Opening of University Libraries during Lockdown Level 1

EdgewoodEdminson Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
All libraries will be closed between 12h00
and 13h00 on weekdays for sanitisation

Howard CollegeBarrie Biermann Architecture LibraryMonday, Wednesday and Thursday: 13h00 – 16h00Closed
EG Malherbe (Main) Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
Eleanor Bonnar Music LibraryClosedClosed
Law Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
Medical SchoolNelson R Mandela Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
PietermaritzburgCecil Renaud (Main) Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
Law Library08h00 – 16h30Closed
Life Sciences Library08h00 – 16h30Closed
WestvilleWestville (Main) Library08h00 – 23h0008h30 – 15h30
We continue to work remotely and business communication will continue as per lockdown regulations. Librarians remain available to provide virtual support for teaching, learning and research


Access to the library

  • Walk-in students and staff will be restricted to the Issue Desk (general queries, book issues and returns), designated seating areas and Research Commons.
  • No entry without student/staff card and mask.
  • Please present your student/staff card to the RMS member at the Library entrance and complete the COVID-19 register.
  • There will be no group gatherings or study rooms made available for use.
  • Demarcated areas will be regularly monitored and sanitised for use.

Research Commons

  • Limited spaces are available for postgraduate students (Masters, PhD, Researchers and academics) in the Research Commons.
  • Please present your student/staff card to the RMS member at the entrance and complete the COVID-19 register. 

Special Collections

  • Access to the Special Collections for users with permits is only possible with an appointment.
  • No browsing of collections will be allowed.
  • Reproductions of material will be scanned on demand.
  • Special Collections will continue to offer virtual support to researchers, students and staff.

Study Spaces

  • Limited study spaces in each Library will be available.
  • The number of study seats available will depend on the size and capacity of the specific library, and regulations regarding the number of people allowed in a public space will apply.
  • For health and safety reasons, computers will not be available to users and users are requested to bring their own devices or use the ICS LANs.

Book Retrieval Service

  • No browsing of collections will be allowed. 
  • The Library collections will remain closed-access.
  • Students and staff may submit requests for circulating material (indicated on the Library catalogue) at the Issue Desk or via email or telephone, using the following generic email addresses: Step-by-step guide

Name of Library

Email address


Edgewood Library

031 2603467

Howard College Library

031 2602323

Medical Library

031 2604261

Pietermaritzburg Library

031 2605258

Westville Library

031 2607390


  • Users will be requested to place a HOLD on the system for the item (pick-up location will be their home library).
  • Library staff will retrieve the item from the shelves and have it ready for collection at the Issue desk. They will communicate the date and time for collection.
  • Books will be handled within the health and safety regulations regarding COVID-19 and while adhering to social distancing protocols.
  • Lending of Academic Reserve items will be restricted to prescribed books only.
  • Please search the Library catalogue for an electronic version of the book or consult your Subject librarian.
  • Academics may request scanned chapters from prescribed books for teaching purposes. If required the Library will scan the relevant chapters for these prescribed books, according to the Copyright approval sought by Academics.

Book Return Service

  • All books must be returned to the Issue Desk or Book drop boxes in the Library.
  • Library staff will check-in the books and hold them in quarantine for 1 week (7 days).
  • The Library catalogue will indicate the item as IN QUARANTINE.
  • Users who do not have permission to access campuses are requested to keep their books safe until campuses re-open.
  • All your items on loan will be renewed until we resume normal business.
  • All library fines for material that is overdue during this period will be waived.

Interlibrary loans

  • The Interlibrary loan service is in operation. All library users can place Interlibrary Loan requests for articles and chapters online using the ILL button via iCatalogueor through your online Interlibrary loan account using your Library account login credentials. (Step-by-step guide)
  • Should you not find an item on iCatalogue. The request can be sent directly to your subject librarian. Please provide full bibliographic details with your email request. We will do our very best to source the item for you.

Online Library Resources

  • You can access extensive online resources from our library website.
  • Access to e-resources (electronic databases, journals and library catalogue will be available remotely as always.
  • These include:
    1. e-books
    2. Databases
    3. Theses
    4. Databases A – Z
    5. Subject Guides
  • Users will be prompted to sign in with their LAN username and password.
  • Problems experienced with electronic databases and journals can be reported to your subject librarian.

Online Library Support/Assistance:

Librarians remain available to provide virtual support for teaching, learning and research.

The following services are available:

Online Library Account

  • Your online library account will allow you do view your library record. You will be able to see all your checkouts, holds and charges that are against your library record.
  • The checkouts tab will list all the library books issued on your account with their due dates.
  • The holds tab will indicate the status of all items that you have requested.
  • The charges tab will list all the charges you have against your library record
  • Watch: Online library account video.

For help accessing your online library account email:

Contact details:

Librarians remain available to provide virtual support for teaching, learning and research, as well as online consultation and instruction. 

For assistance, please see the Library website for a list of library contacts.

We are using a call forwarding function, so your calls may take longer than usual to be answered.

Thank you

Library Management