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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the campus response to COVID-19?
  • Is the library open?
  • The Princeton Theological Seminary Library building is open to PTS faculty, students and staff through the summer. See the Library Hours page for details. All digital resources will continue to be accessible and reference assistance will be available online. Please check this page regularly for further reopening updates.

  • Can I return my books while the library is closed?
  • Yes; the book return slot to the left of the main doors is open.

  • Who is eligible for curbside pickup?
  • Curbside pickup has been discontinued until further notice. See "Is the library open?" above.

  • I am from Princeton University. Do I have access to the Library’s resources?
  • At this time, the Princeton Theological Seminary Library is closed to Princeton University users. See "Is the library open?" above.

  • I am a paid patron. Do I have access to the Library’s electronic resources?
  • Licensing agreements only allow the Library to make subscription or licensed electronic resources available to certain authorized users.

    You can continue to take advantage of the resources offered on the seminary’s digital library Theological Commons or through the fuller list of freely available electronic resources.

  • Who has access to online resources off campus?
  • The Library provides PTS students and other members of the Seminary community with access to licensed content (library databases, e-books, e-journals, etc.) both inside and outside the campus network.*

    PTS Alumni who request alum database access have access to a selection of these resources as well.*

    Open access (non-licensed) content is available to everyone; see Resources for Everyone.

    In other words, authorized Library users can connect to licensed (and open access) online resources, including those found in the Research Guides, Summon and the Library Catalog, from any location with internet access. Visit the Library Home Page, Catalogs, About Library Databases, About Online Journals, or Resources for Everyone for more information.

    Feel free to contact Virginia Dearborn, Discovery and Web Services Librarian, if you have any questions:

    Reference Service continues to be available during the closure as well.

    *This is made possible with a single sign-on authentication service. You can learn more about that service here:

  • I am an alum of Princeton Seminary. Do I have access to the Library’s electronic resources?
  • The Library has negotiated electronic access to a wide selection of databases for alumni.

  • Can I get help from the reference librarian?
  • Yes; Reference Service will continue to be available during the closure.

  • How do I log in to the library catalog?
  • If you have an active email address, click on Login and My Account. Click on the PTS Borrower link. It may ask you to enter your e-mail address and then give you a place to enter your password. And then you will see your patron record (My Account).

    If you do not have an email address and you're a guest borrower, just use the second link on the My Account Login Options page. On this page you'll enter your last name, the barcode number from your borrowing card and your PIN that you've selected. If you haven't yet set up a PIN, just enter your last name and your barcode and click Submit and you'll get prompted to create one.

    The guest borrower login involves a PIN. This PIN is also required for logging in via the MyLibrary! library catalog mobile app. Establish your PIN before using the app. For details and instructions, follow the link below.

  • Can you recommend a good place to start my research?
  • Our reference and electronic resources research guides are useful introductory tools for research. Subject areas in these guides include: Biblical Studies, History & Ecumenics, Religion & Society, Practical Theology, and Theology.

  • Where can I find reserve materials and textbooks for my classes?
  • Textbooks and Course Reserves

  • Where can I learn about on-campus, off-campus, mobile, and wireless access to library resources?
  • What is OpenAthens?
  • OpenAthens® is a single sign-on authentication service that enables access to subscription-based electronic resources both on and off campus.

  • May Ph.D. candidates borrow more books than other degree candidates?
  • Yes; degree candidates in programs other than Ph.D. may borrow up to 50 books for a 28 day period. Ph.D. candidates have expanded borrowing privileges. Follow the link below for more information.

  • How do I recall a book?
  • If Princeton Theological Seminary faculty, students or staff want or need a book that is checked out to someone else, they may recall it. Follow the link below for details.

  • Can books be renewed?
  • Yes; you may renew items online or via SMS (text) through your PTS Library Catalog account, but they must be renewed before the actual due date.

  • If I cannot locate a book that should be on the shelf, what should I do?
  • Alert library staff at the Circulation Desk (609-497-7940), giving them as much information as possible. A trace will be put on the book and you will be notified when it is located.

  • System not working?
  • If you encounter a system (e-mail, BrightSpace, a library database, etc.) that is not working, please check the IT Status page to see if it is a known issue. You can subscribe to the whole page or to specific incidents to receive automatic updates. Updates on scheduled maintenance and other known issues are also sent out via Twitter @PTSTechnology.

    If you do not see the issue you are experiencing listed on the IT Status page, please alert the Help Desk to the problem with as much detail as possible.

  • As a PTS student, do I have remote access to electronic resources owned by Princeton University?
  • No, nor do our faculty. However, you have access to those resources from within PU libraries; follow the link below for more about using Princeton University Libraries.

  • Approximately, how many volumes does the library currently have?
  • 1.3 million books and microforms in the general collection.

  • Is the Library accepting book donations?
  • At this time, the Library is not accepting donations of books, archival collections, or artifacts.

    Please check this FAQ for future updates.