Tips for New Students

save image

Welcome New Bruins!  The UCLA Library has a lot of resources and services to offer you, whether you are a freshmen, transfer student, graduate student, or maybe a returning student who just wants to learn more about the UCLA Science and Engineering Library (SEL)!

Here are some tips and answers to frequently asked questions that will help you get started:

How do I check out books?

You can check out books with your Bruincard, which also serves as your library card.  Your library number is your student ID number (nine digits on the front of your card) plus the number on the back of your Bruincard.

All UCLA users can borrow up to 200 items at a time.  For undergraduate students and graduate students, the borrowing period for books from SEL is 90 days. See more on borrowing.

How do I access library resources from off-campus?

The library subscribes to many online books, journals, and databases.  These resources are accessible from any computer on campus.  However, to access these sites from off-campus, you must set up either the Bruin Online Proxy Server (a simple setting in your browser) or the UCLA VPN Client (a program you install on your computer).

What are your hours and locations?

The Science and Engineering Library is made up of two campus collections:

Where can I find a study space?

SEL offers two reading rooms for quiet study.  One is located in the SEL/Engineering and Mathematical Sciences collection (8th Floor Boelter Hall) and the other is located in the SEL/Geology-Geophysics collection (4697 Geology Bldg).

In addition to quiet study space, we also offer the SEL/EMS Research Commons (8th floor Boelter Hall), a collaborative, flexible, technology-enabled workspace.  The Research Commons features a plasma screen with VGA hookup, 2 dual screen Windows desktops equipped with CLICC software, 6 library workstations, whiteboards and whiteboard tables, an iMac, and 3 wall mounted monitors for laptop hookup.

For group study, there are two group study rooms available for two or more students in the SEL/Geology-Geophysics collection. These rooms must be reserved in person at the circulation desk; a valid BruinCard is required. 

The Library and campus also offer a variety of other study spaces.

Does the library lend laptops?

Yes, the library has laptops for check-out! SEL/EMS has 30 and SEL/Geology has 15 laptops available for loan periods of four hours.  All are dual-boot macbooks!

How do I get started with research?

One of the best places to get started with your research are the UCLA Library Research Guides. The Research Guides offer recommended resources for finding information, such as databases (for finding articles), books, web pages, scientific information and more, for both subjects and specific courses.

How do I find my textbooks and course reserves?

If your textbook is on reserve for a course, use the Course Reserves tab in the UCLA Library Catalog.

How do I get help from a librarian?

We are here to help you! You can get help in-person at the reference desk, by phone, or email.  You can also contact a specific subject librarian to set up a research consultation.

The UCLA Library also offers 24/7 assistance from our Ask a Librarian service. Because this is a cooperative service, you may be chatting with a librarian from another academic library. UCLA librarians will follow up via email with additional information if needed.

If you are a new graduate student, attend our Science and Engineering Library Resource Fair to meet your subject librarian, learn about databases in your field, ask questions about data management, grab some swag, and more! Drop-in anytime on Friday October 3, 3pm-5pm, 8251 Boelter Hall (SEL Research Commons).

Have a great Fall Quarter and welcome to UCLA!