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Using the Library: Library Resources

All about the Library's resources and how to use them.

Books & Articles

Search the Library Catalog to find books, ebooks, articles, journals, newspapers, DVDs, musical scores, and more.

  • Do a basic keyword search, or use the advanced search to search by things like author, title, or ISBN, and to combine multiple search terms.
  • Once you have a list of search results, use the options on the left to narrow your results by criteria such as format, publication year, subject, or language.
  • By default, the catalog searches for items that Shaw Libraries owns, but you can expand your search to libraries everywhere by checking the Libraries Worldwide check box under Held by Library on the left side of your search results list: See the "What if Shaw doesn't have the resource you need?" box below for information on obtaining books Shaw does not own.
  • For tips on searching, see the Get Started with Research page.
  • Items available electronically will have a "View eBook" or "View full text" button. Items available in person will have details about where to find it in the library. See "How to Locate an Item on the Shelf" for more instructions.

The Library has course textbooks for you to borrow!

They check out for 3 hours and must stay in the Library.

Here's how it works:

  1. Search here for the textbook you need, or ask for help at the Library's front desk.
  2. Ask for the course number of the book (e.g. HIS 204) at the Library's front desk (they are kept behind the desk and organized by course number).
  3. Show your Student ID card to check it out.
  4. The book checks out for 3 hours and must stay in the Library.
  5. If you need more than 3 hours, return to the front desk. You will be allowed to renew your time if nobody else is waiting.
  6. Be sure to return on time, otherwise you will be charged an hourly late fee.

The University Library provides access to over 115 online databases (found here and here). 

  • Databases are searchable indexes of published, reliable resources like scholarly journals, encyclopedias, and newspapers. This is where you would look for articles.
  • A handful are highlighted on our Electronic Databases page, and many more can be found through the NC LIVE site.
  • Ours cover a wide range of subjects, including business, career and test prep, health, humanities, language learning, literature, news, North Carolina, religion, science, and social sciences.
  • After clicking a database link, you will be brought to a page where you enter your Shaw credentials to gain access to the resource. The Library uses the same single sign-on used to access Bearsnet and Moodle.
  • For tips on searching, see the Get Started with Research page.
  • For more details and tutorials, visit the Remote Services & Access guide, or contact Library staff.

The following books are often read in Shaw courses. Click the links to retrieve an open access copy.

eBook Collections


Library staff are available and happy to help you! We can answer questions on:

  • Understanding the research process
  • Selecting a research topic
  • Searching for and evaluating research sources
  • Finding a specific item
  • Citation styles
  • Using technology
  • Recommendations for recreational reading/watching/listening
  • And more! We are just helpful people. :)

You can view our Citation Help LibGuide for assistance with Citation styles and formatting, links to appropriate resources for help with all citation issues, and more. 

We also have our Copyright and Plagiarism LibGuide to help you understand those concepts and put them to proper use in your research.

Request a Recommendation

Use this online form to request a recommendation for books, movies/television shows, podcasts, and other resources, available for free to you online. You can also see our curated lists of recommendations on things to see, watch, and listen to on our Recommendations LibGuide.

The Library FAQ is a list of our frequently asked questions, curated to help you understand library functions, events, important features, and more. You can browse the full list by clicking here, or use the search box below to search for specific topics or ideas.

Need assistance with your research or utilizing library resources?

Make a 1:1 appointment with our Library Staff using the box below or visiting our Bookings Page and be connected with us for more assistance!

For help with a research assignment or understanding Library resources, use our LibGuides!

Shaw's librarians create online guides (like this one) to help you use the Library. Many provide advice and resources for doing research in a particular subject area. Others offer how-to guidance and explain important topics and library resources.

If you'd like more information on how to use our LibGuides, visit our tutorial here.

What if Shaw doesn't have the resource you need?

To obtain materials that Shaw University Libraries does not own, there are a few options available to you:

  • Shaw University is a member of the Cooperating Raleigh Colleges, which means that Shaw students, faculty, and staff can borrow items at other CRC libraries. Prior to going to one of these libraries, you must pick up the appropriate documentation from the James E. Cheek Learning Resources Center.
  • Interlibrary loan, which ships an item from another library to Shaw for you to borrow. It can take some time for items to arrive as they are sent by USPS mail, and a form is required.

For details and request forms, see the Other Lending Resources guide.

For further assistance, please contact us!
Shaw University Libraries - James E. Cheek Learning Resources Center
118 E. South Street - Raleigh, NC 27609
919-546-8407 -

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