Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Circulation & Borrowing: Understanding Your Library Barcode

Information about Circulation, Borrowing, and Library Access.

Quick Library Links

Circulation Hours & Contact

Robert L. Carothers Library & Learning Commons

Call Us
(During Regular Hours)

(401) 874-2672

Email Us
(After Regular Hours)

(Please allow 1-2 business days for a response)

Understanding Your Library Barcode

What is your barcode?

Every registered library borrower is assigned a unique 14-digit barcode that identifies him or her in the library computer system (for example, 21222005012345). This barcode is located on the front of your University ID (or on the back of older ID’s). [If you are not a URI student, faculty or staff member, your barcode can be found on the front of your Special Borrower’s Card.]

Activating or renewing your library barcode

Before being able to use many of the Libraries’ services, you may need to activate your barcode. 

Using your library barcode

You need an active barcode to do any of the following activities:


No Letters!

If on your University ID the letter “A”, or any other letter appears at the beginning and/or end of your barcode, IGNORE IT! Whenever you are prompted by the computer to enter your barcode, enter only the 14 numbers! Do not include any letters!

Additional information

If you have any additional questions about your barcode or if you just want to check to see whether or not it is active, please contact the Circulation Desk at your home library:

Kingston: (401) 874-2672

Providence Campus: (401) 277-5130

Pell: (401) 874-6161


Activating and Renewing Library Cards

There are three ways to activate or update the information on your library card:

  • In person
  • By phone
  • Online

In person - Simply stop by the main service desk at whichever URI Library you most frequent (Kingston or Narragansett or Providence) and ask a member of the staff to update the information on your card.

By phone - If you cannot access online materials from off-campus, you should first call the main service desk of whichever URI University Library you most frequent.  Explain your situation and read them the 14 digit number located beneath the barcode (beginning with 21222).  More often than not, the access problem is due to an issue with the library card.  If the card is expired or requires updated information, the staff person will either renew the card or update your library record.

It is recommended that you call the library you most frequent when involving such issues as described above.  The service desk phone numbers are: 

  • Kingston: (401) 874-2672
  • Providence Campus: (401) 277-5130
  • Pell: (401) 874-6161

Online - This online application can be used by any University of Rhode Island student, faculty or staff - whether you are a new patron wanting to activate your URI ID as a library card or needing to update information on your patron record.

The application only applies to 

  • students currently enrolled at URI
  • URI staff and faculty (including adjunct faculty)
  • Emeritus Faculty

Please, you must allow at least two days for your application to be processed.

The link to the online application can be accessed via this link:

Contact us @ Circ

Click on the black arrow to open the chat in a new window.

If we're not online, please email us at Please allow 1-2 business days for a response.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.