Studying online

We have increased the number of e-resources you can access and now provide you with access to around one million e-books, 100,000 e-journals, plus a wide range of databases.

You can use our scan-and-deliver service to request digitised book chapters and journal articles, which we will email to you. We can also post items to you. More information can be found on our borrowing pages.

If you are having problems accessing the materials you need online (for example books, journals and articles) - please contact us.


How to use key technology for online lessons

We've created a guide to online learning with advice on key technology and how to engage with online lessons.

Online learning

Additional access to digital content

A number of publishers and content providers have opened up some or all of their digital content to support library users during this period.

Find out more about additional access to digital content during the coronavirus period.

Disabled users

Here are some specific resources to help disabled users:

Please contact us if you need any further support with accessing reading for your course.

Visiting our Libraries

We are still operating at a reduced capacity, so you should check the library occupancy status (traffic-light system) before visiting us. Please familiarise yourself with our current safety measures.

View opening hours

Library occupancy status (traffic-light system)

We are monitoring building occupancy and may need to restrict access when we are busy. To ensure that you can work safely in our spaces, we are using a traffic-light system to help us manage building occupancy. When entering our libraries, you will see signage with our current status, with staff on hand to direct you to the closest available study spaces.

Here is what our traffic light system means to you:

  • Green – there is plenty of study space available.
  • Amber – we are close to reaching our current capacity. Please consider returning later if your visit is not essential.
  • Red – our study spaces are full and we are closed to new arrivals. Please make yourself known to staff at the entrance if you have items to return or have a collect notification.

As our spaces open from busy corridor areas, we are unable to allow queuing outside of our entrance. You will be asked to leave by University staff if you are waiting outside during a red status period.

You can view our current building occupancy status level on our online hub. We will update this regularly throughout the day, Monday to Friday during opening hours.

Check library status levels

External users (not a UWE Bristol student or staff member)

Latest update: Monday 19 July

We remain closed to external users at this time.

Our Libraries are currently open for UWE Bristol students and staff only. As a result of our significantly reduced occupancy and restrictions on campus, we are unable to invite external users back into our buildings at this time. We recognise that this may be disappointing for some of you.

Some of you have books that you may be hoping to return. Our customer service team should have been in touch with you directly to discuss a variety of options for return. Alternatively, you can contact us to discuss your options.

What needs to happen before you can invite us back to on to campus?

We are awaiting government guidance for Higher Education institutions about how we should be operating once other national restrictions are lifted. We are expecting to receive this on or around Monday 19 July. We will need some time to digest this and what it means for how we configure our spaces for the autumn semester. We are unable to invite you back whilst we still have reduced occupancy levels.

If our library spaces are allowed to return to their normal occupancy levels, then we will work with our Health and Safety team and Public Health England on a suitable date for inviting external users back to our library buildings.

We look forward to inviting you back when it is safe to do so.

What will you be able to offer me when I return?

We have been working behind the scenes to improve our offer to you:

  • Fixing the technical issues we had with offering you access to electronic resources, such as databases (on campus).
  • When you return, we are hoping to be able to issue you with assigned user credentials (a log in) instead of you needing to request a temporary user credentials every time you visit. N.B. You will still only be able to access electronic resources on library computers.
  • With your new assigned user credentials, you will be able to add printing credit to your account and use our printers.

Safety measures in our libraries

  • In line with Government advice, you will still be expected to wear a face mask in our libraries, including whilst seated, unless you are medically exempt. You may remove your face covering when eating.
  • Sanitisation stations can be found across our floors, with hand gels and wipes for use before and after using study desks and equipment.
  • You should continue to test twice a week, either using home test kits or at an on-site facility. You can collect home-testing kits from our libraries. Remember, if you have symptoms you need to book a PCR test instead. Find out more about COVID-19 testing
  • We are using the free NHS Covid-19 app for library visitors to check-in whilst using our study spaces, as per the latest Government guidance. Please use the QR codes provided, these can be found as you enter each study floor and on each study desk. If you are just visiting to return a book or for 'click and collect' collection, you do not need to check in using this system. You can find more details about the app, including a video, Privacy Notice and FAQs on the NHS COVID-19 website.
  • Books, laptops and other physical items will be quarantined for 3 days before being reissued.

Access to physical resources

  • Our click-and-collect service enables you to make a request for physical items before your visit, as we cannot facilitate browsing. Alternatively, you can use our scan-and-deliver service to request digitised book chapters and journal articles, which we will email to you. More information can be found on our borrowing pages.
  • Printing is available.

Accessing the Special Collections at Bower Ashton Library

Students and academic staff can request to view items from the Special Collections in Bower Ashton Library. Library Search should be used to identify the items (artists' books, zines, comics) you wish to consult. For Visionaire please contact Bower Ashton Library to identify the items you wish to consult. Access is available during our staffed hours but must be requested in advance.

Students and academic staff can also request a time to browse the Special Collection (1 person only) on either a Thursday or Friday 08:30-10:00 only, to allow time over the weekend for the collection and items to pass through quarantine.  

Submit a request

To arrange all of the above please complete the request below and allow at least two working day's notice.

Request Special Collections items

Inter-library loans

Our Inter-Library Loan Service is still operating.

  • New requests - Please submit an inter-library loan request and we will contact you if it is not possible to fulfil it.
  • Returns - You can return items to our Frenchay, Glenside and Bower Ashton libraries, which remain open. Please check our opening hours and returns information.

If you have any queries please contact the inter-library loans team.


We have widened our services to support you working from home. These include bookable 1:1 support via Microsoft Teams, providing support on a range of topics including finding resources to improving your study skills.

Our Ask a Librarian 24/7 online chat and email services remain available for whenever you need us.

One-to-one appointments

Check Infohub to book a one-to-one appointment on topics such as reading, writing and referencing, literature reviews and critical writing. Find out more about one-to-one appointments.

If no appointment slots are available, contact us to discuss your needs.

Study skills advice and support

Access online library workbooks to improve your study skills, including reading and note taking, writing, critical thinking, presentation skills and time management. These interactive resources cover the skills that you need to be successful in your assignments. You will also find a series of reading lists which list additional books, training videos and other resources that will enable you to develop your skills further. You can also sign up for our online workshops or book a one-to-one appointment for help with study skills.

Study skills 

LinkedIn Learning

Access thousands of online training videos in software, design and business. LinkedIn Learning is a vast library of high quality, current, and engaging video tutorials. Perfect for developing the skills you need during your studies, for future employment and even your hobbies. If you’re a staff member, you’ll find training courses about business software and tools that you might have recently needed to adopt due to home working.

LinkedIn Learning

Updates for academic staff

Copyright guidance for teaching staff during COVID-19

We've published some copyright guidance for teaching staff during COVID-19 about preparing learning materials for remote teaching.

Digitisation service

Our Digitisation Service (staff intranet) is still operating. Please submit a digitisation request (via your reading list or the online form) and we will contact you if it is not possible to fulfil it.

Library support

Academic staff can contact their Subject Librarians to discuss:

  • delivery of online teaching for study skills
  • assistance in putting together a bespoke package of the extensive online content available through the study skills pages
  • designing assessments in line with the digital resources available for students to use.

Support from IT services

Please visit the IT Services webpages for more information that will help you to study remotely. This includes software to download for use at home.

You may also need: IT Services Status Hub