Your safety, and that of our staff, is our top priority, and we have implemented health and safety protocols set by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the University of Minnesota.

We need your cooperation to help keep our community safe, so wear your mask per University policy and the Governor of Minnesota's Executive Order, stay at least six feet away from others, and wash your hands frequently. Patrons will be asked to comply with guidance and direction provided by staff. Do not visit our buildings if you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19.

Until further notice, only current U of M students, faculty, and staff with a U Card may access our open spaces.

Open libraries

Our four largest libraries are open to current U of M students, faculty, and staff:

  • Wilson Library (West Bank)
  • Walter Library (East Bank)
  • Health Science Library (East Bank)
  • and Magrath Library (St. Paul)

Libraries access by appointment only

  • Elmer L. Andersen Library: UMN affiliates can contact the curator for the collection you are interested in from Andersen Library’s Archives and Special Collections.
  • The Borchert Map Library: email to request an appointment
  • Wangensteen Historical Library. UMN affiliates can email to request an appointment
  • Andersen Horticulatural Library (off campus). Open to members of the public with a registered Arboretum visit time.

Closed libraries

  • Architecture and Landscape Architecture (Rapson Hall)
  • Journalism Library (Murphy Hall)
  • Mathematics Library (Vincent Hall)
  • Music Library (Ferguson Hall)
  • Natural Resources Library (Hodson Hall)
  • Veterinary Medical Library

More about using our libraries

Frequently asked questions

How late are the spaces open?

Check hours for Wilson Library, Walter Library, Health Science Library, and Magrath Library. Hours will be evaluated on a continuous basis in adherence with safety guidelines through fall semester and beyond.

What health and safety measures are in place?

Our spaces are going to be very different from visiting in the past. Learn more about health and safety in the Libraries during COVID-19.

What if I forget my mask?

We will have disposable masks available at no cost.

How do I get a book or materials from a library that is closed?

Search for the item in Libraries search. Sign in and place a “get it” request and you can pick up items at one of our four open buildings — Wilson Library, Walter Library, Health Science Libraries, and Magrath Library — or have them delivered to your office, home, or residence hall.

Are computers and printing available?

Yes, we do have a small number of computers, printers, scanners, and photocopiers available at our four open buildings (Wilson Library, Walter Library, Health Science Library, and Magrath Library). You can also use wireless printing.

You need GopherGold on your U Card to pay for printing and photocopying. You can deposit money to your card online or in our buildings.

Please wipe down spaces/computers before and after each use with wipes / disinfectant provided.

Are the Wilson and Walter coffee shops open? 

No, the coffee shops in Walter Library and Wilson Library are closed. 

Can I bring my own food?

Food is not allowed in library buildings.

Are the 1:Button video recording studios open?

Yes, the 1:Button video recording studios are open by appointment for individual use. You can schedule an appointment online.

Can I reserve a study room in our open libraries (Walter, Wilson, Magrath and Health Science Library)?

Yes, you can reserve a study room for individual use and studying. 

How often are the libraries cleaned? How often are bathrooms cleaned?

Like other campus buildings, the Libraries are maintained by University Facilities. Use our provided wipes and disinfectant to wipe down spaces/computers before and after each use.

Do I need to be physically distant while studying? Can I study with my friends?

Patrons and staff should practice physical distancing and stay a minimum of 6-feet apart.

Are the capacities and study spaces in the libraries lower?

Yes, per Minnesota Department of Health guidelines, the capacity of our spaces is limited to 25%. Please comply with the signage and capacity requirements posted in each space.

Are staff being screened for COVID-19?

All library staff will wear masks, regularly wash their hands while working, and will stay home if they are not feeling well, experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or have known exposure to an individual with COVID-19.

What resources are available for the general public?

Though the general public does not have access to our spaces, there are still many resources available. Use the open access filter in Libraries search to find what we have that the public can access. There are library resources beyond what we offer as well. Explore our guide to free public resources for more options.

Is the Law Library open?

Visit the Law Library website for current information.

Reopening of services and collections

Delivery of print and electronic materials (Began June 15, 2020)

We resumed delivery of print books and journals to U of M faculty, students, and staff on June 15. Upon request, our staff will scan and digitally deliver print items, such as book chapters and journal articles, via email.

Select “Get it” from Libraries search results, or go directly to the Interlibrary Loan and Digital Delivery page to request materials to be sent to Wilson, Walter, Health Sciences, Magrath, or to your home or campus office.


Return of books and other materials (Began July 22, 2020)

We began accepting returns on July 22. Note that we have extended due dates and are not charging fines.

End of online access to in-copyright books and journals (Ended August 12, 2020)

We have resumed lending from our physical collections, so we are required to terminate our online access to in-copyright materials through the HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service. Materials may be ordered for mail or digital delivery through Get it and Interlibrary Loan, as noted above.

Library buildings reopen (September 1, 2020)

Four libraries reopen on September 1, 2020: Walter Library, Health Sciences Library, Wilson Library, and Magrath Library.