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Library services during the coronavirus situation

Due to the coronavirus situation in The Netherlands, Leiden University Libraries has had to adjust its library services.

To be able to enter the library, a personal, activated LU-Card is mandatory.

This page as well as our regular webpages will be updated regularly. Any significant changes in library services will be announced on our homepage and via Twitter and Facebook.

Please check our opening hours webpage for an up-to-date overview. From 12 July - 23 August, several library locations keep to a summer schedule.

Library study places can be booked by Leiden University students. All seats need to be booked in advance, online. Other patrons cannot reserve or use study places.

From 12 July until 1 September 2021, several study places will be made available for use by Leiden University staff.

Non-silent short use seats

Students who have a study place reservation, but would like to follow an online course or otherwise conduct an online conversation during their reserved time-slot, can use one of the dedicated seats in the University Library's north hall next to the print & copy unit.

Online library services and remote access options for Leiden University students and Leiden University and KITLV staff, are currently being offered as usual.

Read e-books at home, or have a look at our vast e-journals collection. Browse our extensive subject guides for your field of interest. Treat yourself to some film and music! Learn all about Open Access and Leiden University Scholarly Publications.

Temporary access to extra digital resources

Several database platforms now offer free access to a selection of online materials:

  • Ars Aequi – Dutch monthly law journal and online platform 'Ars Aequi' is now available for remote access through EZProxy
  • JSTOR – access to additional JSTOR collections and coronavirus and public health content until 30 June 2021
  • Ohio State University Press – free access to all monographs and the linguistic textbook 'Language Files'

Library patrons owning a valid library account and LU-Card may visit the library locations to pick up requested items and later return them.

Choose one of the pickup locations from the drop-down menu in the catalogue. Books can be picked up without making an appointment. Please await the availability email, so as to be sure the items are ready.

Current opening hours per location are listed on our opening hours page.


During opening hours, borrowed items may be returned at the UBL library location of your choice.

Books may also be sent by mail, provided they are securely packaged and carry sufficient postage: 

University Library
User Services
P.O. Box 9501
2300 RA Leiden
The Netherlands

Most university libraries, and the National Library (KB), currently offer ILL services through WorldCat. Please note that, for loans as well as for article deliveries, we do depend on other libraries' current ILL options.

Please contact us in case you should have any questions.

A selection of books shelved in the University Library (UB) reading room and the Asian Library, and non-circulating items shelved at the Law, Wijnhaven and NINO libraries, can be made available and checked out to library patrons upon email request. Items will be determined suitable for loan on a case-by-case basis.

Please send us an email at facultyliaison@library.leidenuniv.nl, stating your student number or username, plus author, title, volume and call number of the item needed, or copy the link from the catalogue using the share link option. You will be notified as to the loan options and availability of the item. UB, Law Library and NINO items may be picked up from one of the lockers in the UB, Wijnhaven materials from the lockers at Wijnhaven Library.

Entering the library or the reading rooms to fetch or consult these books is currently not allowed.

We kindly ask teachers to use digital materials whenever possible, and limit the use of physical materials to a maximum of ten books.

Using the UB and Wijnhaven Library course reserve books

Students wishing to consult course reserve books for a short while only, can book a 'course reserve seat' for an hour. For the UB, please contact the UB reception desk at +31715272800, for Wijnhaven Library please send us an email.

For the time being, all University Library (UB) and Asian Library course shelves have been moved to the Information centre Huygens on the UB ground floor.

E-books for course shelves

Check our catalogue to find out whether the publication you are looking for is available in digital form. If not, please fill out a purchase request form, or contact your subject librarian to discuss alternative solutions.

Course shelve books loan

Please let us know if can make course reserve items available for loan, by sending an email to uitleen@library.leidenuniv.nl. We recommend you only do this for small groups of students, who will often connect with each other when resources are limited, and share books. The student registered in our system as borrower will be responsible for the book loan at all times.

Scans and readers

In some cases, it is permitted to publish scans of copyrighted book chapters on BrightSpace. A number of publishers have allowed articles or book chapters to be included in printed or digital readers for educational purposes, in which case there is no need to count words or images. Please check publishers' policies using the Usage regulations licensed e-resources module.

When a publisher isn't indicated on the list, the UFB Reader Online service can scan book chapters and make them available to students. Please consider copyright regulations when using this option. Deviating from regular procedure, the library will provide the book and the UFB provides the scanning services. For more information, please contact the UFB Reader Online Services at readers@ufb.leidenuniv.nl

Students can purchase scanned items through the Reader Online webshop, in digital or printed form. Any costs due to copyright will be added to the purchase fee. Leiden University’s Central Crisis Team has decided these costs will fall on students as they did before.

More information

General information about copyright issues when teaching online can be found on our Digital Scholarship webpage.

If you should have any questions regarding course reserves, please contact us by email: uitleen@library.leidenuniv.nl.

Researchers can contact the Centre for Digital Scholarship (CDS) for questions, advice and training regarding data management, Open Access, copyright, and use of digital data. Please contact the CDS via email: cds@library.leidenuniv.nl.

The Reading Room Special Collections currently provides thirteen workplaces to researchers and students wishing to use materials from the library's special collections for their research. Seats need to be booked in advance.

Applying for a visit

To apply for a workplace, please send an email to specialcollections@library.leidenuniv.nl. Let us know on which day and during which time slot(s) you would like to visit. From Monday to Friday, the time slots to choose from are:

  • 9:00 to 11:00
  • 11.30 to 13.30
  • 14:00 to 17:00

Your request must be sent in no later than 14:00 on the workday prior to your intended visit. We will inform you as to the availability of a seat during your preferred time slot. Approval of applications is handled in order of receipt.

Visiting Special Collections

When your application has been approved, you are welcome to visit during the agreed upon time.

Please report to the UB reception desk to have your registration checked, after which you will be admitted to the library. We ask you to thoroughly wash your hands before entering the library, and follow the indicated one-way route.

Once in the reading room, please report to the desk. Staff will show you your workplace and provide you with the requested items. Walking routes are indicated on the floor. After your visit, please return all documents or objects at the desk, and leave the library by the indicated route.

Workplaces are cleaned thoroughly between visits.

Courses and lectures

Leiden University teachers may request to use original items from the Special Collections relevant to their courses, in the University Library lecture rooms.

Digital Collections

Please find our rich and varied Digital Collections online.

Leiden University teachers wishing to stream audiovisual materials during online classes, can book the University Library's media room (ground floor) for this purpose.

One of the computer units in the media room has been equipped with the proper software and hardware needed to stream audiovisual materials. Teachers can book the room themselves, or have a student assistant handle the booking and streaming. This service is meant specifically to enable teachers to use dvd's from the library's collections, and is being offered to Leiden University teaching staff only.

To book, please send an email to the University Library's reception desk, stating your name, email address and phone number, and the desired date and time. More information regarding the procedure will be sent to you by email.

Leiden University students can make an appointment to print documents or transfer their P-disk files at the University Library (UB) and at the Wijnhaven Library in The Hague.

Please contact the library to book a max. 20 minute time slot, during which you will have sole use of the printer and/or computer assigned to you.


Using Webprint, you can prepare and upload your print requests before your visit to the library. If this option does not work for you, you will be assigned a library computer for the duration of your booked time frame.

P-disk files

You can send your P-disk files by email, or transfer them to Office 365. In case you choose to use Office, make sure to have access to Office services before your appointment at the library. Please find all necessary Office 365 information and manuals at Leiden University's Helpdesk Portal. Library staff can not offer assistance in this matter.


UB reception desk
+31 71 5272800

Wijnhaven Library Wijnhaven@library.leidenuniv.nl

For any library-related queries you might have, please contact us using Ask a librarian. On weekdays from 9:00-17:00 we can also be reached by whatsapp, chat, and phone.

Forgotten your password?

In case you have forgotten your library account password, please request a new password online.

Subject librarians and curators

Subject librarians and curators can be reached using their regular university email address.

All notices regarding loans, requests, and overdue fines from the library to Leiden University students, and to alumni graduated after August 2006, are sent to the Leiden University uMail-address.

uMailbox transfer issues

In 2020, Leiden University has transfered all uMailboxes to a new online environment. Please check the university's news item on uMail migration issues.

uMail forwarding settings

Forwarding settings created before April 2020 are no longer active. Please refer to the university's news item for more info and a manual regarding the new uMail forwarding options.

Please find information regarding services currently offered by the Walaeus Library (LUMC) on the Walaeus Library website.

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