Information for College Members


The Library is open to all current members of Oriel. All undergraduate and postgraduate freshers will be invited to a tour of the library in Freshers' Week of Michaelmas Term. The Junior Library (Pantin Library) is accessed via doors in second and third quad and is open 24/7 during term time via your University (Bod) Card. The Senior Library, accessed via a door on the first floor of the Junior Library, is open from 9am-5pm on weekdays during full term only for silent study. There are some periods (for instance between Christmas and New Year) when the Library is closed, the Library Offices may also be closed at times during vacations. Readers should check on the door of the Library Office for details of opening times.

The modern collections are not normally available to non-members of Oriel College, and members of the College may not bring non-members into the Library without the permission of the Librarian or Assistant Librarian. The historic collections of the library are available, by appointment only, to any bona fide scholar from anywhere in the world.

Find a Book

To find out if Oriel has a copy of the book you are looking for, you can search online using SOLO, the University's online catalogue. You can do this via your laptop, phone, or by using one of the computers located in the Library. Once you have found the book you are looking for on SOLO, click the + icon to make a note of the shelfmark, and to find out if it is in the Library or on loan to another reader. If the book you are looking for does not show up on SOLO, we recommend checking the Oriel Library card catalogue, which is found across from the entrance to the 1st floor of the Junior Library.

Once you have the shelfmark, you should be able to locate your book in the Library. If you have trouble finding your book, please let one of the Librarians know and they will be able to assist you. You may also like to look at the quick guide to the Oriel Library classification scheme.

New Accessions

View a list of the new books added in Trinity Term 2019.

Borrowing Books

All books must be checked out before being removed from the Library. Most items may be borrowed at the self-check terminals located near the entrance to the Reading Rooms on each of the three floors of the Junior Library. This is done by selecting 'Issue' on the touch-screen, scanning the barcode on your University Card and placing up to three books at a time in the designated area on the desk. Please check that all the titles have appeared in green on the screen. If titles come up in red, please record each loan on an issue slip and put the completed slips in the box provided on each floor. If titles do not appear at all, please try scanning the book barcode inside the front of each book at the red laser beam below the screen; failing this, please record the loans on issue slips as above. Finally, select ‘Finish’ on the touch-screen. Every book taken out MUST be checked out using one of these methods.

Returning Books

Please return books to the Reading Room from which you borrowed them. To return, please place up to three books at a time in the designated area on the desk of the self-check terminal and select 'Return' on the touch-screen. The titles should appear in green on the screen, but whether they do or not, put them through the slot in the Book Return Box. The Library staff will sort out any problems when they clear the boxes. If the relevant book box is full, please leave the returned book(s) on the trolley next to it.

Reserving Books

If you need a book which is on loan to another reader, please reserve the book on the SOLO system, and you will be notified when it is ready for you to pick up. If you get the book directly from another person, please remember either to e-mail stating the title and author of the book, and the name of the person from whom you got it, or to bring it to the Library Office, so it can be transferred to your borrowing record.

Renewing Books

Books can be renewed when they become due at the beginning of each term unless the books have been reserved by another reader, or you are leaving Oxford because you have finished your course or are a modern linguist leaving for your year abroad. To renew your books, please renew them on SOLO before they become overdue (the best time is just after you receive an e-mail reminder for them); or tell Library staff by phone, e-mail or in person that you wish your books to be renewed. If the book you have is not on SOLO for some reason, please notify Library staff and they will renew it for you.

Long-term Loan Books

Certain scientific textbooks are in a special category of Long Term Loan, and these can be taken out for the entire academic year. They are kept in the lower stack, and students must request entrance from the Library staff. They are designated with slightly different shelfmarks, for example the shelfmark QC MAR/25 would be a Long Term Loan, whereas the shelfmark Q 44.81 MAR would be a book on the ordinary shelves.

Book Suggestions

If you have checked the online and card catalogues to make sure the book you need is not already in the Library, you can fill in a book suggestion slip and place it in the box provided. These small green slips are located near the issue files on each floor of the library. Alternatively, you can e-mail the library about suggestions, use the online suggestion form, or come in and ask the Library staff. We try to obtain recommended books as quickly as possible, and will let you know when the item arrives.


There is a collection of books on or about old members named the Orielensia collection housed in the Cedar Room of the Senior Library. If you would like to consult a book from this collection, please let Library staff know.

Networked Computer Terminals

Several computer terminals in the Science area of the Library on the 2nd floor can be used for searching SOLO (Search Oxford Libraries Online). Examination papers from 1999 onwards are available online through WebLearn. Direct internet access is available on the left-hand terminal in the small Science room; you will be required to log in using your Single Sign-On (SSO).

Assistive Equipment

The Library has an extensive range of assistive equipment available for use. These include: height-adjustable desks and chairs, noise cancelling headphones, book rests, coloured sheets, a variety of cables and chargers, easy-reading rulers, snake weights/book weights, magnifiers, and pens and pencils. Please ask a member of staff for help if you would like to use any of these.

Photocopying, Printing and Scanning

There is a Multi-Functional Device (MFD) for your use in the 2nd Quod entrance to the Library. It works by way of your University Card. All training and assistance is provided by IT services.

Contacting the Library

The Library Office is usually staffed from 9:00 - 5:00 pm on weekdays. Please do not hesitate to contact a member of staff with any queries you may have.

Telephone: (2)76558 or (2)86526; E-mail:

If you would like to suggest a new book for the library, please complete this request form.