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Access Services Policies

This guide houses the policies of the Access Services unit of the Newton Gresham Library

Circulation Policies by User Group

  • 28-day checkout of normal circulating materials
  • Maximum of 25 items at a time
  • Borrowing and recall privileges begin on the first day of class, and end the day before the next semester’s first day of class.
  • Not enrolled for summer? Click on the Eligibility for Borrowing page in this guide and refer to the Summer Card Policy.
  • SHSU privileges may be blocked for overdue, damaged, or lost material, whether SHSU or interlibrary loan materials.
  • 28-day checkout of normal circulating materials
  • 2-week checkout of Reference materials
  • Maximum of 35 items at a time
  • Borrowing and recall privileges begin on the first day of class, and end the day before the next semester’s first day of class.
  • Not enrolled for summer? Click on the Eligibility for Borrowing page in this guide and refer to the Summer Card Policy.
  • SHSU privileges may be blocked for overdue, damaged, or lost material, whether SHSU or interlibrary loan materials.
  • Remote users may request books owned by SHSU to be mailed to their home address. Books must be returned by the due date via UPS or insured mail. Learn more about Distance Learning Services.
  • In general, other regular borrowing privileges and restrictions will apply according to classification (undergraduate or graduate).
  • Semester-long checkout of normal circulating materials
  • 2-week checkout of Reference materials
  • 1-week checkout of journals/periodicals
  • Maximum of 75 items at a time (Academic Policy Statement 840606)
  • Borrowing and recall privileges begin the first day of employment with SHSU
  • Faculty do not accrue normal overdue fines for SHSU materials, but are responsible for overdue recall fines, overdue interlibrary loan fines, and bills for damaged or lost materials.
  • SHSU borrowing privileges may be blocked for overdue, damaged, or lost interlibrary loan materials.

This applies to non-SHSU-affiliated TexShare users only. SHSU users can request a TexShare Card online from SHSU to use at other libraries.

  • 28-day checkout
  • At the time of application and payment, one book may be checked out
  • Maximum of 10 items at a time after application processing
  • May borrow in-building resources (laptops, study rooms, etc.) when available
  • No hold or recall privileges
  • No interlibrary loan privileges

 

  • 14-day checkout
  • Maximum of 10 items at a time
  • May borrow in-building resources (laptops, study rooms, etc.) when available
  • No hold or recall privileges
  • No interlibrary loan privileges

Apply and pay ($20) for a Courtesy Card at the Library Service Desk.

Circulation of Specialized Collections

The library provides a collection of tabletop games.

  • Play games in the library
  • Check out games for 4 days
  • Check out up to 4 games at a time

Materials housed in the Reference collection may be checked out for 14 days by faculty/staff and graduate students.

All other relevant circulation policies apply to these materials.

Periodicals may be checked out for one week by faculty/staff.

If a periodical is barcoded, it will be checked out online according to standard procedures. If a periodical is not barcoded, checkout will be manually recorded in the Faculty Periodical Checkout folder by the personnel at the Library Service Desk.

All other relevant circulation policies apply to these materials.

Books housed in the Music Listening Room may be checked out at the staff counter inside the Music Listening Room. They may be returned to any book drop along with other library books.

Audiovisual materials housed in the Music Listening Room may be checked out by faculty/staff or used in-room by students.

Microforms are eligible only for in-house use and do not circulate (except via Interlibrary Loan).

Materials housed in Special Collections & Archives are eligible only for in-house use and do not circulate.

Many materials housed in Closed Stacks can circulate, but must be retrieved by library personnel. Patrons may inquire at the Library Service Desk about retrieval of items whose location is indicated as "Closed Stacks."

Some materials housed in Closed Stacks may constitute Special Collections materials and therefore are limited to in-house use only.

Reserves Policies

  • Borrowed in person from the Library Service Desk.
  • Checkout times are specified by the faculty member.
  • Most items are in-building use only for 2 hours, though some items may have a longer loan period.
  • Only 3 reserve items may be checked out at one time.
  • Reserve materials cannot be renewed.

Reserve materials and board games must be returned to the Library Service Desk.

Electronic reserves are accessed online only by authorized SHSU accounts enrolled in a given course.

Faculty requests for materials to be placed on electronic reserve will be vetted by library personnel with respect to copyright, fair use, and licensing considerations.

The Library Service Desk lends a variety of equipment with the following policies:

  • Molecular modeling kits, supporting study in organic chemistry.
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout
  • Laptops, which can be used anywhere in the library building
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout
  • HDMI adapter cables, to connect a laptop to a monitor in a library group study room
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout
  • Whiteboard kits, with markers and erasers to use on dry-erase boards in library study spaces
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout
  • Calculators (scientific and graphing), which can be taken out of the library for use in class, on tests, on homework, etc.
    • Three-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the third day
  • Family Kits, full of toys and activities for different age ranges, to entertain your children in the library while you study. (Learn more)
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout
  • Focused Study Kits, full of tools to help students with ADHD, dyslexia, or other reading or focus issues. (Learn more)
    • Same-day checkout, due ten minutes before closing on the day of checkout

 

These items are available on a first-come, first-served basis and cannot be reserved.

These items must be returned to the Library Service Desk (do not place in a book return / book drop).

Reserves, print or electronic, may be requested or renewed by SHSU instructors:

Faculty requests for materials to be placed on electronic reserve will be vetted by library personnel with respect to copyright, fair use, and licensing considerations.

For more information on the use of copyrighted works, refer to these related policies.

Holding, Renewing, and Returning Policies

  • All users may renew SHSU materials online
    • Online renewal is preferred, but renewal may also be done by phone (936-294-1618) if necessary
  • Students, Courtesy, and TexShare: 4-week renewals (or the last date of the semester, whichever is earlier)
  • Faculty and staff: One-semester renewals (or the last date of the semester, whichever is earlier)
  • Special item types with shorter loan periods (e.g., board games) will have shorter renewals.
  • Reserves items are not eligible for renewal.
  • A specific item may not be eligible for renewal if it has been recalled by another patron.
  • A patron will receive an email confirmation of the renewal request within 48 hours, indicating a new due date, any items which could not be renewed and must be returned, and any accrued fines.
  • Eligible items will be renewed from the date the renewal request was submitted, rather than the date that the email confirmation was sent.

The Library Service Desk cannot renew materials borrowed through Interlibrary Loan (ILL). These materials must be renewed following ILL policies and procedures.

Book Drops

  • Only books should be returned in book drops.
  • DO NOT place the following in book drops:
    • Interlibrary loan materials
    • Reserves materials
    • Material that is damaged or appears fragile
    • Oversized or unusual materials such as board games
  • Book drop locations:
    • Outside on the patio at the Northeast corner of the Library, near the steps coming up from the parking lot (1st floor entrance).
    • On the wall at the front of the Library next to the main entrance (2nd floor entrance).
    • Inside the Library at the front of the Library Service Desk (2nd floor lobby).
  • Book drops are emptied regularly throughout the day. Books that are returned after the Library has closed will be checked in early the next business day, with a return date of the previous business day.

Reserves

Reserve materials and board games must be returned to the Library Service Desk.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

ILL materials should be returned to the ILL Office or the Copy Room. DO NOT return ILL materials to the SHSU library book drops; you will be financially responsible for any damage to ILL materials placed in book drops.

SHSU-The Woodlands Center

Any materials, both regular loans and ILL, may also be returned to the library services desk in the computer lab (room 315) at SHSU-The Woodlands Center, Monday-Friday, 8a-5p.

Returning by Mail

You may mail materials (both regular loans and ILL) back to the library via USPS library book rate with tracking using the address below. (Please write "Campus Box", NOT PO Box)

Interlibrary Services
Newton Gresham Library
Sam Houston State University
Campus Box 2179
Huntsville, TX 77341

  • You will be contacted when the book is available for you to check out. Hold items can be picked up at the library’s first-floor Help Desk during the library’s hours of operation.
  • All material is subject to recall after a patron has had an item for 14 days.
  • Overdue recalled materials promptly accrue a fine of $1.00 per day per book to a maximum fine of $25.00.
  • Note that TexShare Card and Courtesy Card holders do not have hold/recall privileges.

Overdue Items, Lost Items, and Account Restriction Policies

Notices

Overdue notices will be sent to your SHSU email account. Generally notices will be sent:

  • Three days before the due date
  • On the due date
  • Seven days after the due date
  • Thirty days after the due date

At forty-five days after the due date, the patron will be notified that they are being billed for a lost item

Fines

  • Overdue fines accrue at a rate of $0.25 per day per item on regularly circulating material.
    • There is a 2-day grace period on regularly circulating material, after which the fine is charged.
  • Overdue recalled material accrues a fine of $1.00 per day per item.
  • Reserve material with hourly checkout accrues overdue fines of $0.25 per hour per item.
  • Reserve material with daily checkout accrues overdue fines of $3.00 per day per item.
  • $25.00 maximum in late fines per item.

 

Faculty do not accrue normal overdue fines for SHSU materials, but are responsible for overdue recall fines, overdue interlibrary loan fines, and bills for damaged or lost materials.

If an item is damaged during use, depending on the severity of the damage, the library reserves the right to bill the patron for a damage fee to offset the cost of book repairs (generally $10) or a replacement fee. If a patron believes that the damage pre-existed their use, they may discuss their concerns with personnel at the Library Services Desk.

If an item is known to be damaged (for example, after billing a damage fee, or detected during checkout), library personnel will note the known damage inside the book so that it will not be held against the next borrower.

When a patron receives a notice that they have not returned a book...

  • The library will search for the book at least three times.
  • If the library finds the book on the shelf in the first search, staff will remove it from the patron's record and waive the fines for that book.
  • If the library finds the book on the shelf after the first search, the fine will be calculated from the date due to the date found.
  • If the library doesn't find the book, the patron will be charged the replacement cost of the book plus a $15.00 processing fee.

 

When a patron is charged for a lost book:

  • Replacement costs are generally based on an industry-published list based on the item's Library of Congress call number.
  • The patron may be able to find a replacement copy that is less expensive than the replacement cost charged.
  • The patron may provide a replacement copy meeting these criteria:
    • the SAME ISBN, title, edition, and publication date;
    • clean, in good condition, with no stains, tears, writing, or library labels/stamps on it.
  • If the item meets the criteria, the library will delete the cost of the book from the patron's account. The patron will still owe the $15 administration fee and any overdue fines.
  • A replacement copy will not be accepted after a patron has paid the replacement cost for an item.

 

When a patron finds a lost book...

  • Before paying for it: The patron will owe the overdue fine that accrued from the date due to the date the item was returned, as well as the $15.00 processing charge per book.
  • After paying for it: The patron will be reimbursed for the difference, if any, between the fine and the lost charge.
  • After paying for it, and the book has already been replaced: The patron may be reimbursed for the difference between the fine and lost charge, less the $15.00 processing fee.
  • A patron will not receive a reimbursement for a lost item returned after three years.
  • Bill notices will be sent to your SHSU email account.
  • For questions about why a bill has accrued, please contact the Service Desk at : 936-294-1618 or library@shsu.edu.
  • Bills under $10 are payable at the Library Service Desk by cash, check, debit, or credit. Appropriate identification (Bearkat OneCard, driver's license, state ID card, etc.) should accompany debit or credit cards.
  • Bills $10 and up will be billed at the university Cashier's Office and may be paid online via MySam.
  • If you prefer to pay a bill under $10 online, please contact the library to have the bill entered: 936-294-1618 or library@shsu.edu.
  • While a bill of $10 and up remains unpaid, your library account will be restricted, and you will not be able to borrow materials. Once you have been billed at the Cashier's Office, the bill may also restrict you from other actions on campus, such as receiving an official transcript or completing graduation. Please contact the Cashier's Office for more information about restrictions on campus accounts or how to pay bills online.

Manual Checkout Policy

If for any reason the integrated library system is down, library personnel will record checkouts in an Excel spreadsheet and transfer the details to the integrated library system when it is again accessible.

If for any reason library personnel is unable to record checkouts digitally, the patron ID and item ID will be recorded on paper and transferred to the integrated library system when it is again accessible.

Both Excel and paper checkout logs will be maintained for a limited time in case of data entry errors and then destroyed.

 

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