Requesting Materials

How do I request material?

Once you have identified the material you'd like to  view in the Reading Room, you can place a request online through Aeon, the Reading Room's request system. If you have found an item in the catalogue, select the "Request to view in Reading Room" button on the right-hand side of the catalogue record to be taken to the Aeon request form, or log in to Aeon and complete the appropriate collection request form. If this is your first time using Aeon, you will need to first register as a user by completing a registration form.

Log in to Aeon

Collection material is stored in a number of locations, both on and off site, so delivery times vary. It can take up to ten business days to deliver some material to the Reading Room, so be sure to submit your request well in advance of your visit. If you have requested restricted collection material, this may affect when your items are delivered to the Reading Room. Staff will contact you if there are any issues with the delivery time you have requested.

Before you visit:

Make sure to order material in advance of your visit to the Reading Room through Aeon.

Check delivery time for your material as it varies across collections. See below for details.

If you wish to view the material in the Reading Room after 5pm on Wednesday nights, please contact the Reading Room team before your visit to ensure your material can be made available.

  • Using Aeon

    Creating an account.

    When you first use Aeon you will be prompted to create an account.

      University of Melbourne Affiliates:

      If you are a University of Melbourne student, staff or faculty member, you can create an account using your University of Melbourne credentials. Enter your username and password into the login box on the left-hand side of the Aeon login page and click "Logon to Aeon".

      You will be taken through our registration process, which shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to complete. Ensure you have read and agreed to the User Agreement and completed all required fields in the registration form before submitting your registration.

      Non-University of Melbourne Affiliates:

      If you do not have a University of Melbourne username and password, you can still create an Aeon account. Select the "First Time Users" option from the login box on the right-hand side of the Aeon login page.

      You will be taken through our registration process, which shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to complete. Ensure you have read and agreed to the User Agreement and completed all required fields in the registration form before submitting your registration.

      When completing your registration, you will need to choose a username and password that is easy to remember.  Passwords must be at least eight characters long and contain a lowercase letter, an uppercase letter, and a number. No spaces.

    Every time you wish to make a request or check on the progress of your requests, simply log in via the Aeon website.

    Making a request. 

    To make a request, simply fill in the relevant form with the details of what you'd like to borrow. Please add as much information as possible to help us identify the material you are requesting. You will need to agree to certain conditions of use, these will be explained on the request forms. More information on placing requests for the different collections available via the Reading Room is provided below. Complete your request form by selecting the date and time you wish the visit the Reading Room to view the material and selecting "Submit Request".

    Once you have submitted the request, you can track its progress by going to the "My Requests" page. If there is an issue we will get in touch as quickly as possible.

    Viewing the material.

    Any requested material must be viewed in the Reading Room. Visit the Reading Room on the day you arranged when placing your request in Aeon and we will have your items ready to view.

  • Requesting Special Collections

    Rare Books:

    Requests for Rare Books material can be made online in Aeon by submitting a Rare Books Request Form.

    If you have found an item in the catalogue, select the "Request to view in Reading Room" button on the right-hand side of the catalogue record. Clicking this button will take you to the Aeon login page. Login using your University of Melbourne credentials, or the username and password you chose when registering in Aeon. You will automatically be taken to a request form with the relevant catalogue information pre-filled. Ensure all the information is correct for the item you wish to request, editing information such as volume number and publication date as needed.

    All Rare Book material must be received by midnight for delivery the following business day at 10:00am.

    Items with the location UniM Bund or UniM Store are held off site and will require up to 5 business days for retrieval. In these cases, our staff will contact you when your material is available for viewing in the Reading Room.

    Prints:

    Requests for Print collection items can be made online in Aeon by and submitting the Print Request Form.

    Print collection items can take up to 2 business days to be delivered to the Reading Room. Our staff will contact you when your material is available for viewing in the Reading Room.

    Rare Music:

    Requests for Rare Music items can be made online in Aeon by submitting the Rare Music Request Form.

    Rare Music material can take up to 3 business days to be delivered to the Reading Room. Our staff will contact you when your material is available for viewing in the Reading Room.

  • Requesting University of Melbourne Archives

    Requests for Archives material can be made online in Aeon by submitting the UMA Request Form.

    Archives material is held at an off-site repository and must be ordered in to the Reading Room prior to your visit.

    Requests placed by 12.00pm can be made available for delivery by the following business day.

    Requests placed after 12.00pm will not be processed until the following day and delivery of material to the Reading Room will be made the morning after the request is processed.

    A maximum of ten archive boxes can be delivered per requestor at any one time. Access to some archival collections is restricted and permission must be obtained before the material can be accessed. This may affect when your items are delivered to the Reading Room. Staff will contact you if there are any issues with the delivery time you have requested.

    If you have a general research enquiry, please email archives@archives.unimelb.edu.au.

  • Requesting Grainger Museum Collection

    Requests for material can be made online in Aeon by submitting a Grainger Museum Request form.

    The Grainger Museum Collection archival material, including letters, manuscripts, diaries, business documents and photographs, can be requested for viewing in the Reading Room.

    Grainger Museum Collection material is held off-site and can require up to 10 business days for delivery. Our staff will contact you when your material is available for viewing in the Reading Room.

    Larger or more fragile items may be unsuitable for viewing in the Reading Room. In this instance, it may be possible to make an appointment to visit the offsite repository. In these cases, our staff will contact you to discuss your request.  Please note that access to collection material may be denied if the item is deemed too fragile.

How do I know my request has been submitted successfully?

When you successfully submit a request form in Aeon, you will be redirected to the homepage. Details of the material you have requested will appear in the "Outstanding Requests" table with the status "Awaiting Request Processing"

If you select the "Submit Request" button and are not redirected to the homepage, you may have forgotten to complete a required field. An error message will appear at the top of the request form and provide details on why your request has not been submitted.  Review the request form, completing all required fields and click the "Submit Request" button.

If you have trouble submitting a request, please contact the Reading Room for assistance.

How do I know when my material is available to access?

Reading Room staff will generally only contact you if your request cannot be completed by the date and time you allocated when submitting your request form, or if more information is needed to service your request.

To track the progress of your requests, login to your Aeon account. You can view the status of your active requests in the "Outstanding Requests" table on your Aeon homepage. Requests available to access will display the status "Available in Reading Room".

What if I’d like to view material again?

When you have finished viewing requested material in the Reading Room, please return it to the staff member at the Reading Room reference desk.

If you would like to view the material again, collection material will be held for up to one week, unless the request is renewed through Aeon, by telephone, or in person.

If you do not wish to view the material again, it will be returned to the repository and you will need to follow the request process to view the material again. Please advise staff in the Reading Room of your requirements.

Change of plans?

If you are unable to visit the Reading Room to view collection material at the time you requested, please update your request in Aeon or contact us so we can update the hold information to show when you will next visit. Please note, we only hold material for a limited time. If you contact us after the delivery or hold date has passed, your material may have been returned to the repository. In this case, you will need to submit a new request.

What if I'm unable to visit the Reading Room?

The Reading Room receives enquiries from all over the world seeking access to the rich and varied collections held at the University of Melbourne. Where Researchers are unable to attend the Reading Room in person, they may wish to engage a private research agent to undertake research on their behalf. See our guide to Engaging Private Research Agents for more information.