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Library: Policies

Library Policies

Below you will find information about library cards, borrowing books and media, material policies, laptop lending, study rooms, and food & drink. Please stop by the circulation desk, call #2236, or send an email if you have any questions or need help. 

Library Cards

Abell Library does not issue a special library card; instead, your AC ID card doubles as your library card. Your status as a student, faculty, or staff member of AC also allows you the privilege of borrowing materials from area libraries who are members of the Bibliographic Association of the Red River (BARR) Consortium.

BARR member libraries: 

Your AC ID is valid while you are enrolled at Austin College, and you must be in good standing with us if you want to obtain a BARR account. You may apply for a BARRcard from one of the other libraries by presenting your AC ID. Another form of identification as well as proof of local address may be required. (Abell Library does not issue BARRcards.) 

Borrowing Books

Borrower Loan Period Restrictions
AC faculty 1 year 100 item limit
AC staff 1 year 100 item limit
AC student 28 days 100 item limit
AC guest (on campus for limited time) 14 days 3 item limit
AC spouse 14 days 3 item limit
AC dependent (must be 16+ years of age) 14 days 3 item limit
BARRcard holder--Grayson College (must be 16+ years of age) 14 days 3 item limit
BARRcard holder--Denison Public Library (must be 16+ years of age) 14 days 3 item limit
BARRcard holder--Sherman Public Library (must be 16+ years of age) 14 days 3 item limit
TexShare card holder (non-Grayson Co. resident) 14 days 3 item limit
TexShare card holder (Grayson Co. resident - use appropriate BARRcard instead) 14 days 3 item limit

Borrowing Media

The privilege of borrowing DVDs and videos is limited to the following groups.

Borrower Loan Period Restrictions
AC faculty 14 days counts toward 100 item limit
AC student 7 days counts toward 100 item limit
AC staff 7 days counts toward 100 item limit
AC spouse 1 day 1 item limit
AC dependent (must be 16+ years of age) 1 day 1 item limit

Overdue Materials

Everyone is expected to return library materials on time so that others may have access to them. When this does not happen, the library user may be subject to fines, depending on the material borrowed. More details on fines may be found below.

  • Books -- As of the Fall 2016 semester, AC students will no longer be charged late fees for overdue books (this does not include ILL books or books a professor has put on reserve for a class).
  • Media (DVD/VHS) -- The late fee for media is $3.00/day, with a maximum fine of $20.00 per DVD/video.
  • Reserve Materials, Study Rooms, Laptops -- these materials carry more severe penalties ($.50/hour).

Notices are sent out before and after an item's due date as a reminder. Please contact the Circulation Supervisor about fines. Lost or damaged books should likewise be reported as soon as possible to the Circulation Supervisor. 

More information on lending policies for materials can be seen above.

Returning Borrowed Materials

All materials are to be returned to the circulation desk. Reserve materials should be handed directly to a circulation staff member to ensure that the items are discharged in a timely manner to prevent fines. All items must be returned in the same condition they were when checked out. Any damage, including pen or pencil markings, may result in a library fine. Any material checked out from other BARR libraries or a TexShare participating library must be returned to the appropriate library by the date due.

Recalling Library Materials

Any member of the Austin College community (faculty, staff or student) may request that an item checked out to another be recalled. Please make your request at the Circulation Desk. Books are not recalled until the person has had the item for at least 2 weeks, and no one is obligated to return a book until their loan period is over, unless the material is needed for a course reserve. Material needed for a course reserve is requested to be returned to the library immediately.

Materials Missing from the Shelves

If a book is not on the shelf where it belongs, please report it to the circulation desk. The library's catalog should indicate whether a book is checked out or not. If it is not on the shelf and not checked out, please request that the library conduct a search for the material. When the item is located, a circulation staff member will send you a notice that the item is available for checkout.

Laptop Checkout

Abell Library has four laptops for student use in the library. Students who check out a laptop must first complete and sign a copy of the laptop contract (see below), which states the following:

  1. I understand that this equipment is a 4-hour library loan and cannot leave the building. I will not take the laptop from Abell Library.
  2. I will immediately inspect the laptop upon checking it out and agree that it is in good condition.
  3. I will not tamper with hardware or existing software. I agree to protect this equipment from theft and/or damage. I understand that the Austin College Campus Police will investigate any loss of a laptop or any missing components, and I will cooperate with such investigations.
  4. I agree to accept full financial responsibility for failure to return the laptop and accompanying equipment, and any damage incurred to the laptop through abuse, misuse, or operation contrary to any instructions supplied with the laptop while it is in my care. Approximate cost of the laptop is $1,000.
  5. I agree to speak to a library staff member if the equipment is discovered to be damaged or malfunctioning, as well as if it is lost or stolen while in my possession.
  6. I agree to return the laptop to the circulation desk by the time due and personally give it to a library staff member before I leave the library. I will return the laptop no later than 15 minutes before the closing of the libraryFines will be charged at the rate of $.50/hour with a maximum fine of $10.00.
  7. I will never leave the laptop unattended. If left unattended, I may permanently lose the privilege of borrowing a library laptop.
  8. I will follow the same practices with this laptop as those specified in Austin College's Network Responsible Use Policy.

Laptop privileges will be revoked if a borrower violates any part of this agreement. In addition, any blocks on a patron record (overdue books, ignored recalls, etc.) will also prohibit laptop borrowing.

Study Rooms

The study rooms are located on the second floor of the library for individuals or groups of students to study together.

  • There is a 2-hour reservation limit per room. If you wish to stay in a room beyond your checkout period, you must come to the circulation desk to renew your checkout. This is only possible if there is no other group waiting for a room. 
  • Late fines of $.50/hour will accrue on your account if you do not return or renew your checkout on time.
  • During high usage times, you may add your name to a waitlist. If you share your contact information, a text message will be sent when your room is available.
  • Room checkout is maintained at the circulation desk. 
  • Study room packets (dry erase markers & eraser) are available for rooms with whiteboards. 

Food & Drink, Etc.

Food and beverages are allowed, but please exercise caution when using library materials and/or equipment! (No food or drink allowed in Special Collections.)

Tobacco products, e-cigarettes, and other vaping devices are not allowed.

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Library Information


Abell Library Center

900 N. Grand Avenue, Suite 6L

Sherman, TX 75090-4400

Phone: 903-813-2236

Summer 2017 Hours*
Day Times
Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Saturday & Sunday CLOSED

*hours in effect May 13 - Aug. 23, 2017

Austin College
©2017 Abell Library Center | Austin College, 900 N. Grand Avenue, Sherman, TX 75090-4400 | Phone: (903) 813-2236
Please direct comments or questions about this website to Shannon Fox-Teichmann or Andrew Smith