Frequently Asked Questions


What services are available to students in WTOnline classes?

All library services -- access to online resources, reference assistance, research advice, library instruction, etc. -- available to students on campus are also available to students taking WTOnline classes. If you are not taking any other courses on campus, you may have your books and journal articles mailed to you. This is known as document delivery. This document delivery service is not offered to students who are also taking classes on campus, who must come in to the library to pick up their orders. We apologize for being unable to offer the service to everyone taking WTOnline courses.

Am I eligible for distance library services?

If you are enrolled in an WTOnline or Interactive TV course delivered by WTAMU AND you are not taking any other classes on campus this semester, you are entitled to distance library services.

Do I need to get a library card?

No! Your Buffalo Gold Card acts as your library card and is automatically activated at the beginning of each semester. See Borrowing Library Materials for more information.

Do I need a physical Gold Card?

If you are a registered student of WTAMU then you are automatically issued a gold card number. If you wish to come to campus and use certain facilities such as the HELC (Hastings Electronic Learning Center), the Virgil Henson Activities Center or will be checking out books at the Cornette Library, you will need to get a physical card from the Gold Card Office. If you are not going to be coming to campus you may call the Gold Card Office and they will provide you with your Buffalo Gold Card number. You will use this number to request books and journal articles, to use the Library's online resources from off-campus, and to view online course reserves.

There is a college library near me. Can I borrow their books?

You probably can't go into a college library and be granted the right to borrow books without some form of introduction. Fortunately, we can provide you with an introduction to libraries with which we have reciprocal agreements. We can furnish you with a special library card (TexShare) that allow you to borrow books from selected academic libraries. These cards give you borrowing privileges with libraries in Texas and neighboring states. Find out which libraries belong to TexShare. One of them might be located near you! Contact us if you want to apply.

How do I find library materials?

From your classroom Web page, there is a link to the Library's home page and from there links to the library catalog and to our online resources. As a rule of thumb, use the online catalog to search for books and our databases to find journal articles. Note that some of these databases provide full-text access to journal articles while others only provide citations. In either case, click on the SFX logo Logo to see if there is a link to full-text of the cited article or an option to search the Library's online catalog. If we receive only a print copy of the journal, distance students may fill out our online Interlibrary Loan Request form to have the article sent via document delivery. WTOnline students who have other classes on campus will need to come by the library in person. If you are having trouble searching the catalog or searching the databases, contact us for help, and tell us you are a distance student.

I found some books in the catalog that I want to see. How do I get them?

If you are a distance student who is not taking any classes on-campus this semester, fill out the online Interlibrary Loan Request form, being sure to indicate your WTOnline status from the drop-down menu. Once we receive your request, we will find the books in the library's collection and mail them to you. If you are taking other courses on campus, you will need to come to the library in person and check the materials out at Circulation.

I found some great journal articles. How do I order them?

First, you will want to check the online catalog and/or the list of online journals. If the article is available online, you can access and read and/or print it. You will have to login through the Connecting From Home page. You will be asked to login with the same username and password that you use for Buff Advisor. Provided you are not taking any classes on-campus this semester, fill out our online Interlibrary Loan Request form. We will photocopy articles in our print journals and mail them to you. Not all the articles listed in our online resources are available at WTAMU. When you find a citation for which you want the full-text of the article, click on the SFX logo Logo to see if there is a link to full-text of the cited article or an option to search the Library's online catalog. If we receive only a print copy of the journal, distance students may fill out our online Interlibrary Loan Request form to have the article sent via document delivery. WTOnline students who have other classes on campus will need to come by the library in person. If you are having trouble searching the catalog or searching the databases, contact us for help. If we don't subscribe to it, you can still request the article (using the online Interlibrary Loan Request form). We will, however, need to order a copy of the article through interlibrary loan which may take longer.

Students taking classes on-campus will need to come to the library for articles in journals which are available in the Cornette Library. You may still request interlibrary loans over the Web but must come to the library in person in order to pick them up when they are received.

What happens if an item I want is not held at WTAMU?

Interlibrary loan can be requested for any book or journal article which isn't held at our library. This involves borrowing from other libraries around the country. We encourage you to take advantage of this service since you will have access to a much greater pool of materials. Interlibrary loan requests take much longer than regular requests. Allow two weeks from the time you submit your online request for items to arrive at the interlibrary loan office, so make sure you order the items you need well in advance.

I'm having trouble using the Library's resources. What should I do?

Contact a Reference Librarian using the Ask a Librarian form or at 806/651-2215 for help. The librarian will "walk" you through the process. If you aren't familiar with searching the Online Catalog or our online resources, please don't be reluctant to ask for assistance. We are here to help you. You can make an appointment to see the librarian for a personal session, and if coming to WTAMU is awkward for you, a "brush up" session can be handled over the phone. As always, make sure you inform them that you are a WTOnline student.

Are there any charges for distance services?

No! There are no charges for students taking only online courses.

My professor says we have items on Electronic Reserve. Where do I go to find Electronic Reserves?

Electronic Reserves are available on your classroom Web page or from the library catalog Course Reserves Search page. To access the Library's E-Reserves, you will need to login using the same username and password that you use for Buff Advisor.

I can't get into the Library's online resources. I don't seem to be authorized for access. What am I doing wrong?

Most of our online resources are restricted to WTAMU students, faculty, and staff. When you access these from off-campus, you will be asked to login with the same username and password that you use for Buff Advisor.

If you have problems, contact us or call 806/651-2215 and we will help you work out the problems.

Why is it that some students in my classes have materials mailed out to them, while I have to come to the library in person?

The mail-out service, also known as document delivery, is a labor intensive service which is costly to provide. That is to say, we offer the service to those students who cannot come to the library in person because they do not take any courses on campus. We apologize for being unable to offer the service to everyone taking distance education courses. If you have any comments or questions regarding the service, please feel free to contact us or call 806/651-2212. Furthermore, if you feel that an exception needs to be made in your case, contact us.

Who do I contact with other questions?

Students on campus have always been able to come to the Reference desk and ask for help with their research assignments. As distance students, you are to be afforded the same type of assistance by way of e-mail, telephone or in-person sessions (we encourage you to make appointments for one-on-one sessions). Fill out our online form or call 806/651-2215 if you want assistance. If you call, be sure to indicate that you are a WTOnline student. We are happy to help you, so please don't hesitate to ask.

You may also contact Linda Chenoweth, the Head of Reference Services. She coordinates the Library's services to WTOnline students.