By Tyler Ostrander, MA 2014-15
As we approach finals, we thought we’d give our students a small reminder about the Lorenzo de’ Medici Library and all of the ways it can help you prepare for your exams and papers!
Conducting research in a foreign country can be quite challenging, especially if you are not fluent in the native language. Between the challenges of finding useful books in English, a stable internet connection, and a quiet place to work in the busy city of Florence, writing papers might seem much more difficult than back at home. Luckily for students, the Istituto Lorenzo de’ Medici library, located on Via dell’Alloro 13 and open from 9 AM to 8 PM Monday through Friday and 9 AM to 1 PM on Saturday, exists to make studying abroad a little easier.
There is a vast array of resources offered by the LdM library, including over 7,000 books and 1,500 DVDs, as well as numerous periodicals, such as journals and newspapers. While the LdM Library operates under a closed stack system, meaning that these can’t be looked through shelf by shelf as one might be used to in the United States, the books can be accessed by the library’s online catalog. On this website, books can be searched by their title, author, subject, or even ISBN. Upon finding a book that is of interest, one can present the title and call number of this book to one of the two librarians at the front desk, which they will find and usually allow you to check out. Depending on the book, some can be taken out of the library for as long as a week, while others are allowed to only be checked out for a day, and some unfortunately cannot be taken outside of the library at all, but can be perused at your leisure inside the library’s reading rooms.
The LdM library also features a quiet space where students can study, read, or use their computers. As previously mentioned, some books cannot be taken outside of the library, but they can be used as long as one wants in this study area. For the students’ convenience, this room contains a number of chairs, tables, and outlets. In this space, one can also access the library’s Wi-Fi connection. This can be used by presenting identification to one of the librarians at the front desk, who will give you a voucher containing a username and password, which is good for a total of 120 hours of internet connection.
While convenience can sometimes be hard to come by in old-fashioned Italy, the LdM library aims to at least make studying a bit more simple.
Photos by Tyler Ostrander