Study Spaces

Please keep your belongings with you at all times when using the library. The Library operates a strict no food and drink policy (except for bottled water and drinks in KeepCups).  

The SSL offers over 400 study spaces including:

Open Plan Study Areas

Located on the south and east sides of the Library is open plan seating, with a total of 186 seats, where wireless and Ethernet port access is available.

  • For wireless access: connect to Bodleian-Libraries and log on using your library card login and password.
  • For Ethernet access: open a web browser and log on using your library card login and password. Ethernet cables are available for loan or sale at the issue desk.

The main study area on the east side also contains two height-adjustable desks and three standing desks.

Partitioned Areas

The study area at the back (North) of the Library by the Discussion & Working Paper section is a partitioned seating area for quiet individual study.

Following the results of the SSL's Space Survey in 2014, 18 partitioned seats outside the Central Graduate Study Room were designated as a laptop free zone. We request that readers do not use a laptop or a device with an external keyboard at these seats. Tablets and other devices with silent keyboards may still be used. The seats in this area are clearly labelled.

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Study Carrels

A few individual rooms are available for quiet study away from distractions. The carrels designated for general use operate on a first-come, first served basis.  (If these rooms are all in use, there are a few desks on the West perimeter of the Library, overlooking the car-park, which are also helpfully removed from distractions and noise). Please consult our guide to study carrel etiquette for further details.

Social Science Graduate Study Rooms

Three study rooms are reserved for the use of graduate students in the social sciences. To access these rooms, please register your University Card with Building Reception or Library staff.

  • The Central Graduate Study Room is a Quiet Zone where brief, low volume conversations are permitted. The room contains two electronic and one manual height-adjustable desk.
  • The East Graduate Study Room is a Silent Zone. The room contains a standing desk and an electronic height-adjustable desk.
  • The West Graduate Study Room is now known as the "Oxford Q-Step Centre Teaching Lab". The room is used for teaching Quantitative Methods from 1pm - 6.15pm every weekday of the teaching term (Weeks 1 - 8). Outside of these hours the room is accessible to all Social Sciences graduate students. Undergraduate students who attend Q-Step sessions and who wish to practice on these PCs may be registered to use the room on request: ask a member of Library staff.
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Discussion Rooms

For group work, please use one of our discussion rooms.  The small room comfortably seats 8 and the larger room seats 16.  Both rooms are equipped with whiteboards and projectors. Marker pens, board rubbers and remote controls for the projectors can be borrowed from the issue desk. Ethernet and power sockets are also available. These rooms can be booked in advance by members of the departments in the Social Sciences Division for academic-related purposes.

Information Skills Room

This room offers 20 PCs, trainer's PC, LCD projector and screen.  Headphones can be loaned from the issue desk for use with these PCs.

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Comfortable Seating Area

There are 8 blue comfortable chairs on the south side of the library next to the open plan study area.

Ergonomic Furniture

The Library has 7 height-adjustable desks (5 electronic, 2 manual) and 6 fixed height standing desks in the following locations: 

Electronic Height-Adjustable Desks 
  • 1 at the end of the Reader PCs Area (also equipped with a PC)
  • 2 in the study area on the east side of the Library
  • 1 in the Central Graduate Study Room
  • 1 in the East Graduate Study Room
Fixed-Height Standing Desks
  • 3 in the study area on the east side of the Library
  • 1 at the end of the partitioned searing area outside the East Graduate Study Room
  • 1 in the quiet study area on the west side of the Library, outside the Q-Step teaching lab
  • 1 in the East Graduate Study Room
Manual Height-Adjustable Desks
  • 2 in the Central Graduate Study Room
Ergonomic Chairs

The Library also has 10 RH Logic ergonomic chairs in the following locations:

  • 2 in the study area on the south/southwest side of the Library
  • 2 in the Laptop-free zone / partitioned seating area
  • 5 in the study area on the east side of the Library
  • 1 in the Reader PC area (with the height-adjustable desk)

Standard adjustable chairs are available in the Graduate Study Rooms and at desks equipped with PCs. Library staff will fetch or move these on request.

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