Overview of the Collections

tokugawa maps

Collection at a glance

In 2018-2019, UBC Library:

  • Saw over 3.1 million visits to its branches and almost 9.7 million visits to the UBC Library website
  • Answered over 117,750 questions at its service points, including over 72,000 reference questions and over 12,000 via virtual interactions (including online chat and email)
  • Facilitated more than 240,000 loans to UBC student, faculty and community borrowers
  • Provided more than 10.7 million e-book and e-journal downloads

UBC Library Collections include:

  • Over 8.3 million items (print and electronic)
  • Access to more than 2.8 million e-books
  • Access to more than 440,000 journal titles
  • Over 5.3 million microforms

Collection strengths

Woodward Library is the largest biomedical collection in Western Canada.

Xwi7xwa Library, a First Nations library, offers unique services and subject descriptors for collections relating to aboriginal peoples.

Asian Library holds one of the largest Asian collections in North America. Collection highlights include the Puban collection which contains traditional Chinese works before 1912 including the Sung, Yuan, Ming and Ch’ing dynasties.

Rare Books & Special Collections holds the largest store of print and manuscript materials about BC and extensive holdings on Canadian and Pacific history and exploration.
Collection highlights include the Douglas Coupland archives and the Wallace B. and Madeline H. Chung Collection, which contains over 25,000 items including documents, books, maps, posters, paintings, photographs, silver, glass, ceramic ware and other artifacts. Much of the collection has been digitized.

The Library is an official Depository for British Columbia government publications.

University Archives is the official repository of the University’s corporate records and information.

cIRcle is the University of British Columbia’s digital repository for research and teaching materials created by the UBC community and its partners. Materials in cIRcle are openly accessible to anyone on the web, have persistent URLs, and will be preserved for future generations. Its holdings include more than 30,000 electronic theses and dissertations.