Skip to main content

The Caribbean Research Library (CRL) is a specialised reference collection of all types of materials both current and retrospective, which relate to Guyana and the Caribbean. It is the largest of its kind regionally, and its resources and services are open to organisations and individuals engaged in research on Guyana and the Caribbean.


The primary objective of the CRL is to be an important reference collection. It therefore aims to be as comprehensive as possible in the collection and acquisition of Caribbean material. This objective has been achieved to the extent that the CRL can claim to be the largest collection in the world on GUYANA. In scope, this unit covers the Guianas, Belize and the Caribbean islands, and in some instances, items on flora and fauna of South America. It contains over 30,000 books, pamphlets, manuscripts, newspapers, microfilms, maps, records, tapes and other miscellaneous items, some of which are both unique and rare. The immediate objectives of the division are as follows:


  • To collect and disseminate retrospective and contemporary information on a wide range of topics and subjects – from the creative arts to the sciences – on Guyana and the Caribbean.
  • To support research and teaching activities of the University Campus including nationals and overseas researchers on Guyanese topics.
  • To encourage an awareness of the importance of research on Caribbean, and especially Guyanese topics.
  • To preserve our history and cultural heritage.


Because CRL is a closed collection, users do not have access to the stacks. In order to find out what is available on a particular subject, the catalogues should be consulted. It is arranged by author, title, and subject and provides call numbers to books. Additionally, the collection of the CRL is partially automated and users may consult the online catalogue to retrieve information. A list of Serials / Journals held in CRL can be obtained on request at the Desk. Indexes of content pages of journals can also be obtained at the Desk. After identifying the item(s) you wish to consult, a reading room issue slip must be filled out and submitted to the staff. A reading room ticket must be submitted to borrow the material. Only two materials can be borrowed by a user at any one time. The loan period is 2 hours. Books may be renewed if necessary. There are also various special collections within the CRL, these are as follows:


vital information on the social history of Guyana
reports and other information concerning the history of Guyana
old maps, postcards, photographs, and manuscripts dating back to the 15th century.
manuscripts, diaries
diaries, manuscripts, letters.


The CRL houses a large Reading Room with seating capacity for approximately seventy-four (74) persons.