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Access to the collections and reading rooms

The library material is available to studentsErasmus studentsUniversity’s teaching staffvisiting professorsUniversity staffstaff from partner institutions and external users who have an interest in the collections.

Wherever possible, the collections are on open shelves: books, journals and other materials located in the reading rooms or in other rooms, that can be accessed directly by users.
To access materials located in reserved reading rooms or on closed stacks, readers must submit a request to the library staff: they are normally retrieved at the time of request, except when the starage area is located off-site or when the organization of individual libraries does not allow for this.

The reading room is primarily intended for the use of the collections and services. Access to the reading room for the purpose of study using personal materials is permitted on a seat availability basis, as verified by library staff.
You have to reserve a seat through our web portalLink verso un sito esterno or mobile appLink verso un sito esterno "lezioniUnimi".

We remind you that access will be regulated in compliance with the security measures provided for the containment of Covid-19Link verso un sito esterno



University of Milan students, Erasmus students, University teaching staff, visiting professors, University staff, staff from partner institutions and users from partner hospital centres, are all registered with the library’s borrowing service.
Interested external users can request temporary registration by submitting a completed application form filled in and signed by a member of the teaching staff from the University. The form can be collected in person from the library or downloaded from the Library Service portal.

Online services. Users can access the personal area of the catalogue Minerva to:

  • send a loan request; the reader has 3 days to collect the volumes;
  • reserve books that are currently out on loan; when the reserved volumes are returned, the  library will email the user by the following day to notify them. The user then has 3 working  days in which to collect the documents;
  • request a renewal

Renewal is allowed as long as the books have not been reserved by others. Renewals cannot be authorised for books that have exceeded their loan due date.

Failure to return items by their due date will result in the user being barred from services provided at all Library Service libraries until the item is returned; the return of an item more than three days after its due date will result in the user being suspended from using the library service for twice the number of days overdue.
Students who fail to return items within 60 days of their due date will have a temporary block put on their academic studies and will be excluded from exam sessions; the block will be removed once the borrowed item is returned; however, the student’s suspension from using the library service will remain in place.

There are different types of loans:

a) Standard loan

This is the standard type of loan covering all books and documents available for loan, with the exception of those regulated by the types of loans detailed below. The service is provided by all the libraries as follows:


  Students and those of similar status University teaching staff, technical and administrative staff, staff from partner institutions, and those of similar status External users with  Malleveria*
How many items? Up to 20 volumes Up to 20 volumes 3 volumes
For how long? 30 days 60 days 30 days
Loan renewals  60 days as a whole (30 day each renewal) 120 days as a whole (60 day each renewal)  60 days as a whole (30 day each renewal)

* Guarantee form filled in and signed by a member of teaching staff from the Law and Humanities area. The form can be collected from the library in person or downloaded from the Library Service portal or from the library’s web pages.

Requested books must be borrowed in Sala Centrale (Monday-Friday: 9am-11pm; Saturday: 9am-2pm)

b) Course reserve 

  Course reserve
How many items? 4 volumes
For how long? 15 days
Loan renewals 30 days as a whole (15 day each renewal)


Books from the Course reserve can be borrowed in Sala Centrale (Monday-Friday: 9am-11pm; Saturday: 9am-2pm)

  • Law texts (shelfmark T.E. GIUR., G., SP.)
  • Humanities texts (shelfmark T.E.LETT., L.)
  • Geography, anthropology, psychology texts (shelfmark T.E.GEO)

c) Overnight and weekend loans

Overnight loans: the University’s teaching staff, researchers, doctoral students and Law bursary recipients may borrow some types of texts normally reserved for in-library use only from:

  •  Crociera
  •  Sottocrociera
  •  Sala del Settecento
  •  Common Law
  •  Diritto pubblico
  •  Diritto privato e storia del diritto
  •  Diritto del lavoro

Users can borrow up to 3 volumes at a time for a 24 hour period.

Weekend loans: the service is available for all registered users in:

  • Crociera
  • Sottocrociera
  • Sala del Settecento
  • Common Law
  • Diritto pubblico
  • Diritto privato e storia del diritto
  • Diritto del lavoro

 from 2pm on Friday to 12 noon on Monday. Users can borrow up to three books at a time.


Interlibrary loans and document delivery

The library provides the following interlibrary services to students, Erasmus students, University teaching staff, visiting professors, University staff and staff from partner institutions, as well as to users from hospital centres.

a) Interlibrary Loans i.e. ordering books not held in the Library Service libraries from other libraries in Italy and abroad;

b) Document Delivery, i.e. ordering copies of journal articles and book chapters not held in the Library Service libraries from other libraries in Italy and abroad;

c) Intrasystem Document Delivery Service, i.e. ordering printed copies of journal articles and book chapters from other libraries in the University. The service is not provided between libraries located on the same premises or adjacent premises: neither is it available at the via Festa del Perdono site or between the libraries located in the Città Studi district (Biblioteca di Agraria; Biblioteca Biologica; Biblioteca Biomedica di Città Studi;  Biblioteca di Chimica; Biblioteca di Fisica; Biblioteca Matematica; Biblioteca di Medicina veterinaria; Biblioteca di Scienze della Terra).

The services are provided with due regard for current copyright regulations and specific licence agreements covering certain types of resources, within the limits established for the purposes of preservation, and according to the conditions laid down by the supplying library.
Please note that the copy of the document requested through the Document Delivery service cannot be sent by email but must be collected from the library in person, regardless of its original format.

Service parameters:

Service Number of requests
Interlibrary loan No limits
Document Delivery No limits

Forwarding of requests via e-mail (, My library account in the catalogue.
Collection of material and payment: Interlibrary services office - Sala Centrale (Monday-Friday: 9am - 6pm).
Books can also be returned to the Interlibrary services office - Sala Centrale (Monday-Friday: 9am-6pm).
Books obtained via an interlibrary loan must be used on the library premises and remain at the disposal of the user according to the conditions set by the lending library.

Delays in returning documents received through the interlibrary loan system, and damage to or failure to return borrowed materials will result in sanctions as envisaged under the borrowing service.
Users who fail to collect requested material or pay the reimbursement costs will lose access to library services until the account has been settled.


Libraries and documentation centres at other institutions

Through the interlibrary loan and Document Delivery systems the library makes its resources available to those libraries and documentation centres that request access to them.
Forwarding of requests via e-mail  to

Books may be used on the premises of the requesting library only and must be returned by registered post.
Italy: 1 IFLA voucher for each volume, ½ an IFLA voucher for every 20 photocopies
Abroad: 2 IFLA vouchers for each volume, 1 IFLA voucher for every 20 photocopies. ½ a voucher will be added on for each subsequent batch of up to 20 photocopies.

Library orientation, assistance and bibliographic information (Reference service)

Library staff help users navigate the library services in the first instance and to provide basic assistance for searching the catalogues and using the printed and digital collections.
With regard to the library's field of specialisation, by appointment the library provides personal assistance for specialist bibliographical searches and compilation of bibliographies, and help in developing effective search strategies. It also offers tips for the advanced use of catalogues and other bibliographic search tools, both printed and online, as well as help in finding information and even documents where possible.

To make an appointment please contact:

The library subscribes to BiblioHELP, the online reference service.  

Photocopies and printing

The library offers all users a self-service photocopying service which allows them to make photocopies and print jobs.
Service charges can be paid cards which can be purchased from automatic card dispensers located on the University's premises.

Card dispensers are located in Sala Crociera.

Italian copyright law permits photocopying of up to 15% of the pages in a printed volume or journal issue. It is possible to print copies of Digital Library search results within the limits of individual licence agreements with publishers.
Photocopying is not permitted where there is any risk to the condition of the material.

Internet access

The PCs in the library provide access to the University Catalogue, the University Library Service portal, the Digital Library and other key online resources for study and research.
Users must identify themselves using their University login details to browse Internet sites other than the University’s websites.

Users who have a University email account can access the University’s wireless network from their own computers, smartphones or tablets in Eduroam mode. The service is also available to external users from member institutions of the Eduroam Federation of Universities and Research Institutes (access to the Digital Library is not available to logged in external users).

Courses and training activities

The library offers orientation and training sessions on the services, resources and tools available in its area of specialisation, with the general aim of improving information literacy.

The schedule of courses and information are available on the University’s library service portal.

If you are an international student and you are about to start your thesis you can attend Toward my thesis course (in English).

This course will give you useful and practical information for the preparation of your final thesis and tips to look for the materials in libraries.