Reference and Instruction Services

Reference Services

IN PERSON: The Reference Area and Research Help Desk are located on the first floor of the library. Library personnel are available at the Research Help Desk to guide you in your research and help you to locate and use reference sources in print and electronic form.

TELEPHONE: You can request assistance by calling (607) 436-2722.

E-MAIL: You can e-mail your question to All questions are generally answered within one day, during normal business hours.

RESEARCH CONSULTATION: If you need help with a research project, sign up online or call (607) 436-2722 to schedule a one-on-one session with a Milne librarian.

Free Reference Book Photocopying

The Reference and Instruction Department will photocopy pages from reference items without charge. There is no limit to the number of pages, but those requesting photocopy should be encouraged to select the most appropriate material before making their requests. At least 24 hours should be allowed for processing when the request is made Sunday through Thursday. Photocopies requested on Friday and Saturday will be processed on the following Monday, if possible. Request forms are available at the Research Help Desk.

Instruction Services

The Reference and Instruction Department at the James M. Milne Library supports undergraduate, graduate, and faculty research by offering reference service, individualized research consultations, course-related instruction, and a one-credit information literacy course. Through these services, the department enables student success in a welcoming, inclusive, and intellectually stimulating environment.


Instruction librarians at the James M. Milne Library introduce students to the nonlinear and iterative nature of research, a process that requires both creativity and flexibility in pursuing ongoing and emerging questions as new understanding develops. Librarians cultivate in students the discovery skills necessary to locate, use, and evaluate a variety of information resources.

Guided by the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education, librarians provide instruction in the resources appropriate to students’ research goals. Students learn how to effectively manage the library research process. Specifically, students will:

-match information needs to appropriate search tools

-design and refine search strategies, including search terms, to improve results

-use multiple criteria to evaluate a variety of information sources

-demonstrate flexibility, persistence, and skills to produce new knowledge

-reflect upon learning in the research process

Milne Library’s instructional program includes information literacy classes the request of faculty to help students complete research assignments. Librarians tailor instruction to the particular needs of each class and, where needed, prepare bibliographies of information sources and other instructional materials to help guide students through the process of identifying, finding, using, and evaluating information. In library classrooms, students have the opportunity to practice skills introduced by librarians in the instructional sessions.

Faculty members should request information literacy classes well in advance of the desired date to help ensure the availability of both a librarian and a library classroom. Requests for instruction should be directed to Michelle Hendley, Coordinator of Instruction, at or 436-3341.

Back to top