Estates Directorate

Access to Buildings

Most University buildings will be open during the “normal” working/academic day and you do not need your card or any other device to gain access.  The main locations where you do need to use your Smart Card for access are:

  • McClay Library
  • International & Postgraduate Student Centre

Emergency Access

Security Control is able to facilitate emergency access to buildings by calling 028 90 975098/5098 (external) or ext 5098/5099 (internal) and producing a valid staff/student card. Security Control is open 24/7.


With the exception of the locations above, students typically do not need to use their Smart Cards for door access.  However, some Schools do allow students controlled access to their buildings – for example in the evenings.  Schools have already supplied Estates with the details of students who require their Cards to be enabled for building/door access. If you think you should have controlled access to a building/door, you should contact your School Manager.

If you have been given a PIN code or a door access card by your School then you may be able to use your Smart Card instead (see below).


If you have previously used a PIN code to gain access to any building, then you may be able to use your Smart Card instead (see below).

Using your Smart Card instead of a PIN

There are two main types of door access readers in the University: older ‘scramble’ pads and newer proximity readers. For scramble pads, you must continue to enter your PIN. The keypad works by pressing the start button, inputting your PIN and then pressing the # key (the bottom right hand button). For proximity readers, you can either enter your PIN code or hold your new Smart Card within 2cm of the reader. 


Scramble Pad                       Proximity Reader