German Studies

Opening hours

The German Studies Library is part of the Unitobler Library

The English Studies Library is open to the public, but its collections and services are primarily tailored to the needs of members of the university and students.

For general information about infrastructure, borrowing and returning, courier, information and research assistance please visit the website of the Unitobler library.


  • 66 long-term workplaces which can be rented for one semester; 54 of them come with additional corpuses.
    Further information on renting workplaces and corpuses can be found here.
    Requests for workplaces and corpuses can be made using the following form.
  • 7 daily workplaces for free use
  • 3 online catalog terminals
    Print option from the terminals (instructions)
    2 self-lending terminals
  • 1 Uniprint device (at the staircase on the 4th floor)

Introductory tutorials

Introductory tutorials to the library are held at the beginning of the semester (dates are published on the "News" webpage of the Institute of German Studies and on the blackboard in the institute).

Individual guided tours of the library can be booked here.

The German Studies Library serves teaching and research and focusses on the following collections:

  • Modern German Literature
  • Medieval Studies
  • Linguistics
  • Communication Studies
  • Comparative literature

The collection of around 80,000 volumes grows by around 1,500 new acquisitions every year. 150 current journals, a rare book collection, in-house master's theses and dissertations as well as a small collection of non-books complete the holdings. The entire collection is catalogued in swisscovery University and PH Bern.

Most of the books can be borrowed and are shelved by subject according to the institute's own systematics (Systematik der Bibliothek Germanistik - document in German). 

Borrowing restrictions:

  • reference library (shelfmarks H, Y)
  • linguistic atlases (shelfmark K)
  • rare works (shelfmark R)
  • large formats (shelfmark Q)
  • course material 
  • single issues of periodicals

Items that cannot be borrowed can be copied or scanned. Please inform the library staff.

The new acquisitions of the Institute of German Studies will be displayed on two shelves by the staircase for a few weeks.

We are happy to receive your acquisition suggestions by e-mail or electronic form.

A partial stock of around 17,000 volumes is located in the von Roll stacks and can be borrowed via swisscovery University and PH Bern.




Subject librarians