Skip to Main Content

Library Online: Borrowing from the library

Borrowing from the library

How to borrow and use resources in the library

These services are available for Hallam students and staff only. The library offers a range of services to help you access and make the most of your library resources. Use Library Search to find the item you want and check it's availability. Here are the options for how to borrow and use library resources: 

Items that are available in the library  

You can browse the shelves or use Library Search to find available items on the shelf in the libraries. Use the self-service machines to issue any items to your Library Account. Self-service machines are located:

  • Adsetts Library - Level 4 
  • Collegiate Library - Ground floor in Quiet Study, and on Level 1

Items that are out on loan

If all copies of a book or item that you need are out on loan you can place a request using Library Search. You can choose to collect these from the library or have them posted to you when they become available. You can find more instructions on how to make a request further down this page. 

Reference only items

Reference only items can only be used in the library. You can either visit the Library and find the items of the shelf yourself, or use our Request and View service. See further down this page for more information on Request and View.

Ebooks and other online resources

You have access to many online resources, including ebooks. You can find ebooks using Library Search and other online resources, including databases, on your subject guides.

Get and help and support with using Library Search 

Can't find what you need? 

If we don't have the item you need please use our Document Supply Services to request it. 

Request and View for reference books

If you want to access reference books, you can do this using Request and View. Request your books using Library Search and once they are ready we will send you an email with details of where to collect. Request points are open 24/7.

Your requests will be available for you to access for 7 days, and within this time you can access them as many times as you like. But remember, you won't be able to take these items out of the library. We recommend that you use your requested items as soon as possible to maximise the amount of time you can access them. If you want to use your items for longer than 7 days, you will need to request them again. 

You can, of course, visit the library and browse the bookshelves for the reference item yourself. However, we cannot guarantee it will be in place for you, so you can use Request and View to ensure you can access the reference book you need. 

Postal Loans

To support students and staff, the library is currently offering postal loans to UK addresses only. This service offer will be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

Students - When you request a book on Library Search you will see an option to request the item to be sent to either your home or term-time address. Please make sure your student record is up to date with the correct address information. 

Staff - The library doesn’t have staff address information so if you want to use the postal loans service you will need to tell us which address you would like us to use by emailing: . You can then request your books as normal using Library Search. It doesn’t matter whether you choose home or term-time address.

Postage - All postal loans will be sent via Royal Mail recorded delivery. Items will be issued to your account for 2 weeks to allow extra time for them to be posted to you. 

Please be aware that not all items will be suitable to send via postal loans, for example due to their size or condition. We will contact you if this is the case.

To request a postal loan you should follow the steps below.

How to request - please read these instructions before making your request

Find the book or item you would like to request using Library Search:

Sign in to see the option to make your request.

Image of where to sign in to Library Search

You will see the options to request items for your home or term-time address, to pick up at Adsetts or Collegiate libraries, or view in the library only. 


If you choose to collect the item(s) from the library,  when your book is ready to collect you will receive an email that will include the details of where to collect your requested items from. Please don't make a journey to collect an item until you have received an email to say your items are available to collect. 

For Postal Loans, you will receive an email confirming the item(s) have been added to your Library Account and have been posted to your selected address. Please allow up to one week for the items to arrive with you before contacting us. 


How can I return items in person? 

You can return items at both libraries 24/7. You can return items back to any library, it does not have to be the same one where you borrowed the items from. 

Self-service returns machines are located on Adsetts Level 4 and on Collegiate Ground Floor.  

Returning items using freepost 

The library’s freepost returns service is available to anyone who has borrowed library item(s) that have been recalled. If you have an item that has been recalled you’ll receive an email with the details of how to use the freepost service. 

When you post items back to the library please ensure you use secure packaging to avoid any damage. We recommend that you re-use the packaging that your original books were sent in. 

This service offer will be reviewed on an ongoing basis as we monitor demand for returns both on and off campus.

If you think you have recalled items but you haven’t received an email from the library, please let us know about this using this online form.

More information about the freepost service 

The library is currently offering a freepost returns service for:

  • recent graduates who still have library items
  • anyone who has an item that has been recalled by the library (because it has been requested by another user)
  • students and staff who are clinically vulnerable

If you are not able to visit either Adsetts or Collegiate Libraries safely, please complete this online form and you will be contacted with the details of how to return using freepost. You will need to provide your own packaging to post items back to us, but the cost of postage will be free.

Freepost is for UK postal returns only. If you are currently outside of the UK then please let us know by filling in the same online form and we will contact you to discuss this. 

Postal returns for items that haven't been recalled 

You are welcome to post your items back to the libraries if they haven't been recalled, but you will have to cover the cost of this yourself. We would recommend using recorded delivery to cover yourself against loss. If you do post books back to us, the date on which you post them will be used as the return date. Please post your items back to Adsetts library, even if they are Collegiate items: 


Adsetts Library

Sheffield Hallam University             
City Campus
Howard Street
S1 1WB

Library fines

We charge fines for any lost or damaged items. If you have any queries about fines please contact us

How long can I borrow items for?

The standard amount of time you can borrow an item for is one week.

If you are a distance learner, part-time student or have a learning contract, you can borrow library items for 2 weeks. 

Books will automatically renew at the end of the loan period unless: 

  • they have been requested by someone else
  • they have been renewed for a total of 52 weeks
  • your account has expired because you have finished your course

Can I renew items?

Items will automatically renew at the end of each loan period unless:

  • they have been requested by someone else
  • they have been renewed for a total of 52 weeks
  • your account has expired because you have finished your course

Please note: You are only guaranteed the item for its current loan period. Items that can't be renewed need to be returned as soon as possible within the 5 day return period.

It is recommended that you check your Library Account regularly.

Can borrow a laptop or AV equipment?

Laptops and AV equipment are currently unavailable to borrow from the libraries, we are working to make these available again as soon as we can do so safely.

Please see your 24 hour learning spaces page for more information about access to PCs and study spaces in the libraries.

Adsetts Library [map pdf]
Collegiate Library [map pdf]

Sheffield Hallam University
City Campus, Howard Street
Sheffield S1 1WB