American University

University Library

Pence Law Library

4400 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20016


4300 Nebraska Ave NW
Washington DC 20016

202 274 4000

Parking and Public Transportation

A parking lot with some metered spaces is located next to the library near the intersection of Nebraska and New Mexico Avenues. The Tenleytown/AU stop on the Metrorail Red line is about a 15 minute walk from campus. A valid AU or Consortium ID or a shuttle pass may be used to ride the University Shuttle service between the Tenleytown/AU station and the campus. Call 202-885-3302 for additional shuttle information. The M4 bus route also runs from Tenleytown to campus. The N2 and N4 bus routes serve American University from central Washington and the Dupont Circle area. The H2, H4, and all of the 30 series bus routes stop at Tenley Circle. 

Library Regulations

The library is open to the public for use of materials within the building; borrowing privileges are extended to American University students, faculty, staff, and alumni, and to eligible faculty and students of WRLC institutions.

Loan Period and Fines

The loan periods for materials are:
  • Undergraduates: 4 weeks
  • Graduate students: 6 weeks
  • Faculty: three fixed due dates a year (1/31, 5/31, 9/30)

Overdue books are fined at 25 cents per day up to a $10 maximum. 

Services for Individuals with Physical and Learning Disabilities

A complete list of services is available here.
Adaptive technology for the ALADIN system includes voice recognition software, Braille translation software and a Brailler, screenreaders and screen and text magnification for the visually impaired; software that scans text and reads it aloud for both the visually impaired and those with learning disabilities; and integrated learning tools for those with learning disabilities. Additionally, the library offers a number of physical modifications to equipment to assist those with mobility impairments. The library offers numerous services to accommodate users based on their needs. Please contact the Coordinator of Library Services to Individuals with Disabilities (202-885-3845) to obtain additional information. 

Special Collections

Includes: the University Archives. Historical manuscripts such as the papers of former University presidents (most notably John F. Hurst) and faculty members (especially Harold E. Davis in Latin American history and Ed Bliss, Jr. in broadcast journalism). The Records of the National Commission on Public Service (The Volcker Commission). Rare book strengths include the Martin Collection of early and rare math books and the Spinks Collection of books about local Japanese history, Japanese color prints and print collecting, and the civilization of the Tokugawa Period; some Japanese color prints are also included. Other collections of interest include a collection of signed literary works and papers of William Faulkner and a substantial collection of Playbills, including the Iris Lipkowitz Playbill Collection.

Music Library

The Music Library is located in the Katzen Arts Center and offers a collection of music and sound recordings in various formats and a collection of music scores.


Page Updated: 11/09/2018 - 13:05