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Borrowing & membership

Document Delivery Service

The Document Delivery Service is for requesting books, journal articles, reports and conference proceedings that are not currently stocked by our libraries.

This service is provided free of charge and is strictly for use by Staffordshire University students and staff.

Most requests will be fulfilled by On Demand, the document supply service from the British Library.

You will need to register for a British Library Online Account (select On Demand as the service) and then associate that account with Staffordshire University Libraries.  

When you receive an email from The British Library asking you to confirm your email address. Click on the link within the email to activate your account, then forward this email to the Document Delivery team at to notify us of your online account number. Please include your Staffordshire University student number or staff ID to allow us to confirm your status and eligibility, and the email address that you registered with the British Library. We will contact you to confirm when your online account has been associated with our business account. 

You can then order books for loan to your home address, or request documents for electronic delivery direct to your registered email address. Please note, you will be required to complete a Copyright Declaration form for each request made.

There is no limit to the number of requests that you can make, but please bear in mind that the service is expensive, so try to be selective.  Before requesting an item, please make sure that it is relevant to your studies and research - the journal article abstract will help with this, and Google Books may help with books.

Please also make sure that you check any items you wish to request are not freely available online. Our guide to Open Access resources in the section below will help you with this.

Overdue, Damaged or Lost Items

There will be a charge of £5.00 for any loan item that is not returned promptly after it has been recalled.

The British Library charges a minimum of £182.80 for long overdue, damaged, or lost items - this includes an administration charge of £89.60 plus VAT, which is non-refundable even if the book is returned.  This charge will be passed on to the borrower.

How to Register for British Library On Demand

To register for a British Library Online Account, please follow the step-by-step instructions in the guides below.

Open Access Resources

What are Open Access Resources?

These are resources (for example books, conference papers or journal articles) that have been made available to read or download free of charge and without having to log-in for access.

Please check that the material you need is not freely available online before making a request via the On Demand service.

The following search tools provide a quick and easy way to check for resources, when you can't find what you are looking for in stock at our libraries.

Search Tools for Open Access Resources

Browser Extensions

These free browser plug-ins unlock access instantly and legally to millions of open access resources.

Doctoral Theses

We are unable to order theses on your behalf, but many of these are available digitally from the British Library. 

You can search over 500,000 doctoral theses using EThOS (the UK’s national thesis service) and in many cases download a copy for your research.  If a thesis is not immediately available you can order a scanned copy (charges will apply). 

Other useful open access resources include:

Resources for Research Students and Research Active Staff

If a book or article is not available from the British Library or if after receiving a book from the British Library, if you think you would require it for a longer period to support your research, we will look into purchasing the item for you. 

To request a purchase contact the Academic Skills Librarian for your subject, giving the full bibliographic details, and stating if you have used the British Library service and you require the book for longer, or if you are unable to source the item elsewhere.

This purchasing service is only available for, final year undergraduate and postgraduate taught students undertaking a final year project, postgraduate research students for any part of their research, and research-active staff. 

Contact Us

If you have any questions about using the On Demand service, or you cannot find the article or book that you need, please get in touch via email at