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Services for Visitors

The American University Library is an open access facility. We are pleased to offer a multitude of services for all members of the greater Washington, DC area.

On-Site Services 

Visitors may use Bender Library until closing or until 11pm when the library is operating 24 hours. While on-site, you have access to all of the library's databases and electronic resources, as well as professional assistance from reference librarians and subject specialists. Visitors may also print and scan documents, and are welcome to read or use any of the books in our collection. 

In order to access the Internet and AU's electronic resources, you will need to show a valid government issued photo ID at the Borrowing Desk for a daily use log-in. These log-ins expire at midnight of the day they are issued. If it is your first time using the library, a guest account will be created for you at that time.

Internet Access

The American University offers two wi-fi networks: eagle-secure and eagle-guest. For general access to the Internet, a daily use log-in can be obtained at the Borrowing Desk for the eagle-secure network. If you are visiting a student, staff, or faculty member of AU, then you may choose to log into the Internet via eagle-guest

More information about the credential verification process, and how to use eagle-guest, can be found here.

Visitor Borrowing Privileges 

AU offers two different options for individuals/groups to purchase borrowing privileges from our library.

Friends of AU Library Borrowing Program 

The Friends of American University Library Borrowing Program enables individuals not affiliated with American University to borrow from the library's general collection. Purchasing this membership will allow you to borrow up to 25 books at one time for 4 weeks. You can renew these books 3 times via your My Library Account, over the phone, or in person. Consortium borrowing is not available; however, interlibrary loan is available for a $25.00 fee per item. 

Click here to download the application. You can also obtain one at the Borrowing Desk.  

1 year membership –$300
3 month membership –$100
(Payable by credit card only)

Group Associate Borrowing Program 

Commercial, nonprofit, and governmental organizations can purchase group borrowing privileges for their members or employees. Groups may borrow books from AU for 4 weeks and may renew them 3 times. Membership includes one borrowing card, but additional cards may also be purchased. In order for the group to check out books, the borrower listed on the account must be present.  

Click here to download the application. You can also obtain one at the Borrowing Desk. 

Commercial Organizations:
1 year membership –$1000 ($200 each additional card)
3 month membership –$400 ($100 each additional card) 

Nonprofit and Governmental Organizations (must be registered with the IRS):
1 year membership –$500 ($100 each additional card)
3 month membership –$200 ($50 each additional card)

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at American University 

Members of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at American University have borrowing privileges for up to 25 books at one time from the library's general collections. The loan period for books is 4 weeks, and they can be renewed 3 times via your My Library Account, by phone, or in person.  

OLLI instructors may also borrow certain DVD titles for class use. This is restricted to low use and easily replaceable titles and requires the prior approval of a Media Services supervisor.

Accessing My Library Account

Due to increased security measures, AU has changed verification for accessing your My Library Account. Each student, staff, and faculty member has an individual log in that they will use.

Because Friends of the Library, OLLI members, and even alums do not have these log ins, they will have to click here to access their accounts in the usual way:


Visiting Faculty / OCLC Reciprocal Faculty Borrowing Program

American University Library participates in the OCLC Reciprocal Faculty Borrowing Program. Visiting faculty from participating research libraries are eligible to borrow from our general collection. Faculty must pre-register for an identification card at their home institution before coming to AU to set up their account. 

Click here to see the list of participating libraries in the OCLC Reciprocal Faculty Borrowing Program.

For more information about Visitors Services, please contact: 

Borrowing Desk
First Floor
Borrowing Desk staff

Spring Hours
Mon - Thurs: 8am - 11pm
Fri: 8am - 9pm
Sat: 9am - 9pm
Sun: 10am - 11pm