Large two-story room with cream-coloured marble floors, columns and stairs; black leather couches; lots of light from the ceiling and a balcony from the second floor looking over the room. On the columns are signs with directions and the word 'Welcome'. People are moving around the room.

Joining the National Library gives you access to millions of items from our collections, onsite or online, wherever you are. 

It's easy to sign-up online, and it's free for all Australian residents. 

Join us

When you join the Library online, you’ll get instant access.

Remember to read the terms and conditions – with great power comes great responsibility!

Join the Library

What can I do with my Library login?

When you login, you can:

Learn more about your Library login

How can I join the Library?

It's easy to register online, and it's free. To join you will need to provide a name, email address, post code and telephone number. We’ll create a digital login for you straight away.

Remember to read the Library login terms and conditions.

Do I get a Library card?

After joining you will have a digital login which will allow you to access eResources and request collection material to use in the reading rooms. If you do not wish to access the Library’s physical collections, then you do not need a Library card.

If you want to access the Library’s collections onsite, please chat to staff in our Reading Rooms. They will need to see proof of identity before giving you a Library card.  With your Library card you can:

How do I change my login details?

Your email address is the one that you provided when you first created your Library login.

To change your email address, login to the Library catalogue, go to ‘Profile’ and select the details you wish to update. You can also update your phone number, and postcode.

To change your password, when logging in select the option ‘forgot/reset password’ to reset it. Or login and go to Profile and select change my password.

I’ve lost my Library card. What should I do?

Lost cards can be replaced in person in our Main Reading Room. Please ensure you bring proof of identity.

I found something in the catalogue that I want to look at in person. How do I get it?

Login to the Library catalogue to request items.

Once you’re logged in, you can request items, track your requests, mark favourites and create lists for future research. You can request up to 15 items at a time. To make the most of your visit, order items in advance so that they're waiting for you when you arrive.

Your ‘requests’ page will tell you whether your items have been delivered to:

  • the Main Reading Room on the Ground Floor, or
  • the Special Collections Reading Room on Level 1.

To access the Library’s collections onsite you will need a Library card. Staff in our Reading Rooms will give you a physical Library card. Please remember to have current ID with you, such as a driver's licence or student ID card.

Collection material can only be used in the reading room it is delivered to. It can't be taken to other areas of the Library or outside the building.

Collection delivery times vary according to the type of material you need. Check our detailed collection delivery information to confirm the timeframe for your request.

How do I find online journal articles and resources?

Your Library login allows you to access online journals and resources through our eResources portal.

Log in to browse full-text electronic journals, newspapers, academic papers and more.

Two of our most popular eResources are:

  • NewsBank, a collection of newspapers from over 200 countries, and 
  • PressReader, which has 7,000 newspapers and magazines.

When you're looking at eResources, keep an eye out for the yellow key symbol. If you see it next to a resource, you'll know you can access it from anywhere. If you see a small building symbol, it means that resource can only be accessed when you're in the Library building in Canberra.

Want to know more about how to use the eResources? Our research guides on eResources at the National Library and eBooks might help.

I'm an overseas visitor. Can I join the Library?

Yes! You can apply for a login for use whilst residing in Australia or shortly prior to your visit.

Please bring proof of identity when you visit to assist staff with issuing you with a Library card.

You will not be able to use your Library login to access eResources once you return to your home country.

Further questions?

Not sure where to start your research? Stuck somewhere along the way?

Our librarians are here to provide suggestions, research tips, resources and strategies to you. If we can't help, we will recommend someone who can.

Ask a Librarian