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FindIt@Bham online help

Borrowing books

Most of the books we have on the open shelves in our libraries are borrowable.  Those that are not will be clearly marked as For reference only or For library use only inside the front cover and on the catalogue record. 

You can borrow books using the self-issue machines (right) which we have available at various points in the Main Library, the Barnes Library and the Dental Library.  In other libraries, or if you have any problems with using the self-issuing machines, you can take your books to the help desk to have them issued.

Loan periods

Books are issued for a week, unless they are high demand (see below).  They will renew automatically overnight, extending the due date by a day, until:

  • someone else requests the book
  • you have a large amount of fines
  • your library account expires at the end of your course.

You can sign in to check your loans on FindIt@Bham. You will also be sent emails to let you know that the item is due back so it is important to check your university email account regularly.

High demand:  If you request an item and other people have requested it as well, it will be issued to you for 48 hours instead of a week.

The Library Services web site has full details of our loans system.

Requesting books

When a book you need is out on loan to someone else, you can request it by following these steps:

1.  Click on the title or on Check for current availability …  

2.  In the next screen, click on Sign in (if you are not already signed in) to see the details of the book.  Click on Request:

3.  Complete the form and click on Request.  You can collect your requested item from any UoB library.

4.  You will see a confirmation screen advising you of your position in the request queue:

5.  You will receive an email when your requested item is ready to collect.  If other people have requested it after you, you will only be able to borrow it for 48 hours rather than a week. In the Main Library, items are held on the shelves in the Library Information Centre on the ground floor. Make sure you issue the book to yourself using our self-issue machines.

Books in the Research Reserve

About 80% of our book stock is in the Research Reserve, so it is important to search on the catalogue so as not to miss valuable reading material on your subject.

If you find a book that shows it is in the Research Reserve, you can request it online:

Click on Check for current availability and, if it is available for loan, you can click on Request this item from the Research Reserve to be given the online request form:

We will fetch the item and keep it for you to collect from the shelves in the Library Information Centre on the ground floor of the Main Library, or at another site library if you ask for it to be delivered there. We aim to have the item ready within 24 hours. In the Main Library, make sure you issue the book to yourself on our self-issue machine.

What if I can't find the book I need?

If a book is showing on the catalogue as being available, but you cannot find it, let the Library know via Just Ask!.  If it is missing, we may be able to replace it.

If there is a book that you need for your course or your research, and we do not have it on our catalogue, there are two things you can do:

  • Recommend that we buy it for library stock using the MoreBooks@Bham online form.  If it is available for purchase, and it is likely to be of use to other readers, we will order it.
  • Obtain it from another library using the Inter Library Loans service.  You may be able to obtain an Inter Library Loan voucher from your department, or otherwise purchase one from the Library.
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