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Resources on accessibility, disability, chronic illness and neurodiversity

Library Accessibility Information

The ECU Library is committed to providing an inclusive environment with equal access for all students, faculty and staff of the University. We aim to provide equal access to our library services and collections.

Library Space

  • Entrance is on the second level. Doors are kept open during library open hours.
  • Elevator is located at the west end of the library
  • Washrooms are all single stall, accessible and gender neutral. They are located on the north side of the upper level; and northeast side of the lower level
  • Where the library building or facilities restrict access, do not hesitate to ask for assistance.

Accessing Library Material

The stacks or shelves in some parts of the library are high and narrow, and may not be accessible to all users. If you have difficulty reaching or lifting materials in the book stacks, or operating the library's self-serve photocopiers, printers or scanners, please contact the library to arrange service, or visit the Service Desk on the upper level.

Books that are available in the library can be put on hold by logging into your account through the Library Catalogue. Items will be held for you at the Service Desk and you will receive a notification when they are ready to be picked up.

Other Services

  • If you have a student aide, the library can issue a card that allows your aide to borrow library materials on your behalf. This can be arranged at the Service Desk.
  • Research help services can be offered in person when the library is opened or online by appointment if you need help accessing materials in accessible formats.
If there is anything else we can do to help you use the Library, please let us know.

Scanning Print Materials into Accessible Formats

  • The KIC book scanners in the library have optical character recognition (OCR), which means they can scan text and make it readable. If you would like to scan library materials to be used with a screen reader, you can use the scanner and save the file as a Searchable PDF
  • If your document is difficult to see, use the settings to adjust the brightness and contrast to make it easier to read.

Electronic Resources

  • Not all library material is published in accessible formats, but many newer titles will have an electronic version of a text
  • Search the library resources using the General Search option and narrow your results by eBook or article using the limiters on the left side of the screen. Most of these resources will provide multiple format options of the text (audio, larger print, etc. You can also narrow the search results by language.
  • Once you find the resource you can use the permalink or download all or part of the text (there are more restrictions on some titles due to licensing agreements). 
  • If you need help finding electronic versions, ask a library staff member for help It’s possible that the resource is only published in print, but we can try to find an alternate format for you.

3 readers are sitting in a reading room area reading books on accessibility. In the background there is a white board with access needs written on it.

In the fall 2021 semester we had a display of resources on accessibility in the ECU Library Reading Room, where we posted a white board for students to tell us their access needs for using the library. Thank you for your feedback and letting us know ways we can make the library more welcoming and accessible to you. Here are the compiles posts with our responses.

    Greeting me by name
    • Yes, we would love to get to know students and learn your names. Come chat with us and introduce yourself. 
  • I need someone to help me proofread
    • The ECU Writing Centre has created an excellent selection of resources about editing and revising your writing: You can also use the library as a space to meet with peers to proofread each others’ work. This is a great way to learn from each other and gain experience with providing feedback. 
  • Audio and video material in “reading lists”
    • Excellent suggestion! We will do a review of our electronic resources and research guides to look into ways that we can include more AV material.
  • I need soft lighting | Moderate lighting
    • We agree! Right now, the lighting in the bookable study rooms can be adjusted. In the future we would like to get more desk lamps so lighting can be adjusted better for each patron. 
  • I wish we could have portable CD players, cassette players, etc. available to borrow
    • Media Resources has cassette and CD players which students can borrow, but they are quite large and not very portable. We have a portable record player. Sorry - this is not the answer you are looking for.
  • Somewhere to nap | I want to nap more | Nap room | Stronger lighting in darker areas of the library
    • The Student Wellness Department now has a nap room!!!!! The library offers some semi comfortable couches and we now have a hammock chair that is pretty good for napping. Also we have two slumpy beanbags.
  • I need to talk ideas through with folks I trust
    • The research help desk is here to talk through your ideas with you! We have staff at the desk from 11:30-1:30 and 3-5, Monday - Friday. You can also make an appointment by emailing
  • Silent work areas | Quiet space
    • We have a designated quiet study area on the north side of the lower level. You can also book a study room here: 
    • We welcome group work, socializing, and independent noise making in areas outside of the designated quiet zones.
  • Someone to show/walk me through how to do things
    • We are happy to work with you to navigate how to use the library. You can ask us in person at the Service Desk or Research Help Desk, stop by our offices on the lower level, or get help online. We have a Library Chat Service that you can access and we can meet with you in Zoom. Email us to set up an appointment 
  • Water fountain downstairs 
    • We have asked for an estimate on how much it would cost us to install a water fountain on the lower level and the estimate came in at approximately $18000. At this time, we do not have the funds. 
  • More plants
    • We love plants! We are trying to propagate and grow more plants. Do you know about the seed library? Take some seeds to grow plants at your home too
  • Friends
    • There are often events happening around the University that provide opportunities to meet people. You can find events here: 
  • More free food
    • We look forward to being able to share food again. 
  • More hand sanitizing stations 
    • During the height of the pandemic we had hand sanitizer on almost every table in the library. But then we ended up with so much waste. We are hoping that we now have enough out so that you can feel clean while offering you 3 bathrooms to wash your hand if necessary. 
  • More garbage cans
    • We have recently added two recycling stations in the library: one on the lower level just east of the stairs and one on the upper level in the sustainability area. 
  • More comfortable seating | back support and tables | The couches and chairs are uncomfortable | More hammocks or bean bag chairs downstairs. I want more hammocks and surfer furniture too!
    • We will keep trying to find money in the budget.       604-844-3840        520 East 1st Avenue, Vancouver, BC