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Library Services

Your gateway to a wide range of online information resources

Joining the Open University Library

  1. Library Services
  2. Services for you
  3. Joining the Open University Library

All Open University staff, associate lecturers and students can access the full range of the library's online resources using their usual OU computer username and password. The full range of services available is detailed in Services for you. Students and staff who require access to physical materials and are not able to visit the library in Milton Keynes can arrange to visit Libraries near you.

Anyone can

  • Use the Library at Walton Hall as a reference facility and as a quiet place to study. There are sockets available for you to plug in your own laptop.
  • Access publicly available e-resources.
  • Search the collections held at the Library building in Milton Keynes by using Library Search and limiting their results to 'In the Walton Hall Library'.

OU students and staff

Before you wish to borrow books from the library at Walton Hall:

  • Current OU students and staff members who do not have a staff ID card should complete the registration form. If you have applied to join the SCONUL Access scheme you don't need to apply for an OU Library card separately. Once you have received your confirmation email an OU library card will be posted to you if you don't already have one.
  • OU research students and OU staff who have a staff ID card need to activate the barcode on the back of your staff ID card.

OU Retired staff and Alumni

OU Retired staff and Alumni who would like to borrow from the physical collections at Walton Hall should complete the online registration service form.

Alumni joining the Walton Hall Library will not have access to licensed online resources, but can still use a wide range of publicly available resources. Retired staff retain access to a subset of the Library's online resources.

Help on how to use online resources and on how to borrow, renew and return items at Walton Hall is available from Help & Support. Library Services requires all customers to abide by our Terms and Conditions (PDF).

Students and staff from other educational establishments

Students and staff from universities which are members of the SCONUL Access scheme can join the OU Library and borrow materials. If your home institution provides Eduroam WiFi you will be able to use it in the Library at Walton Hall.

Before visiting the Open University Library

  1. You need to ask your home institution for a SCONUL Access acceptance email.
  2. You will also need to apply for an Open University Library card. Once your application is processed your card will be posted to your home address.

When you visit

Please bring your current University library card, your OU Library card and your SCONUL Access acceptance email from your home institution when you visit. 

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Contacting the helpdesk

Chat to a Librarian - Available 24/7

Other ways to contact the Library Helpdesk