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Purchasing Policy

Purchasing policy

The Library uses the online reading list to purchase resources for students. When we receive your list, we consider the estimated number of students on the module and how important the item is for those taking the module: for example, is it an essential reading to be used over multiple weeks, or is it suggested background reading to be used for a particular essay question?

For us to be able to make the right purchasing decisions, the online system requires you to tag the importance of each item and we have three categories to choose from:

  • Essential Reading - e-resources only, no print items. 
  • Recommended Reading - print and e-resources.
  • Suggested for Student Purchase

Print books are purchased using the following ratios as a guideline:

Type of reading (indicated on reading list) Number of copies purchased Loan status allocated
Essential - no print items will be purchased.



Recommended  1 copy Short Loan
Student purchase 1 copy Reference Only

We don't aim to provide enough resources for each student to have their own copy, so students should be advised that they will need to plan their reading to get the best out of the Library's resources. If they do need a particular text for the duration of a course then they should give serious consideration to purchasing a copy. See the Library Borrowing Information for details about the different loan statuses.

eBooks policy

eBooks purchasing policy

The availability of academic ebooks is increasing all the time. Thousands of titles are now available and the cost is often comparable to print, so we are keen to develop our collection further.

Where possible we will purchase ebooks, particularly for courses with large student numbers and for those in which students have placements. All ebooks are made available via Library Search and can therefore be linked to your Online Reading List. 

The exact ratio of electronic to print copies will vary depending on the type of ebook licence and access model provided by the publisher. For more information about ebook purchasing, please contact

Out of print items

Out of print items

Please be aware that out of print copies in good condition can be difficult to source with resultant delays. If they are Essential or Recommended reading for your course, we will endeavour to obtain at least a single copy of these titles and place the item(s) in the Reference Only Collection. If further copies are required we will need to work with you to find a solution.