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Library Services

Information for Students
How do I...


How do I get a library card?

Your student card is your library card. NIC faculty and ID cards also serve as library cards. If you are not a current student, faculty member, or employee, you may register in person at the library to become a community borrower free of charge with photo identification and proof of address.

Students at a Distance and NIC Centre Students: If you are unable to visit a NIC Campus, your student card will be mailed directly to you. If you have not received your card, contact Student Services at 1-250-334-5000.


How do I borrow materials?

Simply present your student card (or staff/faculty ID) each time you borrow library materials.

Students may borrow a maximum of 20 books and 5 DVDs (or videos) at a time. The loan periods are 2 weeks for books, 1 week for DVDs and videos. As long as no one else has placed a hold on an item, it may be renewed two times.

Items that have been placed on course reserve by instructors have much shorter loan periods and may not be renewed.

Journals and magazines are for in-library use only.

Fines are applied to overdue items. For details, please see  Borrower Services.

Students at a Distance and NIC Centre Students: If you are unable to visit a NIC Campus, you can have books shipped to your home, free of charge. Call the Comox Valley library circulation desk at 250-334-5037 for more information, or click here to email us.


How do I place a hold on a book or video?

Holds can be placed on most books and videos in the collection. Exceptions include reference materials and course reserves. 

Search our collection online. Once you have located the title you are interested in, click "Place Hold." The next screen will prompt you to enter your myNIC or community borrower ID, password, and your preferred campus pick-up location. Items being transferred from one campus to another can take a couple of days. You will receive an email notification when your item is ready to pick up.

Note: if you are a community borrower and do not know your PIN, you can obtain it from NIC Library staff either in person or by telephone.


How do I view my dues dates, fines, and renew materials online?

First, log into My Account by entering your myNIC User ID and password in the top right corner of this page. Once logged in, you can view your due dates, renew items, and view any fines you may have. You will not be able to renew library materials if you have fines in excess of $5.00, or if you have more than five items overdue.

Note: if you are a community borrower and do not know your PIN, you can obtain it from NIC Library staff either in person or by telephone.


How do I get a book that is not listed in NIC Library's catalogue?

If NIC Library does not carry the item you are looking for, we may be able to bring it in from another BC library for you. This is called an interlibrary loan. Please note that materials such as reference books and required textbooks are not available through interlibrary loan.

Instructions on how to find and request a book from another BC library can be found here.

Interlibrary loan requests can take up to two weeks to arrive.


How do I get an article that NIC Library does not have in full-text?

Some of our subscription databases only supply citations or abstracts for articles. If you would like to access the full-text, simply click the "Where can I get this?" link. The results screen will either direct you to another one of our databases, or to a link for placing an interlibrary loan request. Click this link, complete the form with applicable information, and the NIC Library staff will try to obtain the article for you from another library. This process can take up to a week. You will be notified of the results via your NIC email.

How do I access Library resources off-campus?

NIC students, faculty and staff have full access to Library & Learning Commons electronic resources, however, some of subscription resources require you to login using your NIC credentials.  More information


How do I download eBooks?

Many eBooks found in Discovery Search and Books & Media can be read via Full Text on your browser, or downloaded for offline viewing on a computer or mobile device. Detailed instructions on how to download eBooks can be found here


 How do I borrow in-person from another institution? 

The NIC Library participates in the CPSLD reciprocal borrowing agreement which states that "Current students & employees of one publicly funded B.C. post-secondary institution are granted on-site borrowing privileges at another B.C. post-secondary institution library, free of charge, & that permission is reciprocated."

The following procedure is in place: "Students & employees must present valid identification from their institution when borrowing materials from another institution library. Reciprocal borrowers are registered at the lending library according to the lending library's practice (e.g. expiry date established by lending library).

Loan policies, including types of items loaned, number of items, and length of borrowing period of the lending library are followed. Materials must be returned to the lending library and will not be cleared from the borrower's record until they reach the lending library. Any costs (for overdue fines, damaged or lost materials) are paid by the borrower to the lending library."

Because NIC student and employee cards do not have an expiry date, you may be asked to provide a registration receipt or login to NIC Blackboard or library databases as proof of affiliation. Alternatively, you may acquire a CPSLD (Council of Post-Secondary Library Directors) Reciprocal Loan Program card from the NIC Library. 


 How do I borrow a laptop? 

Laptops are available at the Comox Valley Library & Learning Commons for lending to currently registered North Island College Students.

For more information, please visit the Library & Learning Commons Laptop Lending Policy.


How do I find course reserves?

Sometimes an instructor will place an item on reserve for his or her class. These materials are available for short-term, non-renewable loans, ranging from 2 hours to 1 week. Search the catalogue for reserves by course or instructor here. NIC Library staff can help you locate these items on our shelves.


How do I get help with research?

NIC Library staff are here to help you with your research needs. Appointments for one-on-one research help are available at all campus libraries. To schedule an appointment, just call the NIC Library or ask staff in person.

Library Contact Info and Hours


How do I book a study room?

Students can book study rooms online for the Comox Valley and Port Alberni campus libraries. Click HERE to book a study room.


How do I print/photocopy/scan something?

The multi-function printers at the Comox Valley, Port Alberni, and Campbell River campus libraries can all be used to print, photocopy, or scan documents. Printing and photocopying costs $0.10/page for black & white, $0.20 for colour. Scanning is free.

NIC Print-Bucks or an online printing account is required to print or photocopy. Print-Bucks must be purchased from a campus bookstore; they are sold in denominations of $1, $5, and $10. To set up or access your online printing account, click here.


How do I apply for a job at the library?

NIC Library does hire student assistants. Watch for job postings at the beginning of each semester. Drop off your resume and timetable at the library. Note: you must be a currently registered NIC student to qualify.

Library Contact & Hours | Privacy