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Law Enforcement: Resources for Off-Campus Students

Transportation Library General Information

Reference staff are available Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For answers to general questions, contact our Reference Desk at 847-491-5273 or

Library Services for SPSC Students

  • Research consultations with librarians via phone or email
  • Chat reference services 
  • Loans of books and scans of articles via Interlibrary Loan

Citing sources

Library Catalog

Find the library's catalog at You won't have a login to access library resources directly, but please see the Requesting Articles box on this page for instructions on requesting articles that you find.

You can search here by keyword, or the key words that you are looking for. If you are searching for a certain title or author, you can also select the Advanced Search option to focus your search.

The screenshot above includes a search for police "shift work." Enclosing "shift work" in quotation marks will search for those terms together as a phrase; leaving the quotation marks out would search for any resources in which the words shift and work appeared, even if they were not together. 


You'll see that our search returned 6,260 results. That's a lot! Let's narrow that down to focus in on what you need. For this, we'll use the limiters at the left of the screen. If you're interested in looking just for the most recent resources, under Creation Date, enter a date range: the last 10 years, for example. You can also filter here by format - narrowing to just articles, for example.

Looking again at our results, you'll see the top article is Shift Work and Health Consequences in Policing. Click on the title to access the full catalog record. 

Here, you'll see the full bibliographic information: Title, author, year published, journal where published (if applicable), and publisher. You'll also notice further down the page subject headings. These are another way to search: they act similarly to tags that you'll see in social media, where if you click a tag for #ChicagoBears on a social media website, for example, you'll be taken to other posts about the Bears. Here, professional librarians have added subject headings, so clicking on Shift Systems will connect you with other resources on that same topic.

You'll also see a button to automatically generate a citation to use in your bibliography or works cited page, as well as a button to email a record to yourself. See below.


As mentioned, you won't have a login to directly access library resources. Please see the Article Requests box below for information on how to make requests.


Article Requests

For article requests, email with a complete citation for your request.

Provide your name, contact information, and SPSC affiliation and course number when submitting your request.  

The ILL process may take several days, since requests are filled manually. Please take this into account when planning for your staff study.


Step-by-Step Instructions for Requesting Materials

When you’ve found an article or book in the NU catalog, click on the email icon to the right of the title, and enter your email address when prompted to email the bibliographic information to yourself.

Forward that email to the Transportation Library: Be sure to include your SPSC affiliation, class number, and location. This is important so that staff know that you are affiliated with Northwestern.

Staff will manually scan the article for you and email it to you as a .pdf attachment.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Transportation Library at

Access Full-Text Articles and Books

You can limit your search to items that are available to you full-text by clicking on Full Text Online, shown in the left panel of the results page.

If you find articles that you need but that you're unable to access online, contact for article scans.

IACPnet Intro

For an introduction to research resources in IACP Net, please see the video below.