In accordance with federal and state law, the Library offers accommodation to the needs of patrons who are accessibility-challenged by the Library’s physical layout. We encourage patrons to contact the Office of Accessibility Services to register your defined disability with them and utilize their services, including specially-equipped computers and other accessibility devices. More about OAS services »
Library accessibility services
Patrons should feel free to ask at the Reference Desk or contact us in advance when accommodations are needed—for example, for the physical retrieval of books from our shelves, photocopying, scanning, or individual research assistance in a non-distracted environment. Every effort will be made by the Library to meet such requests expeditiously. A telephone consultation via TTY for hearing or speech impared patrons can also be arranged.
For accommodation requests and to make an appointment to learn about our accessibility services, please contact our Access Services Library Liaison, Ellen Belcher (firstname.lastname@example.org or 212-237-8238), or contact the Reference Desk.
We also encourage using reference assistance by email, telephone at (212) 237-8246, text (SMS), chat, or in person, as well as attending our drop-in workshops or making individual appointments with a Reference Librarian for assistance with all of your research and library needs.
Physical access to the Library
For elevator access between the Haaren Hall lobby and the floors within the Library, please ask the Circulation Desk (lower floor), the Reference Desk (upper floor), or the 10th Avenue Public Safety desk for assistance. Assistance may also be available from the Office of Accessibility Services.
Elevator access between the floors within the Library does not require Library or Public Safety staff intervention.
If you are arranging a pick-up or drop-off, use these addresses for your transportation:
- 524 West 59th Street (between 10th & 11th Avenues) Map
- 860 11th Avenue (between West 58th & West 59th Streets) Map
Assistive technology available in the Library
Two special computer workstations are available on the second floor of the Library that gives priority of use to accessibility-challenged Library patrons. Please ask at the Reference Desk for access to these workstations, one of which is equipped with an adjustable-height table and another that is in a more distraction free enviornment. Both computers have the following software:
- JAWS screen reading software
- Zoom Text screen reading and enlarging
- Dragon Naturally Speaking speech and imaging software
- Kurtzweil 3000
Follow the links above to tutorials for each of these programs.
Scanning: Three scanners are located in the Reserve Room downstairs, and four scanners are located upstairs near the Law Reference section (south wing). Email the resulting files, save them to your USB drive, or print them. Make your scanned PDFs full-text searchable (using OCR) at the Accessibility computer located near the scanners upstairs. Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat and select "Recognize Text » In this file." This will allow your scans to be read by TTS (text-to-speech) software.
The Library also has two quite old VTek Voyager XL that still work for enlarging text to any size 4x-60x using a CCTV. More advanced Kurzweil reading software and two more up to date CCTV magnifiers is available at the Accessibility Office. We recommend taking books out of the Library and using their machines for reading enlarged text.