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Learn to Research

Student Library FAQ

Q: I need research help.  What should I do?


A: The library’s chat line is open 24/7 to assist you. You can access online chat from the Library website at  Please note that the librarian responding to your chat session may be from another institution.  If you prefer to set up a research appointment with a librarian via Zoom or phone, please email with your research request and a preferred time.


Also, it is difficult to check multiple citations on chat. If you have more than one or two, please email us your citation page--either as an attachment or a link to your Google doc.  Please give us plenty of lead time for review before the assignment is due (1-2 days is best). We may also want to set up a time to review via Zoom. Make sure to let us know if you are using MLA or APA format. Our email is

Checking Out Library Items

Library Items can be requested through the Library's OneSearch tool. After the item has been requested, it will be sent via US Postal Service mail. During this time, students will be allowed to borrow up to 5 items at a time. Library items for check out include:

  • Books (6 week checkouts)
  • DVDs (4 week checkouts)

Note: Textbooks on Reserve cannot be checked out at this time. Please see our Textbooks page for more information.

Returning Library Items

Books and DVDs can be returned at any time to either of the drop boxes at the main Oceanside campus (The San Elijo campus and the Community Learning Center drop boxes are unavailable at this time due to construction). There is a drive up drop box in the main parking lot (1B) across from the police station. The other drop box is directly in front of the Library and Information Hub building.

Laptops and Hotspots

Checking Out

The library has a limited number of laptops and hot spots available for credit students to check out. If you are a credit student, please submit a CARE Referral form.

If you are a noncredit student who needs a laptop, please use the CLC Laptop Request form.


All laptops and hot spots must be returned in person. To set up an appointment to return these items, please contact

When returning these items, you must follow these guidelines:

  • You must wear a mask and follow all safe distancing markers and directions in place at the return event. Staff will not accept equipment if you are not wearing a mask.
  • Laptops: be sure that all pieces are present: laptop charger (two pieces, wall plug and computer plug) laptop bag if borrowed with bag from the library
  • Hotspots: be sure all pieces are present: hotspot charger (two pieces, wall plug and USB charger cable) bag or box given to you with hotspot

Internet Options

MiraCosta Wi-Fi

Students who have access to a car may park their car on campus to access Wi-Fi between the hours of 8am – 5pm. To support social distancing, students must remain in their cars. At the OCN campus, please park in front of the Admin building. At the CLC, please park near the main building. At the SAN campus, please park in front of the library (west parking lot).

Public Free Hotspots

Xfinity WiFi Public Hotspots: All 33 Public Hotspots are now open to everyone on the “xfinitywifi” SSID (name of the Wifi-network). Public hotspots can be found in small/medium businesses and outdoors in commercial areas. For more information on available public hotspots visit Please enter your zip code to get locations near you and use the above password for the locations.

Discounted Internet Service

To help students, AT&T is expanding it's Access program for landline-based internet service to include households with members on the free and reduced lunch program. Under this program, households receive AT&T’s high speed internet service for just $10 per month with no installation or equipment fees. Students who would like more information about Access from AT&T can visit or call 855.220.5211.