Create an Account

To make an appointment to see the Library's materials in person, you will need to create a Special Collections Research Account.

Reproduction of Materials

Most US Federal Government publications in our collection are in the Public Domain and may be used, copied, and re-distributed without restriction.  We may occasionally need to restrict reproduction for materials to which we do not have copy- or reproduction-rights.  

Aerial photographs

As of June 14, 2024, on demand aerial photograph scanning services are no longer offered by the Library.  However, we are greatly increasing our in-house bulk digitization of the air photo collection and new images will be downloadable for free through FrameFinder as they become available.  This policy allows us to more quickly provide free access to digital versions of our collection.

You may make an in-person appointment to see specific air photos from our collection. While visiting, you may reproduce air photos in paper or transparency format using scanning equipment found in the reading room.  Air photos on roll film cannot be reproduced.

Maps and Atlases

At this time, we do not have the resources to scan maps or atlases.  You can make an appointment to visit the collection in person and take your own photographs, however.  See the information below about in-person visits.

Geospatial Data

Much of the geospatial data on our network files can be directly copied by using computers in the DREAM Lab (depending on license restrictions).  Data on CDs and DVDs can be checked out for 7 days.  For all inquiries about accessing geospatial data, contact the Collaboratory directly.

Republishing Materials

Patrons wishing to use reproductions of Geospatial Collection materials for either commercial/for-profit or non-profit use may be subject to permissions and usage fees. These fees are for one-time use and are in addition to royalties/licensing fees imposed by the copyright holder.  See the Fees section below for current prices.  

The Regents of the University of California retain ownership and reproduction rights for many of our materials, both hard-copy and digital.  Copyrighted materials may need rights clearance from parties other than UCSB.  It is your responsibility to obtain proper permissions for re-publication of materials.  We are happy to assist in this process.

Citing Materials

We appreciate credit for use of our materials. 

Please use this format for citing aerial photography:

[Flight, frame, date. Courtesy of UCSB Library Geospatial Collection.]

Please use this format to citing other materials in our collection:

Geospatial Collection, UCSB Library, University of California, Santa Barbara

There are a variety of guidelines for citing maps, aerial photographs, GIS datasets, and other materials located in libraries and archival collections.

Viewing Materials In Person

Materials in our aerial photography, map, and atlas collections are viewable by appointment only.  The collections are not browsable.  Please create a Special Collections Research Account to request specific materials and make an appointment to see those materials in the SRC reading room.   Contact Geospatial Collection staff at or (805) 893-2779 to set up an appointment.

Keep in mind the following rules when visiting the collection in person:

  • Only pencils may be used around the materials
  • All materials must be used in the reading room and may not be taken from the Department.  
  • No food or beverages are allowed near the materials.
  • The researcher is responsible for careful handling of all materials.  Do not lean on, write on, fold, trace over, or handle materials in a way that may damage them.
  • Staff may photocopy portions of maps at their discretion, depending on copyright law and/or potential damage to the materials.
  • In most cases, photography of materials is allowed after permission by staff has been granted.
    • Permission to photograph does not constitute permission to publish. (Title 17, U.S. Code)
    • Photography must not disturb other users or staff.
    • The UCSB Library reserves the right to deny permission to photograph if, in its judgement, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law or donor agreements.

Loan Policy

Most materials in the Geospatial Collection cannot be checked out.  CDs and DVDs can be checked out for seven days by first requesting access at the DREAM Lab.  The general Library collection does have geospatial books and atlases that can be checked out according to general Library loan policies.  

Inter-Library Loan

Inter-Library Loans (ILL) are generally from UC map library to UC map library.  Geospatial Collection materials sent out on ILL are, with the exception of CDs/DVDs, for in-house use only.  


Fees can be paid using a credit card online through the Special Collections Research Account.

Commercial Re-publication Use Fees

  • Cover illustrations, ads, or non-editorial: $300
  • Editorial or interior use: $70
  • Internet: $70
  • Broadcasting: $250

Non-Profit Re-publication Use Fees

Re-publication for non-profit use requires a signed permission form.  Please contact staff for more information.

  • Cover illustrations, ads, or non-editorial: $150
  • Editorial or interior use: $35
  • Internet: $35
  • Broadcasting: $125