Schedule a Class

Schedule a Class Online

Class Sessions

The Rare Book & Manuscript Library has an on–site Seminar Room for instructional sessions using materials in its collections. Sessions are limited to a maximum of twenty students and fifteen items per hour due to space and security restrictions. The Seminar Room can be reserved in advance for session times from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.


Single–session classes should be requested at least two weeks in advance of the session date. For multi–session classes, reservations must be made prior to the start of the academic term. Please phone (217) 333–3777, or reserve at The Rare Book & Manuscript Library’s Public Services Desk. All reservation requests will be treated on a first–come basis and confirmations will be emailed.

Requesting Materials

Material requests must be received at least one week prior to the class date, should be limited to no more than twelve items per hour and should include call number and enough bibliographic information to identify the requested item. For multi–session classes that need to reserve titles for use in more than one session, please note which titles will need to be placed on Reserve. For security and preservation purposes, The Rare Book & Manuscript Library staff must review all manuscripts and rare books requested for use in the Seminar Room.

Session Guidelines

Rare Book & Manuscript Library staff will work with the instructor to determine the mode of display for the requested titles. Instructors assume responsibility for the materials during the sessions and should be the only ones to handle the materials on display. Class attendees may, of course, request titles for examination at some other time. Please inform attendees that Reader Registration, a photo id, and familiarity with the Guidelines for Use of the Collections will be required. When finished, please alert Library staff to ensure the proper handling and discharging of materials. If the instructor wishes Rare Book & Manuscript Library staff to participate in a presentation, arrangements must be made in advance with the library's curators.

For security and conservation reasons, some valuable or fragile items may not be available for classroom use, or might require the presence of library staff while these items are on display.

For instructional assistance, please contact Curator of Rare Books, Anna Chen.