Using other Libraries

If you cannot find all the material you need for your research here in DCU library there are various ways in which you can access the material outside of DCU Library. 

  • Check if another University Library has it (link to all library catalogues below) and you can get a letter to visit the library.
  • Postgraduate Students and DCU Staff can apply for an ALCID card for access to all University Libraries.
  • Academic Staff and Researchers can use our Inter Library Loan Service, more information here.  


Letter of Introduction


DCU undergraduates may apply for a letter of introduction to visit another Irish academic library if, having searched the DCU library catalogue, you find that we do not have material you require.

The letters are issued at Information Services in O'Reilly Library and Cregan Library, are valid for one visit to one specified library, and must give the date of the visit and specify what material is to be consulted.
If you have no fines or overdue books, your letter will be issued immediately. 


ALCID Scheme

DCU library is a member of the ALCID scheme, which is a co-operative arrangement between a number of Academic Libraries in Ireland. It allows access to the collections of participating libraries on production of an ALCID membership card.

The card is available to academic staff, postgraduate students and registered students reading for taught or research Masters degrees.  It is not available to undergraduates or students studying for a postgraduate diploma.


  • To apply for the card, simply come to Information Services in O'Reilly Library or Cregan Library with your DCU ID card or fill in, sign and send us the Online Application Form. 
  • Membership is for one academic year, commencing in October. 
  • Borrowing is not possible under this scheme. ALCID cards are issued from Information Services and must be signed in person.

It is important to note:-

  • You should always bring your DCU ID card with you
  • You will be subject to the regulations of the member libraries you visit
  • It is advised that your first visit should be during office hours

Participating libraries:

Dublin City University; Technological University Dublin; Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies; Mary Immaculate College, Limerick; Maynooth University; National College of Art & Design; NUI Galway; Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland; Royal Irish Academy; St. Angela's College, Sligo; Trinity College Dublin; University College Dublin; University College Cork; University of Limerick; Ulster University.

Access to TCD and UCD Libraries:

Trinity College Dublin and University College Dublin require an online application form to be completed by all ALCID visiting readers, so a visiting reader's card can be issued - the card is essential for accessing library services.

Intending ALCID visitors should complete their application online 24 hours before visiting. A visiting reader's card will be ready for collection on presentation of DCU ID and an ALCID card. If the form is not completed in advance there may be a delay issuing the visiting reader's card. 





SCONUL Access is a reciprocal scheme which allows university library users to borrow or use books and journals at other member libraries in Ireland and UK. 

The following institutions are members of the scheme in Ireland:

  • Dublin City University
  • Maynooth University
  • Queen’s University, Belfast
  • Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
  • Technological University Dublin
  • University College Cork
  • University College Dublin
  • University College Galway
  • University of Limerick
  • University of Ulster

Information for DCU Applicants

In DCU, only staff and research students (i.e. Band “A” users) can apply for SCONUL Access to other member libraries. Taught postgraduate students and undergraduates are not eligible for the scheme. Before applying, applicants must be in good standing with DCU Library (i.e. have no outstanding fines or overdue books etc.).

Application procedure:

  • Visit the SCONUL Access page and fill in the online application form.
  • Once your application is approved, you will receive a confirmation email from DCU Library outlining your status and entitlements under the scheme.
  • This email can be printed and used to gain access to any member library.
  • Please note: you do not have to submit an online application each time you wish to access a new host library. 

Procedure when visiting other libraries:

  • Present a copy of your confirmation e-mail, along with your DCU ID card.
  • The host library will then issue you with a library card that can be used to borrow materials.
  • Check the opening hours and access regulations of the host Library before you visit.
  • It is your responsibility to take care of and return borrowed items. If you lose or damage any items you will be required to replace them.

Information for SCONUL users to DCU Library

DCU Library accepts SCONUL Access Band “A” applicants only (i.e. staff and research postgraduates). To gain access, applicants must present a printed copy of the confirmation email they received from their home institution, along with a valid library/staff ID card. If the ID card does not include a photograph, additional photographic ID will be required (e.g. a driving licence or passport). 

Useful information:

  • SCONUL visitors are able to use both of our libraries; O'Reilly Library on Glasnevin Campus and Cregan Library on St. Patrick's Campus
  • SCONUL Access visitors are normally issued a DCU Library card within 3 days
  • Visitors are entitled to borrow up to 8 items at a time
  • Items can be renewed up to 3 times as long as they are not requested by another library user
  • Visitors are not entitled to borrow from the short loan section
  • Visitors are responsible for the care and safe return of any items used or borrowed, and for any fines incurred for late returns
  • If you need to use the printing, scanning or photocopying facilities, please drop by the Information Desk to set up a guest user account
  • Under the terms of our user licences with publishers, there are certain electronic resources to which visitors have no access. In addition, SCONUL Access visitors have no access to e-resources off campus under any circumstances.