GW Visiting Scholars

Visiting Scholars do not have access to library buildings at this time. Please use the Book Retrieval and Contact-Free Pick Up process to borrow physical materials. 

Requirement for Checking Out Books

Visiting scholars must be sponsored by an academic or administrative department within the George Washington University. 


A representative of the sponsoring department must sign off on the visiting scholar application form, and all fields are required.  You must also obtain a GWorld card from the GWorld Office and provide the barcode from your card on the application. Your GWorld card is your library card and is required to check out books.

The completed application may be scanned and sent to Submitted applications will be processed within 72 hours, and visiting scholars will be notified when their accounts are ready for use.

Types of Material That Can Be Borrowed

  • General GW circulating collection and Reserves items
  • Materials at the Washington Research Library Consortium (WRLC) Off-Site Storage Facility

Periodicals may be used in the library only and are not eligible for borrowing.

Book Limit

No Limit (except a 25 book limit from George Mason University).

Loan Period

42 days from day of check-out/renewal.


If a book you have checked out is needed for Reserves, it may be recalled. All books are subject to recall at any time. You will be notified by e-mail and will have a new due date assigned to the item. The book needs to be returned on or before the new due date to prevent recall fines of $5 per day from being assessed. 

Renewing Books

GW and WRLC books may be renewed at any time, and they will be assigned a new due date 42 days from the day you renew. Each book is limited to 3 renewals. All books may be renewed a variety of ways, including online, by email, and by phone. Review renewal policies, options, and limits for details.

If you reach the renewal limit of 3, you must return the books. If you still need the books, we will start the process again for you, allowing up to 3 more automatic renewals.

Overdue Fines and Other Fees

We do not charge daily fines for general collection books that are overdue less than 40 days. After 40 days, overdue items are considered lost and you will be charged $120 for each book. See details about lost books.

NOTE: Use My Library Account to manage and review your due dates, overdue notices, and available requests. Failure to receive notices does not excuse you from paying fines.

Other Library Privileges

GW visiting scholars are eligible for the following library services: