XClose

UCL Library Services

Home
Menu

Disability support

UCL Library Services is committed to ensuring that users with a disability are able to take full advantage of our facilities and are not disadvantaged in any way.

Introduction

This page is aimed at helping to make staff and students aware of what facilities are available from the library in order to remove any disadvantages, what potential problems may occur due to the physical layout and regulations of the library and how UCL Library Services staff can assist to circumvent these problems.

Emergency evacuation of UCL Libraries for users with mobility difficulties

In general, during a fire alarm, lifts within the affected area should never be used.

UCL Main Library

In the Main Library, specific routes are available which allow evacuation through to different buildings (where lifts will still be functioning). Users needing to utilise these routes should head to the North End of the Library (accessed through the English or Hebrew and Jewish Studies sections) and evacuate through fire doors there. The North End lifts are in a separate building and safe to use in the event of a Library evacuation.

If you are not able to reach these exits, there are refuge points at South end of the building (through the Art / Economics section or History Section). There are telephones in these areas, so you can alert emergency services to your presence and access to the South Wing building, to ensure safety, is possible.

Please note that it is not possible to reach these routes from the Donaldson Room in the Main Library. Users with mobility difficulties that prevent them from evacuating by stair in an emergency must use other areas of the Main Library instead. A fetch service can be provided to assist.

UCL Science Library

No emergency evacuation routes for users unable to use stairs are available in the Science Library. Users with mobility difficulties that prevent them from evacuating by stair in an emergency are advised to remain on the ground floor and to utilise the assistance available for fetching books (please see below).

Other UCL Libraries

Bartlett, Ear Institute, Institute of Archaeology, Institute of Child Health, Institute of Neurology, Language and Speech Sciences and School of Pharmacy Libraries are all above ground floor level and have no emergency evacuation routes for those unable to use stairs. Instead, users affected should use the assistance available for fetching books and moving them to an accessible location.

For information about fire evacuation for users with mobility difficulties, please contact the Library's Department Safety Officer

For information about fetches and other services to help mitigate the difficulties caused by the Library buildings, please contact the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities

Physical Access to the Library and its collections

Although UCL endeavours to ensure that its facilities are available to all, the physical layout of the buildings UCL's Libraries inhabit may cause problems for people with mobility difficulties or who use a wheelchair. For information about fetches and other services to help mitigate the difficulties caused by the Library buildings, please contact the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities

The list below sets out the particular problems in specific sites regarding:

  • entrance access
  • available toilet facilities
  • whether any of the collections held by the library are kept in inaccessible situations

It can be assumed that sites not mentioned in this list are accessible, either via lifts and ramps or through level access walk ways. However, please check the above notes on emergency evacuation, especially if you need to use a wheelchair at all times. Fire and Safety regulations may prevent access, even where physically possible.

If you require more specific details about a UCL library or collection, please contact the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities

UCL Main Library

Is the entrance to the library accessible?

Yes; Access is via the side gate next to the information point. Please ask at the information point for details.

Are adapted toilet facilities available?

Yes, on the second floor, in between the Hebrew and History sections and at the South Junction near the SEnIT suite.

Do any collections have access issues?

  • American History (limited access space between shelves)
  • Ancient History (limited access space between shelves)
  • Art MU19 - TK (stair access only)
  • Catalan (limited access space between shelves)
  • Celtic (stair access only)
  • Classics (limited access space between shelves)
  • Danish (stair access only)
  • Dutch (stair access only)
  • Economic Books T53 -Y70 (stair access only)
  • Economic Periodicals (stair access only)
  • Economic Quartos (stair access only)
  • Economic Reports (stair access only)
  • Faroese (stair access only)
  • Finnish (stair access only)
  • French (limited access space between shelves)
  • German (stair access only)
  • Germanic (stair access only)
  • Hebrew A10 onwards (limited access space between shelves)
  • Human Rights (limited access space between shelves)
  • Icelandic (stair access only)
  • International Relations (limited access space between shelves)
  • Italian (limited access space between shelves)
  • Law (stair access only for emergency evacuation)
  • Norwegian (stair access only)
  • Paleography (stair access only)
  • Papyrology (limited access space between shelves)
  • Public Policy (limited access space between shelves)
  • Scandinavian (stair access only)
  • Scandinavian periodicals (stair access only)
  • Spanish (limited access space between shelves)
  • Swedish (stair access only)
  • Yiddish (limited access space between shelves)
UCL Science Library

Is the entrance to the library accessible?

Yes, access is via the side gate next to the entrance turnstiles. Please ask the Library attendants for assistance.

Are adapted toilet facilities available?

Yes, on 3rd and 4th Floor landing areas.

Do any collections have access issues?

All collections are above ground floor level and there is no stair-free emergency evacuation route available. Please see "Note on emergency evacuation of the UCL Libraries for users with mobility difficulties" section.

UCL Institute of Archaeology Library

Is the entrance to the library accessible?

Yes, via rear entrance and then a lift to the 5th floor.

Are adapted toilet facilities available?

Yes, on ground floor of the Institute building.

Are any of the collections inaccessible?

All collections are above ground floor level and there is no stair-free emergency evacuation route available. Please see "Note on emergency evacuation of the UCL Libraries for users with mobility difficulties" section.

UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, Queen Square Library

Is the entrance to the library accessible?

Access is via a short flight of stairs to the ground floor and then stairs or a lift to the 1st floor. A wheelchair lift is available to reach the ground floor but please contact us in advance to arrange for an operator to be available.

Are adapted toilet facilities available?

No.

Are any of the collections inaccessible?

The journals collection is on a raised platform and therefore not accessible to wheelchair users.

All collections are above ground floor level and there is no stair-free emergency evacuation route available. Please see "Note on emergency evacuation of the UCL Libraries for users with mobility difficulties" section.

UCL School of Pharmacy Library

Is the entrance to the library accessible?

Yes. The Library is on the first floor but a lift is available.

Are adapted toilet facilities available?

Yes, on the first floor near the Library.

Are any of the collections inaccessible?

Yes. Staff are available to assist.

All collections are above ground floor level and there is no stair-free emergency evacuation route available. Please see "Note on emergency evacuation of the UCL Libraries for users with mobility difficulties" section.

Additional services and facilities for users with a disability

Below is an alphabetical list of some examples of the additional services we offer to users (both UCL members and external visitors) who may benefit from a more flexible approach to our standard procedures and rules. The list also includes details of other useful facilities which are available and how to access them.

Access for study assistants or carers

An assistant or carer is given free access even if they are not registered as a UCL student or staff member for one day (please inform library attendants and register at the issue desk/help point).

For longer periods: please contact the Library's Head of Membership to arrange a long term access card.

Alternative format information leaflets

Library information leaflets are available in large print, braille and MS Word formats.  Please send a request stating what you require to the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities.

Computing facilities

Access to reserved facilities in the SEnIT Suite, South Junction. Facilities include scanners, text-to-voice and mind-mapping software, plus suitable furniture and fixtures.

Users must register with the UCL Disability Centre. This service is only available to current UCL staff and students.

Explore Access Points with large format keyboards and screens

Explore Access Points with large format keyboards and key guards to assist those with fine motor control difficulties are available at the following libraries:

  • UCL Bartlett Library
  • UCL Cruciform Hub
  • UCL Institute of Archaeology Library
  • UCL Institute of Orthopaedics Library
  • UCL LASS Library
  • UCL Main Library
  • UCL Royal Free Library
  • UCL Science Library
  • UCL SSEES Library

The adapted machines are freely available in the catalogue areas for each library. Please ask a member of Library Services staff if you are not sure of the location of the adapted machines.

Extended loan periods

One week loan items are issued for two weeks.

Users must register with the UCL Disability Centre and agree for them to release the information to the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities. Please note that overdue fines still apply if items are returned later than the revised due date. This service is only available to current UCL staff and students. 

Fetches

Items are retrieved and held at the preferred issue desk/collection point for the user to collect. Requests should be submitted to the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities

Requests should, ideally, be submitted a minimum of one working day in advance - delays in organising items for collection may occur if requests are submitted directly to issue desks/collection points. 

Induction loops

Fixed induction loops are in operation at Main Library Help Point, Main Library Information Point, Science Library Collection Point and UCL School of Pharmacy. Portable induction loops are available for use at Bartlett, Cruciform, Institute of Archaeology, LASS, Royal Free, RNID / Laryngology and SSEES libraries. 

Fixed induction loop systems should be in operation at all times. Please speak to a member of staff if the system does not appear to be operating to ensure it is active. Portable induction loops are held at the relevant desks and people requiring this assistance should feel free to ask Library Services staff to use the equipment when it is needed.

Please note: if you have a hearing impairment that means you require the assistance of an induction loop but the site you use most regularly is not listed above, please contact Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities to discuss possible long term re-deployment of one of the available systems at the relevant site.

Issue of reference items for use in SEnIT Suite

Reference-only items are issued for short periods (no more than one day) to allow users to use the facilities in the SEnIT Suite.

Users must be registered for borrowing rights with UCL Library Services. Users must register with the UCL Disability Centre and agree for them to release the information to the Library Disability Officer. For access to SEnIT suite, see entry for computing facilities. This service is only available to current UCL staff and students.

Orientation tours

Staff provide one to one tours and orientation sessions for the required library.

Please contact the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities to arrange an appointment, mentioning which library you wish to visit.

Photocopying assistance

Staff provide one to one demonstrations of how to use the photocopiers, including how to enlarge text.

Although photocopying assistants are stationed in both the UCL Main and UCL Science Libraries, it is a good idea to arrange these sessions in advance by emailing r.pinckney@ucl.ac.uk

Postal loans

Requested items are posted to the user's home address. Users must be registered for borrow rights from UCL library and the item in question must be borrowable (ie. not reference only).

Users must register with the UCL Disability Centre and agree for them to release the information to the Library Disability Officer. Requests should then be submitted to the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities for processing. Please note normal loan periods and overdue charges still apply. 

Reading lists and database searches

Staff provide one-to-one demonstrations on how to use catalogues and e-resources or can perform searches for you, depending on what is required.

Requests should be submitted to the Library Support Officer for Users with Disabilities. Requests should, ideally, be submitted a minimum of three working days in advance - delays in organising assistance may occur if requests are submitted directly to issue desks. 

Visual magnifiers

The UCL Main and UCL Science Libraries have desk-top video magnifiers (with colour filters).
Hand held lenses are available from the following issue desks/collection points:

  • UCL Cruciform Hub
  • UCL Language & Speech Science Library
  • UCL Institute of Archaeology Library
  • UCL Institute of Neurology Library
  • UCL Institute of Orthopaedics Library
  • Royal Free Medical Library, UCL Library Services

UCL Main and UCL Science Library video magnifiers: It may be worthwhile contacting the relevant help point in advance to book the equipment to ensure its availability.
The other listed UCL Library Services Issue Desks have hand-held lens magnifiers.
Hand held lenses: no advanced booking needed.

We are always looking to add to this list and welcome further suggestions and feedback. Please contact the Library's Disabilities officer to make suggestions, ask for information or if you have any individual requirements not covered here.

Useful contacts

Head of Membership / Library Disabilities Support Officer:

Contact details for UCL Student Disability Services are: