Access & Borrowing

Non-CUNY Researchers

The Graduate Center Library is open to CUNY and SUNY Empire State College students and faculty, Graduate Center alumni, and CUNY doctoral faculty retirees. If you are not in these groups you can access the library by joining the Friends of the Library or getting a METRO Referral card from an area library. Details below.

Become a Graduate Center Friend of the Library or Library Associate at the $250 level: A $250 membership grants on-site access to the Graduate Center library for 1 year. A $1000 contribution is acknowledged by a year of borrowing privileges at the Graduate Center library only. For more information contact Jim Cronin, Office of Institutional Advancement, 212-817-7137,

METRO referrals from area libraries are honored with a signed yellow card from another library reference desk for one-day, on-site access and use of the item cited on the card. METRO membership provides reciprocal access for users seeking access to resources unavailable in home libraries.

Visiting Research Scholars

The Office of the Provost manages a Visiting Research Scholar program for scholars capable of adding usefully to the academic discourse at the Graduate Center. Read about the application process

Visiting scholars are entitled to library borrowing privileges and off-site access to library resources. (See privileges chart for more information).

Need a Research Library?

Looking for a research library to work in but not affiliated with the Graduate Center or CUNY? There are several options:


Guests (up to 3) with valid photo ID accompanying Graduate Center students, faculty, staff with current ID may be admitted to the library at the discretion of GC security staff. All guests must sign in at the lobby security desk and provide appropriate ID for weekend library access. Children must be accompanied by an adult with current ID.

SUNY Empire State College Students

SUNY Empire State College students may obtain a CUNY Open Access card from any CUNY library circulation desk for semester-long access and borrowing privileges at all CUNY libraries. Access to licensed electronic resources is available to all on-site visitors.

Special Program, Interuniversity Doctoral Consortium, Auditors, and Non-matriculated Students Students

Library Access: The Interuniversity Doctoral Consortium allows doctoral students (not faculty or master’s students) from Columbia, NYU, Fordham, Rutgers, Princeton, and SUNY Stonybrook taking one or more courses at the Graduate Center to apply for a GC photo ID for library admission. Similarly, doctoral students from Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, Design, and Culture enrolled in at least one course at the CUNY Graduate Center may apply for a GC photo ID for library admission (see p. 19 of the GC Bulletin).

Network Accounts: Special program students, Interuniversity Doctoral Consortium students, auditors, and non-matriculated students enrolled in one or more GC classes (not continuing ed) are eligible for GC computer network accounts for remote access to library resources. After completing registration for a GC course, contact IT Services at