Ask a Question

Have a question about anything Penn Libraries, from the policies of a specific library building to help finding a book or article? Get in touch!


Register and request via Books-by-Mail to have Penn materials shipped to your off-campus home address. The library pays for the outbound shipment. You’ll be responsible for return shipping, or you can return materials to the Van Pelt Library ground floor outside book drop (to the right of the main entrance).

Borrow Equipment

Borrow more than just books! Check out equipment you may need for papers, projects, or research – or that you just want to try out – ranging from audio recording devices, to binoculars, to VR cameras.

Borrow Textbooks

Looking to save on textbook costs? Many required texts are in the Libraries’ collections and you can borrow books for the entire semester.


Search multiple library collections simultaneously – including Brown, Chicago, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, MIT, Princeton, Stanford, Yale, and the Center for Research Libraries – and request materials. Requests typically arrive in three to five days. Pick them up in one of our library locations or have them delivered to you through Books by Mail.

Course Reserves

As an instructor, you can set aside books, films, or sound recordings for class use through our Course Reserves service, and make articles or book excerpts available electronically on Canvas. Reserve lists typically include required and recommended course readings. Taking a class? Find out how to locate and use print and electronic materials that your instructor has put on reserve.


Search the catalogues of over 60 academic libraries in Pennsylvania and nearby states and directly request books. Resources will be delivered to any Penn Library for pickup in 3 – 5 days, and loans last 12 weeks (no renewals).


Standing, tenure-track faculty at Penn are eligible for this delivery service, which offers physical options for circulating Penn Library books and web delivery of articles, papers, and book excerpts from the Penn collections.

Interlibrary Loan

Not finding what you need in the Penn Libraries’ collections? See if it’s available through another library instead! Interlibrary Loan books, videos and CDs are checked out on your Penn Libraries account with a loan period of 12 weeks (no renewals).