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Students working on laptops in the Alan Gilbert Learning Commons

Libraries

As an undergraduate student at Manchester, you’ll not only be able to make use of the huge resources of our University Library – you’ll also have access to flexible, inspiring technologies and places to work.

The University of Manchester Library is one of only five National Research Libraries. With more than four million printed books and manuscripts, over 29,000 unique electronic journals and 414,000 electronic books, as well as several hundred databases, this is one of the best-resourced academic libraries in the country.

Alongside traditional library services, we offer self-service facilities, state-of-the-art group study areas, and Wi-Fi throughout.

Across campus several specialist libraries offer subject-specific and tailored services. The John Rylands Library, a magnificent neo-Gothic building housing some of the world’s finest collections of rare books and manuscripts, also offers a vast array of resources that are available for students to use. It is also a thriving visitor attraction, offering a wide range of free exhibitions and events throughout the year.

Help and support

Our specialist library staff are there to provide advice, training and help whenever you need it. When you arrive we’ll give you a full introduction to our services, and support is always close at hand to help you find the resources you need.

In addition to this, all students have access to the Library’s skills programme, My Learning Essentials, which provides flexible support for academic study via a wide range of face-to-face workshops and online modules. Using My Learning Essentials will help you to develop the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your degree programme, including how to research, reference and write in an academic style.

Our facilities are universally accessible with dedicated support for students with additional needs; there's even a text-help service for on-the-spot assistance if you can’t find what you’re looking for.

The Alan Gilbert Learning Commons

The Alan Gilbert Learning Commons offers you a stimulating 24/7 environment for study, combining inspiring decor with flexibility and the latest in learning technology.

Winner of the Facilities Project category in the 2014 Guardian University Awards, this eye-catching, ultra-modern £24 million building is one of the most popular of our recent developments on campus.

Open all day and night during term-time, it can accommodate more than 1,000 students. It is the UK's first digital library and home to the most up-to-date IT facilities, a range of versatile learning spaces and a relaxing cafe area for breaks or meeting friends.

Manchester students helped to design the furniture, provided the artwork and defined the shape and use of the space by telling us exactly what they needed. The building is designed to the highest standards of sustainability.

Find out more at the University of Manchester Library website.