Skip to Main Content


Find out more about the Sconul Access co-operative library scheme


The Sconul Access Scheme has now reopened.

Relaunch November 2021

1. You must reapply for library access if your approval has expired

  • Do not visit an institution until your new application has been approved.
  • All information about applying for the Access Scheme is available on the SCONUL website.
  • Your own institution’s library is the body responsible for considering and processing your application. Please be patient and allow them time to deal with your application.
  • Please check the website in detail for information about the Scheme
    • before you contact your library
    • before you contact a library you wish to visit or before contacting SCONUL.
  • Please remember access granted under the Scheme is a privilege and not a right.

2. Allow time for your application to be processed

  • An extremely high volume of applications is being processed.
  • How long your application takes depends on how many applications your institution receives.
  • In some cases you may need to wait up to 4 weeks.
  • Do not pressure library staff at your home institution - it will not speed up your application!
  • Do not call the library you wish to visit or the SCONUL office about your application - it will not speed up the process!

3. Check on the day you would like to visit whether the institution you would like to visit is participating

4. Prior access does not mean current access

  • Some institutions that previously participated in the scheme are not participating at this time.
  • You are not guaranteed access to an institution because you previously used it.
  • Check before you visit!

What is the SCONUL Access Scheme?

SCONUL Access is a cooperative library scheme which allows many university library users to borrow or use books and journals at other libraries which belong to the scheme. University of Exeter Library participates in this scheme.

There are four 'bands' of membership:

  • Band A Borrowing: Research students and academic staff
  • Band B Borrowing: Part-time undergraduates and postgraduates
  • Band C Borrowing: Full-time postgraduates 
  • Reference Band: Full-time undergraduates. 

Borrowing entitlements are set by each institution and may vary.

How Do I join the scheme?

If you are a registered student or academic staff at the University of Exeter and want to visit other participating libraries...

  1. Apply online via SCONUL Access.   NB Only one application is required to access multiple libraries.  As part of this process you will see which institutions you are eligible to visit. 
  2. Wait to receive SCONUL Access reply email
  3. Follow instructions in the email
  4. Read the SCONUL Access User Guide
  5. Check with host institution before visiting. Access may be restricted during busy periods (e.g. exams)

To qualify for SCONUL Access you must be registered as a library user in good standing (i.e. no library debts or rule infringements).

What about E-Resource Access?

The SCONUL access scheme does not provide access to the e-resources of the libraries you visit.

Some libraries may provide a 'walk in access' computer service with access to some resources - you should check this with the library before you visit.  You are likely to need to register each time you wish to use the service. Access is often available via a sole PC within the library so availability will be limited. The service will not provide access to all resources are some are not licensed for walk in use.

You should rely on the UoE resources which can be accessed at a distance. Check to see if the library you are visiting is a member of EDUROAM. If so, you will be able to login to the wifi network of the institution you are visiting as a guest user and connect through to the UoE resources.

Check the list of participating institutions on the EDUROAM website.

To connect to the EDUROAM service ...

  1. Choose your wireless icon and search for available wireless networks
  2. Select Eduroam and click the connect button
  3. When asked for your username, type it in followed by (
  4. Provide your password and ‘Connect’


Library Hub Discover


Use this service to search and locate books and journals throughout the collections of the UK research and specialist libraries.


SCONUL Summer Vacation Access

Undergraduate and postgraduate students are usually granted reference use of other SCONUL Higher Education Libraries during the summer vacation period.  See the SCONUL Summer Vacation Access page for more details.

This scheme is separate from the SCONUL Access scheme and you should always check in advance with any library you plan to visit for more detailed information on access riules, documentation required etc.


What is EDUROAM?

This is an animation designed especially for end users to help spread the message and benefits about eduroam services. This animation was created by James Sankar, AARNet, with assistance from the AARNet supported eduroam project group and ToThePointProductions (

Contact Us or Give Feedback