University Library

Compulsory literature (student library)

Please note, that as a rule, we expect students to purchase their own compulsory books. We offer the SB books as an additional service if you forgot your books and want a quick copy or scan, or if you study in the Library and did not bring all your books with you.

Our policy

If possible, we make compulsory literature available as an eBook, especially in the wake of Corona, but this is not always an option. Purchasing eBooks for an academic library works very different from purchasing eBooks as an individual.  For us as a library to purchase eBooks, they may be too expensive (up to thousands of euros where a paper copy only costs less than 50 euros), they may only be available in very expensive packages, or a publisher or agent may simply not allow academic libraries to buy their eBooks.

For more information about this, see our blog post on Ordering eBooks - not that simple! (English text included, scrol down).

It is our policy to ask authors, who are employed by Tilburg University, if they would like to donate an author’s print copy of their book to the library collection. Especially if it's compulsory literature. 


The library has compiled separate collections (SB, Student Books) of compulsory course literature, for the following collections:

  • Economics and Business Administration (ECO SB)
  • Law (JUR SB)
  • Social sciences (SOC SB)
  • Language and literature (LET SB)
  • Philosophy (CIF SB)
  • Theology and religious studies (TFL SB)
  • Liberal Arts & Sciences (LA SB). 

If possible, compulsory literature is available as an eBook, but this is not an option for all titles. Sometimes eBooks come with restrictions for simultaneous access, printing and/or downloading.

Call numbers

The call number of a Student Book can be found in the catalog (WorldCat Discovery).

The call number for a book in the SB library starts with the collection code, followed by SB and the first four characters of the author's name. For example: ECO SB HARR. Books from the SB library can only be used within the library and are not available for loan. For most of the SB books there is a duplicate copy in the regular collection that can be borrowed  for two weeks. The title then mentions two different holdings: one in the SB collections, and one in the regular collections.

The SB library is situated on the first floor of the library,  the regular collections on floor 0.