Support for Distance Learning Students

Distance Learning Programs

Students participating in an off-campus distance learning program may avail themselves of a variety of library resources. These students currently include:

  • Biomedical Writing Program students
  • Online MBA students

In another program? Please contact the Access Services Librarian for additional information.


Reference assistance by phone or chat is available without an appointment during the semester from 10:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday, with extended hours until 6:00pm on Monday and Wednesday (call 215-596-8967 to check availability). You can also visit Ask A Librarian to submit your question online or browse our knowledge base of past answers.

Electronic Resources

Our goal is to offer every online resource we can both on and off-campus. However, some vendors will not allow off-campus access. For others, there may be technical reasons that prevent us from providing remote access.

The library receives over 20,000 online journals, which are available through the Internet. Nearly all of them are available from off-campus. Our Journal List provides a complete listing of both online and print holdings. You can also search our entire library collection of both print and electronic resources via Primo, the library's discovery system. Or, browse for database titles and descriptions via our Databases A-Z directory.

To access our online resources, you will need your USciences network username and password. For help with your USciences network account or password, please contact the IT Student Help Desk, or call 215-596-7611. Please do not share your USciences password with others. To do so jeopardizes your individual access to library resources and endangers the library's ability to provide resources to the USciences community.

Have questions about how you can use the library's electronic resources? See our guidelines, or just Ask a Librarian.

Print Collection

The library will provide a reasonable amount of photocopied articles to you from our print collection for free. Need the article today? If we need to drop everything to send it to you, there's a $10 charge. You can order the article through ILLiad (see below) by filling out an online request form. You may also use ILLiad to order books held by the J.W. England Library, which will be mailed to you.  Please note your student ID # plus your academic program and course number in the “Notes” field when filling out the ILLiad form.

Books and Journals Not in Our Collections

If the library doesn't own an item, we will make an Interlibrary Loan request to another institution at no charge, just as we would if you were on campus. ILLiad is the tool used by distance learners to request journal articles and books, and it allows you to monitor the status of your requests. If you are using ILLiad for the first time, you will need to first create a personal account in order to use the system. When registering, make sure to indicate your status as a "Distance Education Graduate Student" in your profile. 

Distance learners must make all requests for materials (journals and books) through ILLiad (distance students should not use E-ZBorrow!). For ILLiad book requests, please add an extra note that you are a distance education graduate student, and that you will need the item(s) mailed to you.

ILLiad book requests can take up to two weeks to receive, so please allow time for processing when making your request. Books can be mailed to your home or work address. Most articles are delivered via the web in .pdf format, with notification sent to your USciences email address when the article is available. Rush service is available on a limited basis, for a $10 processing fee.

If you would like to use a library in your local area, one of our librarians would be happy to direct you to a local medical or public library, when possible. Many such libraries offer free or low-cost access to their collections. Community hospitals will also frequently open their libraries to guests. 

Drug Information for Your Mobile Device

As part of our arrangement with Micromedex, USciences faculty and students can download mobileMicromedex to their mobile devices. If you're on campus, you can go to Micromedex (use the Databases A-Z link in the Quick Links sidebar). On the Micromedex page, click on the link labeled "Download Mobile Apps" (found near the bottom right corner of the page) and follow directions for your mobile device.


Page Last updated: 8/27/2019

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