Services for Faculty

The University Library provides many resources and services to support your teaching and research. We encourage you to reach out to your subject librarian to find out more information.

Your Subject Librarian

Your Subject Librarian is your primary contact to discuss the library's collections and your students’ information literacy instruction and research needs. Your liaison can meet with you or your department, in your office or the library, to conduct personalized training on databases and other available resources, discuss initiatives and materials to support your curriculum, and answer your questions or concerns. Meeting with your subject librarian is a great way for both of you to keep apprised of the latest changes in resources, services, and curricula and to discuss collaboration opportunities or other needs and concerns.

Teaching Research Skills

The Library’s instruction program integrates information literacy throughout the curriculum and contributes to students’ lifelong learning. A Library instruction session with one of our librarians will teach information literacy concepts and research skills. We’ll design a customized class session for your course and/or assignment(s) and host you in our Library instruction computer classrooms.

If you’re teaching online, there are many ways to incorporate information literacy and research instruction into your online course. There are Canvas modules designed to support your students at all levels of research skills, online research guides, virtual research help services, and more. You can find out more at  5 Ways to Bring the Library into Canvas.

We can also consult with you on building information literacy concepts throughout your curriculum and designing research assignments as well as recommend additional instructional materials. Please contact Kaitlin Springmier, Instruction & Learning Assessment Librarian, or your Subject Librarian.

Using Library Resources for Classes

Librarians purchase materials that align with curricula at Sonoma State University and that support learning and research. Many considerations go into purchasing decisions, and librarians must balance the cost of materials with the long-term relevance and use of resources. We encourage the use of library resources in your courses and welcome purchase suggestions and requests. However, we are not able to provide all requested course materials, and we may not be able to purchase materials in requested formats. As a general rule, the library does not purchase textbooks or other materials that will quickly become out of date or be superseded by new editions. 

You should consider several issues when using library resources for your courses. 

  • If you would like to use a library ebook for your class, please be aware of license restrictions that may limit the use of ebooks for multiple students at once. Many of our ebooks are available with single-user licenses only. Check with your librarian if you’re not sure what license terms apply to books you’re considering. 
  • Availability of electronic resources may change from year to year. Publishers sometimes pull titles or restrict access to materials that were available in the past. Always check to make sure that library resources you’re linking to in your syllabus are still available before the semester starts. 
  • If you would like to share articles and other downloadable materials, please link to the item rather than posting a PDF. Linking to the article ensures that students have the best options for accessibility and ensures that your usage is registered by the library. We employ usage data to make decisions about whether to retain subscriptions, so please help us to have the most accurate information about what resources are being used. 
  • Streaming media can be challenging for the library to purchase and maintain. While we would love to be able to provide the films you want to use for your students in a streaming format, high costs and restrictive license terms make this option unsustainable for our collection. In many cases for requested films, we own the title on DVD. You can put DVDs on reserve for students to view either in the library or at home (we also loan DVD drives for students whose computers don’t have them). 

If you'd like to suggest that we add something to our collection, you can suggest a purchase online or email your Subject Librarian. The Library’s Collection Development Policy details our policies and priorities about selection and deselection.

Placing Materials on Reserve

Placing materials on reserve can ensure that all students in your class have access and help to lower the cost of course materials to students. You can place your own items or the library’s resources on reserve for two-hour, four-hour, or one-day loan periods. If you would like to show a film that the library owns in class, we highly recommend placing the DVD on reserve to ensure that it is available during the time you’d like to show it. Please complete our Library Reserve Materials form to place items on reserve.

Highlighting Your Research

The library provides numerous ways to publish or showcase your research. We want to work with you to make your work accessible and discoverable.

  • ScholarWorks is the CSU’s digital repository, designed to preserve and make publicly available the research, creative works, and output of SSU faculty, staff, and students. Putting your work in ScholarWorks is a great way to make it accessible to readers and other researchers and to comply with funder public research mandates at no cost to you.
  • Our Special Collections—including documents, photographs, correspondence, and ephemera related to the region north of San Francisco—support learning, scholarship, and community interests. Some of our material is available in our North Bay Digital Collections. Your research might have a home here! Contact for more information.
  • If you have a recent publication you would like the library to acquire, contact your Library liaison.

Borrowing Books

SSU faculty may check out most books for one year. New books and some specialized collections may have a shorter loan period. Items may be renewed once online through OneSearch or by calling the Information/Checkout Desk. You can find more details about loan periods, the amount of items you can check out at one time, and more on our Borrowing and Renewing page. 

If you'd like to arrange for someone else to borrow materials on your behalf, fill out our Proxy Borrower Agreement.

In addition, faculty can borrow materials from other libraries through CSU+ and Interlibrary Loan. CSU+ allows you to borrow books, media, book chapters, and articles from all of the California State University libraries and our partners, with fast delivery, no late fees, and borrowing periods up to 60 days. All CSU libraries’ collections are available in OneSearch; easily place requests by clicking the Get It button. CSU+ also allows you to check out materials in person from any CSU library with your SSU ID.