Our resources support the needs of specialists working in academia and business, and can support multidisciplinary research interests.

Collection guides

  • The Human Genome

    Science overview

    We support the needs of specialists working in academia and business, and can support multidisciplinary research interests
  • Magnifying glass on computer

    Science electronic resources

    We subscribe to a large and growing number of electronic resources and bibliographic databases
  • Pantents diagram

    Patents

    The British Library is the UK’s national patent library
  • Warbler

    Wildlife and environmental sounds

    The largest collection of its kind in Europe and the most comprehensive in the world
Desks, shelving and Readers in the Science Reading Rooms at the British Library

Science Reading Rooms

Floor 2 focuses on Medicine and Life Sciences, Floor 3 focuses on Physical Sciences and Engineering.

  • Find information on the open-access shelves
  • Access online databases and electronic books and journals
  • Order collection items to the Reading Rooms via our catalogues

If you need help, please ask our Reference Specialists at the Enquiry desk or contact the Science Reference Service Team.

We offer a range of free Reader sessions and 1-2-1 consultations to help you make the best use of the Library's collections.

You’ll need a Reader Pass

Mon: 10.00 – 20.00
Tue – Thu: 09.30 – 20.00
Fri – Sat: 09.30 – 17.00
Sun & English Public Holidays: closed

Opening hours for all Reading Rooms

Science case studies

More Case studies
…You get to know how people work in an institution like this... it's something I would like to do as well.…

Exploring the working life of a twentieth-century scientist through the archive of John Maynard Smith.

Blog posts

Caroline Herschel born 270 years ago today.

Monday, March 16, 2020

The first page of the letter from Caroline Herschel on display in the Treasures Gallery Happy birthday Caroline Herschel! Today is the 270th anniversary of the birth of the German-born British astronomer Caroline Herschel, who discovered eight comets and fourteen...

John Maynard Smith: evolutionary biology and the Logic of Animal Conflict

Friday, March 13, 2020

This post is part of a series highlighting some of the British Library’s science collections as part of British Science Week 2020. Have you ever wondered why animals often fight in ritualised ways, not killing each other outright even though...

Within a hair’s breadth of failure: John Houghton and the climate change report

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

This post is part of a series highlighting some of the British Library’s science collections as part of British Science Week 2020. Among the papers of the climate scientist Sir John Houghton, (Add MS 89409) is a record of one...

Donald Michie (1923-2007): ‘Duckmouse’, a modern-day polymath

Monday, March 9, 2020

This post is part of a series highlighting some of the British Library’s science collections as part of British Science Week 2020. Codebreaker? Geneticist? Computer scientist? There is no single label which best encapsulates the wide reach of Donald Michie’s...

More blog posts

Projects

Access to Understanding

Access to Understanding is a collaboration, led by the British Library, which unites individuals and organisations that want to promote wider understanding of biomedical research findings.

THOR: Technical and Human Infrastructure for Open Research

An EC Funded project to establish seamless integration between articles, data, and researchers across the research lifecycle

All projects

External links

The British Library is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Access to Understanding

improve public understanding of the latest biomedical and health research findings