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English Research Guide

 Shelves of booksSan Diego Libraries

San Diego County is home to several excellent library systems. 

Click here for a list of local libraries and their websites.

Public Libraries -- Library cards are available free of charge to California residents at any of the public libraries, with a government-issued photo ID and proof of residence.  A public library card allows you to check out materials and access many of the libraries' online databases from home.

Academic Libraries -- Access to most materials at area college and university libraries is available to the public on-site. You can purchase a guest library card to check out library materials.  Access to the library databases is available on-site but off-campus access is available only to the institution's students, faculty, and staff.

Image by Rhododendrites [CC BY-SA 4.0], from Wikimedia Commons

 San Diego Public Libraries

San Diego Public Library Downtown Building

San Diego City Library System

The San Diego Public Library includes the Central Library in downtown San Diego, and 34 branch libraries within the city limits. 

  • Click here for a list of locations and hours. 
  • Most of SDPL's online databases are available off-site to current library card holders.

San Diego County Library System 

The San Diego County Library system has 33 branch libraries in San Diego County but outside of the San Diego city limits.  Those closest to the city of San Diego are the Poway, Del Mar, La Mesa, and Bonita branches. 

  • Click here for a list of locations and hours.

  • Most of SDCL's online databases are available off-site to current library card holders SDCL also participates in the San Diego Circuit and Link services which allow current card holders to borrow books from libraries outside of the system including UCSD, SDSU, CSUSM, and many more.

San Diego Public Law Library

The San Diego County Public Law Library offers free, on-site access to its print and online collections but there is a fee to borrow materials. They also offer a free "Chat live with a law librarian" service from their homepage.

Other Public Libraries

Additional public library systems include the following:

By Nserrano [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Academic Libraries

The college and university libraries listed below are open to the public for on-site access to their print and online resources.

 

University libraries:

Community College Libraries: