Finding literature and information resources
Altogether Kiel University Library - i.e. the Central Library and all specialised libraries - holds about 4.6 million books and information resources. About half of them are located in the Central Library's departments (Main Department, Medical Department, Engineering Department).
To find out if we have a certain title or literature on a certain topic in stock, please check our library catalogue. It contains the almost complete holdings of both the Central Library and the specialised libraries. Acquisitions from 1993 on are recorded completely, items that were bought earlier are covered to an increasing extent. In the library catalogue you will find information about the location and availability of any of our books and information resources.
Within this search interface you may also request or reserve items and renew the loan period.
If we do not hold a book or item you are looking for, you may suggest it for acquisition. We will then check if we can obtain the desired literature and contact you. Another possibility is to order the item in question via inter-library loan.
In the Main Department, more than 700,000 books are directly accessible in the open-access area ("Freihandbereich"). They are shelved in classified order.
The most important reference works, dictionaries and auxiliary materials in the area of humanities, social sciences and law are located in the reading room (ground floor, segment 3). This literature is arranged in classified order, too, and may only be used on the premises.
For most subjects, textbooks can be found within the open-access area of the respective subject. A separate textbook collection exists for the following subjects: law, preclinical medicine and economics. All textbooks are readily identifiable by their blue shelf mark label.
As a marginal note: Please keep in mind that by browsing the shelves of the subject you are interested in you will only find the literature that is available at the moment. For a complete overview of our holdings including borrowed items (which you may reserve) and items that are located in the closed stacks or at a specialised library, please check our library catalogue.
Other books are kept in the Main Department's open stacks ("Offenes Magazin") in the basement. You do have access to these stacks as well but here the library materials are arranged by shelf marks and not by subject.
In contrast, books that are stored in the library's closed stacks ("Geschlossenes Magazin") need to be ordered via the library catalogue.
REGIONAL CATALOGUE OF KIEL
holdings of Kiel University Library and of the other academic libraries in Kiel which are:
- Schleswig-Holstein State Library ("Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek")
- German National Library of Economics ("Deutsche Zentralbibliothek für Wirtschaftswissenschaften", ZBW)
- Library of the University of Applied Sciences ("Bibliothek der Fachhochschule Kiel")
- Library of the Muthesius Academy of Fine Arts and Design ("Bibliothek der Muthesius-Kunsthochschule Kiel")
- Library of the Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel ("Bibliothek des Helmholtz-Zentrum für Ozeanforschung Kiel", GEOMAR)
- Underwater Acoustics and Marine Geophysics Research Institute ("Forschungsanstalt der Bundeswehr für Wasserschall und Geophysik")
COMMON UNION CATALOGUE ("GEMEINSAMER VERBUNDKATALOG", GVK)
holdings of libraries in seven German federal states participating in the Common Library Network ("Gemeinsamer Bibliotheksverbund", GBV)
If an item you are looking for is not available in Kiel you may order it in this catalogue via inter-library loan.
KARLSRUHE VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ("KARLSRUHER VIRUTELLER KATALOG", KVK)
a meta-search interface for library and book trade catalogues not only in Germany but (almost) all over the world
largest union catalogue worldwide; predominantly lists holdings of U.S. libraries, but holdings of German and other European libraries are recorded to an increasing degree; might also be helpful for bibliographic enquiries
Library catalogues primarily list journal titles but not the articles they contain. To find the latter, please consult
IBZ - INTERNATIONAL BIBLIOGRAPHY OF PERIODICAL LITERATURE
articles of about 11,500 journals covering the period 1983 to present
article data includes a subject classification in German and English so that articles can be found regardless of their exact title and original language
accessible only at Kiel University or with an inter-library loan identification
OLC - ONLINE CONTENTS
articles of more than 22,000 periodicals beginning with the year of publication 1993
accessible only at Kiel University or with an inter-library loan identification
As a marginal note: If you are interested in both complete books and journal articles, you may also use GVK-Plus - Common Union Catalogue with Online Contents.
DATABASE INFORMATION SYSTEM ("DATENBANK-INFORMATIONSSYTEM", DBIS)
lists more than 8,000 online databases of academic relevance, many of them licensed by Kiel University Library or freely accessible via the Internet
search interface in German only; search options: browsing by subject or database name, search interface
ELECTRONIC JOURNALS LIBRARY ("ELEKTRONISCHE ZEITSCHRIFTENBIBLIOTHEK", EZB)
lists more than 45,000 electronic journals, many of them licensed by Kiel University Library or freely accessible via the Internet
search options: browsing by subject or journal title, search interface
VASCODA - THE INTERNETPORTAL FOR SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION
access point to many virtual libraries and other subject information platforms of academic interest
meta-search across library catalogues, databases and directories of Internet sources
If a book or a journal article you are looking for is not available in Kiel you may order it via inter-library loan. The only precondition is a valid user card of Kiel University Library.
To be able to participate in the inter-library loan service, please come to the circulation desk (Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 4.30 p.m.) and ask for an inter-library loan account. You will then be equipped with an access number and a password to search and order literature in the databases of the Common Library Network ("Gemeinsamer Bibliotheksverbund", GBV), a network of many libraries offering inter-library loan service.
How to place an inter-library loan request for a book
First of all, please search the book you are interested in in the Common Union Catalogue ("Gemeinsamer Verbundkatalog", GVK). In the "full title" display you have to click the button "loan request" on the upper right side. On the following page please identify yourself with your inter-library loan access number and your password. Afterwards you will receive a request form with the bibliographic data and your personal data already filled in. Eventually re-enter your inter-library loan password and click "Send".
How to place an inter-library loan request for a journal article
You may try to find the journal article in the union catalogue GVK-Plus that contains article information of about 22,000 journals from 1993 on (in addition to the contents of GVK). If you are successful, please click "order copy" on the upper right side. Afterwards a window will open up in which you have to identify yourself with your inter-library loan access number and your password. The article data will then already be completed in the request form. Eventually re-enter your inter-library loan password and click "Send".
In case the article you would like to order is not recorded in GVK-Plus, you need to search the journal in which it is published. The ordering procedure is basically the same as described above, but additionally you have to complete the request form by inserting the year of publication and the volume of the journal. Afterwards a new window will open where you have to fill in the author and title of the article and the pages it occupies.
Charges and delivery
Each book or photocopied article (up to 20 pages) ordered via inter-library loan costs €1.50. Articles with more than 20 pages are charged by the libraries at individual rates. In the request form you may state the maximum amount you are willing to pay for the respective article; the default setting is a maximum of €8.00.
Usually an order takes about two weeks to arrive at our library. You will be notified via e-mail or regular mail as soon as the requested item can be picked up. Then please come to the circulation desk within five business days.
If you need a book urgently you may also order it via document delivery services at a significantly higher cost.
Borrowing period for items ordered via inter-library loan
The supplying library decides how long you may keep the item. Please keep in mind that it has to be returned the day before the date shown in your user account.
Journal articles are usually supplied as photocopies and remain in your possession.
If you would like to renew the loan period, please turn to our circulation desk a week before the due date and fill out a renewal form.
Further information on inter-library loan
For further information on inter-library loan, e.g. how to search the databases and what to do in case you do not receive the literature you are interested in, please refer to our reference service
- Main Department, ground floor, segment 3
phone: (0431) 880 - 47 75
or to the inter-library loan department
- Mr. Oliver Weiner
phone: (0431) 880 - 47 03
If the requested item is not available in Germany, the inter-library loan department may order it for you via international inter-library loan.
Should the disposal time for inter-library loans be too long, then you also have the possibility to order books and journal articles via document delivery services like subito. These services offer a shorter processing time but are more expensive than the inter-library loan service. The exact fees are determined by the supplying library.
To use a document delivery service, you need to register with the respective provider. The requested item(s) will be sent to an address of your choice and not to our library. Please note that you will be charged by the supplying library directly.