To borrow materials from the UCSB Library, you must have a valid library card.  


Your Access Card also functions as a library card. Once you are officially registered with the university, your library privileges are automatically activated.

Faculty and Staff

Bring your staff Access Card to the UCSB Library Services Desk and fill out an application. Your Access Card will then serve as your library card. New faculty and staff can also request activation of their Library accounts using this online form

Emeriti and Retired UCSB Employees

See the Library section of the Emeriti & Retiree Services/Benefits page. You will need to get your new Emeriti and Retirees ID card before coming to the Library.

Extension Students

Please visit the Services Desk at the UCSB Library for more information on library cards for Extension students.

Note: Library cards for Extension students do NOT include Interlibrary Loan privileges nor access to licensed databases from off campus.

Non-UCSB Borrowers 

You can buy a library card at the Services Desk during all hours that it is open. Cards for non-UCSB borrowers are $100 for one year.  Verification of status, proof of residency, a valid government issued ID (drivers license, state ID, passport), and payment by money order or check must be presented when registering or renewing.

Specific documentation is required before privileges are granted. Call the Services Desk to determine exactly what documentation is required to obtain library privileges.

Several categories of users are eligible for library cards free of charge, including:

  • California K-12 public school teachers
  • Students, faculty, and staff at other UC campuses
  • Immediate Family (18 yrs. old or older and living in the same residence) of UC faculty and staff
  • Faculty from institutions participating in the OCLC Reciprocal Faculty Borrowing Program
  • Faculty and librarians from WASC accredited institutions of higher learning in California in accordance with the state's Master Plan for Higher Education
  • Life-time Members of the UCSB Alumni Association
  • Alumni of a UC campus with a paid membership in their campus’s Alumni Association

Note: Library cards for non-UCSB borrowers do NOT include Interlibrary Loan privileges nor access to licensed databases from off campus.

Proxy Borrowers  

Proxy Borrower accounts are made available as a tool to assist a faculty sponsor's research. Tenured, tenure-track, and other faculty members who have a valid UCSB library card may designate up to 3 research assistants to check out library materials on their behalf. These research assistants become "proxies" and will be issued a proxy library card.

  • Proxy borrowing privileges may not be assigned to spouses, domestic partners, children, or friends.  
  • Proxy Borrower accounts are eligible to request interlibrary loan (ILL) materials. Proxy borrowers may only check out ILL materials requested by their proxy account.
  • The faculty sponsor accepts all responsibility for materials checked out on proxy cards, and is liable for damage to borrowed material or any charges resulting from the use of these accounts including non-refundable processing fees.
  • The checkout limit for Proxy Borrower accounts is 500.
  • The faculty sponsor will be contacted annually, in November, to determine if they wish to have their Proxy Borrower account(s) remain active.
  • The faculty sponsor may terminate proxy relationships at any time by contacting the UCSB Library Services Desk.

Applications for proxy library cards can be downloaded and are available at the Services Desk.

Note:  Library cards for proxy borrowers do NOT include access to licensed databases from off campus.