Guest Researcher Access FAQ

About Western Libraries

Guest Researcher Access FAQ

Q: What do I need in order to get a guest researcher WiFi or computer pass?

This applies to guest researchers from Whatcom Community College, Bellingham Technical College, Northwest Indian College, and guests from other educational institutions. It also applies to individuals undertaking research, as determined through consultation with Western Libraries staff, that requires access to online or computer resources.

Quick Answer

Guest researcher passes are available to actively enrolled students or instructors at another educational institution. Access is also granted to other researchers who require subscription database usage in excess of one hour, ebook usage requiring a login, or WiFi usage for purposes of research, as determined by a Western Libraries employee during a consultation.

In order to get access please present your student or faculty photo identification and briefly describe why you require a login at the Circulation Services OR in the Research & Writing Studio in Haggard Hall. Guest researcher passes are distributed at the discretion of library staff and cannot be issues by student employees. To ensure you can get a pass from one of the staff present please call in advance.

What a guest researcher pass provides:

  • Ability to log in to lab computers
  • WiFi access
  • Access to databases
  • Access to ebooks

For basic internet access we prefer to offer one hour passes on our community computers that is renewable for up to three hours in a day subject to availability (requires a form of photo ID).

Detailed Answer

In support of the university's educational mission, Western Libraries provides access to information technology and resources for students, faculty, and staff in accordance with it institutional priorities, financial capabilities, and software license restrictions. In order to meet its strategic goal to enhance barrier-free access and lifelong learning, the Western Libraries has outlined circumstances where authorized Libraries personnel (full-time staff and faculty) may provide guest access to non-WWU affiliated researchers. Due to resource limitations (including WiFi nodes, bandwidth capacity, and vendor agreements), guest access may only be provided when one or more of the following circumstances apply:

  1. Researcher requires subscription to database usage in excess of one hour, ebook usage requiring login, or WiFi usage for purposes of research, as determined by a Western Libraries employee during a research interview.
  2. Researcher requires use of information access devices that require a login, such as a microform reader.
  3. Researcher is visiting a Heritage Resources area for purposes of accessing collection holdings.

Authorized Western Libraries personnel may determine permissions for guest scholar access on the basis of:

  1. Evidence of affiliation with another educational or research institution, such as valid identification or an active academic institutional email address.
  2. Admission to Heritage Resources for the purposes of scholarly research.
  3. Attendance at a WWU-hosted conference, training session, or special event related to teaching, learning, and research.

Activities not allowed under guest scholar access:

  1. Database downloads that violate vendor agreements.
  2. Actions infringing on copyright
  3. Actions in violation of university policy.

Researcher concerns may be directed to the Head of Research or Director of Heritage Resources.