Using the Library

Students generally use material from the College's Working Library for their studies, but can also consult (and, in some cases, borrow) materials from the Music Hire Library, Law Library, Lower Old Library, Old Library, and Archives.

Members of Christ's College have 24- hour access to the Working Library with their university card.

 

 

Reading Room
Reading Room on First Floor 

 

Your Libraries

Most students belong to three libraries during their studies at Cambridge University: College Library, Faculty/Departmental Library and the University Library. Each library has their own rules, opening hours and borrowing rights.

Christ's LibraryOur Library aims to provide all books needed for undergraduate Tripos Part I papers, and as many as possible for Part II papers. We are a 24/7 library that offer study space for our members and a book recommendation service. We are on Christ's grounds and located right in the city centre of Cambridge. 

Faculty/Departmental LibraryFaculty and departmental libraries are designed to accommodate their subject and serve their own faculty or department. They are particularly useful when looking for physical or online resources specific to your subject. These libraries also have subject specific librarians.

University Library: With registration all members of Cambridge University can access and borrow at the University Library. Holding more than 9 million materials including specialized collections, this library is great for further research. The University Library is a copyright library, which means that it receives a copy of every book published in the UK as a legal deposit, either in print or digitally. Core materials can be borrowed or consulted in the University Library but do keep in mind the popularity of some of the materials. 

Please have a look at this video that introduces Cambridge Libraries to prospective and current students.

Christ's Library

Working Library is the term we use for our main library (consists of 3 floors) that houses our 21st century material. The first floor is a Reading Room that also serves as a study area. Most of the material you will be needing for your course can be found in the Working Library.

Our Library aims to provide all books needed for undergraduate Tripos Part I papers, and as many as possible for Part II papers. Some material may also support postgraduate studies. Self issue machines,  to borrow books without staff assistance, are to the left of the first floor in the Working Library. 

Our library also consists of the: Law Library Lower Old Library and the Old Library 

How do I get to the library?

Finding the Library is very easy. It is close to the main entrance of college as it is situated in First Court, making it easy to access at all times.

The Library is situated on First Court. First Court is where the Porters, The Buttery and the Chapel are situated. Next to "The Buttery" there is a narrow corridor that leads to a patio and the Ground Floor of the Library. Follow the Library Corridor on the Ground floor up the stairs to the First Floor where the Reading room is situated. Please check out our visual aid video on how to get to our library and our College map.

 

 

Christ's Opening hours and Admissions Policy

Members of College are allowed access 24 hours a day, in both full term and vacation, using their University ID card.  Readers are reminded not to admit non-members of Chrirst's to the Library. Surveillance cameras operate at all times.

 

Staff operating hours:

The Library is usually staffed 9am - 5.00pm, Monday to Friday throughout term and vacation. The library office is located on the first floor opposite the library entrance. At any time, staffing may be affected by meetings, training courses, annual leave, sickness absence and other factors, so users who need to be certain of staff help, eg students with a crucial deadline or visitors making a special journey, are recommended to contact Library staff in advance.

 

Visitors:

Alumni, members of other Colleges within the University, and all external visitors, should apply for admission by contacting Library staff in advance. Regrettably, during the pandemic, permission to visit is very unlikely to be granted.

 

Disability access:

The Library is accessible to wheelchair users at all times, and there is ramped access into the building. Users with special access needs are recommended to contact the Librarian and or Porters in advance of their first visit. For further information on disability services  please visit our disability/assistive resources website  (https://www.christs.cam.ac.uk/assist)

Induction Information

 

Information about Christ's College

  • College Map 
  • Camguides provides provides information and digital essentials for your experience as an Undergraduate or Postgraduate user
  • Have a look at our video on what our students say about Christ's College and Christ's library.

Information about our library 

  • Our virtual Induction page gives you all the relevant links to information necessary to begin your library experience.
  • Booklets on the general use of the library: Undergraduate and Postgraduate  student guides 
  • We hold induction tours and iDiscover tutorials in the beginning of every academic year. 
  • Our FAQ (frequently asked questions) section may answer some of the questions you may have about our library.
  • Please have a look at how library anxiety might affect you and tips on how to deal with it. 

Information about your libraries 

 

For further information please contact us or book an appointment to speak to a member of staff

Library Layout

Images:

 

Library Corridor:

Situated on  the Ground Floor of the Library, the Library Corridor is a non quiet zone space/study space that has a number of armchairs and coffee tables where you can enjoy your food and socialize.

 

Floor 1: 

The first floor Reading Room provides study space for library users. It is considered a quiet zone but sometimes can reach medium noise levels. It has a combination non adjustable two and four seater desks. A variety of adjustable and non adjustable chairs are available in the Reading Room. There are six MCS (Managed Cluster Service) computers in the Reading Room and two further terminals on the landing outside the Library entrance. The left side wall of floor 1 is windows. There are also individual fans available for extra ventilation if needed. 

 The library office is situated opposite the library entrance on the first floor. Library staff are usually available from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday. You can contact them in person, via phone (01223-334905) or email. library@christs.cam.ac.uk

 

Ergonomic equipment:

Situated on the first floor, shelf adjacent to the library door, we offer a range of ergonomic equipment to make your studying easier and more comfortable. Please visit our Accessibility Collection for a list of all the ergonomic equipment available during your library stay. 

 

Floor 2 and 3:

Floor 2 and 3 are bookcases. You will need to go down the stairs from Floor 1 to get to Floor 2 and 3.

 

Mezzanine (top floor):

Consists of the  Printing Room, IT Consultation Room and Group Study Room. These rooms are situated on the top floor of the library. Please visit our page for more information on Printing and IT services . 

 

 

Photos of our Library Space
Collections

Working Library:

  • Floor 1,2,3 houses our 21st century material. The first floor is a Reading Room that also serves as a study area. Our Library aims to provide all books needed for undergraduate Tripos Part I papers, and as many as possible for Part II papers. Some material may also support postgraduate studies. 
  • The Reference section of the library includes Cambridge University examination papers from previous years, plus encyclopaedias and dictionaries.
  • The library also has a “General Interest” collection of non-academic books and DVDs.
  • We provide the latest issues of a limited number of periodicals found in our display stands on the First Floor. 

 

Law Library

Accessible to Law students, it is a small study space with law textbooks for borrowing. Additional law material can be found in the Working Library.

 

Lower Old Library 

Houses our 20th and 19th century material. The library team is working on a project to create records for previously unrecorded 19th century material in the Lower Old Library. These records are slowly becoming accessible on iDiscover.

 

Old Library 

Our holdings range chronologically from 11th-century manuscripts through to 18th-century works. We hold materials in English and Latin, but also in GreekArabic and Sanskrit.

Online cataloguing of our holdings is ongoing; if you have come across a reference to an item that does not appear in the University of Cambridge Libraries' online catalogue, iDiscover, please contact us.

Finding a book
  1. To find a physical book in our library you will need to access iDiscover, our online catalogue, to search for books and online resources. Make sure to filter your results to Christ's Library. Please visit our pages:

      2. For physical books please note down the Classmark and where the book is located in the library. Please check out our poster on Classmarks and book locations. 

     3. Come to the library or ask a member of staff to reserve the books for collection. For staff we will need the book title, author, classmark and or iDiscover link. 

     4. Pick up your book from the reservation shelf opposite the self-issue machines on the first floor.

     5. Place it on your library account by using the self-issue machines on the first floor or asking library staff for assistance, in person or via  email.

 

Library Services

 

Finding, Borrowing, Returning and Renewing Books:

Books can be borrowed and returned via the self-issue terminals in the Reading Room (instructions are provided next to the terminals) in the Working Library, First Floor. Please place returned books on the 'Returned Books' trolleys to the left of the self-issue terminals. Alternatively you can ask a member of staff

To renew a book please log in to your account (found on iDiscover) or ask a member of staff.  

We follow a NO FINES policy at Christ's Library but do fine for lost books.

  • Borrowing rights are available to all Christ's members. Non members can consult material in the Working Library but cannot borrow. Please check your own College, Faculty or Departmental Library and the University Library for their borrowing rights. 

 

Finding Resources:

Part of your study experience is finding the right resources for you. You will be using iDiscover, our online catalogue, to search for books and online resources. Please visit our pages:

 

Computers/ Printing:

There are six MCS (Managed Cluster Service) computers in the Reading Room, two further terminals on the landing outside the Library entrance, and a Quick Print MCS computer in the Print Room. The "Christs" wireless network is available throughout the College, including the Library. You can also bring your own laptop. 

Please remember to connect your laptop to the College printers and add money to your printing account balance before any visits to the library for printing. It will take some time to set it up.

 

Additional Collections

Our library also consists of the:

Law Library : Accessible to Law students, it is a small study space with law textbooks for borrowing. Additional law material can be found in the Working Library.

Lower Old Library : Material can be borrowed from the 20th and 19th century sections. Material needs to  be fetched by staff. 

Old Library : Material can be consulted during staff working hours, Monday - Friday 9-5. Please contact staff at library@christs.cam.ac.uk

 

Disability and Assistive Resources:

We have a webpage dedicated to supporting any additional needs of our users. Library staff can provide additional information and try to accommodate you as best as possible.

If you for whatever reason cannot come to the library we offer limited remote services for our users. These services are subject to staff availability and some require for you to be registered with the Disability Resource Center. Please visit our page for our Assistive Resources.

Working Library Regulations
  • Hot and cold drinks are allowed but please do not eat in the Library. We encourage students to take regular breaks away from the Library. The Library Corridor seating (corridor before entering the library)  provides space for breaks and for eating.
  • The books are for everyone so please don’t write in, use sticky notes or mark them. 
  • To keep the Reading Room a quiet environment, please have mobile phones on silent and take any calls in the Library Corridor.
  • You are responsible for the health and safety of yourself and others.

 

Reserving a seat:

We have a limited number of spaces so we ask that students do not reserve the space for more than they need to, especially in Easter Term! Items left without an 'I Need a Break!' slip (or time-stamped more than 90 minutes ago) will be removed. We also have "Book reservation" slips that reserve books within the library for 3 days. Both slips can be found throughout the Reading Room on Floor 1.   

 

Belongings:

 You may leave your belongings at your library desk but they are your responsibility. Any items left for long periods of time  will be placed in the "Lost Property" area opposite the self-issue machines on the First Floor. Lockers can be reserved for the storage of personal belongings. Please ask library staff for a key.

 

For a PDF on regulations COVID-19 during your library stay.

Disability and Assistive Resources

We try our best to be as inclusive as possible to all our users. Please visit our dedicated page on Disability/ Assistive Resources for information on our accessibility and disability resources in Christ's and Cambridge Libraries. 

If you for whatever reason cannot come to the library we offer limited remote services for our users. These services are subject to staff availability and some require for you to be registered with the Disability Resource Center. Please visit our page for our Assistive Resources.

 

  • If you do not find the information you are looking for please contact the library team at:

Email: library@christs.cam.ac.uk

Tel: 01223 334905/ 01223 33495

  • Alternatively you can contact the Library Accessibility Service for Cambridge Libraries.

Email:  disability@lib.cam.ac.uk

Latest Updates

To find about the latest news of the library and any information affecting you, please visit our Latest Updates section.

In addition follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram 

Wellbeing and Leisure

In our library we also encourage our students to take regular breaks. You can either use the Library corridor with comfortable sofas and armchairs or take a stroll at our college gardens. The city center is also a step away. Please visit our wellbeing page for information of library, College and Cambridge support for our users. 

  • Please also have a look at our page on Library Anxiety for tips on how to deal with it. 
  • You can also visit the Welfare and Support Christ's page for further information on services available to you. You will need your Raven password for access to that website.
  • Have a look at our General Interest Collection on the First Floor that includes fiction and non fiction. It is also part of our wellbeing collection on topics suggested by our own College Nurse such as sleeping, mindfulness, good nutrition, anxiety, exam preparation etc.
  • You can pair that up with a number of apps available for meditation and mindfulness like "Headspace".
  • The Internet Archive is also a fount of archived material, including books, films and music.
  • And you are all eligible to join Cambridgeshire County Library service through studying in Cambridge - why not find your home library and join there too to access even more?
  • The university also offers a number of resources and websites for its users such as the University Counselling Service and Student Wellbeing.
  • For further information on exercise please visit the NHS page on exercise information and tips.  Why not check out these NHS 10-minute workouts you can do at home?

The University has also collated a page of advice and resources specifically linked to coronavirus, which may prove helpful. Also you may find helpful reading about how the pandemic affects you mentally; Esther Perel blog post on "What is this Feeling? Anticipatory Grief and Other New Pandemic-Related Emotions"