The Ronald Williams Library is located on the west side of the main campus. It has five floors totaling over 140,000 square feet and contains approximately 700,000 volumes of print materials. In addition, approximately 500,000 other educational resources such as electronic books and journals, audio recordings, microfilms, maps, documents, and DVDs are housed in the Library. The building provides seating for more than 600 users, 43 public computer workstations and numerous study areas. Special features include services for people with disabilities, the Center for Teaching and Learning, the Language Learning Lab, the Learning Support Center, the Center for Academic Writing and two classrooms for library instruction.  Further information and access to electronic resources are available on the Library’s web site at


Help in using the Library’s collection and locating information for study and research is available at the Reference Desk, located on the first floor. Library faculty and staff are available to present course-related library instruction sessions to students.


Library users may charge out materials at the Circulation Desk situated to the right of the entrance on the first floor.


Library materials selected by instructors for reading assignments in course offerings are kept on Reserve located at the Circulation Desk. Reserve materials are also available in electronic format for access from any computer. A listing of items on Reserve is available in the NEIU Library online catalog.

Interlibrary Loan

Because the Library is a member of the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI), Northeastern students, faculty and staff may borrow materials from 86 academic libraries in Illinois. With a valid ID card, patrons may borrow materials from CARLI libraries through I-Share, the consortium’s online catalog, or by visiting these libraries directly. Patrons may also borrow materials from other libraries that are not affiliated with CARLI by using ILLiad, an online service available on the Library's website.

Electronic Resources

The Library subscribes to 205 databases which provide access to the full text of approximately 74,000 journals. Online access is available to Northeastern students, faculty and staff from workstations within the Library and remotely from off campus. Assistance with using these materials is available at the Reference Desk.

Special Collections

IRAD and University Archives

The Library is the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) for Chicago and Cook County. It holds and provides access to part of the city and county’s archival materials. The Library also maintains the historical documents of Northeastern Illinois University in the University Archives. Both collections are located on the lower level of the Library. Assistance is provided by library staff and several IRAD interns.

Periodicals and Government Documents

The periodical and government document collections are located on the second floor. The Ronald Williams Library is a depository for both federal and Illinois state documents.

Curriculum Materials

The Curriculum Materials Collection (CMC) is located on the third floor and is designed to support course work and curriculum development in professional education and teaching. It includes curriculum guides and other teaching resources to support classroom instruction.

Multimedia Learning Resource Center (MLRC)

The MLRC on the third floor houses the Library’s extensive media collections along with preview facilities and equipment. The MLRC also provides access to computing resources for digital media editing.

Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies (CCICS)

The Ronald Williams Library provides a branch library to support the Inner City Studies program. The collection, consisting of over 29,000 books, periodicals, microforms, and other research materials, is located at 700 East Oakwood Boulevard in Chicago.

El Centro Campus

The Ronald Williams Library provides a Library & Learning Resource Center (LLRC) at the El Centro campus, located at 3390 North Avondale in Chicago. The LLRC is equipped and staffed to facilitate access to library resources and the delivery of print materials from other libraries.