Mission Statement


The University Library is the main service providing access to literature and information at RWTH Aachen. The Library primarily provides resources for the purposes of teaching, research, and learning. Furthermore, the Library services are available to our partners as well as other target groups at RWTH.

The University Library provides the RWTH community with:

  • an academic learning environment
  • a wide range of services and facilities
  • a diverse and competent team of experts

The Library consists of two main library buildings: the Main Library and Library 2. The Main Library specializes in the natural sciences and engineering, and the Center of Patents and Standards. Library 2 specializes in the humanities and social sciences. The University Library also has a Textbook Collection and a Medical Library branch, which is located at Uniklinik RWTH Aachen.

The Library provides users with work and study areas which include a total of around 500 work stations across its different locations. Around 70 percent of the Library’s conventional holdings are located in closed stacks and can usually be accessed on site only. The remaining 30 percent of the Library’s holdings are located in open stacks and can be borrowed by members of the Library. Computer workstations with internet access are also available in the study areas of all Library branches.

A substantial proportion of the information and resources acquired by the Library, including databases, electronic journals, and eBooks, can now be accessed via the RWTH Aachen University Campus network. The Library provides assistance in using this network and also offers specialized introductory courses and further training. In addition, the Library offers an extensive course program and help desk service providing user support for the most important reference management systems currently in use at RWTH Aachen.

The Library offers resources and services which are specifically tailored to the needs of the RWTH community, including the presentation of the University’s academic achievements in the RWTH Publications database and in the RWTH research repository.

As an official repository and information service for standards and patents, the University Library offers information and guidance on these topics at the Center of Patents and Standards.

The Library advises and supports all departmental and institute libraries and staff within the RWTH Library system. Furthermore, the Library is responsible for managing and maintaining the union catalog / University Library Catalog, in which all locally held journals are stored and the books from around half of the departmental libraries are documented. The Library also coordinates the acquisition of journals and expensive items.

The Library is integrated into national and international structures and information provision systems, and it provides access to resources that are not held within its own collections through the online interlibrary loans service and the document delivery service.