Boston Library Consortium & Other Catalogs
Boston University is a member of the Boston Library Consortium (BLC). The Boston Library Consortium is a cooperative association of academic and research libraries whose purpose is to share information resources so that the collective strengths of the group advance the research and learning of the members’ constituents.
Consortium Card Program
The Consortium Card program extends direct borrowing privileges at Consortium members’ libraries to students, faculty and staff from participating academic institutions. Boston University Medical Campus students, faculty and staff can obtain a BLC Consortium Card at the Alumni Medical Library Reference Desk, Monday – Friday, 8:30 am – 5:00 pm. (Please be sure to bring your BU ID or BMC ID when applying for the Consortium Card.) Card holders must validate their cards at regular intervals, usually four times per year. Those who are not part of the Boston University Medical Campus can request information about the Consortium Card program from the reference staff at their home libraries. You can come into the library to fill out the application in person, or download this form to apply for a Boston Library Consortium Card.
Current Boston University students, faculty, and staff may borrow books directly from the Boston College, Brandeis University, and Northeastern University Libraries using their Boston University ID (Terrier Card). The Boston Library Consortium card is required for Boston University students, faculty, and staff when visiting or borrowing books from other Boston Library Consortium member Libraries.
Privileges and Special Qualifications
The Consortium Card is an identification card, and card holders may be asked to register at every Consortium library visited. Procedures vary amongst libraries and must be followed to utilize this service. Although most BLC members are flexible, the Consortium Card does not automatically confer borrowing privileges throughout the Consortium.
You may return borrowed materials to any Consortium member library, but you will be responsible for any overdue charges at the home institution. Materials borrowed from Consortium libraries can be returned to the Alumni Medical Library. The Consortium Card is a privilege, and card holders must observe the host library’s circulation regulations, including the payment of charges for overdue and lost materials. Failure to do so will result in the loss of borrowing privileges at all Consortium libraries.
WorldCat: Book and Journal Holdings Database
WorldCat is the OCLC Union Catalog. It contains more than 43 million records describing items owned by Boston area libraries and libraries around the world. WorldCat contains records for the following types of materials: books*, journals*, musical scores, computer data files, magazines*, newspapers*, computer programs, manuscripts, sound recordings, films and slides, maps, videotapes. (*May not include individual articles, stories in journals, magazines, newspapers, or book chapters.)
The Government Printing Office (GPO) Catalog of US Government Publications is a resource for information on United States government publications. It includes books, reports, studies, maps, etc. Database coverage is from 1976 to date.
Harvard University’s Countway Library of Medicine is not a member of the Boston Library Consortium, but has an extensive cataloged collection including historical materials in the Center for the History of Medicine. See below for more details.
Library of Congress Catalog contains approximately 12 million records representing books, serials, computer files, manuscripts, cartographic materials, music, sound recordings, and visual materials.
National Library of Medicine LocatorPlus contains books, journals and audiovisual materials in the National Library of Medicine’s collections.
The Countway Library of Medicine holds more than 630,000 volumes, subscribes to 3,500 current journal titles and houses over 10,000 non-current biomedical journal titles. The library also houses one of the world’s leading medical history collections, and provides access to many electronic information resources.
Due to COVID-19, only Harvard affiliates may currently access Countway: during normal times, some services may be available to non-Harvard users.
For more information on the services available through the Countway Library, please visit the Countway website.