The Department of Special Research Collections acquires, preserves, and makes accessible rare, valuable, or unique materials that support UC Santa Barbara students, faculty, and research programs, as well as the scholarly community. The department's holdings are non-circulating but are available for research in the reading room by appointment Monday through Friday 9AM to 12PM and 1PM to 4PM.

For instructions on how to request an appointment, please see this page.

Requesting Materials

 You are welcome to submit questions via our Contact Form or email the appropriate staff. We will answer questions as best we can although there may be delays in response.

All requests to use our department's materials can be made prior to your visit using your Special Collections Research Account. This account offers researchers an efficient way to manage Special Research Collections visits and requests online – anytime and from anywhere. After a one-time required registration process, researchers are able to:

  • Request books in advance along with other materials from Special Research Collections (journals, magazines, microfilm, manuscripts, and even audiovisual materials) directly from the Library Catalog;
  • Compile multiple requests for an event, such as class visits, lectures/talks, and research visits;
  • Order digital scans, photocopies, and audio/video reproductions;
  • Track the progress of requests in order to plan visits accordingly and avoid delays and other inconveniences;
  • Securely access account history to keep track of previous requests and orders; and
  • Pay for copies and scans with a credit card.

Please visit our 'Planning Your Research' page for additional information

Kenneth Karmiole Endowed Research Fellowship

The Kenneth Karmiole Endowed Research Fellowship program enables research professionals, post-doc scholars and graduate students to pursue research lasting from one to three months in UCSB Library’s Special Research Collections. 

One annual fellowship will be awarded in the amount of $5,000 to allow a scholar to pursue research in the humanities, sciences, social sciences, visual and performing arts, and/or UCSB history.

Learn more