Estates Office

University card common questions


1. Who is entitled?

All students and staff (on the main University payroll) are entitled to apply for a University card.

If you are a visitor, contractor, on secondment from another University or directly employed by a school/department and not on the main University payroll then you are not entitled to a University card and instead you need to apply for a Key card/Associate card (see below).

2. The application process

Once you are confirmed as a student/member of staff and have an email on file you will be emailed with a link to the application website which will include your login and password. If you do not receive this email you can click onto the first card application link to the left. 

3. Collecting your card

Once you have applied for your first card online it will be produced. If you are a current student then your card will be available for collection from your corresponding Student Service Centre. If you are a new student and have uploaded your photo prior to registration your card will be available for collection at registration. If you are a member of staff, University card support will be in contact with you to arrange the collection of your card.

4. Obtaining a replacement

If you have already applied for your first card and it has subsequently been lost, stolen, damaged, is faulty or has incorrect data on it then you may request a replacement. See the replacement cards link to the left. 

5. University card functions

Your University card is a very sophisticated piece of technology and has many functions, including: a means of identification, a library card, a building access card, a bus card (on NCT services, see below for more information) and a Sports Centre card (subject to joining). It can also be used for online library borrowing and photocopying authorisation.

To use your University card as a bus card, purchase bus travel from NCT’s Travel Centre or the Students’ Union Reception in the Portland Building (students only). The travel will then be loaded on to your University card. Staff are also able to purchase discounted travel passes through Payroll. Read more about this scheme.

6. Building access

One of the more prominent functions of the University card is its use as a building access card. Your access rights are largely determined by the school/department/faculty that you are associated with and whether or not you are a staff or student. Undergraduate students also have some different access rights to Postgraduates. As a general rule your card will be automatically programmed to give you access to the areas in which your school/department/faculty operates. Additional access rights can be allocated to you at the discretion of University card support and if authorised by your head of school or nominated representative. However, the need for this is rare and your card should give you all of the access that you need.

7. Amendments to automatic unlock schedules for events

Many doors on major academic buildings are set to open automatically during the day, and then lock off for access control in the evening and at weekends or during holidays. If you would like certain doors to open automatically at specific times for an event then you will need to email the University Card team with at least seven days' notice ( You will need to be very clear on the building, doors and timings that you would like to alter, as well as providing details about yourself for verification and a full explanation as to why you would like the door unlocking. If you need to book a building attendant for out of hours building cover you will need to log an Estates Helpdesk online works request ( 

To use your card for building access simply hold the card 3-5 cm away from the MIDDLE of the reader. If the door is locked then the LED status will be a constant RED. If you then present a University card with valid access then the LED on the reader will turn GREEN for a short time and the lock on the door will be released. If the LED on the reader FLASHES RED then you are not authorised for entry. The majority of external academic doors will be set to automatically unlock within working hours for your convenience.

Estates Office

The University of Nottingham,
University Park,
Nottingham, NG7 2RD