These are brief, select policy guidelines for Howard Colman Library.
For further explanation, please refer to the complete Howard Colman Library Policies (PDF).



Your Rockford University ID card is your library card. You must have a library card with you in order to check out any library materials. (If you are a member of a PrairieCat library or another library we have agreements with, you will need a valid photo ID in addition to your home library card.) Items can be renewed or requested via your online library account page. To log in, you will need the barcode number on the back of your RU photo ID and your catalog PIN. The default PIN is 4587.

Faculty, Staff, Students and Faculty Emeriti can check out Howard Colman Library books for 21 days at a time. Books from other libraries (Interlibrary Loan) are due on the date the lending library assigns. If items are returned late or are lost, you will be assigned fines or replacement fees.

For more information, see complete Howard Colman Library Policies (PDF) or ask at the Help Desk (815-226-4035).

Requesting Books from Other Libraries (Interlibrary Loan)

If we don’t have a book, article, or other item at the library, in many cases we can request it through Interlibrary Loan. Depending on the item, this might take anywhere from a few days to several weeks, so it’s best to plan ahead. To request books: Search and request books from one of the many libraries in our PrairieCat library catalog. If you don’t find it there, you can also search WorldCat to find the relevant item record and then look for the “Request Item” link.

To request articles: Search All Resources and look for the “Request Article via Interlibrary Loan” link on the page for the article that you’ve found. Due to borrowing agreements with other libraries, Interlibrary Loan is only available to current students, staff, faculty, and faculty emeriti of Rockford University. As always, lost or late items will incur fines and fees. For more information, see complete Howard Colman Library Policies (PDF) or contact our Interlibrary Loan Department at LibraryILL@rockford.edu or 815-226-4035.

Off-Campus Access

Accessing library resources from off campus

As a current affiliate of Rockford University, you have access to all of the library’s online resources, including article databases and streaming video. If you are off campus, you will be asked to log in with your university ID and password when you click on a database.

Note: Due to licensing agreements, off-campus access to online resources is limited to current RU students and employees.

Don’t have a Rockford University email ID?

If you are a current student or employee of Rockford University and you do not know your email ID and password, contact the RU IT Department. Email: support@rockford.edu. Phone: 815-226-4127. Location: Colman Library lower level entrance.

What about the library catalog? The library catalog is freely available to search without login.

However, please note:

  • If you wish access the online version of a journal, you will be asked to log in.
  • If you wish to see your library account or renew books (except interlibrary loans), you will need the barcode number on the back of your RU photo ID and your catalog PIN. The default PIN is 4587.

Reserve a Room

Howard Colman Library has two meeting rooms that may be reserved, the Map Room (also known as the Rare Book Room – RBR) and the Large Seminar Room (LSR). Priority use of the Map Room is library instruction, but either room may be scheduled for meetings or other college-related uses.

Map Room (aka Rare Book Room) (main floor, northwest corner):

Seating capacity: 25

Equipment in the Map Room includes: internet connection, computer projector, and DVD player.

Large Seminar Room (upper level, south end):

Seating capacity: 15 – 20

Equipment includes: internet connection, computer projector and DVD player.

  • Neither room is available for regular scheduling of classes or for student study groups.
  • Use of the rooms is limited to regular library hours and may not disrupt the normal and orderly operation of the library.
  • Reservations and cancellations must be made in advance by contacting Andrew Johnson (x4037 or AJohnson@rockford.edu) or any library staff member. The individual making the reservation assumes responsibility for the set-up, clean-up, and use of the room.

Howard Colman Library has three small, collaborative study rooms that may be checked out on a first-come basis by Rockford University students, faculty, and staff only, with the understanding that students’ needs take priority over faculty and staff for these spaces.

Collaborative Study Rooms (upper level-north end):

Seating capacity: 8-10

Equipment includes: internet connection, and large screen monitor in each room.

Course Reserves

For Students: To get an item on reserve Sometimes your professor will place a book or other resource on reserve for you at the library. To ensure that everyone in your class can use it, your professor will set a limited check-out period.

  • Come to the main Help Desk at Howard Colman Library
  • You’ll need to know:
    • Professor’s name
    • Class name and number (e.g., EDUC 501)
    • Title of material
  • You’ll need: A current Rockford photo ID (this is also your library card)
  • How it works: We’ll get the item for you and either check it out to you or hold on to your ID while you use it in the library, depending on how long the item can be checked out.

For Faculty: To place an item on reserve

  • You can place two kinds of items on reserve at the library Help Desk:
    • An item owned by Howard Colman Library
    • An item that you own
  • We’ll need:
    • The item (if we don’t own it) or the title (if we do)
    • Your name, and the course name and number it’s assigned to
    • Length of time item can be checked out: library use only (2 hour), 1 day, 3 days, or 1 week.

For any questions, see Andrew Johnson, Circulation Services Manager (815-226-4037 or AJohnson@Rockford.edu)

Study Carrels

Students can reserve a personal study carrel in the library on a semester basis. Study carrels are small desks located along the walls on the third floor. If you are interested in reserving a carrel, ask at the library Help Desk. Carrel assignments are for one semester and must be renewed (checked out again) for subsequent semesters. The student assumes responsibility for materials left in his/her carrel; valuables should never be left unattended in the library. Library materials left in the carrels must be checked out. Library staff will remove non-checked out materials and return them to the shelves.

Howard Colman Library
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108

Contact a Librarian

Andy Newgren
Dean of Library and Learning Innovation

Regular Semester Hours:
Mon – Thu – 8:30am-8pm
Fri – 8:30am-5pm
Sat – 1pm-5pm
Sun – 1pm-8pm