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Distance Students: Distance Library Service

This is a guide to Library services and resources for Distance students


  • Go to the Library Homepage for information about our library resources and services
  • Remember to access Databases from the Library Homepage when off-campus. This will give you fulltext access to the Otago resources.
  • Recalls - All books may be recalled by another borrower, at any time, and an earlier due date automatically assigned. Usually you will get seven days to return a recalled book. The overdue fine rate for books that have been recalled is $3.00 per day

Other Libraries you can use

If you live in one of the main centres around New Zealand you may use the local University Library to borrow books.
You will need proof of your enrolment at the University of Otago, and address details to join. 

The New Zealand Libraries which have agreed to share  their collections  are:

  • Auckland University of Technology
  • University of Waikato
  • Massey University
  • Victoria University of Wellington
  • University of Canterbury
  • Lincoln University
  • University of Otago

Welcome! from the Distance Library team

The friendly Distance Library Team (from left) Christy, Jacinda, Emma, Jessie, Bronwyn and Claire

Absent: Tanya and Lucy

Who can use the Distance Library Service?

  • Any student studying a Distance paper through the University of Otago  is eligible to use the Distance  Library Service.
  • Any student enrolled in an on-campus paper who lives outside Dunedin or who goes outside Dunedin on placement is eligible to use the service.
  • Students registered with the Disability,  Information and Support may also be eligible

About the Distance Library Service:

  • All Distance Library Services are FREE !
  • We will scan a book chapter or journal article and supply it to you via email within 48 hours
  • Books are sent via courier and we include a Freepost label so there will be no charge for return postage
  • We will email and let you know if there is going to be a delay
  • All library messages go to your student email account so if you do not check it regularly you may want to set up an auto forward.  To do this login to your student email, click on Settings, then from the dropdown menu click on Options, from the right hand menu click on Forward your email, enter your preferred email address. Any problems contact ITS on 0800 4798888 or

How to find and request books from the Distance Library Service

Contact us...

For questions about delivery of books and journal articles email:

Freephone: 0800 347 826 or 0800 DISTANT (NZ only) (24 hour answer phone)

Phone:   64 3 479 8940 (24 hour answer phone)

For help on using Library resources for your assignments and research contact your Subject Librarian

Request books from the Library

 Request books via Library Search | Ketu (the catalogue)

  • Find the book using LibrarySearch | Ketu  
  • Available Online indicates an ebook and you should be able to access it online. You will be prompted to login
  • Available in the Library indicates a book that you can request.
  • Click on Available in the Library and sign-in to place request.
  • Click on Request
  • Select pickup location of Distance - in the comments field indicate that you are a Distance student. This way we will know to post the books to you. Example: Distance please post to 123 High St

If the above doesn't work you can also request books by completing the Distance request form 

Requesting journal articles and book chapters

The Distance Library Service can email you scans of books chapters and journal articles. To request a scan complete the Distance request form

The New Zealand Copyright Act allows us to scan a 'reasonable portion' of a publication on your behalf, unfortunately we can not scan whole books or journal issues. Check with the Distance team if you have any questions.