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New Students: An Introduction to BGU Library

Everything you need to know to get started using BGU Library.

Soon to enrol at BGU, or in your first few weeks here? Then you're new to our library and these pages are just for you - welcome!  The Library is located in the Cornerstone Building, in the south-west corner of the campus next to the University Chapel.

All students get a library orientation session early in their first semester, but in the meantime there's lots on this page to help you find out more about our services and facilities. You can also use the tabs above to find out more about our opening hours, subject guides, our FAQs site AskUs, and how to contact us. In addition, if you click on the LibGuides link at the top of the page you'll be able to see all of the other LibGuides we've produced.  The most important thing to remember is that if there's something you're not sure about please ask for help - it's what we're here for!

Borrowing basics

All students can borrow up to 25 library resources at a time.  Your University ID card is also your library card.

Loan periods vary according to the type of material you want to borrow:

  • Standard loans (the vast majority of our resources) can be borrowed for up to three weeks, unless you on a Education MA in which case the standard loan period is nine weeks;
  • One week loans can be borrowed for one week.
  • Children's resources located in Teaching Resources Collection can be borrowed for up to twelve weeks*;

All resources can be renewed.  You also have the facility to reserve books that other people have on loan by placing a hold on them.

You can return items using the returns box outside the Cornerstone Building (in the library wall, at the end of the covered walkway).

Fines are charged for the late return or renewal of loans at a rate of 20p per day for standard & children's loans and 50p per day for one week loans.  If you accrue £10 or more in fines and/or library charges your library account will be suspended until you settle your fine in full. The maximum we charge for one instance of a fine is £50.  

To help you manage your loans we normally send you an email reminder 3 days before any item you have on loan is due to be returned, but it is also advisable to check your account yourself on a regular basis to monitor return dates. We also operate a grace period. which you can read more about here.

If you lose or irreparably damage a library loan you will be charged the replacement cost, or alternatively you can choose to supply us with a replacement copy of the item yourself.

*These resources are aimed at students who are training to be teachers or work in educational settings and are likely to spend time on placement, hence the longer loan period.

Signing into your library account

Once you enrol on your course your library account is automatically set up for you. You'll know when it's ready because you'll be able to login to it from WorldCat. Your username and password are the same as the ones you use to login to your BGU email account. Once logged in you can check what you have on loan, renew loans, and check the status of requests, as well as monitor any fines or charges you may accrue.  There are detailed instructions below:

Access to the Library and to support

At the start of the academic year the library team would normally be welcoming you into the Library building and showing you around, but, regrettably, as a result of Covid-19, access to the Library building is currently limited and you may only enter if you have pre-booked. You'll find more information about these services on our Covid-19 pages.

That said, there is still plenty of support available to you, both online and by contacting us directly. On this site (LibGuides) there's lots of information available from the LibGuides homepage, including how-to videos and tutorials. From the start of the semester you'll also find an Induction button on the library's Blackboard site with lots of resources and information behind it.  For more about how we can support you click here.

The best way to contact us is to email  You might also find our FAQs site useful.


It's really important for you to know about WorldCat and what it can do for you.  WorldCat is our library catalogue and contains a record of every item in the Library (over 140,000!): it is available at http://bishopg.worldcat.orgon and off campus. WorldCat also allows you to monitor your library account including your loans, holds and fines (see the box above called Signing into your library account).

WorldCat also provides access to many online resources, including e-books and journal databases.  On campus you can access all online resources automatically; off campus you will be prompted to login with your BGU username and password (the same ones you will use for Blackboard and email). To find out more about our online resources and how to access them - including all of those not available through WorldCat - click here.  

For more information about WorldCat check out our All About WorldCat LibGuide.

Conduct and behaviour

When using the Library please:

  • Bring your loans back on time to keep resources circulating for the benefit of all library patrons.
  • Only bring lidded drinks into the Library: food and open drink containers are not permitted.
  • Avoid taking or making phone calls.  Texting is fine.
  • When listening to music through headphones, avoid disturbing other library patrons by keeping the volume low
  • Maintain a studious atmosphere at all times.

For more about your rights and responsibilities click here.


You cannot photocopy/print unlimited amounts from library resources (this is against the law!) but you are permitted to photocopy/print limited amounts, as prescribed by copyright law and various copyright licences held by University.  In general you should photocopy/print no more than 10% or one chapter of a book (whichever is greater) and no more than one article per journal issue but you are advised to visit our Copyright for BGU Students site to gain a better understanding of the rules as they apply to all types of library resources. The documents below may also be of use.

What to Expect From Your Library 2020 to 2021

Computers, printing and copying

There are computers around the Library and in the 24/7 IT Suite (off the Cornerstone Building foyer).  

Wi-fi is available throughout the Cornerstone Building and there are plenty of study spaces with power sockets to plug in your own laptop or mobile device. 

Printing and photocopying is pay-as-you-go using your University ID card.  A single sheet of black & white A4 printing or copying costs 4p and colour costs 20p.  A print account is set up for you when you join the University and is initially credited with £5.  Top-up your account online - for more about this click here.

IT Help is available by emailing

Library charges

There is no charge for BGU students to use the Library or borrow resources. Fees/charges do however apply to the following:

  • If you return or renew a library loan late, or if you lose or irreparably damage a library loan (see Borrowing basics above);
  • Printing and photocopying (see Computers, printing and copying above);
  • Replacement of your library card (your BGU Student ID card) if you lose or damage it (£10).

What you wish you'd known earlier

A couple of years ago we asked current students what they wished they'd known earlier about the Library.  Click below to see some of the responses.

Image attribution

All photos ©Bishop Grosseteste University.