Prospector is a group of regional libraries, which gives you access to 32 million books, journals, DVDs, CDs, videos and other materials. With a single search you can find and borrow materials. Borrowing through Prospector is generally the quickest way (3-5 business days) to get materials not available at CU-Boulder.  Most items check-out for 3 weeks with one renewal allowed; most a/v media items check-out for 1 week with no renewal.

If what you want isn’t available in Prospector, you may be able to find it in Prospector’s partner catalog MOBIUS, a consoritum of Missouri libraries. MOBIUS gives you access to an additional 27 million items.  Requests may take up to 2 weeks to arrive. Look for the link within Prospector to take you the MOBIUS catalog.

Am I Eligible?

Current CU faculty, staff and students may use this service.

What can I request?

We’ll try to obtain any type of library material. However textbooks, whole journal volumes, genealogical sources, unpublished manuscripts, and materials that are rare, fragile or in high demand are often hard to get.

How do I place a request?
  1. First, check Chinook, the University Libraries catalog.
  2. If you can’t find what you need, look for the small Prospector icon in Chinook. By clicking on this icon, you can replicate your search in Prospector. When you find what you want, just choose the "Request Item" option and follow the instructions on the screen.
  3. Alternatively, you can search the Prospector catalog directly.
  4. If all copies of materials are checked out, a hold may be placed, although books may not be recalled.
  5. You must select a pick-up location (Norlin or a branch library)
How long will it take?

Plan ahead when requesting materials. Prospector/MOBIUS requests should take three to five working days.

Where do I pick up my materials?

Books must be picked up at Norlin or one of the branch libraries.

How much does it cost?

There’s no charge for this service. However $100 will be charged for lost books ($75 lost book fee plus $25 processing charge).

How long can I keep checked-out materials?

Books generally check out for 21 days; video and sound recordings check out for shorter lengths of time. You’re allowed to renew items once.

How many items can I check out?

You may request up to 70 items at any one time. 

How do I return my materials?

You can return materials to Norlin or any of the branch libraries.

Please don’t return them directly to the lending institution.

How do I get help with Prospector?

Please contact:
Brice.Austin@colorado.edu | 303-492-3975
Richard.Bryant@colorado.edu | 303-735-2646

What is Prospector?

Prospector is a service of the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries and has been in operation since 1999. It currently supports over 40 academic and public libraries throughout Colorado and Wyoming. The system offers over 12.5 million unique titles (over 30 million copies) and is the largest patron initiated discovery and requesting service in the Rocky Mountain region. The Alliance was founded in 1981 and serves the research libraries in Colorado and Wyoming.

What is MOBIUS?

Since its founding in July 1998, MOBIUS has transformed library services for the citizens of Missouri. The consortium's purpose is to share library materials, information, and services using accessible, cost effective methods. Today, the MOBIUS Union Catalog has expanded to include more than 25 million items, serving over 1.5 million people from the higher education community and the state of Missouri.

MOBIUS has 70 members, which include 61 academic libraries, four public libraries, two special libraries, the Missouri State Library and two Associate Members, serving a total of 143 physical branches. MOBIUS manages INN-Reach, a union catalog and resource sharing tool from Innovative, as well as their Sierra library services platform for member libraries.