You are here: American University University Library Collections Gift Books Program

The Library is not currently accepting donations of materials. We hope to revisit this as we expand services over the course of the 2021-22 Academic Year.

Gifting Books to the Library

Thank you for your interest in supporting the American University Library! Every academic program at the American University relies on the materials and services provided by the Library. Your contributions help us to maintain our collection of cutting-edge scholarly material. Please consider making a gift today.

Donation Policy

As the collections at the American University Library grow and evolve, so must our parameters for accepting donated materials. The processing and cataloging of gift books requires a great deal of space, funding, and staff. Like many other libraries, we are decreasing our collection of print materials and focusing more on electronic books, journals, and databases.

We have a rich and full collection, and only need select items that support the research and pedagogy of the university. On a very infrequent basis, the library considers donations of books for the general collection.

Donation Criteria

All prospective donors should email Laura Neal at and attach a complete list of the materials that they wish to donate, including titles, authors, and publication dates. Our subject specialists will then review this list for items that are needed by the library. We are very selective about anything that falls outside of our curriculum. If you are unable to generate a list of titles, please contact one of the alternative organizations listed on this page.

What we do not accept

  • Appraised donations - these are only handled through our Archives Department
  • Books that are damaged (moldy, mildewed, water damaged, brittle, yellowed, or have cracked spines)
  • Paper copies of journals or magazines
  • Incomplete multi-volume sets
  • Computer software and manuals
  • Audiobooks
  • LP records, cassette tapes, or VHS tapes
  • Encyclopedia sets

Getting your Donation to the Library

Donations are not accepted at Service Desks. If the donation is larger than 2 boxes, it will need to be delivered to the receiving room of the Library. The packing and delivery of these materials is the responsibility of the donor.