The University of Alabama
University's Library Annex Frequently Asked Questions
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  1. What is the Annex?
  2. Can I go to the Annex?
  3. Is there a Staff Member at the Annex all day?
  4. What types of books are at the Annex?
  5. How can I get books from the Annex?
  6. Are journal articles delivered electronically from the Annex?
  7. How many books can I request from the Annex?
  8. Why is there a limit?
  9. How soon will I get my requests?
  10. Will someone contact me when my request is available?
  11. What happens if there is a problem with my request?
  12. What type of problems am I likely to run into with my requests?
  13. How can I tell what is available from the Annex?
  14. I’m not sure what I need. Can you help?
  15. How can I talk to someone at the Annex?

1. What is the Annex? 
The Annex is an off-site facility,opened in 2003, that currently houses an estimated 680,000 volumes, 135 microfilm cabinets and a collection of 19th century newspapers.  In addition, the Annex houses the University Records. The interior is climate controlled with temperature and humidity regulation in order to provide the best environment for these items.

2. Can I go to the Annex? 
The Annex is a closed facility and is not open to the public. If there is a large number of items needed we are equipped to set up a book cart for you at any of the Libraries circulation desks. However, if there is a serious research need that warrants a visit and that we cannot accommodate at any Library, then arrangements can be made for you to visit the Annex.

3. Is there a staff member at the Annex all day? 
Yes.  There are currently 2 staff members located in the Annex all day.  In addition, there is a librarian who divides her time between the Annex and Gorgas Library.

4. What types of books are at the Annex? 
There are several qualifications that can get a book sent to the Annex. Most items are books that have not circulated in some time, but there are a few items that are there for preservation purposes. Also, journals titles that are available electronically have been moved to the Annex.

5. How can I get books from the Annex? 
All items are available by request through the Libraries’ web site. It is on the menu used to select Holds or Recalls for the particular item.

6. Are journal articles delivered electronically from the Annex?
Yes, journal articles are now delivered electronically.  If you want a journal article, select “Annex-EDelivery-Articles”.  Enter the citation information into the appropriate field.  If you don’t have a complete citation, enter as much as you have and put N/A in any field unfilled in. Be sure to reenter you CWID and provide a valid email address.

7. How many books can I request from the Annex? 
Undergraduates can have 5 (five) active requests. Graduates can have 10. Faculty can have 25 active requests. As soon as a request is filled more items can be requested.

8. Why is there a limit? 
We do this for several reasons. The primary reason is the space constraints we have at the circulation desk which is also home for Interlibrary Loan, holds, recalls, and reserve items. Also we limit the requests because often there are several people in a class asking for the same items. This limits someone from claiming all items that others might need. It is, however still on a first come first serve basis.

9. How soon will I get my requests? 
All physical items requested before 10:00 am will be received by 11:30 am that same day. All items requested before 2:00 pm will be received by 4:00 pm the same day. Any items requested after 2:00 pm will be available by 11:30 am the following business day.
All electronic (articles) items requested between 7:45 am and 3:45 pm will be sent by 5:00 pm the same day. Requests made after 3:45 pm but before 7:45 am will be sent by 10:00 am the same day.
The Annex does not operate on weekends or on official university holidays. All items requested during these times will be filled the following business day. Note: These are the general rules we try to live by, however there are rare occasions when items will be delayed.
Items not picked up within 10 days will be returned to the Annex.

10. Will someone contact me when my request is available? 
An email (for Graduates and Undergraduates) is automatically generated when the item is placed on Hold. A printed letter is generated for Faculty and mailed the next business day.

11. What happens if there is a problem with my request? 
Generally, due to amount of requests we receive, you will be notified through your Bamamail email account if there is a problem. If there is no valid email address, we will make every effort to contact you via the telephone. If we are unable to at least leave a message and you have other requests that we were able to fill we will attach a notice to those items detailing the problems with your other request.
If there is a problem with an electronic delivery request, someone at the Libraries Annex will correspond with you using the email address you provided in the request form. The email will be from "librariesannex" not a particular person. We will make every effort to fulfill these requests.

12. What type of problems am I likely to run into with my requests? 
This is no easy question to pin point. However, there are several categories in which most unfilled requests fall. Many requests are for items that are not housed in the Annex.
Electronic deliver requests may be denied because: the article is available electronically in one of our databases, the condition of the print is such that scanning would further damage the volume, the way the piece was bound we cannot get a “clean” copy, the physical piece is too large for our scanner.

13. How can I tell what is available from the Annex? 
The best way to identify items that are in the Annex is through the Libraries’ catalog. There is a portion under each location labeled ’Library Has:” This will tell you what is currently available from either the Annex or the original library the items were moved from. An Example:
Database: University of Alabama Libraries
Location: Annex (use Holds/Recalls/Requests button for retrieval)Location
Details: More information about this location
 Call Number: AP2 .N2
Copy number: 2
Number of Items: 1
Status: Not Checked Out
Library Has: v.123

14. I’m not sure what I need. Can you help? 
The best places to find information about any given subject are the Information Desks, which are located in each of the branch libraries. The extremely helpful individuals in these departments can help you to find suitable items for your research and can also help you in making the requests. If you are still unsure or the Information Desk is unavailable for you (i.e. after the library is closed, or if you are off campus), but at least know the series the item you need is in you can still place a request. There is an option when placing a request that allows you to enter your own information, and there is also a comment section for you to add any additional information you might have (note: Do not enter text that wraps the information. Even though it appears in the box it does not show up in the request.  If you have to, use hard return.). If we cannot fill the request or need more information we will attempt to contact you.

15. How can I talk to someone at the Annex? 
The best way to talk to someone at the Annex is via email. This method gives us something with concrete information to go by as well a record of the conversation. Email:librariesannex@ua.edu If you do not have access to the internet then the Annex can be reached by phone at 348-1933 (voicemail) or 348-3669 (no voicemail).