Last Updated: Nov 12, 2020     Views: 289

Note: The Alan MacDonald Graduate Commons is currently closed due to COVID-19. We have reserved a space on the second floor of the TFDL to meet your requirements for study space in the interim. To book your spot, please visit:

Spaces can be booked Monday to Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and is closed weekends and Statutory Holidays.

The Alan MacDonald Graduate Commons is a secure, shared, quiet space on the 5th Floor of the Taylor Family Digital Library (TFDL). It has been set aside as an absolute quiet space in the library for graduate students who are at the stage of intensive research and writing. Approved graduate students can access the space during regular library hours. There is no after-hours access


  • Where is the full information on the Graduate Commons?
  • Who is eligible?
    All currently registered graduate students in good standing with their department and with Libraries and Cultural Resources are eligible to apply. “Good standing” means you have no outstanding fines, registration withholds and that current fees have been paid in full.
  • Is there any cost to access the room?
    No. Access to the room is free of charge.
  • How long can you use the room?
    Successful applicants will be granted access from May 15th -April 30th. All continuing students are eligible to reapply for access when their access expires.
    Deadlines for applications are on the Graduate Commons page of the library website.
    Access to the room expires at 5:00pm on April 30th every year. If you have a locker, all lockers must be cleaned out by this time and the keys returned to the designated person or location.
    The Graduate Commons is closed from April 30th to May 15th every year so that it may be used for Graduate Success Week workshops and for cleaning.
    How do I apply?
    To initiate your application please click on the “Apply Now” button on the Graduate Commons webpage.
    The applications will be vetted and if access is granted you will be contacted to bring your UCID to the library and sign a Terms of Use agreement in person.
    The Agreement contains the rules of the room and is your promise to abide by these rules to maintain a safe, clean, quiet, common study environment for everyone.
    Once you have signed the Agreement we will request Campus Security to grant you access to the room.  It might take 3-5 days for Campus Security to input you into the system. 
    Once Campus Security has input you into the system your UCID card will be your pass key to activate the security key plate.
  • What are the terms of use for the Graduate Commons?
    Access is granted solely to the person on the application form.
    You are not allowed to share your card or bring other colleagues into the room.
    Allowing ineligible people in to the room will result in your access being revoked.
    Your UCID card (Unicard) is your passkey into the room. If you lose your Unicard you are responsible for replacing it and notifying LCR that you have a new Unicard number.
    Replacement cards will not work to access the Commons until we have been notified and can re-authorize Security to let you in. Library staff cannot grant a temporary card.
    All study spaces are shared. Tables and carrels are available on a first-come basis. 
    There are no assigned spaces and students cannot claim a space or carrell as their own for the term.
    LCR is not responsible for lost or stolen items. The Graduate Commons is still a public space despite having restricted access. Please keep track of your personal belongings and do not leave valuables unattended.
    Graduate relevant workshops are very occasionally held in the Graduate Commons. You are welcome to participate in them.  But be sure to check the board to see if a program will be happening. If you require quiet study during that period, you will have to use another part of the library.
    No unborrowed library materials are allowed in the Commons.  If you are taking library materials into the room, check them out first.  There is a fine of $5.00 per unchecked item that you have in the room.
    There are restrictions on food, drink, noise and behaviour in the room.  Behaviour that disrupts the ability to study is not allowed. Cold snacks without strong odors and drinks in containers with a lid are permitted. 
  • What are the Room Amenities?
    There are a limited number of lockers available.  You may request a locker when you come in person to sign the Terms of Use agreement required to complete your application. Lockers are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis only. Lockers are free of charge, but students who lose their key or fail to hand them in at the end of their access term will be charged a $25.00 replacement fee.