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Borrowing and Returning Books

Books in UEA Library are found across all 6 floors. Books are arranged by topic, according to the Library of Congress system. To browse books for your subject, please consult the ‘find your subject’ poster on Floor 0; on the doors to the main stairwell. You can also pick up a ‘find your subject’ flyer from the Library Helpdesk.

If you are looking for a specific book and you know the title and author, you can use the library catalogue to find out exactly where it is. You can access the library catalogue on your own laptop or phone from anywhere in the world using the Library Search on our homepage, or you can use one of our catalogue PCs in the Library.  

On the Library catalogue search result, you will see the book details, whether or not it is available, and the shelf location details.   

Screenshot of Library Search highlighting what are the book details, where you can see availability status, and shelf location.

If the book is available, you can collect it from the Library shelves. If it is unavailable, a pink “Request” button will appear on the search result. Click the request button and we will recall a copy back to the Library for you. 

The shelf location section will tell you which floor of the Library to go to, if the book is on the main shelves or the oversize shelves, and the book’s call number. 

A call number is a code of letters and numbers that lets you locate the exactly where to look for a book. 

If you intend to borrow a book and take it out of the Library, please check the book’s spine and inside cover to make sure it isn’t a reference only book. Reference only books cannot leave the library, and they cannot be issued to your library account. 

Once you’ve found a book that you want to borrow, take it to the borrowing machines on Floor 0, opposite the Library Helpdesk.  

Hold your campus card with the photo facing upwards, and scan the barcode under the red light. The borrowing machine will ask you to place the book on the shelf. Once you've done this, the book title will appear on the borrowing machine. 

Press the green “Done” button. You will then see your library account screen; you can check what items you have on loan, or press the green “Done” button again to log out. 

Most UEA Library books renew automatically every 7 days, so you can keep a book for as long as you need. However, if someone else has requested a book that you have borrowed, it will not automatically renew and you will receive an email asking you to return the book within the next 7 days. 

High demand books work in exactly the same way, the only difference is that they automatically renew every 3 days instead of every 7 days. 

In the Library building on Floor 0, head towards the main IT area and you will see the book returns machine on the right-hand side. Put your items on the conveyor belt one at a time and follow the instructions on the screen. Once all your items are returned you will receive an email receipt within the hour. 

If you are on campus but short on time, there are two metal drop boxes outside the main door. Open the shoot and put all your books in. You will receive a returns receipt within the next 24 hours. 

If you are away from UEA and need to return something you can post items to us at the following address: The Library, University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norfolk, NR4 7TJ. We recommend getting proof of postage. Once the items arrive in the Library you will be notified by email.   

You can also arrange for your books to be collected for free. You will need access to a printer to use this service. 

If you are based in the Edith Cavel building, you can use the drop box there and items will be returned to the Library within two working days. 

Have you got your campus card the right way round? Hold your card with your photo facing upwards and scan the barcode under the red light.   

Books still not issuing? You may have picked up a Reference only book by mistake. These are identified by small ‘Ref’ stickers on the spine. You can use this book in the building, but you won’t be able to borrow it.  

Have you reached your borrowing limit? Do you have any overdue books? This might be stopping you from borrowing further items. Return any unwanted books and you will be able to borrow some more. If you don’t think you have anything overdue speak to a member of staff at the Library Helpdesk.   

When your requested book becomes available, you will receive an email from us. You can then collect the item from the Helpdesk. 

If we don’t have the book you need there are a variety of options. You can request we look into buying a copy (either in print or an electronic version). Or you can request that we borrow the item from another institution for you by making an Interlending request