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Online reference resources

If you are a member of Shetland Library, you can use our 24 Hour Library online resources, for free, anytime. 

Why do I need the 24 Hour Library?

We often use Google, Bing, or other search engines to find information online. This is very useful, but sometimes the information you need is not available free. or you may be unsure of its accuracy. Often your search results can provide information which is out of date, or just wrong! This is why we still need these high quality reference publications, and why the Library provides them for you..

To use these sites on your own computer, enter your library card number on their log-in pages.


Access to Research

Access to Research

Students, independent researchers and small businesses can now access many of the world’s best academic papers through the library for free. This resource can only be used at the library.



Go Citizen

Go Citizen

Free to Shetland Library members this is an online study resource for candidates preparing for the Life in the UK test or British citizenship test.

Encyclopedia Britannica - the best online encyclopedia in the world

The best known encyclopedia in the world, for ages 15 and above. Includes multimedia material unavailable in printed format.

Encyclopaedia Britannica


Theory Test Pro

Theory Test Pro

Pass your driving test with Shetland Library. Online practice theory tests, hazard perception simulations and the Highway Code..

Britannica Student, the best encyclopedia online for early teens & secondary education

For children aged 10-14, with information at their level with journals, videos & more available.

Britannica Student

  The Dictionary of National Biography

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

Contains over 56,000 biographies of anyone who was anyone from the Romans to the present day. It is the first place to look for anyone interested in British history.

Britannica Junior - fun learning for young children, including games, videos & maps.

Primary school children will be entertained & educated by this resource, with games, videos & talking articles.

Britannica Junior


The Oxford English Dictionary Online

The definitive guide to the English language covering more than 600,000 words.

Oxford English Dictionary Online - on Library PC

Oxford English Dictionary Online - at home (card number required)

Original Sources - 350000 documents from world history, available to read here for free

Original Sources by Britannica

Original Sources from World History, containing 350000 texts & 5000 full books. Perfect for historical, legal, scientific or religious enquiries.

  Oxford Reference Online - over 200 Oxford University Press reference texts

Oxford Reference Online

A collection of over 200 Oxford University Press reference works accessible through one site.


Who Else Writes Like? Find your next favourite author with this simple search site

Who Else Writes Like . . . ?

Have you read all the books by your favourite author and are looking for something new to try? This site can provide you with a list of similar authors whose books you might enjoy. You'll need the number on your borrower card to log in.


Very Short Introductions

Very Short Introductions

Shetland Library members can access the following titles online: Twentieth Century Britain, British Politics, Drugs, Contemporary Art, History, Management, Mathematics, Nutrition, The Earth, Planets. Just click the cover of the book you wish to read, select “login with your library card” and enter your library card number.




SCRAN - the image archive of Scottish culture, history & industry


This site provides access to over 300,000 images, movies and sounds from museums, galleries, archives and the media.


National Library of Scotland

Ask a Librarian

The National Library of Scotland has a team of dedicated reference librarians with a wealth of high quality resources at hand, and will be able to assist with a wide range of questions.

Please visit to post your question or to find out more.


UK Newsstand

European Newsstream

A searchable database of local, national and European newspapers. Set up email alerts for your favourite topics and get personalised results mailed to you. An invaluable research tool.



Oxford Bibliographies


Oxford Bibliographies

Shetland Library members can access Oxford Bibliographies in Victorian Literature and British and Irish Literature for free by logging in with your library card.




Oxford Dictionaries

Oxford Dictionary Premium – English

Shetland Library members can access an online dictionary for English for free by logging in with your library card.







Oxford Dictionaries

Oxford Dictionary Premium - Spanish

Shetland Library members can access an online dictionary for Spanish for free by logging in with your library card. It includes a tool for English to Spanish and Spanish to English word and phrase translation.







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