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Zahnow Library & COVID-19 - Library Resource Use: Home

This page was created to help students and faculty with their Library and Research needs during COVID-19 health and safety measures.

Accessing the Library From Home

The User Services department is NOT available in the library
-E Reserve items can be submitted on line at
-Chapters of books can be scanned and placed in your canvas course student use
-Please make an appointment to bring physical materials to the Library you would like to have scanned.
-For material needed from current reserve holdings at the library to be placed on canvas contact circulation at or (989) 964-4240 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“Why was my ILL / Tipasa request cancelled?”
Many of our partner libraries have closed or significantly reduced services. We are one of the few exceptions, yet it means we have fewer libraries to work with during this time. Beyond that, there are some things you can do to improve your odds:
-If a resource gives you the option to limit by language, do it. There is a reason for that. Limit to English to cut down on unnecessary requests. -If an article title is in brackets, e.g., [The life of left handed bassoo
nists] the odds are very high that the article is *not* in English.
-Watch out for international journals. While some are widely available in US libraries, many re not. If you *really* need an article from an international journal please contact Thom Zantow at While we could order DVDs and CDs through MeLCat (which is shut down for a period of several weeks), we do not have that option through Tipasa / ILL. Having said that, if you have a need for media we do now own please contact Thom Zantow at For faculty and staff: “Can we bring things over to the library for scanning and processing?” Yes! Contact us at 964-4240 or to make arrangements. For our partner ILL libraries (to be distributed via multiple lists)
-In light of multiple library closures or significant lending restrictions, Saginaw Valley State University’s Melvin J. Zahnow Library (EZS) is pleased to announce: We are closed yet fully functional. We still loan physical materials. Previously we have loaned media only through MeLCat. Effective immediately we will supply DVDs and CDs. Please note that we also have a fair performing music collection, especially wind quintets, flute choir, and larger ensembles. We will happily accommodate extended due dates during this period. Please let us know what you need.” Updates to US and related pages: “Effective immediately: All due dates for SVSU-owned print materials have been extended to at least Friday, May 8th. This includes books checked out and past their original due dates. New due dates for those materials is Friday, May 8th. Media (DVDs and CDs) should be returned by their due date. If this is a problem please contact us immediately. Materials ordered through MeLCat should be returned by their due date. If this is a problem please contact us immediately. Materials ordered through Tipasa/interlibrary loan need to be returned by their due date. If this is a problem please contact us immediately.”

“How do we get things from the Library?” Use Tipasa to request and materials you need or want. If we own it we will get it ready for you. Let us know if you need it mailed to you. Returning the materials will be your responsibility. This includes Library-owned CDs and DVDs. You can still use the “Place Hold” feature on our library system, or request it through Tipasa. Please note that MeLCat is on hold until further notice. Please use Tipasa instead. If you have MeLCat items that are not in transit (“considering”), please request them through Tipasa instead as it may be several weeks before MeLCat resumes operations. You can check on the status of our materials or MeLCat requests at My Library Account from the Library homepage (

“The laptop I checked out isn’t working. What do I do?”
Please submit a support ticket to ITS. 

“I have overdue materials. What do I do?” I
If it is from our Library… If it has not been declared lost or missing, you should see that it has been renewed to at least Friday, May 8th. For everything else, including our CDs and DVDs, please contact us ASAP so we can work something out. You can check on the status of our materials or MeLCat requests at My Library Account from the Library homepage ( ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Accessing Library Resources:

When accessing anything from Zahnow Library (library database, e-reserves, libguides, etc.) you must log in to your Library Account first or authenticate when you get the login screen.

Make sure that your Username is just the first part of your email. Example:, only use "jdsmith" as your Campus Username. Campus Password is the same password that you use for email. 

How to Login to the Library Image

Library Hours

Hours subject to change:

The library building is closed to the public (including students) through March 30th. However, many of the library's services including online chat assistance, email and research databases will be available as normal.

Library Contact

text messaging iconText brief questions to 989.292.3902  (normal texting rates apply)

email image Email questions  (Librarian will reply as soon as possible)

phone imageCall us at 989.964.4242 or circulation at 989.964.4240

research consultation appointment image Request a research consultation

smiley face  Contact your friendly library staff!


Accessing the SVSU Library from Off Campus

Here are some suggestions and information that SVSU users should know for accessing materials if you are away from the Zahnow Library:

  1. To access library resources including articles, streaming music and videos, and ebooks you will want to go to the library's home page and search using the "We Search" box in the center of the screen. Or you can also browse for specific resources using our databases page.
  2. From off campus it will ask you to authenticate, using your username and password. Your username is whatever is before the in your university email and your password is whatever your SVSU email password is. (See example in box above.)
  3. If you need research assistance off-campus, librarians can still be reached by chat and email. (See box on the left for links.) Research Desk phone will be mostly unavailable. And you can reach out to our subject librarians via email if you want subject specific assistance. Their names and emails are located here. NOTE: The Research Desk and library building will be closed to the public through April 13.
  4. The library is still offering some borrowing services. You can make requests for materials we do not have online using our interlibrary loan system called Tipasa. MelCat is temporarily unavailable.
  5. If you must have a circulating print book that is inside the library please contact circulation at 989.964.4240 to determine if some type of arrangement can be made.
  6. Temporarily the Zahnow Library will be pushing back ALL due dates on SVSU circulated items until the end of the semester. You can still return the items to the library if you are in the area if you want to. You can also drop books off at any MEL affiliated library and the item will get returned to us. You can find a participating library here.

Library Catalog Search

Laptops for Checkout

Stop by the Zahnow Access Services desk to check out a laptop through April 24th, 2020. 

Laptops are available on a "first come, first serve" basis so stop by today!

Use the Library Databases to Find Articles

Enter your SVSU username and password when prompted to access the library databases.

* A-Z Databases

If you want search several databases at once you can use the "We Search" box located on the library home page.

*Library Home Page

Downloading & Using eBooks

Zahnow has a large eBook collection, please access the Library Catalog to select titles in eBook format. 

For help accessing and downloading eBooks, please refer to our help page.

Stop the Spread of Germs

Stop the Spread of Germs Image

Ordering Books from Other Libraries

TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED Order books through MelCat 

  1. Click MyMelCat
  2. Select Saginaw Valley State University from the alphabetical list
  3. Login with Campus Username: (ex: jdsmith) do NOT include and add Campus Password: (same password you use to login to email)
  4. Complete a keyword or title search in the search box and order book from another library

Order books through Tipasa

  1. Tipasa will automatically log you in as long as you are connected to you email account. 

For additional assistance, please refer to the ILL libguide

Page created by Marlene Edge-Phillips & Matthew Buckley

This Guide was adapted from the Portland University State Library COVID-19 Research Guide by Portland State University Library is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at