should I backup my data?

We encourage all data to be backed up to Hamline’s Google Drive. Here is an article from Google on how to save/move your dataopens in a new browser tab to Google drive.


Information Technology: Software Applications

Q: I heard that employees who need Microsoft Office can get it on their standalone workstations so they don't have to fiddle with VDI. Is this accurate? Can we get Microsoft Office installed on staff computers?

Yes. Contact the Central Service Desk to fill out the form.

Information Technology: Health (Social Distancing, Masks, Cleaning)

Q: How does the library plan to sanitize public use computer keyboards, mice and headphones? How often? 

The university cleaning crews wipe down tabletops every night. The university also provides each campus building a supply of “wipe down buckets” containing cleaning supplies which allow Hamline users to self-clean a space and university tools, prior to and after using it.  Look around your study area to locate the nearest wipe down bucket you can use.