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Homeless Services & Resources: Place a Hold

The purpose of this guide is to provide contact information for local, state, and national services designed to assist the homeless as well as recommended library resources.

Holding An Item

Library patrons may place a maximum of 10 holds on materials based on the following:

If an item is checked out, visit the Circulation Department, call 954-262-4601, or login online to request it. Notification is done by phone or email when the item is returned, and it will be held at the Circulation Desk for 5 days for you.

If an item is not checked out, the Circulation Department will place it on the hold shelf for five days. Holds on available items can be placed online or by phone 954-262-4601. Online holds on available items takes a maximum of 2 business days to process. *Please note that borrowing of items is on first come first serve basis.

BCL Holds

Patrons can place holds on Broward County Library (BCL) items using the BCL catalog and they can request to pick them up at the Alvin Sherman Library Circulation Desk. A BCL library card is needed for the circulation of BCL items through the BCL system. BCL items will be held for only 5 days.

For more information, visit the Circulation Department webpage. 

Course Reserves

NSU faculty members may place books, journal articles, and other materials on reserve for a course. Students can find Course Reserves items in NovaCat by professor name, course name or course number. Faculty should note that they have the option of placing the reserve items to be checked out for 2 hours only or overnight by prior arrangement with the Circulation staff.  For more information, visit the Course Reserves webpage.

Place An Item On Hold Online

When searching NovaCat, you may put a hold on up to 10 items on most circulating books, DVDs, audio books and CDs.  No more calling the circulation desk to request a hold! In most cases, the library will process your hold request within two business days. However, the process will take longer for items that are already checked out.


  • Non-circulating items: items from Reference or Special Collections
  • High demand items: reserves, study rooms, laptops, and any hourly loan
  • Electronic resources: e-books and online journals
  • Items already on loan to you, or that you have already requested

Any local NSU faculty, student, staff or public Alvin Sherman Library card holder in good standing (there are no overdue books or outstanding fines on your account) may use the online hold service. NSU distance students will use the ILLiad service to have library materials shipped to their homes. Public patrons can only put holds on Alvin Sherman Library materials.


  1. Locate the item in NovaCat.
  2. Click on the “Hold for Pick-up” button.
  3. Enter your username and password.
  4. Specify a “Cancel if not filled by" date if you need an item before a certain date.
  5. If your request is successful, you will see a confirmation message on the screen.
  6. You will be notified on the screen immediately if your hold request was unsuccessful.

Some reasons a hold could not be placed:

  • You already have 10 items on hold. That’s the maximum number of holds allowed.
  • You already have an unfilled hold on the item.
  • You already have the item checked out.
  • You have overdue items and/or you owe money.
  • Your library record has expired.

NovaCat will place your name in the hold queue for the next available copy. It can take up to two business days to pull an item already in the library after you place the hold. If other holds are ahead of yours or the item is checked out by someone else, it will take longer. To verify the status of your hold request, log in to your NovaCat account. You will get notified via email when the item is ready for pickup. Items ready for pickup are kept at your library’s pickup location for a maximum of five days.

When your hold request is filled, you will receive an email message informing you to pick up your item. There are 5 pickup locations: the circulation desks of the Alvin Sherman Library, Health Professions Division Library, Law Library, North Miami Beach, and the William S. Richardson Library.


Call the Circulation Department at 954-262-4601.

New DVDs

To view the entire list, click "View RSS Feed" below.  To check the catalog for availability, click the individual entry.

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