Typically when students ask this question, they’re wondering about journal articles. But to be thorough, I have to give the whole answer here.
Alumna are able to use special alumni accounts to borrow regular library material, like books. You can do this in two ways:
- If you only want to borrow books from Brescia or the other affiliate colleges (Kings and Huron), you can bring your old student card to the Brescia library service desk, and we will create an alumni account for you.
- If you want to borrow books from all libraries in the Western community, you will need to sign up for an Alumni card.
Where you run into limitations are on short-term loan items (e.g. course reserve materials) and on items that require a subscription. This means that, after graduation, you will not be able to access our online databases, including journal articles, from off campus.
You’re not without options, though.
- Firstly, our copyright tariffs allow on-site users to have reasonable access to our journal subscriptions. So, come into a library on campus and the staff there can set you up with a computer in order to access the journals you need.
- Secondly, there are a variety of open-access journals that are still quite prestigious. Access these through the Database of Open Access Journals. For science students you can also try PubMed Central for other free journals.
- Ask your employer: academic research is an important part of many professions, so you may have access to resources you didn’t know about (especially if you work in a hospital system, school system, for a large corporation or chain, etc).
- Joining professional associations often will provide you with access to important journals in your field. Examples of these associations could include the Ontario College of Teachers or Dietitians of Canada.
- And don’t forget to talk to your local public librarian!