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Scan instead of copy

Since this summer, you can scan free of charge in almost all libraries of our university. In the spirit of sustainability, this service replaces the fee-based printing and copying services.

News from Oct 05, 2023


Scanning offers several advantages:

  • Ecological   "Scanning instead of copying" is a simple way to reduce your own ecological footprint. By copying documents paperlessly, each individual makes a small contribution to resource-efficient studying, research, and teaching - and thus to achieving Freie Universität's climate goals.
  • Sustainable – in both senses of the word: digital reproduction ensures permanent availability of documents. Automatic text recognition (OCR) makes digitized files stored in PDF format searchable; they can be digitally edited, annotated, and shared with others. When exported as a high-resolution image file, the scans also offer better reproduction quality than any conventional copy - ideal, for example, for maps or photographic documents.
  • Free – Unlike the previous multifunction devices, the use of the new book scanners is free of charge for all library users. Page-by-page billing and chargeable miscopying are now a thing of the past. Also, a copy card (Campuscard / Mensacard), which must be charged in advance, is no longer required.

For more information on the background to the service changeover, click here


Almost every one of our library locations has scanning capabilities. There are classic book scanners, scanning tents for digitization with smartphones, and microform scanners for reading microfiche and microfilm.
You can find an overview of the equipment at the locations here


Scanning is fairly straightforward and self-explanatory. If something doesn't work, the library staff on site will be happy to help.

And if I do need to print something...?

Conventional printers and copiers are no longer available in libraries, or only to a very limited extent. We are thus following a nationwide trend: free, stand-alone scanning is now standard in many German libraries. The use of printing and copying services, on the other hand, has slowly but surely declined.

However, a reduced print service for members of Freie Universität, which will continue to be available for a fee, will be maintained in cooperation with the ZEDAT print service.

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