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Using the Library

Our Libraries are open to students for studying as well as browsing of print collections. 

As a member of the University of Derby, you have access to our print and online collections. We have access to 700,000 eBooks and 250,000 print books. We also have access to journals both within our Libraries and online. In addition if we don't have access to the item you are looking for try requesting an Inter Library Loan.

How do I borrow items from the Library?

You can either browse the shelves and then take out the item or you can reserve the item (see section below) and then collect the book from the Reservations area when you are notified that it is ready.

How do I access eBooks or journals online?

To access our online collection the best place to start is Library Search.

Most eBooks should have 24-hour access (on and off campus) as well as work on mobile devices. Some of the licences we can purchase do vary so please get in touch if you're having any problems accessing what you need.

Loan allowances

You can borrow up to 15 items and they are issued for one week. Items are now automatically renewed unless they are recalled for another borrower. If the item is recalled for another borrower you will be notified of the date the book needs to be returned by. Items returned late will incur a replacement cost charge.

How do I access PCs and laptops?

As a student, you have access to plenty of computers and laptops on site. There are over 3000 devices (including Windows PCs and Apple Macs) to use throughout our libraries and labs and there are around 200 short term loan laptops that you can borrow. You have access to these throughout your time as a student.

Laptops can be borrowed from self-service units for either 4 hours or 2 weeks. These units can be found in our libraries at: Kedleston Road, Britannia Mill, and Buxton. Laptops are available at our Leek library too – please ask at the library service desk. There are also self-service units at University sites in non-library spaces: Chesterfield, Markeaton Street, and One Friar Gate Square.

Who can I ask for help with a PC, laptop or internet question?

If you’d like to ask an IT related question, our award-winning IT Services is available for you to contact.

Laptop loans are counted within the 15 item allocation but will not auto-renew. These loans are issued for a fixed period of time and must be returned by their due date.

It is important to keep a regular check on your Library account to ensure nothing is required to be returned. If charges occur; they can be managed in your account. You'll temporarily lose your borrowing rights if items are not returned, and you have more than £30 owing on your account.

Non returned / lost or damaged items

In the following cases we'll request that an item is paid for in full:

  • The item has been lost
  • The item is damaged beyond repair
  • The item is returned with a part missing

You may be asked to return your books to the library if they are requested by another user (you will be notified by email to your Unimail account).

How do I return books?

The easiest way to return your books is by using the Self Service machines in the library. You can return your items and then get a receipt to confirm that the items have been returned. At Derby and Buxton, you can return books to the book box 'Library Book Vault' outside the main entrances; of the atrium at Kedleston Road, and at the side entrance of the Buxton Dome.

If the item you need is not on the shelf, is on loan, or is at another site, you can reserve the item. Reservations can be placed using Library Search. You can have up to 8 active reservations which can be collected from the site of your choice

SCONUL Access Scheme

If you are a student from another University in the UK or the Republic of Ireland you may be interested in the SCONUL Access scheme.

Post-graduate, part-time, distance, and placement students can apply to join the scheme in order to borrow materials from the University of Derby libraries. Members will also be provided with limited access to computing facilities.

Full-time undergraduate students may be able to join the scheme to use the University's resources for reference only.

Please note there is no access to the FE Libraries at Buxton and Leek, and the Britannia Mill Library in Derby.

Members of the public

Access for members of the public is currently under review. If you would like to access the Library collections please contact the Library in the first instance at

Library support for distance, online learning and off campus students

We support students on:

  • Online learning programmes
  • Distance learning programmes
  • Research programmes, when living outside Derby city and not employed by the University

Postal loans

We offer a postal loan service of University of Derby stock

  • We can only post books within the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
  • We are unable to post paper copies of books if we hold the title as an eBook.
  • You can search for and reserve your books using the online library catalogue.

Books are sent to you by Recorded Delivery in a padded bag. They will require a signature on receipt so please let us know if you would like us to post them to an alternative address. Please reuse the padded bag to return your items and send them by Recorded Delivery. A return address label is provided in the package for you to use. We pay for the postage out to you, and you pay for the return postage.