Library Services for Patrons with Disabilities


Recognizing that individuals with disabilities may need special assistance in obtaining access to library resources, Sprague Library offers a broad range of services that includes lending and reference service accommodations, as well as assistance in retrieving materials and making photocopies.

Coordinator of Library Services

Since it is difficult for the Library to anticipate specific requests, patrons are encouraged to arrange special assistance in advance. Please contact Steve Shapiro, the Coordinator of Library Services for Individuals with Disabilities at (973) 655-4428 or for information or assistance in obtaining these and other accommodations. The Coordinator also serves as liaison between the Library and the University’s Disability Resource Center (DRC), which may be contacted at (973) 655-5431.

Access to Electronic Resources

The Library’s web site ( is available in text-only format using a lynx browser available at

Text only access is available to selected databases, electronic journals, e-books, and other electronic resources. For assistance in accessing and/or using these electronic resources, patrons should contact the Coordinator or a Reference librarian at (973) 655-4428

Assistive Technology

Two workstations with JAWS (Job Access With Speech) for Windows screen reader software and ZoomText screen magnification software are located in the Reference Department. A closed circuit television (CCTV) for magnifying the text of printed materials is located in the Faculty & Graduate Student Reading Room on the Lower Level. Access can be arranged through the Multimedia Resources Department.

Borrowing Materials

Materials in the Library’s Circulating Books collection are available for in-house use to all patrons and visitors. However, borrowing privileges are extended only to eligible patrons. Eligible borrowers include: Alumni and Retirees; Local Residents; MSU Faculty, Staff, Graduate Assistants & Doctoral Students; MSU Families; MSU Students; and Non-MSU Faculty, Staff, and Students.

Patrons with a disability may authorize another person to borrow library materials on their behalf. The designee must present the patron’s current, valid ID, along with written authorization (e-mail or paper), to Access Services staff at time of service. An additional piece of identification (e.g., driver’s license) must also be presented.

In addition, patrons with a disability may request that exceptions to the circulation policies be made to accommodate their access needs. Patrons should contact the Coordinator for additional information about this service.
(Click here for information on multimedia resources)

Interlibrary Services

MSU faculty, staff, and students can borrow and/or acquire copies of some items from other libraries through the Interlibrary Services (ILS) office. Extended loan periods for these items are granted at the discretion of the ILS librarian and the lending library. Requests for extended loan periods should be made directly to the ILS staff at (973) 655-7143.

Photocopy Assistance

The Library provides photocopiers for public use. Whenever possible, patrons who require assistance in making photocopies should request it from the Coordinator in advance. If needed, however, the Coordinator will arrange to have copies made. The patron is responsible for reimbursing the Library only for the standard public photocopier per page cost of ten (10) cents.

Reference Service

General reference services are available in person, by phone, and via e-mail. To place a request for this service from the Library web site, select the link "Ask A Librarian" and follow the instructions for submitting the request.

Patrons who need extended reference assistance are encouraged to contact the Coordinator first. Availability of extended reference assistance is dependent upon the staff and resources of the Reference Department.

Retrieving Print Materials

Library staff is available to retrieve print materials for patrons who need assistance. Patrons should ask for assistance at the Access Services Counter located in the lobby or the Information Desk located in the Periodicals Department. Library staff will make every effort to retrieve the needed materials immediately. However, advance notice is required if many items must be retrieved. Patrons may be asked to come back later to pick up requested materials if Library staff is busy and/or only one staff member is available at the service desks.

Last Updated January 20, 2017