Research Help

Librarians are here to help! You can find us in a number of ways:

Visit a library reference desk. Almost all libraries have a reference desk (sometimes called "information desk" or "research services") that is staffed throughout the day; you can visit the desk with any kind of question. If you are not in a library building and would like to phone for help, call the Widener Reference desk at 617-495-2411. Reference desk hours are often noted under "detailed hours" on the Locations & Hours page.

Explore our Research Guides: created by subject experts, these guides offer detailed advice, research strategies, and resource recommendations for specific areas. For example, Literary Research in Harvard Libraries offers suggestions for conducting research on literary topics. If this is your first time in an American university library, we highly recommend the Guide to Harvard Libraries in Plain English.

Ask Us: the Ask A Librarian system contains hundreds of answers for frequently asked questions, plus a form you can fill out to ask your own question via live chat or email. Librarians monitor this system throughout the day and will forward your question to the appropriate expert if needed.

Request a research appointment for a one-on-one consultation with a librarian. (Make sure to request time slots that are within normal business hours, i.e. 9 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.)