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Using the Library

Using the Library

January 2023 ongoing important information
The Library catalogue is now available for use off-campus from 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday

Use this to find library books, journals as well as material from SOAS Archive and SOAS digital library.
This means that to find some kinds of library materials you will need to visit campus. Please see the information below for more details about research resources that you can use from home.

Our Digital Library ( and Archives Catalogue ( are temporarily unavailable. Some information can be found when on campus using or please contact for assistance.

Temporary change in fine payments and book renewals
To have your books renewed please call the library at 0207 898 4163 as you are not able to renew it online.

Please do not use "MyAccount" to pay your fines until the current problem with the web access to the catalogue has been fixed. Please, use SOAS online store to pay your fines until such time as this notice is updated to say that you can pay by"MyAccount". When you pay by SOAS online store, there will be a delay before your account is updated. Please retain the receipt you receive by email in case of a query.

Research guidance for off-campus
Use eJournal and eBook Finder link to locate e-books and e-journals and EBSCO discovery.

Further guidance on finding specialist Electronic resources and more advice on finding Ebooks can be found on this page.

There is also the A-Z list of databases and guides researching specific subject areas via this link.

You can find out from home about books, journals and other material in SOAS Library using Jisc Library Hub Discover

Special Message for Library members who are not SOAS staff or students: E-resources

Our walk-in E-resource terminals are currently unavailable. We may be able to conduct a limited amount of research on your behalf if you email

Further help
Please contact for assistance!


Library Opening times

Important Service Update

Easter opening hours

Thursday 6th April 10am to 4pm
Friday 7th April 10am to 4pm
Saturday 8th April 10am to 4pm
Sunday 9th April CLOSED
Monday 10th April CLOSED

Monday to Friday: 8:00am to 11:30pm
Saturday & Sunday: 9:30am to 10:30pm
Further information about opening hours at key dates and opening times webpages.

Existing members

External members with valid SOAS Library card they do not need to book to visit SOAS Library.

If you don't yet have an up-to-date membership, please fill in this form to apply for membership. We will contact you to arrange an appointment for you to collect your new ID card when it is ready.

Special Collections Reading Room

Visitors wishing to use SOAS Special Collections should read our guidance before arranging their visit. We regret that visitors without a booking will not be admitted. For information about joining SOAS Library if you do not already have a valid membership card 

Brunei Gallery

For further information see Brunei Gallery web site

Where to find us

The Library is located in the main SOAS site (College Buildings/Philips Building) at Thornhaugh Street which is just off Russell Square:

To visit the Library enter the College building and you will find the Library located towards the back of the building.

Getting to SOAS Library by Tube/Train

The following stations are all within walking distance:

  • Russell Square (Piccadilly Line)
  • Goodge Street (Northern Line)
  • Tottenham Court Road (Central and Northern Lines)
  • Euston (Victoria and Northern Lines, London Overground & Mainline trains)
  • Euston Square (Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan)
  • Kings Cross / St Pancras International (Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan, Piccadilly, Victoria lines & domestic and Eurostar trains)
  • Warren Street (Victoria and Northern lines).

Getting to SOAS Library by Bus

The following buses serve the local area: 

Getting to SOAS Library by Bicycle

SOAS has ample bicycle parking outside the main SOAS entrance; and also has TFL cycle hire/parking nearby

More information

SOAS Library Online public access catalogue