This page details what to expect when you visit Cook Library in person.
This website details the plans for returning to Albert S. Cook Library’s physical space, including:
- What visitors can expect when they come to the library and what visitors must do in order to keep themselves and others safe
- What resources, services, and spaces will be available when Cook Library is open
Our current services and access are meant to protect the health and safety of library visitors and staff. We might have to make changes quickly as circumstances change. Thank you for your understanding.
What to Expect
Before You Leave, Make Sure to
- Check That We’re Open. The 2nd and 3rd floors are open for reduced hours. The 4th and 5th floors are closed. The 24/7 Space will be open 24/7 with very limited occupancy.
- Check the Occupancy. You can see how much space is available on the Library Website when the library is open.
- Bring Your TU OneCard. The library is only open to TU students, faculty, and staff. Your OneCard is required to enter the building.
- Bring Your Mask if You are Not Fully Vaccinated. For those who are not fully vaccinated, wearing a mask/face covering is required in all TU facilities. Please see TU’s Masking Protocols for additional details.
- Leave Your Food at Home. While sipping drinks is permitted, food cannot be consumed in public spaces in the building.
Entering the Library
- Swipe Your OneCard. You will need to swipe in to the building using the swipe card reader on the right-most lobby doors in order to enter. Please do not hold the door for others. Each individual needs to swipe.
- Be Counted. In order to keep everyone safe, we have limits on how many people can be in the building at a time. When the library is open or when you enter the 24/7 Study Space, you will walk through a sensor that will count you.
- Look for the Capacity Stops. If you see a sign in the lobby that says we are at capacity, please exit the building and return later.
- Verify Your Status. You may be asked to verify that you are cleared to be on campus upon entering the library. If you are, visit towson.edu/clearance, log in with your NetID, and show your status.
- Grab a Wipe at the Sanitizing Station. You’ll find sanitizing stations throughout the Library and you’re going to want to wipe down your space and any shared technology that you’re going to touch before you use it.
Using the Library
- Follow Directional Signs. In areas where space is tight, like the stairwells, arrows on the floor will tell you what direction you can go. The stairs in the back of the building can be used to go up and the stairs in the front of the building can be used to go both up and down in the building.
- Sit or Wait Only in Designated Space. Look for a tiger sticker telling you can sit in that space. Please do not move stickers to make spaces closer together. Also look for Xs on the floor telling you where you can wait to use restrooms, scanners, printers, etc.
- Keep Furniture Where You Find It. Our staff worked really hard to make sure that all designated spaces are a safe 6 feet apart. We’d like to keep it that way.
- Computers, Printers, and Scanners are Available for Individual Use. Group study is not available and spaces are not reservable.
- Stay Out of the Shelves. For safety reasons, we can’t permit visitors to browse in the Stacks (shelves on the 2nd, 4th, and 5th floors with books and other items you can check out), Leisure Reading, Leisure Viewing, or the Microfilms Collection. If you need a print reference book, you can use it but please place it in one of the carts on the floor so that the item can be safely quarantined.
- Get Help at the Kiosk. If you have a question, stop by the kiosk on the main floor and say hi
- Keep 6 Feet Apart. As you are moving throughout the building, be mindful of how close you are to others.
Leaving the Library
- Take Your OneCard with You. If you are leaving the library to go to Starbucks, you will need your OneCard to get back in so please make sure you take it with you.
- Clean Your Workstation. Grab a wipe at the sanitizing station and wipe down your space before you leave.
- Be Counted. When the library is open or when you enter the 24/7 Study Space, you will walk through a sensor that will count you.
The Library building will be open to TU students, faculty, and staff only for limited hours with reduced capacity, spaces, and services.
There are some exceptions:
- The 4th and 5th floors are closed.
- The Stacks (shelves on the 2nd, 4th, and 5th floors with books and other items you can check out), Leisure Reading, Leisure Viewing, and the Microfilms Collection are closed for browsing
The 24/7 Space is open with limited capacity. During hours when the library is open, visitors will need to enter and exit the space through the library-side entrance.
Group study spaces are single occupancy only and are no longer reservable.
The Library building is not available to non-TU affiliates at this time.
The restrooms are open with limited occupancy. There are Xs on the ground to mark waiting areas. Hand dryers have been disabled.
Interfaith Meditation Room
The Interfaith Meditation Room (404C) is open and can be accessed using the back elevator or stairs.
Computers, Scanners, and Printers
Both PCs and Macs are available in limited numbers throughout the building.
Scanners and Printers are also available.
Please be sure to wipe any library technology you touch with a university-provided wipe before and after you use it.
Contactless pickup of TU books and books from other University System of Maryland libraries is now available!
How do I request a book?
- Find an available Cook Library book or other item on the Library website
- Click on the "Request Item" link
- Follow the prompts through the “Confirm Request” button to complete your request
- We will pull the item from our shelves and check it out to you
- We will send you an email letting you know when your item is ready for pickup
- Pick up your item in the Library lobby during open hours
- Items will be available for pickup for 10 days before being reshelved.
You can check the status of your book requests and loans by signing in to your account on the library website.
Borrowed materials can be returned to the book drops in front of the building and in front of the Media Center.
Fragile materials can be returned to the bin marked for fragile materials at the Circulation Desk during the library’s open hours.
Many materials can be renewed online and due dates of TU items have been extended until May 1, 2021. Fines and fees are being waived at this time for physical materials that cannot be renewed or returned. Please contact Circulation Supervisor Kevin Fry if you have questions about your account.
Cook Library will not offer physical course reserves of any kind for the spring 2021 semester.
E-reserves will be available for the spring 2021 semester. We are working on processing e-reserves requests, but please know that fulfillment may be delayed due to limited staff availability.
Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery
Requests for electronic articles, chapters, and books not owned by Cook Library may be submitted using the ILL form.
Faculty, staff, and students (grad and undergrad) may submit document delivery requests using the ILL form for articles or books chapters owned by Cook Library. ILL staff will scan the article or chapter from our print collections and deliver to the requester electronically, via their ILL account.
Special Collections & University Archives
SCUA staff are available via chat and for virtual consultation during limited hours. Visit the SCUA website for additional details.
The following offices located within the library are conducting virtual appointments:
- Tutoring & Learning Center (TLC)
- Faculty Academic Center of Excellence at Towson (FACET)
- Student Launch Pad
- Office of Technology Services (OTS)
- The Writing Center
Help kiosks are located on the main floor of the library. These kiosks will allow you to video chat with a library staff member during Ask a Librarian (Chat) hours. To ask a question, just stop by a kiosk and say hi.
Text, Chat, Phone, and Email Help
You can also contact your liaison librarian via email if you have a more in-depth question.
All library instruction will take place virtually at this time. Please contact your liaison librarian for assistance.
Can't make it to Cook? No problem! We also have many resources and services available online.
Have Questions? Contact Ask a Librarian