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Library Accounts & Passwords

COVID-19 Update 

Accessing print materials in person

Our print collections at Cowichan, Powell River and Nanaimo campuses are accessible for in-person browsing during library hours.

Receiving print materials by mail

To access print materials from the Cowichan, Powell River or Nanaimo campus by mail, place a hold through our catalogueThen, select "VIU Library - Mail Delivery" as your pickup method when placing your hold. 

Returning print materials

Cowichan: The interior bookdrop is located at at the Cowichan service desk. The external bookdrop is located at the west entrance to the campus.

Nanaimo: The interior bookdrop is located by the washrooms near the entrance of building 305 on the left-hand side. The exterior bookrop is located across from Starbucks.

Powell River: Materials can be returned at the reception desk.

By mail: Use the pre-paid postage provided to return your items if you had your materials mailed to you. 


Loan Periods & Fines

Books, Videos & Government Publications

  • Students: loan period is 4 weeks and may be renewed 3 times.
  • Employees: loan period is 6 weeks and may be renewed 4 times.
  • Community borrowers & Alumni: loan period is 4 weeks and may be renewed 1 time.
  • Overdue fines for Community Borrowers & Alumni: $0.50 per item per day.

CDs (and accompanying guides)

  • Loan period is 2 weeks.
  • No renewals.
  • Overdue fines for Community Borrowers & Alumni: $0.50 per item per day.


  • Loan periods vary: reserves may have 2-hour1-day, 3-day, or 7-day loan periods.
  • No renewals.
  • Borrowing limit is 3 at a time.
  • Overdue fines for all borrowers vary by loan period: 2-hour loans are charged 50 cents per item per hour overdue; 1-day, 3-day and 7-day loans are charged $2.00 per item per day overdue.

Overdue Materials

Borrowing and online access privileges may be suspended when items are long overdue.  Borrowers are expected to pay the replacement cost of lost or damaged items. Replacement costs include the cost of the item plus a non-refundable processing charge of $25.


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