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Self-Guided Tour of the Robert L. Carothers Library & Learning Commons: Self-Guided Tour of Robert L. Carothers Library

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Welcome to the Robert L. Carothers Library & Learning Commons!

This guide will lead you on a tour of the Library. When you have completed it, you will have a good idea of the layout of the building, and you will have learned about some of the services and materials available in the Library.

1. First Floor: Entry

The tour begins on the First Floor of the Library, at the front door. Straight ahead, you will see the security gates. On your left are stations where you can add money to your RAM Account or purchase a one-time copy slip.

2. First Floor: 24 Hour Room

To your right is the entrance to the 24-Hour Study Room. The Daily Grind Coffee Cart sells food and beverages there during the Spring and Fall semesters. You are free to take small snack items and covered beverages into the rest of the Library, but large meals or messy items should remain in the 24-Hour Room.

3. First Floor: Circulation & Reserves

Once you enter the lobby, you will see the Circulation Desk immediately to your left. Library materials, including materials requested from other libraries, can be checked out and returned here. This is also where you register your library barcode so that you can borrow books and access the Libraries’ many online services. The Reserves Desk is also here. This is where you can find materials that have been set aside by faculty to be used in a particular course, or get help accessing the E-Reserves materials. A valid library card is required for borrowing Reserves items.

4. First Floor: Computer Access & the Library Catalog

As you leave the 24-Hour Room, you will see a seating area and computers across the lobby. The computers are for accessing the library catalog and other online materials.

5. First Floor: Main Staircase & Maps

At the center staircase on your right, you will find the Floor Directory and Map. Each level of the Library has a Directory and Map at the staircase.

6. First Floor: Reference Online Center (ROC)

Past the stairs on the right is the Reference Online Center (ROC), where you may search the Library’s many article and reference databases. If you need help with your search, ask a Reference Librarian or a Graduate Assistant at the Info & Research Help Desk.

7. First Floor: Info & Research Help Desk

The Info & Research Help Desk is located on the left just across from Reference Online Center. The Desk is staffed most of the hours the Library is open. Librarians are available to answer your questions about the Library and to help you locate materials and information.

8. First Floor: Reference Collection & Curriculum Materials Library

The Reference Stacks begin at the edge of the Reference Online Center and extend into the corner of the building. The Reference Stacks contain encyclopedias, dictionaries, bibliographies, older indexes and abstracts and other reference sources. These materials do not circulate. The Curriculum Materials Library (Room 115) is located at the end of the Reference Stacks.

9. First Floor: Learning Commons

The far end of the First Floor is home to an area known as the Learning Commons. This is a collaborative study space with group study areas and rooms, as well as a Presentation Practice Room.

10. First Floor: Teaching-Learning Technology Center

As you return to the lobby, you will see Room 142, the Teaching-Learning Technology Center. Workshops on Library and online research are often conducted in this room. Faculty may make arrangements with the Reference subject specialists for specific subject-oriented instruction.

11. First Floor: Government Publications

Just past that Center are the Government Publications. The URI Library is a partial depository for materials published by the Federal Government and the RI State Government. The Govt Pub and Sta Pub Collections are behind the offices.

12. Lower Level: Current Periodicals

Now return to the central staircase and go down the stairs to the Lower Level. If you turn to the left when you leave the stairs you will see the Current Periodicals area. The latest issues of newspapers and periodicals are shelved in call number order. (Older issues of periodicals are also on the Lower Level or in microforms on the Second Floor.) Remember: These are only the titles with print subscriptions. Many more are only available electronically.

13. Lower Level: Student Computing Facility

You will also see the Student Computing Facility nearby. Access to this facility requires you to have a URI student, faculty or staff ID. There you can use e-mail, type papers, use statistical packages and access the Internet. You can also find staff to help you with copying, printing, and basic tech questions.

14. Lower Level: Microforms

Right outside the MRC is the Microform Area. Newspapers, ERIC documents, and the back issues of certain periodicals are available on microfiche or microfilm. Reader/printers are also available. Assistance with microform is available from the Media Resources Center during most hours the Library is open.

15. Lower Level: Computer Help Desk

The Help Desk is to the right as you exit the stairs. The Help Desk can assist you with common technology problems, including lost passwords, technical issues, and so on. Most of the rest of the floor contains the Bound Serials, older issues or periodicals which have been bound together in volumes for preservation. They are shelved in call number order.

16. Second Floor

Re-enter the main stairwell and climb to the Second Floor. Here you will find books with call numbers starting in the letters Q through Z.

17. Second Floor: Distinctive Collections

Turn to your right and you will see Distinctive Collections, located right next to the stairwell. Here you will find the University Archives, the Rhode Island Collection, rare books, and the manuscript collection. All materials must be used in the room, which is open from 8:30 to 4:30 Monday through Friday.

18. Second Floor: DataSpark

Just past Distinctive Collections, you will see the offices for DataSpark

19. Second Floor: Administration

The Library Administration is in the office suite in the front of this floor. It includes Conference Rooms which are frequently used by campus organizations.

20. Third Floor & Galanti Lounge

Go back to the central staircase and go up to the Third Floor. This is where books with the call numbers beginning  A through P are shelved. If you were to turn left you will see the Galanti Lounge, a meeting room frequently used for various campus functions. There is a Walk Through Time picture history of the University circling this floor.

Additional Information

Additional information:

  • There are two elevators in the building, one across from the Circulation Desk and the other in the Reference Stacks.
  • Restrooms and copy machines are located on each floor. The floor plans near the central stairs will show the exact locations.
  • Individual research/study carrels and group study carrels are located on the Second and Third Floors. Information about them can be found in the Individual Research/Study Carrel policy.

Created and revised by

Created by:
S. C. Krausse 7/95

Revised by:
S. C. Krausse 2/97, 8/97
M. C. MacDonald 7/98
S. C. Krausse 7/99

A. J. Rathemacher 8/02
M. J. Keefe 5/06

A. Izenstark 2/07, 8/07, 2/10, 5/10

K. Leahy, 6/14
A. Izenstark, 6/17

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