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Essential coronavirus info
Your safety is our first priority.


Coronavirus: Online library resources and support for students

Textiles with organic shapes by Tayla-Jayne Sander
Textiles with organic shapes by Tayla-Jayne Sander

Written by
Dan Austin
Published date
23 March 2020

As UAL moves to online teaching and learning, our Library Service is here to help you by providing online resources and support for students and researchers at all levels of study, across all subject areas.

Contacting library staff

You can contact our library team online using our ASK service. Here, you can also view a list of frequently asked questions and answers, or view contact details to ask additional questions via phone, text or Twitter.

Library staff will be able to respond at the following times during the Summer term:

Monday - Friday: 9am - 10pm

Saturday and Sunday: 10am - 8pm

Library staff will not be available on Friday 8 and Monday 25 May due to the Bank Holidays, but our FAQs and all of our online resources are available for you 24/7.

You can contact the Academic Support Librarian for your course on Moodle or by going to the Your Librarian section of our website.

We're also offering online teaching and virtual 1-1s this term. To arrange a session, contact your Librarian or check Moodle.

Library loans

If you have any books or DVDs on loan, please keep them with you. We will give you plenty of time to return your loans once the UAL buildings re-open. All fines are currently suspended, and all books have been renewed indefinitely. No new fines will be accrued for late items, and your account will not be blocked if you have a book reserved by another user. If you are planning on leaving the UK soon and are unsure how to return library items, please contact us via our ASK service.

E-books, e-journals and databases

Using your UAL username and password, you can access all online resources off campus via our website.

You can also use Articles Plus to search our online subscriptions and image databases.

Here's a few fun facts about the scale of our resources:

  • In 2018/19 we purchased 17,000 e-book titles.
  • The majority of our 50,000 journal titles are available full-text online, as print is now only purchased for magazines with high image content.
  • The library subscribes to 184 databases, covering all our areas of study, and often providing direct access to full-text articles or data.
  • In 2018/19 410,529 full text articles were accessed by staff and students.
  • In 2018/19 our e-books were accessed over a million times.

Other online resources and services

  • Digital learning: Linkedin Learning provides access to videos to support creative practice, business skills and technology training.
  • TV and radio: Box of Broadcasts provides access to TV and radio programmes from numerous channels.
  • DVDs and CDs: We are moving away from purchasing DVDs and CDs, which need to be borrowed from the library, to providing online streaming media services such as Kanopy, which is available off campus.
  • Copyright and referencing tools: citethemright, RefworksMendeley and Zotero are online tools that are particularly useful if you are writing a dissertation.

Library subject guides

If you want to know what is available within your discipline or on a particular theme, you can check our subject guides via LibGuides.

These guides list key online resources, as well as the contact details of course librarians.

Support for researchers

The British Library, Wellcome Institute, National Art Library, and many other university libraries and archives are now closed, although most of them will have some level of digital service. Articles from journals not held by UAL libraries in an online format can still be obtained through our inter-library loan service.

If researchers need additional help in sourcing information, we will give them tailored support. Read our Research Support Guide or find further advice on our website.

Support and advice can also be provided in relation to archives and special collections. More information and relevant contact details are available here.

The Scholarly Communications Team will advise on all aspects of scholarly communication and uploading of research outputs to UAL Research Online by email or through online means.

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