A person using a lift to reach books in the library storage stacks
Image: National Library of Australia

The National Library is a reference library—you can use collection items in our reading rooms but you can't take them home. You can use your library card to print, copy and scan in the reading rooms.

If you can't make it to the Library we have copying and interlibrary loans services for individuals and for libraries.

Digital reproductions and interlibrary loans for individuals

Individuals can use the Copies Direct service to order digital reproductions of material from our collection. Search the Catalogue or Trove for material held by the National Library of Australia and select the Copies Direct ‘Order a Copy’ button. For more details see Copies Direct

Our interlibrary loan service can be used by individuals to request material from other libraries to view onsite at the National Library in Canberra. The material must be used in the Main Reading Room at the Library. For more details, see Borrowing from another library

Individuals can also request interlibrary loans of some material held by the National Library for use at their local or research library. As this is a service provided between libraries, public users must place requests through their local or research library’s interlibrary loan service. Note that in most cases, requested material will be provided as a digital reproduction rather than the original physical item, consistent with the Library’s digital first approach to interlibrary lending

Digital reproductions and interlibrary loans for libraries

The National Library has implemented a digital first approach to interlibrary loans. This means the Library will supply a digital surrogate in place of the original physical item where possible within copyright and other rights obligations. For more details, see Copies and interlibrary loans for libraries.  

Copyright in Library collections

We have general guidance on copyright and requirements when using and copying from our collections.

When you make copies of material from our collections or order reproductions through our services you need to meet the requirements of the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) and any special requirements that may apply to material that is rare, unique or culturally sensitive.