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Information for Newbies

The Library

The library is divided into four departmental libraries. In the Main University Building (UHG) you will find the departmental library UHG-I (including health sciences, biology, chemistry, medicine and physics) and UHG-II (including educational science, psychology, law, mathematics and economics). In Building X you will find the history, philosophy and sociology collections. The linguistics and literature departments are located in the IUB - the interim building between the UHG and Building X.

Site Maps of the Departmental Libraries and Service Units

You will also find the Library Service Centre (BDZ) in the main building. The staff at the service desk will help you with any questions you may have about using the library, searching for literature, borrowing, interlibrary loan requests, accessing e-media, library cards or fees.

Library Service Center

Opening Hours

You can work in the library until 1 am, on weekends until 10 pm. Borrowing and returning books is possible until shortly before midnight, on weekends until 10 pm.

Opening hours in detail

Essential Information to Get Started

  • The UniCard (Student ID) is also your library card and allows you to borrow items from the library or use services like the interlibrary loan. Please bring your UniCard with you each time you visit the library. Further info on the UniCard
  • You are welcome to bring your coat, bags or backpacks into the library. You can also leave them in the lockers in front of the library. Baskets to carry work materials, laptop or books comfortably within the library are provided at the entrance of each departmental library.
  • All beverages (except alcohol) in resealable bottles or other all-around closed and resealable drinking containers may be taken along and drunk from. Drinks in open or non-reclosable containers, such as coffee cups or beverage cans, remain not permitted
  • Please keep quiet within the library

For all library rules please look up the regulations (in German).​

Studying and Working


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For undisturbed and concentrated studying choose the individual study zone or the PC workstations of the departmental libraries.

Study Environments

Our study environments are a combination of relaxing and studying. Cosy furniture create a pleasing ambience for reading, studying and chilling.The study environments offer zones for group work as well.

Learning zones

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Discussion rooms are available in the departmental libraries for concentrated work in teams. From Mon – Fri, 8.00 – 18.00 only for students of Bielefeld University after reservation. Reservation is not necessary / possible after 18.00 and on weekends

Some discussion rooms are equipped with SMART Boards, Whiteboards or LCD television for presentations etc.



Scan and Print

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The book scanners can be found in various departmental libraries in the Main University Building in D1, T1, U0, and V1, as well as in the Interim Building (IUB) and the library in Building X (see Site Maps of the Departmental Libraries for the exact locations). No UniCard or login is required for use. You can save the scanned documents on a USB flash drive or transfer them directly to your smartphone or tablet using the free Scan2Pad app from the App Store (for iOS devices) or the Google Play Store (for Android devices). For Android devices, you can also directly download the latest version of the software and install it manually.

Students at Bielefeld University can use the library's public PC workstations to create print jobs and can print them at three printers in the library in black and white on A4 paper free of charge. This is how it works.

In addition, students of Bielefeld University can print free of charge in the BITS PC pool rooms (UHG, V0-218 and V0-101) on 3 printers in the BITS vestibule (V0-224). Opening hours: Mon - Fri, 7 - 22 and Sat / Sun, 8 - 22.

Copy machines are not available in the university.


The Wi-Fi "eduroam" is available in all areas of the University. Eduroam can also be used in some parts outside Bielefeld University ("eduroam off campus").

Using the University's WiFi network

Borrowing and Renewal of Items

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White call number labels on the spine mean that these items circulate, yellow labelled ones do not. The loan period amounts to 15 or 30 days.

Finding Resources

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You may take the items from the shelves. To borrow and return media, please use the self-service units. In addition, the circulation terminals are staffed by library personnel from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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The self-service units, recognisable by the green-lit surface, can be found in the entrance area of the departmental libraries in areas D, E, T, U, V, in the Interim Building (IUB) and in the library in Building X.

You will find self-service units for returning books in the entrance area of the library in the main university building (Entrance D and U), in the interim building (IUB) and in Building X.

When borrowing / returning items on self-service units you will receive a receipt, which you should check for correctness and keep carefully.

You have the option to renew a book in your loan account, when there is no reservation for it - simply press the button "verlängern". The renewal must be made on the last day of the loan period at the latest otherwise overdue fees will occur.

There is a total loan period measured by calendar days. Within this period, renewals are possible as long as the item is not reserved elsewhere. With each renewal, the loan period is extended by a further 30 or 15 days, but not beyond the total loan period.

Loan period 30 days: total loan period 180 days
Loan period 15 days: total loan period 85 days

Regularly check the loan deadlines and return your books in time, otherwise fees will be incurred.

We will answer your questions about borrowing, returning or fees in our FAQ or in person at the Service Desk in the Library Service Center (BDZ).

Searching for Literature

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The! is the most important tool when you search for literature in the library. Here you will find printed books and journals, audio books, DVDs, etc. from the library's holdings and numerous e-books and e-journals, which you can use online at the PC workstations or as a member of the university from home.

The University Library also offers a large number of search options in catalogues, subject databases and search engines.

Assistance in using the catalogue or subject databases and search engines is available from the Service Desk in the Library Service Center (BDZ).

Assistance and Tuitions

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Our library personnel at the Service Desk of the Library Service Center (BDZ) (area U0 - entrance via U1) will be pleased to answer any questions on library matters. You can also ask questions via live chat or e-mail support ("mailbox"). You are welcome to arrange a consultation as a video conference with us by e-mail.

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For subject-specific support in literature research, please contact the subject librarians.

Subject librarians / Academic services

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The Library offers a variety of tuitions to show you how to develop searches and how to use the reference management program Citavi – on site or online via Zoom.

Training and Tutorials

Reference Management

The library provides students, faculty and staff of the university with the reference management program Citavi. Bibliographic information, call numbers and links to full texts can easily be imported.

Reference Management

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