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A COVID-19 Fall 2020 Primer

by Liza Palmer on 2020-08-19T16:50:00-04:00 | Comments

Hello, BCC Students/Faculty/Staff,

What a year it has been -- and it is only August!  Here's hoping you and yours have been keeping well during these strange times.  BCC Library is excited to welcome you all back to campus, albeit under these very different (and trying!) circumstances.  This blog post is designed to prepare you for what to expect when you next visit the library.  We'll cover the major topics but, of course, if you have a question about something not listed below, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us (910-755-7331 or -- we can answer your question directly, that way, and then edit this post to include the information for others to learn from.

Without further ado . . . new rules for a pandemic-proof library!  These are organized by topic, alphabetically:


A-Z Database List

The only good thing about pandemics is that all of our best resources are virtual and available remotely 24/7.  Simply visit our A-Z Database List to browse through our fabulous databases.  Remember, when off campus, you will need to log in first to use them (please see "Logging In" below for more information).  We have lots of favorite databases, but our *most* favorite are the following:

A premier virtual reference collection including encyclopedias, dictionaries, atlases, images, audio files, and videos in a wide expanse of subject areas. (NC LIVE)

Scholarly titles supporting student and faculty research, and general nonfiction on topics such as school & studying, career development, arts & leisure, and practical life skills. (NC LIVE)

The Feature Films for Education Collection offers hundreds of full-length feature films for educational instructional purposes. (Not a Gale or NC LIVE resource)

Database designed to support science, social studies, current events, and language arts presents each side of important issues and empowers learners to develop information literacy and critical thinking skills. (Gale)


ACE is open for testing services and is tutoring students F2F and virtually, via Zoom!  Their fall 2020 hours are:

  • Mondays-Thursdays, 9am-3pm



We have expanded our LibCal booking capabilities with the new Seats application!  Library users can now book actual seats in the library, as well as our rooms (conference room and three study rooms, each of which has a Phase 2 capacity of one person).  While reservations are not required, they are recommended (please see "Capacity" below for more information).  The booking process has changed slightly from previous semesters, though, thanks to COVID-19.  As always, you are welcome to contact BCC Library staff to book a seat/room (910-755-7331 or  Out of fairness to other library users, library staff can only book reservations for you up to a week in advance.

But users with and email addresses can use the self-service system for Rooms & Seats; self-service bookings can be made up to twenty-eight (28) days in advance.

The general self-service booking process is as follows:

  1. Request booking online; visit or use the Quick Link on the Library Portal homepage 
  2. Verify email by clicking on link in email automatically generated by request (users must do this within 24 hours of making booking request, otherwise, the requested times are opened back up to other users); then click on “Verify Email” button
  3. Wait for BCC Library to approve/deny request (if we have reached capacity, we may have to deny your request)
  4. If approved, show up to the library at appointed time and check in with library staff (please make sure you show up within 30 minutes of your start time, otherwise, you will lose the booking)

But here are more detailed instructions:

**Please make every effort to keep all library reservations or cancel by calling library staff (910-755-7331) or clicking on the link in your reservation approval email.  The system tracks all no-shows and, if the library is reaching capacity, we may have to deny your booking request if there is a track record of no-shows.  Thank you!**



Library stacks are closed to casual browsing, unfortunately.  This is to keep our materials properly sanitized and to protect your safety.  We are still checking materials out, however -- never fear!  The library staff will pull any books, DVDs, and audiobooks that you want to have a look at.  We simply ask that you return the items to the desk when you are ready to check them out or when you are done using the materials in-house -- that way, we can ensure that they are cleaned properly between uses.

Library staff are happy to recommend books on all sorts of topics, if you have no idea where to start; they can also help you find any other materials you may need.  So never hesitate to get in touch with us (910-755-7331 or!

To find materials on your own, use the Library Catalog.  Then, either jot the call number down to give to library staff or place a hold in the system.  To place a hold on BCC items:

  1. Select "Brunswick Library" from the dropdown menu;
  2. Enter your search terms in the box (simple keywords work best and leaving it on the default "All Fields" should be fine) and click the Search button;
  3. Find your desired item in the results list;
  4. Click on the Place Hold button (if not available, the item cannot be requested directly by the library user; work with library staff to get this hold placed);
  5. Enter the entire library card number (on the back of the BCC ID) in the Username field, leave the Password field blank, and click the Log In button;
  6. Finally, click the Place Hold(s) button in the resulting popup;
  7. BCC Library staff will receive notice of your hold, pull the item for you, and then give you a call/send you an email to arrange library pickup, curbside pickup, and/or mailing if visiting to campus is challenging.

Basic search in BCC Library Catalog



Our current Phase 2 maximum capacity for the library, including our bookable rooms, is fifteen (15).  So space is at a premium, unfortunately!  We encourage you to make an advance appointment (please see "Bookings" above) to ensure that you are not disappointed.  If the library reaches capacity, we will temporarily close to new users until current users leave, which means you will have to wait elsewhere until our capacity lessens.  Don’t take your chances — an advance appointment is really the way to go!



Thank goodness for Chatstaff!  It got us through remote-only learning in the spring and it is here for us now.  Anytime you need help with library-related questions (and sometimes even with general questions about BCC, etc.), BCC Library staff and/or the Chatstaff Librarians are available to help in real time, 24/7 (Liza, one of our librarians, will generally be the one helping you, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 7:30am to 5:30pm; Chatstaff Librarians at all other times). Simply click on the teal teardrop "chat now!" button in the top right corner of most Library Portal pages to start chatting!

Chatstaff service "chat now!" button



We have a new Facebook page!  Please like us so you can stay in the loop about any changes to our fall 2020 hours or services.



All fines (for late fees) have been suspended for the calendar year 2020.  As long as you return an item(s) that you checked out in the spring or fall semester 2020, any late fees associated with that item(s) will be forgiven.  If you lose the item(s) or return a damaged item(s), however, you will still be responsible for paying all replacement costs associated with that item(s).  Payments for missing/damaged items will be made in the Business Office; BCC Library will not be taking cash or checks at the desk for the fall 2020 semester.



BCC Library is open to BCC students/faculty/staff for the following Phase 2 hours:

  • Mondays, 7:30-11:30am and 1:30-5:30pm (closed for cleaning, 11:30am-1:30pm)
  • Tuesdays, 7:30-11:30am and 1:30-5:30pm (closed for cleaning, 11:30am-1:30pm)
  • Wednesdays, 7:30-11:30am and 1:30-5:30pm (closed for cleaning, 11:30am-1:30pm)
  • Thursdays, 7:30-11:30am and 1:30-5:30pm (closed for cleaning, 11:30am-1:30pm)


ID Cards

All ID cards are now made by appointment until further notice.  The good news is:  if all your fall 2020 classes are online, then you don't need a BCC student ID this semester.  If, however, you are in one of the few F2F classes this semester, then you will need to make an appointment with us to get your ID made at some point:



Liza, one of our librarians, is happy to offer in-person and/or remote synchronous library instruction for any courses this fall -- F2F or otherwise. Alternatively, she can provide asynchronous instructional videos tailored to your course content that you can link to in Moodle. Please contact her ( to explore your information literacy options!


Library Cards

You only need a library card if you are planning on checking out any of our physical materials (please see "Borrowing" above for more information) or needing to borrow books from other NC community college campuses.  Usually, your BCC ID card is your BCC Library card.  If you have an ID already, we can easily get your library account set up remotely (simply submit this form, and we will take it from there).  If you don't have an ID yet, and are all online this semester, we can still create a virtual card for you (emailing is the best way to get started with that)!


Logging In

If you want to use any of our databases off campus (please see "A-Z Database List" above for more information), you will need to log in first, using your full BCC email address (including the new extension, and current BCC password.  For more information about logging in, please read this blog post.



Masks are required and most be worn at all times in the library.  If you forget yours, we have disposable ones to give out -- just ask at the desk!



All printing charges for using the student printers are suspended for the fall 2020 semester.  Using the B/W copier, however, is still ten cents per side; scans on the copier are free, providing you bring your own USB drive.


Social Distancing

All library users are expected to socially distance while in the library -- regardless of whether you are with someone from your household or not.  Please practice the “Three W’s”: (1) wear a cloth face covering, (2) wait six feet apart, and (3) wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer.  We have plenty of hand sanitizer at the desk -- just ask us!  And if library staff request that you distance yourself from others, please remember it is for your safety — it's not personal!



Each time you enter the library, you should see a STOP sign in front of you -- when you reach that point, please stop and wait to talk to library staff before proceeding with your plans.  Library staff will direct you accordingly and figure out how your plans impact the library's Phase 2 capacity.  Should you see another library user in front of you, at the STOP sign, waiting to talk to library staff, please wait six feet behind that person to practice proper social distancing.



You'll notice, when you are in the library, that we have removed all of our usual supplies from their stations.  This is for your safety!  If you need something small, like a pen or pencil, we will likely tell you to keep it.  If it is something reusable, though, we ask that you return it directly to us as soon as you are done so that we may clean it properly between uses (please don't share it with others before returning it to us!).  And, for the duration of the COVID-19 event, we are suspending the loan of our headphones at the desk -- please plan on bringing your own if you need to use audio while in the library.



The library debuted several general tutorials over the summer. Page-specific tutorials educating users about the Portal and our databases can be accessed by clicking the orange tab on the left side of the Library Portal homepage and the A-Z Database List. And quick overview videos can be found on this page: We are eager to grow these resources so if there is a topic you need a tutorial or video for, please let us know!

Library Portal tutorial         A-Z Database List tutorial


It feels like everything, in a pandemic, takes twice as long to accomplish, even the simple tasks!  So we all have to be patient with each other as we navigate our new normal together.

Stay healthy!

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