Rules and regulations

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Rules and regulations


Rules concerning admission to the library and fees
  1. The following are eligible to use the library:
    1. University members.
      The following University members may have consultation and borrowing facilities without charge:
      1. members of Council
      2. members of academic and related staff
      3. members of staff, other than academic and related staff, who are recommended in each case by their Head of School
      4. registered students of the University.
    2. Former members of the University.
      Graduates and diplomats of the University and of Kings College Durham may have consultation and borrowing facilities using the library's own stock on payment of an annual fee.
    3. Members of other UK higher education institutions
      1. Members of Universities that have joined the SCONUL Access Scheme. Members of academic staff, research postgraduates, other part-time, distance and placement students may have consultation and borrowing facilities in accordance with the scheme and restricted to the use of the library's own stock without charge. Other students may have consultation facilities only without charge, on production of a current university campus or library identity card from their university.
      2. Other UK higher education Institutions that are not members of SCONUL Access Scheme. Staff and students of other UK higher education institutions may have consultation facilities during term and vacation without charge, on production of proof of status.
    4. Members of the public may apply for borrowing facilities restricted to the library's own stock and on payment of the current fee if applicable. Members of the public may also apply for consultation facilities. There is no charge for this activity.
    5. The Librarian has discretion to grant borrowing and/or consultation rights to:
      1. members of organisations which are affiliated, or which have a special relationship, with the University.
      2. registered students (including part-time and distance learning students) of other institutions of higher education for regular use; and to determine the appropriate fee.
      3. helpers for disabled users or for mature students who have difficulty in making use of library services.
      4. individuals, institutions, groups or conferences wishing to use the library for short periods or for specified purposes; and to determine the appropriate fee and/or ask for a School of the University to act as guarantor.
    6. The Librarian has discretion to grant borrowing and/or consultation rights for limited periods without fee. In exercising this discretion the Librarian will take into account the level of existing demand on the library and its ability to maintain the level of service available to its normal users.
    7. Learners using an Inspire passport or referral letter.
      Inspire learners will have consultation access to the University library.
  2. All registered members admitted to the use of the library are required to sign an undertaking to abide by the Regulations and Rules of the library. An approved University Smartcard card must be brought to the library on each visit and must be produced to enter a library building, when books are borrowed and at any other time at the request of library staff
Rules concerning use of library facilities and borrowing
  1. Access to library material. The Librarian has discretion to restrict certain categories of material held by the library from being borrowed, such as works of reference, theses, manuscripts, items of special value or rarity, issues of periodicals and material in student texts collections.
  2. This restriction may be extended by the Librarian to books in heavy demand. Other books in demand may be issued only for such limited periods as the Librarian deems desirable.
  3. Special regulations govern access to theses deposited in the University library (see Regulation 23 ). Advance notice (normally at least twenty-four hours) must be given where access is required to library Special Collections of manuscripts or printed materials.
  4. Copying from library material. Copying, recording or downloading from materials or services supplied by the library must comply with the terms of current UK copyright law and with any University licences governing the use of such materials and services. Such copies, recordings or downloaded files must not be made unless any appropriate library forms or agreements have been completed and signed by the library user. The Librarian has the right to refuse or withdraw copying privileges and to suspend access to any services where he has reason to believe that a breach of copyright or licence conditions has taken place or is likely to take place.
  5. Use of library equipment. Readers who are given permission to use library equipment such as laptops, ebook readers, microfilm/fiche readers and sound, video and DVD equipment are responsible for any damage other than fair wear and tear.
  6. Categories of library borrowable material. Borrowable library books and periodicals have been divided into four main categories:
    1. Student texts: loan periods dependent upon type of material and time of day borrowed.
    2. Next day loan: Volumes must be returned by midnight on the following working day.
    3. One week loans. Volumes must be returned by midnight seven days from day of issue.
    4. Long loan:
      1. four weeks - undergraduate, postgraduate, external, access members and NHS staff
      2. three fixed periods per annum - university staff and associate staff Smartcard users
    Loan periods may be adapted to take account of vacation requirements and in exceptional circumstances extended loan periods may be negotiated for specialised material. Further information about loan entitlements for each category of borrower are obtainable from the University library.
  7. Any borrower may apply to borrow more than the regulation ‘ceiling' of long loan books. In the case of undergraduates, an application for such permission must be made through their tutors.
    1. All books are issued until the date and time stamped on the issue label or official receipt of issue. If no time is given, books are due back by the closing time on the last date stamped on the date label or printed receipt.
    2. A book on loan may be recalled by the library at any time, and the book must then be returned to the library on or before the closing time on the date given in the recall notice.
  8. Overdue charges for overdue or recalled books - An overdue charge may be levied per day or part of a day for failure to return books (including books obtained from another library) to the counter or book return bin of the library from which they were issued. Persistent offenders may also have borrowing privileges reduced or suspended (see Regulation 15).
  9. Failure to return books - Borrowers who fail to return recalled or overdue books may be invoiced for the full cost of replacement (see Regulation 17). Borrowers who subsequently return books after invoices have been issued may be required to pay the overdue charge per invoiced book or the charge levied by the lending library in the case of inter-library loan items.
  10. Renewals - Next day loan materials and STC items may not be renewed. All other books on loan may be renewed if they are not required by another reader.
  11. Inter-library Loans - Applications for material to be obtained on inter-library loan must be made on the appropriate application form and accompanied by the appropriate fee for each item requested. Requests will be dealt with in order of receipt dependent on the resources available.
  12. Library membership cards and passwords - The use made of the membership card and of any passwords issued by the library will be the responsibility of the reader to whom they are issued. If the approved library membership card is lost, or stolen, the reader will be held responsible until the loss has been reported to the library. A charge may be made to cover the cost of replacing a lost card.
  13. Books borrowed by one reader must not be passed on to another but must in all cases be returned to the library and officially re-issued. A reader may not borrow books in anyone's name but his/her own.
  14. Borrowers, other than students, are responsible for keeping the library informed at all times of their current term-time and vacation addresses.
  15. Books and other items borrowed by the University library from other Libraries are subject to library Regulations and Rules and also to the conditions imposed by the lending library.
  16. Readers should inform the library as soon as possible of any circumstances (such as illness or hardship) which might affect their use of the library and their ability to comply with the Regulations and Rules. The Librarian has discretion to grant special privileges on compassionate grounds.
  17. Lockers in the Philip Robinson Library - Application should be made to the main Counter on Level 2. Keys are issued against a refundable deposit. Lockers may be inspected by library staff. Lost keys are charged for at the rate set by the library
  1. The reservation of seats in the reading areas is not permitted. Books and other articles left for any length of time on chairs and tables may be removed by the library staff.
  2. Articles left in the reading areas at closing time will be cleared away.
  3. The University accepts no responsibility for personal belongings left in the library.
  4. Advance warning of the closing of the library will be given over the public address system. Times for the cessation of borrowing will be announced and all readers must vacate the library by the times fixed for the closing of the library which are displayed in the library.
  5. Readers are not permitted to make telephone calls in the library except in designated areas . Otherwise mobile phones must be switched off or switched to silent in the library. Library staff are not permitted to accept private telephone messages for readers with the exception of emergency calls.
  6. Notices must not be displayed or distributed by readers in any part of the Library except by or with the permission of the Librarian, nor may readers offer anything for sale in the library.
  7. Whenever a fire alarm sounds in the library building all readers must vacate the library immediately.
  8. Computing equipment in the University library must not be used for the creation, display, importation, circulation or storage of offensive material.

February 2011



These regulations have been approved by University Senate (on 9 November 2010)

  1. Admission to, and use of, the University library is conditional upon the Regulations and the Rules of the library being observed. The Regulations apply to any sectional and divisional libraries or other facilities managed by the University library, but do not apply to libraries owned and managed by academic or other service units.

  2. The Rules of the library are made by the University Librarian in consultation with the Library Advisory Group. Rules concerning borrowing arrangements and announcements of changes affecting the use of the library and its services will be publicised using the library's website and other electronic communications, and will be displayed in the library.

  3. Throughout the library Regulations and Rules the term 'book' is deemed to include any information resources owned, held or licensed by the library. The term 'services' includes any system by which the library provides access to information, within a library building or remotely.

  4. All members of the library staff are empowered to enforce library Regulations and Rules.
Admission to the library
  1. Members of Council, staff and registered students of the University are entitled to use the library. Other groups and individuals may be admitted at the discretion of the Librarian. Payment of a fee for access to the library and its services by external users may be levied as set out in library Rules. The money collected from fees will be retained and used for library purposes.

  2. All people using the Library must, if required, produce their University smartcard or library membership card to gain entry. While in the library, readers must be prepared to show their smart card or membership card when requested by any member of library staff.

  3. Bags, cases, parcels and other items of personal property brought into the library must be presented for inspection if requested by a member of the library staff. The library accepts no responsibility for personal property brought into the library, and reserves the right to exclude or remove any item which might cause an obstruction.

  4. Animals may not be brought into the library, except for assistance dogs.
Use of the library and its services
  1. A quiet environment suitable for study must be maintained as far as possible throughout the library buildings except in areas specifically set aside for discussion and group work.

  2. Food and drink may only be consumed in the library in areas which are specifically designated for this purpose.

  3. The marking, defacing, mutilation or damage to books or equipment provided by the library is strictly forbidden.

  4. No book may be removed from the library unless all library issue procedures have been completed. The University Librarian will have discretion to restrict the circulation of any book at any time.

  5. A borrower is responsible for the return of any book which is recorded as borrowed by him or her. This responsibility ends only when the library loan is officially cancelled, and those who fail to return books will be required to pay for the cost of replacement.

  6. All members of library staff may inspect any books in the possession of any person leaving the library, and anyone found attempting to remove a library book without complying with library borrowing procedures may be reported to the University Librarian.

  7. The University Librarian has authority to levy overdue charges for the late return of books. The rates of overdue charges will be set by the Librarian in consultation with the Library Advisory Group and will be publicised on the library's website and displayed in the library. Funds collected from the overdue charges will be retained and used for library purposes. Failure to pay overdue charges levied in accordance with library Rules may lead to a suspension of borrowing privileges.

  8. Any library user may be required to make good the cost of damage to, or loss of, books on loan to him or her or being used in the library, or of any damage to other library property.

  9. When a book on loan is reported as lost or is not returned when requested by the library, it may be re-ordered and the borrower required to pay the cost of replacement. If the copy belonging to the library is subsequently found, no refund of the cost will be made and both copies will be retained by the library. If the lost or damaged book was part of a set the user may be required to pay the cost of a new set if this is the only way to replace the lost part.

  10. Any student who fails to fulfil obligations in respect of library overdue charges or replacement costs of library books will be regarded as being in debt to the University.

  11. The access or borrowing rights of any user who fails to observe library Regulations and Rules may be limited or withdrawn by the University Librarian. In the case of students, the University's Student Disciplinary Procedures will be applied.

University theses deposited in the library

  1. One print copy of each thesis for which a higher degree has been awarded will be deposited in a condition suitable for preservation in the University library. In addition, an electronic version should be supplied as a PDF file on a CD-ROM, or other suitable medium as agreed by the library.

  2. Each thesis (in both print and electronic format) will be made available for consultation six months after it has been deposited in the library. The print version will be kept in the University library and the electronic copy made publically available on the e-theses repository.

  3. The print copy shall not be permitted to leave the University library or a library to which it has been issued on inter-library loan.

  4. Access to the thesis may be restricted for a further 6 months if the request is supported by the Supervisor/Head of School or Institute and the Dean of Postgraduate Studies for the relevant Faculty. This restriction will be granted if it meets one or more of the following Freedom of Information Act exemption criteria:
    1. Some or all of the material is due for publication, or publication is actively being sought
    2. Release of the material would prejudice substantially the use of the results and related commercial interests
    3. The material includes information that was obtained under a promise of confidentiality
  5. At the end of the second period of six months, access to the publication will be restricted for up to a further two years with the written permission of the Dean of Postgraduate Studies. This restriction will be granted if it meets one or more of the Freedom of Information Act exemption criteria described in 23 above. In very exceptional circumstances a longer period of embargo may be applied.

  6. A thesis which is restricted for general consultation may nevertheless be consulted at any time, without the author's permission, by the supervisor of the thesis or by the Head of the School or Institute concerned.

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