Getting Started

Take advantage of the services offered by the Colorado Talking Book Library (CTBL). CTBL provides postage-free recorded, braille, and large print library materials to eligible residents in Colorado. Please click here for the application. For more information on CTBL Services and eligibility follow the links below.

CTBL is part of a national network of libraries that partner with The Library of Congress to deliver services to the print-disabled. NLS, the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, is the Library of Congress unit that provides overall direction for the program.

Audio Tour Files

Audio tour files are short audio files explaining the services provided by CTBL.


Bimonthly magazines will tell you about newly-released books and provide you with information on related library services. "Talking Book Topics" ( in audio and online ) and "Braille Book Review" ( in Braille and online ) are two available catalogs. Be sure to try and Order Books Online, since the entire CTBL collection of locally recorded books is available online. You may also order other general catalogs of recorded or Braille books.

Certifying Authority

The list of professionals who are authorized to sign the application form are listed at the bottom of the fist page of the application, which states:

"Certifying authority" is defined to include doctor of medicine, doctor of osteopathy, ophthalmologist, optometrist, psychologist, registered nurse, therapist, and professional staff of hospitals, institutions, and public or welfare agencies (such as an educator, a social worker, case worker, counselor, rehabilitation teacher, certified reading specialist, school psychologist, superintendent, or librarian). Certifying authorities are not permitted to certify relatives.


You can select your recorded books and magazines from a national collection that includes bestsellers, classics, mysteries, westerns, poetry, biographies, informational works, religious literature, children's books, and foreign language materials. You can also subscribe to more than 80 popular magazines.



You are eligible for the Colorado Talking Book Library service if:

  • you are legally blind;
  • your vision in the better eye is 20/200 or less with corrective lenses or your widest diameter of visual field is no greater than 20 degrees;
  • you cannot see well enough or focus long enough to read standard print, though you wear glasses to correct your vision;
  • you are unable to handle print books or turn pages
  • you are certified as having a learning disability, due to an organic dysfunction, that is severe enough to prevent you from reading in the usual manner
  • the disability may be permanent or temporary.


In order to provide service to your organization at least one individual using your facility must be eligible for Talking Book Library service and registered with CTBL at this time.


CTBL books and magazines are recorded in a special format and require special playback equipment. The Colorado Talking Book Library will loan you the equipment, which you may keep as long as you are actively using the recorded books and magazines. If the equipment you are using needs service or repair, return it to the library and contact us to have replacement equipment sent to you free of charge.

There are several videos available on YouTube that discuss the digital players currently sent out to patrons. These videos will open in a new window.

Subject Code List

We are now using the Library of Congress subject headings and it is an extensive list. A condensed list is provided here for your use. To further refine the subject codes on your patron record, please speak with a Reader Advisor at the library.