Help with using the Library

Introductory tours are arranged for all new students at the beginning of each semester. In-depth classes are available for anyone who is working on a major project or thesis. In addition, there are informal 'drop-in' sessions each week during term where a subject librarian is available to answer questions. Subject librarians are available during the day, in the evenings and on Saturdays by appointment and will provide tailored programmes for individual students or staff on request. New staff are encouraged to contact subject librarians to arrange an introduction to library facilities and resources. For more information, please contact Lorna Reid or Marion Khorshidian

Subject guides

Library staff have created a number of subject guides which will point you to good quality resources in the Library and on the Internet. Click here to go to the subject guide for Arts.


There are around 61,000 books in the Library at Belfast and most of these are available for you to borrow. They are arranged in numerical order on the shelves and the library catalogue will give you the number for your subject. Here is a brief guide to the numbers used at Belfast:

Subject classification numbers at Belfast
000 General - includes web design, photojournalism
100 Philosophy, Psychology
200 Religion
300 Social Sciences
400 Language, Linguistics
500 Natural Sciences
600 Technology
700 General books on art history, aesthetics, colour theory
709 Modern art
720 Architecture
730 Sculpture, Ceramics, Jewellery
740 Drawing, Design, Fashion/Textiles
750 Painting
760 Graphic arts, Printmaking
770 Photography
791 Cinema
800 Literature
900 Geography and History

You may also borrow books from the other libraries of Ulster University. If the item that you need is on another campus, you may reserve it if it is on loan or complete an intercampus loan form and we will arrange for it to be delivered to this campus. Items returned late will incur fines and the scale of charges is on posters and leaflets in the library. You can avoid paying fines by:

Renewing by telephone - contact details available from the Library's Contact Us page

Reading your University email - we will send you a reminder a couple of days before your books are due back.

Renewing online via the Library Catalogue's My Account option

Renew at any Information Point - ask staff to renew any material that is almost due.

If an item that you need is not available in a Ulster University library, we may be able to borrow it for you through the Document Delivery service.

Exhibition catalogues

The library at Belfast holds exhibition catalogues from galleries in the U.K., Ireland and elsewhere. They are listed in the library catalogue and most may be borrowed.


The library at Belfast subscribes to 200 periodicals (journals and magazines) to support subjects taught onthe campus. Current issues are available in the red boxes next to the video-viewing area, back issues are bound into hard covers and shelved at the back of the library.

Audio cassettes

The library subscribes to Audio Arts, a magazine on cassette, which contains interviews with artists. Audio Arts cassettes and other audio cassettes are listed in the library catalogue. Cassettes may not be removed from the library, headphones and a cassette player are available on request.

35mm slides

The library has a collection of 95,000 35mm colour slides, mainly on art and design subjects. These are arranged in numerical order and are listed in the Slides Collection catalogues. Staff and students may borrow slides for up to one month.


There is a large collection of videotapes/DVDs on a wide range of subjects. These are listed in the Library Catalogue and are generally for reference only. Video/DVD viewing facilities are available for individuals or small groups, headphones will be issued in exchange for ID cards at the Information Point.

Photocopying Facilities

The University Reprographics Service provides the library with a number of photocopying machines offering black&white and colour copying. Photocopiers are self-service, card-operated and are supplied with A4 and A3 paper. A Reprographics Assistant is available during term-time, Monday-Friday 9.00am until 1.00pm to help with a range of copying options.