Access and Services

Access and Services

For students

Filming and photography in the libraries

We're often contacted by students who wish to film, take photographs or hold a performances in the Libraries.

We'll always try to accommodate you if it's possible. However, our purpose is to provide an environment conducive to study and it is our duty to ensure the safety of all Library users. It's therefore important that:

  • The photographs/films do not include pictures of other Library users without their written permission
  • The photography/filming/performance does not disturb other Library users
  • Access to books and other Library equipment is not unduly restricted
  • There is no large-scale moving of furniture or stock
  • The photography/filming/performance is done in a safe manner
  • Appropriate risk assessment for the activity is submitted in advance to the Library
  • The photography/filming/performance is done during Library opening hours only.

What do we need?

We require two completed forms: a permissions form and a risk assessment. You'll need to email them to

We'll need to know:

  • Dates of filming/photography
  • The nature of the activities planned
  • Any risks involved
  • How you plan on mitigating these risks
  • The names of those undertaking the activities.

What next?

A member of Library staff will make a decision on whether to give permission and let you know by email.

You cannot proceed without permission.


It's easy to print from either Bath Spa computers or your own mobile devices.

Full printing instructions and costs are on the Apollo printing page

Mobile printing can be done through Hotprint.

Printing credits can be purchased on The Hub.


International students (overseas campus-based)

Bath Spa registered students enrolled on overseas teaching franchises are eligible to access Library e-resources where licences permit:

For staff


How do I get a library card?

Your university ID card is also your library card. We need to activate the card before you can use it, so please bring it on your first visit to your campus library.

How many books can I borrow?

Academic staff can borrow up to 25 items. 

Who is my Subject Librarian?

Each course is supported by a dedicated Subject Librarian with subject knowledge in your area. They can provide teaching sessions on library resources for you and your students.

Can I order books for the university to purchase?

You can request books via this form.

Getting library materials into Minerva, reading lists, etc.

Wherever possible, we encourage you to link to open access or subscribed content from within the library’s holdings (such as eBooks or e-journals). The alternative is to post digital scans through the CLA Scanning service, which is outlined in the next section.

The following guidance explains how to provide students with durable links to library e-resources, that will work from both on- and off-campus.

Books & eBooks

  • Find the eBook in our library collections. Click on its title in the search results. Click on 'Save/Export' to the right of the screen. The Permalink URL will appear at the bottom of the pop up box. Copy this URL to provide a link to that screen (from where students and staff will be able to link out to a location containing the full text).


  • Journal articles
    You'll have located a journal article of interest in our library collections. Follow the same guidance as for eBooks and books above.
  • Journal by title
    You'll first have found a journal in the library's e-journal A-Z search. From the resulting screen, click the title of the journal. Finally, from the journal title page, select the 'permalink' option from the far right of the screen. Copy this URL to provide a link to that screen (and the downloadable full-text documents therein).


  • Link to the letter above the database you're linking to on the Databases A-Z page. This is done by right-clicking on the letter from the A-Z menu at the top of that page and choosing 'Copy link location' (Firefox), 'Copy link address' (Chrome) or 'Copy shortcut' (Internet Explorer). 

Direct linking to full-text content in databases ('deep linking')

It is not always feasible (or advisable) to provide students with links that click straight through to the full-text content or articles. If you do wish to provide direct access to papers or pages within specific databases however (sometimes called 'deep linking'), some advice for the most popular services is below.

(Please be aware that the links you create following instructions below are more liable to break as publishers change their websites over time, and it's worth checking the links you post are still working at least once a year!)

The best general practice to try is as follows:

  1. Grab the URL of the PDF or document file by right clicking on its link and selecting 'Copy link location' (Firefox), 'Copy link address' (Chrome) or 'Copy shortcut' (Internet Explorer).
  2. Add the EZproxy prefix: directly before this URL. For example, needs to become

The EZproxy prefix is essential in order to provide access from on- or off-campus.

If you can't locate an actual PDF or document file, then simply copy the URL for the page the content is on from the web browser itself (for example, when a pdf is embedded in a page), still prefixing this with the EZproxy URL as above.

Some of the URLs you end up with through following this method may be very long, so obviously it's good practice not to paste them directly into pages in Minerva, and to put them behind link text (hypertext) instead.

If you have trouble providing direct links to these or any other databases, please contact the library.

Digital Scans

The University's CLA (Copyright Licensing Agency) Licence allows the Library to supply academic staff with digitised book chapters and journal articles. Links to these scans can be placed within Minerva as key readings for a particular module. Academic staff can request a scanned extract from ANY book or journal, not only items physically held by the Library.

Under the University Copyright Policy, only 'designated persons' are authorised to scan copyrighted material; academic staff must not personally make scans and upload them into Minerva. All requests must be made through the CLA scanning request form (login with your Google ID). Please note that scans are supplied for a single named module only, and should not be linked to from multiple modules. Our copyright FAQs provide advice about how to request the same scan for multiple modules.

Please give as much notice as possible; requests may take several weeks to fulfil while the Library sources your material and conducts the various checks required by the CLA. The Library may alternatively provide links to eBooks or database subscriptions where a request is already available online.

Audio-visual materials for teaching and learning

Off-air recordings

Through the Library's membership of the British Universities Film and Video Council (BUFVC) we have access to BoB (Box of Broadcasts), which allows students and staff to view, record, create clips and share broadcast programmes from over 60 TV and radio channels. Under the BUFVC membership, staff can also request copies of up to 50 freeview television programmes per year, as broadcast since 1998.

Alternatively, the University holds a licence from the Educational Recording Agency (ERA) that allows off-air recordings to be made by University employees.

Please note:

  • "Programmes may only be recorded, retained, stored and copied by licensed establishments for non-commercial 'educational purposes'."
  • "All recordings...must be clearly and appropriately labelled. Failure to do so may lead to licences being withdrawn." Digital recordings require these details as a written opening credit or webpage which must be viewed before access to the recording is permitted.
  • ERA recordings cannot be adapted or re-edited.
  • ERA recordings cannot be supplied to overseas-based students.
  • "The copying of commercially produced, pre-recorded videos, audio tapes, CDs and DVDs is not authorised by the ERA scheme."

Full guidance is available on the Era website.

DVDs and videos

The library's videos and DVDs are lent for private home use, on a non-profit basis, and only on the understanding that they will be viewed for the educational purposes of individual private study or non-commercial research.

Our videos and DVDs can only be shown to an audience if the screening takes place on a University campus, solely for the purposes of instruction, and provided that the audience comprises only University staff and current students.

Library videos and DVDs must never be shown publicly for entertainment purposes without the express written permission of the copyright holder.


In order to comply with current legislation, pre-recorded feature films and television programmes can only be added to library stock when they have been classified for UK release by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC).

The only exemptions are those listed by the Video Recordings Act 1984, i.e. "educational works or works predominantly concerned with sport, religion and music". See the BBFC website for further information about exemptions.

For people with disabilities

Visit us to discuss your requirements

Wherever possible we aim to meet the individual library needs of users with disabilities. To achieve this, we invite you to contact the library to discuss your requirements.

For Newton Park, please contact David Rooney
Telephone: +44 (0)1225 876769

For Sion Hill, please contact Helen Rayner
Telephone: +44 (0)1225 875648

For Corsham Court, please contact Katie Rickard
Telephone: +44 (0)1225 875854

Physical access

Our three campus libraries have different levels of accessibility. Please take a look at the accessibility guides below:

Newton Park Library

Sion Hill Library

Corsham Court Library

Please contact Katie Rickard to discuss your access requirements.

Assistive technology

We have a screenreading software called Read & Write Gold on all computers in the Library and Learning Commons. 

Read & Write Gold, "provides users with dyslexia, literacy difficulties and ESL (English as a Second Language) with literacy support throughout their education, from primary through to tertiary level and into the workplace".

To get started, we recommend their Beginner's Guide or their video playlist.

In addition, the library provides a magnification tool in the main room which can be used to magnify the pages of print resources. Colour filters can also be used with this resource to improve access.

Borrowing books

If you have a support worker, they can borrow books on your behalf with a letter of authorisation from you. Your support worker will also need your Library card to borrow books.

Library staff will be happy to help you retrieve books from the shelves. If you think you might need long-term assistance, we can put you in touch with a member of Library staff who can be your named contact.

For members of the public

Before you visit

Please check our Library catalogue, which is available for members of the public to search online, to check we have the books you require. Do also take a look at our Library Opening Times, as our three campus libraries have different opening times at different times of the year.

Apply for reference use

Members of the public may use the libraries for reference purposes. Please fill out the external borrower application form, and choose 'Member of the public - reference use' as your category of membership.


There is no fee for this form of membership

Apply for borrowing facilities

If you would like to borrow library items, please complete the external reference users application form to register as an external member.

As an external member you can borrow up to five items at a time and use the enquiry service. Unfortunately due to licence restrictions, external members may not use the networked computers or access our electronic resources. This means that only our Library catalogue, and not the main library search, will work for you.

Cost of membership:

  • £55 for 6 months
  • £100 for 12 months

Apply for Alumni membership

If you are a graduate of the University, you can join the library at a reduced rate. With alumni membership you can borrow up to five items at a time and use the enquiry service.

Unfortunately due to licence restrictions, alumni may not use the networked computers or access our electronic resources. Please complete the alumni application form for alumni membership. 

Cost of Alumni membership:

  • £30 for 6 months
  • £50 for 12 months


Visits for local schools

The Library accepts supervised visits from groups of 6th form students at pre-arranged quiet times, usually during University vacations. Pupils will have access to printed books and journals, and the use of the Library catalogue. Before arranging a visit, please check the Library catalogue to ensure we cover subjects relevant to your pupils at the site library you plan to visit.

Arrange a visit or request further information.


My book has been recalled, what does this mean?

Your copy has been recalled because it has been reserved by another user. If you do not return it within seven days, you will be asked to pay a fine.

I have received an invoice. If I return all the books, do I still have to pay it?

You won’t have to pay the book replacement fee if you return the books, but there will still be a £5.00 administration fee per invoice. Any fines will also still need to be paid.

I have just renewed my membership, but my books have not renewed. Why is this?

The loan period was set to end when your membership ended. You can renew your books online once you have extended your membership.

I borrowed a book yesterday and it has already been recalled, why is this?

Your book is in demand so we have reduced the loan period to allow others to use it. You will need to return it within seven days of the recall notice.

I have a fine, how do I pay it?

You can pay fines and charges online through “My Account” in the library catalogue (minimum payment 50p).

For visitors from (and to) other academic libraries


SCONUL Access is a scheme which allows University library users to borrow or use books and journals at other libraries that belong to the scheme.

Take a look at SCONUL’s web pages for further information and to apply for access.

For Bath Spa University students going elsewhere:

  • You will need to apply using your official Bath Spa University email address.
  • As long as you are in good standing with the Library (i.e. no outstanding debts) you will receive an email which can be presented at any of the participating libraries together with your BSU Library card.
  • If your application is rejected, you will be given the opportunity to resolve the issue before you apply again.
  • Remember to take your BSU Library card with you as proof of identity and eligibility.

For external students planning to visit Bath Spa University:


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