The Sir Alex Ferguson Library

"... a futuristic but people-friendly learning space"

The Sir Alex Ferguson Library is the focus of learning and student services at Glasgow Caledonian University.  The 10,500 square-meter, five-floor facility offers students:

  • 1,800 Internet-connected study spaces
  • 600-seat learning cafe
  • 370,000 RFID-tagged books
  • 500 computers
  • Laptops borrowing facility
  • Free Wi-Fi

The building is one of the most ambitious and innovative learning environments in the UK, prompting the Guardian newspaper to describe is as “a futuristic but people-friendly learning space” that is  “paving the way for the universities of tomorrow”. Read the full Guardian article, “It's a university, but not as we know it”.

Space to learn

Home to the university library and Student support services hub, the Sir Alex Ferguson Library is the beating heart of Glasgow Caledonian. With 1,800 study spaces, the Sir Alex Ferguson Library gives you plenty of room to learn and it offers 500 computers for student use. A wireless network means you can use your own laptop anywhere in the building or borrow one of the 150 university laptops available to everyone.

Space to interact

The different areas of the centre mean that you can take advantage of noisy social interaction areas for group work, but also settle down to silent study on the upper floors. The open-plan learning spaces are similar to modern office environments, which will help you to prepare for moving into a professional environment after graduating.

Accessible to all

The Sir Alex Ferguson Library is also wheelchair friendly throughout, with software and technology for students with learning or physical disabilities available in a central location.

The Sir Alex Ferguson Library is home to the GCU library. Described by The Guardian as “rewriting the design book for academic libraries”, the library has superb resources, with hundreds of thousands of books, e-books and journals containing over 63 million articles.

Every floor of the building has a self-issue and return point. If you have any questions about the library you can visit the Library Desk which is open seven days a week. From here you can get help using the library and using the digital resources available to students at GCU. With over 1,200 study spaces there’s always plenty of room. Designed to provide the best possible study environment the variety of spaces – from lively interaction areas, ideal for group work, to quieter and silent study spaces – ensures you can always find the right location, whatever you’re doing.

There are 350 computers in the library and you can use your own laptop, smartphone or tablet throughout the building on our wi-fi network. We are about to launch our new laptop vending machine which is located near to the cafe on level 0. You can use your student card to borrow and return a laptop.

Our librarians can make a real difference to your study too. Specialist subject librarians can tell you about library services, help you find information for coursework and dissertations, and show you how to use and access databases and electronic journals and books. A wide variety of services and support are available via the library website.

The library also houses an impressive collection of Archives and Special Collections. The subject strengths are the Scottish Labour and Trades Union Movement, Scottish social work, social policy and child welfare, and Scottish social enterprise. The collections also house the records of the University and its parent bodies (dating back to 1875 and the formation of the Glasgow School of Cookery).