Skip to main content

Ordering Library resources: Information for academic staff

Advice for academic staff who want to suggest new items for the Library collections to support teaching and research.

Suggesting items for Library stock

Before suggesting any items, please check the Library Catalogue to confirm that we don't already provide them. You are then very welcome to email your Subject Librarian with your suggestions. If the subject librarian is happy to authorise the order, they will pass on the relevant information to the Library Acquisitions team.

You can also email reading lists to your Subject Librarian and these will be checked for items that might need ordering. The sooner you can send us these lists, the more likely we can make items available in time for the start of each semester.

Ordering items

It is useful to give as much of the following information as possible:

  • Author
  • Title
  • Edition
  • Year of Publication
  • Key texts required for teaching: please also provide the course code/name and approximate number of students. Where no ebook equivalent is available, we aim to order multiple print copies. The number of copies will depend on factors such as the size of the cohort requiring access.

We generally place orders for material within 5 working days of receiving them, but this can fluctuate in response to the volume of requests. Within the contractual terms with our suppliers, we aim to receive the majority of those print books that are in publication within three weeks. Single-title e-book orders are usually fulfilled much more quickly.

Please read our short guide to e-book provision in order to understand the key issues regarding library provision of e-books for students.

For information on the progress of your order, please contact the Acquisitions Department:

Books needed urgently

  • While it’s best if you can allow sufficient time to order items, we realise this is not always possible. Books needed urgently should be marked as such when contacting your subject librarian. These may include items such as core/key texts or materials required quickly for research/projects.

Library suppliers

  • The University of Bath is a member of the Southern Universities Purchasing Consortium (SUPC). As such, the Library benefits from favourable deals with contract-winning book suppliers in terms of discounts, customer support and extra services such as book covering. It is not feasible to rely solely upon suppliers such as Amazon as they would not be able to provide us with this level of support (or discount!) - we make occasional use of these services where there is no acceptable alternative, for example, to obtain out-of-print books.

Receiving and processing items

  • The Library gets deliveries of new books every day. Once a book has arrived in the Library, it will show as ‘it will show as ‘in process of acquisitions technical services’’ on the Library Catalogue.

  • We give priority to items marked Urgent, and then process the rest in strict date order. If a user has an urgent requirement for a book, it can be fast-tracked through the various processing stages.

  • All items need to be allocated a classification number and given an accurate record on the Library catalogue before they can be made available for loan.

  • If an ordered item is reserved on your behalf, you will be alerted via email once it is ready for you to collect from the Issue Desk.

Reserving ‘on-order’ or ‘in-process’ books

You are unable to reserve for items that are ‘on-order’ or ‘in-process’ through the library catalogue, but the Acquisitions Team can do this on your behalf if you contact them using one of the following methods (you will need to tell us your library card number when you contact us). When the item is available for you, you will be alerted by email. You will then need to collect the book from the 'reserved for collection' shelf on Level 2 of the Library (opposite the toilets).

  • e-mail
  • call x5581
  • visit our office on Level 2 of the Library (adjacent to the Copy and Print Office)


  • The Library is happy to consider donations of books and journals. These will be passed to the relevant subject librarian for consideration. We do however reserve the right to decide whether or not to retain such material for stock or to dispose of it according to Library guidelines.


If you have any questions, please contact us.