MLK Library

Top Secrets and Tips of the MLK Jr. Library

By Ana Orbis


“The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library,” said Albert Einstein.

MLK Library
Illustration by Stephanie Ko

Students love using the Martin Luther King Jr. Library, and while most know where it is located, there are a lot of services we do not realize are available to us. In this list, learn some tips and tricks that will help you get the most out of your experience, and set you up for success.

Request books for purchase

Did you know that any student can request a book that the library does not have in stock, and they will purchase it for you? 

You can send your request to the Library Department Chair Barbara Vasquez at vasquebj@lacitycollege.edu and she will forward it to the librarian responsible for purchasing books. If it is a new textbook that the library has not acquired yet, they will purchase it directly from the LACC Bookstore and it will be available to you inside the library for two hours. Also, in your request let them know the reason you want a certain book to be stocked That will help the staff to decide whether they should purchase it or not.

Get help from a librarian online 

Get help from the convenience of your own home with 24/7 online library support. To access it, go to Resources & Services on www.lacitycollege.edu  where you will find the link Ask a Librarian – 24/7 chat in the left corner. LACC librarians are there to answer your questions during library hours, and librarians from other colleges and universities are available to assist you after hours should you have any questions with your research.

Use OneSearch for all your searches

The OneSearch engine that the library now offers will make your life easier and save you a lot of time. Instead of going to one database to search for journal articles and another to search for print books, OneSearch will allow you to search multiple library resources in one place. Simply go to MLK Library homepage where you will find a link to OneSearch engine in the left corner.

Access Los Angeles Times and the New York Times

Get access to Los Angeles Times articles dating all the way back to 1985 through ProQuest database. Each issue of every newspaper is indexed thoroughly so you can find detailed information on politics, art, culture, etc. Your Public Library card will give you access to the digital edition of The New York Times. If you do not have a public library card, apply for an e-card and get immediate access to their online resources. 

Ask “the walking card catalog”

Dorothy Fuhrmann started working at the LACC library as a student worker, and has been here for over 40 years. Her fellow co-workers call her the walking card catalog. If you ask her about a book, she will tell you where to find it, what the cover looks like, the color and the size. Also, do not hesitate to approach librarians with any questions. Forget the old stereotypes of what you think librarians are – they love to help!

Learn new skills with Lynda.com for free

Did you know that you had access to online classes on Lynda.com at absolutely no cost? Lynda.com offers high-quality online classes in business, design, technology and many more. All you need to do is to log into the website with your L.A. Public Library card number.

Take Library Science 101 

What better way to learn about everything the library has to offer and improve your research skills, than to take LIB SCI 101! The class is usually offered twice a year in fall and spring, but it is also being taught this summer for the first time ever. Learn how to do college-level research utilizing all library resources. 

Improve your writing and reading with Read and Write Gold

Read & Write Gold is a software program that supports students with reading, writing and research, and it is offered to all LACC students for free. 

Los Angeles City College acquired a software license that now allows students to download this product and use it at home. Go to https://www.lacitycollege.edu/Students/For-Students and find the Software Section that will take you to the link where you will be able to download the program.

Follow Martin Luther King Jr. Library on Facebook

You can get news and updates, leave a comment or ask a question on MLK Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/lacclibrary/

Read e-books anywhere 

MLK Library offers over 220,000 ebooks, which is more than physical books (over 150,000). You can download and cite e-books, save pages for printing and emailing or export pages to google drive. Over 220,000 ebooks and over 150,000 books in print is like having two libraries – very few of these books are in both collections.

Listen to audiobooks on the go at no cost

You have access to hundreds of thousands of audiobooks through platforms like RBdigital, hoopla, overdrive and Libby. Just have your Los Angeles Public Library card to register or use your e-card that, as was mentioned above, you can apply for on their official website lapl.org.

Free textbooks

Through May 25, as a response to the COVID-19  situation, publishers have made their textbooks available to students. Check https://studentresponse.redshelf.com and https://bookshelf.vitalsource.com/#/user/signin for the textbooks you need. The instructions are provided on MLK Library homepage on how to log in. 

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