UCL Library Services


Self-service @ UCL

Self-service machine in use 2

During summer 2015, the number of UCL libraries offering self-service issue and return facilities using Radio-Frequency technology expanded to include - the UCL Institute of Child Health Library; the Joint Library of Ophthalmology, Moorfields Eye Hospital & UCL Institute of Ophthalmology; the Royal Free Hospital Medical Library; the UCL School of Pharmacy Library and the UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies Library (SSEES).

" Great to have the self service desks!
" So easy to use…cool…awesome!

This rollout followed the successful launch of RFID technology at libraries located near the central Bloomsbury UCL campus in 2014, and as a consequence, self-service facilities are now available in the majority of our family of libraries.

This is part of our ongoing commitment to support extended opening hours across many of our sites. Indeed at libraries with 24-hours access such as the Main Library, the Science Library, the SSEES Library and the Cruciform Hub, the introduction of this technology has enabled readers to borrow and return material whenever the buildings are open.

Self-service facilities also allow for a much faster and more efficient way of borrowing and returning books. Not only does it mean less queueing to be served at the desk, but it also frees up Library staff time from routine transactions so they can answer your queries and provide the front-line help where it is most needed.

Following the successful launch of these services across the majority of UCL libraries over the last two years, we are now committed to making this technology universally available across our entire family of libraries and will therefore be introducing RFID technology at the following the sites

  • the UCL Ear Institute & Action on Hearing Loss Libraries
  • the UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square Library
  • the UCL Institute of Orthopaedics Library
  • the UCL Institute of Education Library

When will I be able to use self-service?

Self-service in these libraries will be in place by the start of the 2016/17 academic session.

Further details on the installation schedule and likely service disruptions will be available on each library’s individual RFID page. Please look out for further updates in the coming weeks.

RFID details by library

UCL Ear Institute & Hearing Loss Libraries
UCL Institute of Education
UCL Institute of Neurology
UCL Institute of Orthopaedics

Self-service FAQs

Can I return books to the machines which are overdue or are requested?
Can I return books from other libraries to the machines?
Can I renew books at the self-service machines?
Can I pay my fines at a self-service machine?
Is there a desk I can return books to?
If I am not sure how to use the machine what do I do?
Why do I need a PIN?
Will I get a receipt when I borrow and return books?
If a machine is not working what do I do?
Is self-service available 24-hours?

Contact us

For more information on RFID and Self-service in the library, or if you would like to comment, please email us at library@ucl.ac.uk

Look out for updates on this web page, or follow UCL Ear Institute & Action on Hearing Loss Libraries;  UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square Library; UCL Institute of Orthopaedics Library and UCL Institute of Education Library on Twitter or Facebook. 

Also be aware that RFID posters in these libraries will also indicate potential future service disruption.