External Borrowers

We welcome applications for membership of the library.  If you are Alumni, please visit our Alumni web page.

Type of memberships

You may become an External Borrower without charge if you fall within one of these categories:

  • Alumni - Graduate of the University of Sheffield *
  • Member of the University Court or Council
  • Member of staff at the British Film Institute
  • Teacher or FE Lecturer employed in South Yorkshire
  • Member of the Geographical Association
  • Member of the Society of Glass Technology
  • Clergy in the Sheffield Diocese or District area
  • Member of the Medico-Chirurgical Society
  • University company staff
  • Wilson Carlisle College of Evangelism
  • SCONUL Access member (Bands A, B and C)

* Only those who have obtained an undergraduate degree or postgraduate doctorate, degree, diploma or certificate. Please see Alumni for more information.

Fee-Paying External Borrowers
If you do not fall into any of the above categories and still wish to borrow, you may apply to become a Fee-Paying External Borrower by paying a subscription; this costs £50 for the year or £15 for three months (incl. VAT)

How to apply

Applications for library membership are done online and you will be required to upload a current passport style photograph.

  • Access the Online Store
  • Create an account (Choose ‘Book Event’ and create your account or ‘Use my Customer Details’, if you have previously created an account)
  • Select 'Conference and Events'
  • Select 'Professional Services' and then 'Library'
  • Complete the application form

Applications may take up to two weeks to process and you will be notified when your card is ready for collection.

You can select the Library site from which to collect your card; please bring photographic proof of identification, proof of your current address and proof of status/membership.
If you wish to renew your card or you require a replacement because your card has been lost or damaged, please apply online

Access to Library Sites:

Western Bank Library

Health Sciences Libraries

The Diamond  - Ground Floor (During staffed hours)

Borrowing from the Library

  • You can borrow up to five books, for a period of one week
  • You can check your account on StarPlus, and place requests on items (although there is no access to the Information Commons you can still request books from this site; just choose another pick-up location)
  • As long as no-one has requested your items we will keep renewing them automatically until the expiry date of your account
  • We will send you a weekly borrowing statement email to remind you which books you have out on loan and highlight any that have been requested and cannot be renewed
  • We no longer fine on overdue items but, if a requested item is not brought back on time then your borrower account will be blocked until the item is returned

Special Collections and Archives

  • Items from the Special Collections and Archives (reference use only) may be made available, subject to the approval of the Head of Special Collections, Jacky Hodgson, (email lib-special@sheffield.ac.uk)
  • Enquiries relating to the National Fairground and Circus Archive should be addressed to nfa@sheffield.ac.uk or phone 0114 2227231

Access to Wi-Fi

If you have registered with the library as an External Borrower you can use the University Guest Wireless Service for your own devices. Please ask at one of our Information Desks for the WEP key (Guest username and password) to access this service.

Access to e-journals

External Borrowers can access a large number of electronic journals from the University’s portfolio using our “Walk in Access” scheme.  Access is provided via dedicated computers based in Western Bank Library and the Health Sciences Library at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital and the Northern General Hospital.

To register as an authorised walk-in user you must sign and agree to the code of practice (forms are available at all three sites). You are also required to provide proof of name and address and membership of the Library. Please note, access is limited to one hour per user during busy periods.

Other library benefits for External Borrowers

  • Use of all the Library print collections
  • Use of microform reader/printers, DVD and video players (where available)
  • Use of Self-service photocopiers
  • Use of the InterLibrary Request Service to place an inter-library loan request or to obtain a photocopy of a document; payment at the time of request is required by debit/credit card or library card