COVID-19 Library Updates
Information about Library & University Collections services in response to COVID-19
This page will be kept up to date with information about Library & University Collections facilities and services.
In line with Phase 2 of the Scottish Government roadmap for research and innovation, the University can begin to reopen laboratories, research facilities and libraries for access to research materials from Monday 29June. This means that we can prepare the first steps towards the reopening of libraries, which will start with limited access to the Main Library and CRC services. It will take time to put these services in place, so please continue to check this page for regular updates.
Click & Collect Service
The Library is developing a new Click & Collect service to provide access to general collection items. This will begin as a limited service with access to Main Library collections for University staff and Postgraduate Taught and Research students. The service will expand to provide access to collections at other sites where possible, dependent on the opening of those buildings with safe and compliant practices being in place.
The service will be tested from 13 July, with 20 July as the target full launch date. Further information about how to place requests will be provided here as service plans progress.
Returning Library Books
Plans are underway to enable the return of library books to the Main Library while ensuring the safety of all Library users. Further details will be provided here when a date for the return of items is confirmed.
The Centre for Research Collections will be returning to campus and opening soon as a designated arts, humanities and social sciences research lab. To support staff and students over the summer and into the coming academic year, the CRC has been asked to lead on returning to the University of Edinburgh’s Main campus. Please note this is a limited, appointment-only service, with priority given to University of Edinburgh staff and students.
To find out more see our webpages: www.ed.ac.uk/is/crc
We are planning the re-opening of libraries in line with advice from the Scottish Government. There are a lot of steps to take before any staff will return to work in our Library buildings - as well as general building reviews, risk assessments will be undertaken as each area of activity is planned to resume.
We’re expecting our first access to Library buildings to be the Main Library. When we first get access our priority will be to assess how we can:
• Enable the return of books to the Main Library.
• Undertake E-Reserve scanning of Main Library items for teaching for 2020/21.
At the same time we're looking at how we might resume or put in place other services and activity, including:
· Collection of items from the University Collections Facility.
· Click and Collect’ service for books from Main Library, and following this, other library sites.
· Managing the receipt and acquisition of new print items.
University of Edinburgh loans
All items currently on loan which were due between 1st January 2020 and 21st June 2020 will have their due date changed to the 31st August 2020. No fines will accrue on items over this period.
- All current recalls and requests are cancelled
- Maximum number of items for staff and students has been increased to 100
- Maximum number of reserves is set at 6
We’re currently not able to accept book returns as our University Libraries are closed but we’re looking into ways that you can return your borrowed items so keep checking this page for updates.
No fines will accrue on items over this period and users will not be fined for the late return of items due to the current Library closures.
Please retain your ILL items at the moment, to be returned when we are again able to provide access to our libraries.
For help with accessing online Library resources, including support for online learning and teaching:
For information about the availability of E-reserve services including copyright compliant scans for teaching, and temporary extensions to copying limits:
For information about temporary extended access to e-books and other e-resources:
Help and support
Are you writing a dissertation this summer? Would you be using Archives, Manuscripts, Rare Books or Museum collections material if the Library was open? Our expert curators are here to help you cope with the consequences of the closure. We can provide information and advice on our collections, help navigate our digital image collections, help find substitute source material, answer questions. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Curators’ hotline’ in the subject line, and your enquiry will be fast-tracked to the appropriate curator.
For information on finding academic literature, referencing and more for all subjects:
For guidance on preparing for online exams:
For sessions on using the Library's online resources:
Events @ Edinburgh event booking: Library Bitesize - Using the online Library (University login required)
Online learning pages
For information about how to use online resources, including prerecorded Bitesize sessions:
Help from Academic Support Librarians
For library-related support for teaching, learning and research, Academic Support Librarians are available for all subject areas. For resources and guidance see:
University-wide COVID-19 updates
For the latest information and advice from the University of Edinburgh see the University's updates page: