University of St Andrews

University Library Special Collections

Research and enquiries

How to register


You don't need to be a registered reader of the University Library to consult Special Collections.

On your first visit you'll be asked to fill in a small registration form and to provide photo identification. You'll then be issued with a blue reader card.

We'll retain your blue reader card while you're in the reading room, and return it to you before you leave.  Please bring it with you every time you visit Special Collections.

If you are not a student or member of university staff you are very welcome to join the Library as well and use the resources and services available at either the Main Library or our outlying libraries.

Items that you request will be brought to you, and you must abide by the regulations for the use of the Reading Room.

Access to any book or manuscript is at the discretion of the staff, but use of individual items would normally only be refused for reasons such as physical fragility, or their absence due to loan or exhibition.

Special Collections for Groups

Learn about how we share our treasured collections with specialist groups and schools and how we use materials for teaching within the University.

Research enquiry?

If you need assistance with research, have a query about our collections, or would like to know about researching your family history please ask for our help.

Do you need reproductions?

Find out how you can get copies of books, manuscripts or photographs held within Special Collections.