Guide for librarians

Document supply

Document supply services to other libraries are managed by the Reference Services Team at the National Library of Scotland. Visit the document supply pages to find out how to make a request and what services we offer, and to see the price list.


National Library catalogues

You can consult our main catalogue online. We also have other catalogues and databases that you might find useful. The site also has guidance on the use of our records and our Z39.50 profile.



Some of our eResources (formerly called licensed digital collections) are only available to visitors to our reading rooms in Edinburgh or, from 14 September 2016, in Kelvin Hall in Glasgow. Others are available to use from any computer with internet access if you have a library card or if you register online and your main address is in Scotland.



A national project was carried out to preserve fragile, historic local newspapers by copying them to microfilm and increasing access to their content through local libraries. NEWSPLAN Scotland, one of 10 regional offices, is based at the National Library of Scotland.


Online reference service

The National Library of Scotland is part of the global reference network that provides an online service for general reference enquiries. One of the key elements of the Ask a Librarian service is that an enquiry may be forwarded to another library in the network, if its resources make it better placed to answer the query.


Rare Books in Scotland forum

Rare Books in Scotland (RBiS) is a forum for staff in Scottish libraries and other organisations who are responsible for collections of rare books. The forum is affiliated to SCURL and facilitated by the National Library of Scotland. New members are always welcome.


What we collect

If you are interested in the scope of our collections, you'll find links on the policy documents page to PDF documents covering our various collection policies. Also on this page is our cataloguing policies document and the full text of the National Library of Scotland's strategy document and corporate plan.


Visiting us

If you plan to use reading rooms, you may need to know where to find us, when we open, and what services we offer — such as:

This kind of information is in our 'Using the Library' section. We also have pages on facilities for people with disabilities and on what's available in the Visitor Centre.


Contact us

Consult our staff and departments directory for details if you know the name of the person you want to contact, or to browse by department.

Our contacts page also has the postal addresses and phone and fax numbers for our two buildings with public access. There is a list of the email addresses (and in some cases phone and fax numbers) for the main National Library departments.


Useful links — libraries and information resources


Guides main page

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