The key to finding books is the computer catalogue. There are guidance notes on searching beside the enquiry terminals. The General search allows you to type in an author surname and/or title word, or a phrase. The Advanced search is more specific. From the entries on the catalogue you will be able to see how many copies of a book are in the library stock, the editions, and whether they are available for loan.
The classmark will tell you where in the library the book can be found. The library operates on a Dewey decimal based classification system (a decimal number followed by the first three letters of the Author's Surname, e.g. 942.7 JOH), and the numbers ascend through the library with the lowest numbers in the basement and the highest on the top gallery.
Some classmarks have a prefix signifying that they are part of a separate collection of books, and will be out of the normal shelving sequence. The main special sections are WOMEN (next to the stairs on the ground floor), F or FOLIO which signifies an outsize book (at the end of the first floor gallery, or occasionally shelved at the end of a section as in the case of Art, Architecture and Music), REF (reference books, located in the basement), RAWSON (far end of the ground floor), GABE (at the end of the French section, first floor gallery), Short Loan or SLC and STORE (available on request from a librarian, only to be used in the library).
If you encounter any difficulties in locating books that are recorded as "available" on the computer system, please seek help from library staff.
If you cannot find a particular book in the catalogue, you can always suggest that a copy be purchased. A suggestion book is kept on the desk by the issue and return machine on the ground floor.
How to borrow books
Readers are allowed to borrow up to 10 books at any one time, both during term time and vacation.
Books can be taken out for 3 weeks at a time.
Books should be returned as soon as they are finished with or when recalled by the Assistant Librarian for another reader. Reference books must not be removed from the library.
EVERY BOOK TAKEN OUT OF THE LIBRARY MUST BE BORROWED EITHER ON THE COMPUTER OR IN THE BOOK
All open-access books can be borrowed on the computer terminal near the library entrance. You will need to scan in the reader code on your University ID card with the barcode scanner and then scan the barcode on the front of each of your books. The number of books you currently have on loan will automatically be shown. Once you have borrowed all your books please wait while the screen clears your record, otherwise the next borrower may inadvertently borrow on your card.
If there is a problem with the computer or if you have forgotten your borrowing card, please write the details in one of the borrowing books next to the terminal, including your name, author name, title and the accession number. The accession number is the barcode number on the front or inside cover of the book and will begin with a "T" followed by five or six digits.
Illegally borrowed books
The borrowing system relies on trust. Many books are in great demand from students in more than one subject and we expect co-operation in circulating them. Because of the unacceptably high number of missing books it is a priority to track down readers who take them without signing them out.
How to return books
Books should be returned using the computer terminal near the library entrance. You will need to scan in the barcode on the front of each of your books. Please place returned books in the Book Return Bin on the ground floor.
How to renew books
Books can be renewed up to 3 times, unless they are required by another student. If books have been requested by another student, they need to be returned as soon as possible. In this instance any books not returned within 1 week will be subject to a fine.
If you are unable to find the book you want, please ask one of the library staff for assistance. If staff are unavailable please fill out a reservation form (found on the desk opposite the Assistant Librarian's office) giving details of the book. The form must be completed fully or we cannot guarantee the reservation: be sure to complete the classmark, the accession number (barcode or "T" number) of the book together with edition information (if applicable). If the book is on loan it will be recalled. If it is unobtainable for whatever reason (e.g. missing or awaiting repair) you will be informed.
At the beginning and end of each term before borrowing begins, readers may reserve up to three books. This service helps readers obtain heavily used books. It is not possible for students to reserve books they still have on loan or have just returned.
Books on tables
By filling out table reservation slips, which can be found on all tables in the library, you may keep up to five books for three days on a table before they are cleared, checked against borrowing records and reshelved. All library books without reservation slips will be cleared from the tables each morning.
New books are displayed on shelves near the entrance to the library. A list of new books can be found on the Library Catalogue search screen, under the "What's new" heading. An RSS feed is also available for new books, accessible from the library news page: http://linux02.lib.cam.ac.uk/rss/accessions/by_holding/NHL.rss
Short loan collection
Books in heavy demand are kept in the Short Loan Collection and may be borrowed for two or three days at a time. They are identified by a classmark suffix of SLC on the library catalogue.
Films and Dvds
The library also has videos and DVDs that can be borrowed in the same way. All the titles appear in the library catalogue. Many more CD-ROMs and DVDs are available at the University Library and faculty libraries.
Copyright restrictions apply to videos/DVDs, as follows:
Films may be borrowed on a short-term basis by registered library users for their own individual private study and non-commercial research.
Films may be borrowed by registered library users and shown to an audience of University Staff and students. Such a showing must be for educational, instructional purposes only. No fee may be charged for the viewing.
Films may not be shown to the general public.
No copies of a film may be made in any format or media. Digital rights management measures such as copy control measures embedded in the media may not be removed for any purpose.
The library does not take many periodicals, as hard copies are available at the University Library and faculty libraries.
Recent issues of periodicals and journals that the library takes can be found on the display unit next to the Law Reading Room. Back copies for the current year are stored behind the lift up shelves. Back copies from previous years are generally shelved on the second gallery on the end wall at the opposite end to the stairs.
Thousands of journals can now be accessed electronically through eresources@cambridge: http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/electronicresources/
Some popular issues of the University Reporter (e.g. Lecture Lists and Awards) and the Cambridge University Guide to Courses are held for reference in the Assistant Librarian's office. The Reporter, including special numbers, is also available online at http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/reporter/
Although the College is fairly liberal with its borrowing system we are strict about recalling all books at the beginning and end of each year, and impose fines for those that are returned late. You will be notified of the date by posters around College and by an email reminder about a week beforehand.
All late books incur a fine of £1 per book per week or part week. Fines do not make money for the library. They are imposed to ensure that books are returned on time and to allow other readers to have fair access to them.
Computers (including a MAC) are available for students' use in the IT Resource Centre; a computer is also located in the Law Reading Room. You are welcome to bring your own laptop to use in the library; there are plug sockets and data points on all the ground floor tables. The library has free wireless Internet access for students. In order to access the network, you will need to configure your computer using instructions provided by the computer office. Copies are kept in the Assistant Librarian's office. Scanning facilities are also available in the IT Resource Centre.
Whilst the library is set aside for quiet study, students wishing to work together in groups can book to use the Law reading room. The room can be booked between the following times: 9.00am-11.00am and 11.00am-1.00pm. Please see or email library staff to book the room. Please note that after 1.00pm the room reverts back to general use.
Tea and Coffee
Join the library staff for tea and coffee in the library office every Friday between 11.00-11.30am during term time.
Online information resources
Other library catalogues
The most commonly accessed services are the online catalogues of the University Library, collectively called Newton, which include most Departmental and College Libraries.
Newton can be accessed from a dedicated terminal on the ground floor of the library, online: http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/ from your own computer or any of the PWF computers, or through the new Cambridge Libraries Gateway at http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/libraries/.
The Gateway will enable you to view electronic resources and the new library induction video, renew your books via the Cambridge Libraries Widget and keep up to date with what's happening via the Cambridge Libraries Twitter feed.
Via Newton you may order some categories of University Library books in advance, so that they can be fetched for your use in the reading rooms before you arrive at the UL, saving you time.
All undergraduates can now borrow up to 5 books from the University Library. We strongly recommend that you attend University Library sessions introducing the University Library and the Newton Catalogue.
eresources@cambridge: http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/electronicresources is a portal to all the electronic resources available to the University, including databases, e-Books and electronic journals. It is possible to browse by subject to find all available electronic resources, or you may choose to search for a specific book or article. Some resources require you to log in with your Raven password.
One of the most important collections of databases is Web of Knowledge (click ‘find databases' and search ‘web of knowledge'), which includes The Arts and Humanities Citation Index as well as Science and Social Sciences Indexes. In addition OCLC/Firstsearch offers a wide range of databases, including WorldCat, which is the largest bibliographical database in the world.
ebooks@cambridge provides all current members of the University with electronic versions of over 1,000 of the most popular undergraduate textbooks, covering all Tripos subjects. If a title is available as an e-book, it will appear in the Newton Catalogue with the location ‘electronic resource'. Clicking on the title will take you to a link to the full text e-book.
For more information and a full list of titles arranged by subject,
see the ebooks@cambridge website: http://www.sel.cam.ac.uk/ebooks@cambridge/.
E-book titles available through ebooks@cambridge are slowly being added to our own library catalogue.
In addition to the titles subscribed to by the ebooks@cambridge project, the supplier Netlibrary: http://www.netlibrary.com/ also provides access to over 3,000 publicly available books. Out-of-copyright works are available through Netlibrary, but do not appear as electronic resources in the Newton Catalogue. Another supplier of e-books is MyiLibrary: http://lib.myilibrary.com/home.asp.
Cambridge Companions Online is a unique scholarly resource for the humanities covering over 220 books and 2,000 essays written by experts, published during the past 20 years. Access is now available through eresources@cambridge - click on ‘find databases' and search for ‘Cambridge companion'. For access to the full text you may need to click on 'Log In', but no passwords are required within the cam.ac.uk domain.
Normal copyright printing limits apply with e-books. Library staff will be happy to help should you require any further assistance.
Library staff provide drop in induction sessions on "Using the library" during the first two weeks of Michaelmas Term. To book a library tour please sign up using our Induction Booking Form. If you miss one, please contact the library to arrange an induction.
Further advanced training on finding relevant books and journal articles will be available throughout the term. The College's Gateway Skills Development Programme will also include sessions on information skills.
Library staff will also be happy to assist you with all types of computer searches and can offer advice on resources for projects.
The University Library also runs courses throughout the year to help you get the best use out of electronic databases and catalogues. Please see the posters in our library, or the University Library website (http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/Courses/index.html).
intute (http://www.intute.ac.uk) is a government funded online service providing access to evaluated web resources for education and research and a highly recommended Virtual Training Suite, which teaches Internet skills from a subject angle.
- No smoking
- No eating or drinking (apart from water in small bottles)
- No illegal borrowing of books
- No talking on mobile phones
Persistant offences will incur an on-the-spot fine of £5.00.