Where to study in The Sir Duncan Rice Library?

This post is all about helping you to find the right spot to suit your study style.

The Sir Duncan Rice Library has been designed with the needs of 21st century learners in mind, with lots of different sorts of space for the activities that visitors told us they needed most. Essentially the design of the building locates more social areas close to the atrium, so as a useful rule of thumb, the further you are from the hole in the middle, the more we encourage quiet.

So where’s best for you?

Silent study

A silent study room.

room to think in a silent study room

Our building is not a traditionally silent kind of library. It’s built for collaborations and conversations to reflect more modern education needs, but also provides for traditionalists who like to hear themselves think in peace in old-school classic study style. We have silent study rooms on floors 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6, which you’ll find handily located in the same corner of each of the floors.

There are two types of silent study space: one with spaces to plug in laptops and one without, so if your ideal vision for revision is for no internet distractions or clicking of keyboards, then go to rooms 324, 424. 524 or 624 for superlative silence, and see our web page on silent study rooms for more information. We have printable library guide PDFs with full details about the way the rooms are to be used to respect other students and the library as a shared learning environment.
Library Guide to the SE corner study rooms
Library Guide to the SW corner study rooms


for collaboration

for collaboration

Need collaboration for inspiration? Then our co-labs could be the place for you. These are specifically designed for group and project work, such as presentations, with spaces for 4-7 people; useful for group revision and idea-sharing. These are especially recommended if you are a more multimedia learner, as they offer built-in information technology facilities to allow you to use a range of digital devices. Co-labs include a PC, a plasma screen for viewing DVDs or online content, and multiple ports for headphones so you can listen and learn with others. These spaces are partitioned, so offer a little privacy, but please do be mindful of noise levels to respect other visitors.

Group study rooms
For those of you who like to plan ahead and study with company, there are two bookable Group Study Rooms on Floor 7. These rooms have space for up to 8 people, and have a PC and plasma screen. To book a Group Study Room for 1-2 hours, email groupstudyrooms@abdn.ac.uk or reserve a time in person at the Information Centre on Floor 1. The keys are available for collection from the Information Centre on Floor 1. Find full details in our Group Study Room Library Guide.

All sorts of seats


Comfortable soft seating is available on Floors 1 to 5. These areas are ideal for individual reading, personal laptop use, reading newspapers on Floor 1, and for short and quiet conversation.

Round Study Tables are near the lift/lobby area on Floors 3 to 6, and are intended for quiet conversation or collaborative work in pairs or small groups.

for quiet, individual study

for quiet, individual study

The study desks by the windows around each side of the building and on the open floor areas on Floors 1 to 7 are intended for quiet, individual study, perfect if you want to enjoy your own little study-bubble, with or without your headphones, and look out at the Silver City in stunning eagle-view panorama.

From staff at the library, we wish you the best of success with your study!

By Georgia Brooker, Communications Co-ordinator for Library, Special Collections and Museums.