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NYU Libraries Online Tutorials

Popular research & library tasks in short tutorials, with links to more help.

Physical Books and Ebooks

NYU Libraries collection includes more than 4 million physical books and several million ebooks. Here's what you'll find on this page:

  • Getting Physical Books

    • Finding a Book: Quick overview of the process, from searching in the catalog to checking out the book.
    • Navigating the Stacks to Pull a Book from the Shelf:  A more focused look at how to use a call number, navigate the book stacks (floors where the books are shelved), and locate your book on the shelf.
    • Requesting a Book for Pickup: An alternative to going to the shelves is to have library staff pull the book for you. Within 2-3 business days, you'll be notified that it's ready for pickup

Finding a Book

The quickest way to get a physical book in your hands is to pull it from the shelf yourself. (If you have difficulty fully accessing the book shelves, we're happy to assist you.) This video quickly covers the 5-step process: looking up you book in the catalog, getting the call number, identifying the floor the book is shelved on, pulling the book from the shelf, and taking it the Circulation Desk for checkout.

This video has captions. For a transcript  go to the NYU Stream viewer: The 5 Steps to Finding a Book

Navigating the Stacks to Pull a Book from the Shelf

This video provides a bit more detail about how call numbers are arranged so you can successfully navigate the stacks to locate your book.

To view this video with a transcript, go to Stream viewer: Bobst Library: Locating a Book in the Stacks.

Requesting a Book for Pickup

Rather than getting the book from the shelf yourself, you can opt to request a pickup. We'll pull the book from the shelf and email you when it's ready to be picked up -- usually within 2-3 business days.

This video has captions. For a transcript go to the NYU Stream viewer: Requesting a Book for Pickup.