Books circulate for 4 weeks and may be renewed up to 5 times (books should be renewed online whenever possible). Fines for overdue materials accumulate at $0.50 a day per book. Journals and pre-1920 materials do not circulate. All materials are subject to recalls that may shorten the original due date. Overdue recalls are fined at the rate of $2.00/a day from the adjusted recall due date. The minimum borrowing period is 14 days.
The Library is not responsible for non-receipt of recall and other library notices.
Online Renewals: All Harvard ID and Countway Special Borrower cardholders with pins can renew their books online using the HOLLIS catalog. To renew books online, follow these steps:
Books may be renewed in person at the Circulation Desk any time the library is open.
Books may be renewed by phone at (617) 432-2136. Callers will be asked to provide their HUID number and, in some cases, the book barcode.
Books may be renewed by email by responding to the courtesy notice and asking for a renewal.
Countway Library loan items may be returned to the Countway Library circulation desk, the outside drop box (located at the beginning of the ramped entrance at 10 Shattuck Street) or to any Harvard University Library. Countway items cannot be returned to the library of any Harvard affiliated hospital.
The goals behind charging fines and fees to patrons are to encourage responsible behavior with regard to borrowing and renewal practices and treatment of library materials. Although there is a punitive component to the use of fines, our primary motivations in issuing fines is to persuade the patron to behave differently in the future. For this reason, a certain amount of leniency is encouraged in dealing with people who are not repeat offenders.
Fines for overdue circulating materials in the general collection accumulate at $0.50 a day per book.
Reserve materials are subject to a $1.00 fine each hour the item is overdue.
All materials are subject to recall which shortens the original due date. Overdue recalls are fined at the rate of $2.00/day from the adjusted recall due date. The Library is not responsible for non-receipt of recall and other library notices.
The maximum fine is $28.00.
Lost or missing items are charged to the patron at a rate of $120.00 replacement fee plus an additional $35 processing fee.
Access services staff may negotiate the reduction or elimination of fines within the guidelines outlined below. Difficult or overly insistent patrons and repeat offenders should be referred to the Access Services Librarian along with a copy of the borrower fine history and a brief summary of any offers you may have made to remediate fines or other actions you may have taken.
Fines billed in error or otherwise the result of a mistake made by Harvard or Countway staff should be waived or cancelled at the earliest available opportunity. Please make a note of the reason and your initials in Aleph.
First time offenders contesting a fine or requesting leniency should be fully informed of Countway fines policies. Staff should also check email and address information to confirm that they are correct. If information is not correct, the patron should be instructed concerning how to update his or her contact information.
In the case of a first-time offense, staff may offer to waive 50% of the fines in question. If the fines are still in “Active cash” they may be waived directly in Aleph. If the fines have been sent to Accounts Receivable (for patrons with non-student status), contact the HL Privileges and Finance office (email@example.com 617-495-3015) with the details so that a credit memo may be issued against the invoice. If the fines were sent to a student’s term bill, a credit can be created in Aleph for the amount waived. Contact the Harvard Library Privileges and Finance office.
Patrons who have had their borrowing privileges blocked or received block warning letters (from the HL Privileges office) as a consequence of non-payment of fines are expected to pay the full amount of their outstanding fines before privileges are reinstated. The only exception to this policy is in the event of an error on the part of Harvard or Countway staff.
Lost book fees, including replacement fees ($120) and processing fees ($35) are generally not waived. Exceptions to this policy include:
Replacement copies: If the patron has reached an agreement with the Acquisitions Librarian to provide a replacement copy of the lost item, the $120 replacement fee is waived and the patron is charged only the $35 processing fee.
Stolen items: Replacement and processing fees are not charged to patrons who can provide a copy of a police report indicating that they reported that the item owned by Countway was stolen.
Other situations may be handled at the discretion of the staff member, keeping in mind the guiding principles outlined above. Partial or full waives may be made on the basis of genuine extenuating circumstances, not merely because the patron might have suffered an inconvenience. If in doubt, please refer cases to the Access Services Librarian.
Waiving, Canceling, Crediting and Billed to External Fines
Fines that are billed to external can be adjusted depending on the patron status.
Student with “Billed External” fines or fees – Crediting in Aleph
Damaged items can be charged to preservation/repair by using preservation pseudo-patron card (00455660) and put on repair shelf.
When patrons say that they have received an overdue notice for a book that they have returned to the library, check their patron record to see if the item is still charged out to them. If the item is still on their record, print out a copy of the record. Write the patron's phone number on the item printout and mark it with "claims returned" and the date.
Search the stacks for the item. If the item is found, and in good order, discharge it and cancel the patron's overdue fines. Notify the patron that the item has been found.
If the item is not found, change the item status to "Claims Returned."
A patron may provide a replacement of a lost item under certain conditions. First, the patron must contact the Access Services Librarian to determine if the library will accept a replacement. If the library decides not to accept a replacement, the patron is liable for a $120 replacement fee, $35 processing fee, plus any fines accrued.
If the library agrees to allow a replacement copy the patron is told the specifics of the item needed. For example, the item must be the correct edition, hardcover or paperback specified, and in new condition, not used. A $35 processing fee applies to replacement copies, in addition to any accrued fines.
When a patron reports a Countway item is missing or lost, or an item cannot be located on the Harvard Direct list.
Recalls can be placed by patrons online in HOLLIS. Holds can also be created by staff at the circulation desk using Aleph.
This lets you record Circulation transactions when the computer cannot connect to the server or has lost internet connection. The transactions are saved in a file which you can send to the server once the connection is re-established. The system will then check the transactions and produce a “check” report.
**Please see complete instructions at back of binder.**
To perform a transaction:
When you have completed use of the Offline system, the data files must be imported into the Aleph online circulation system.
Harvard affiliated requests can be made online by clicking ‘Request Item’ on the item online record.
Patrons with Harvard IDs, RAs, and BML members can request HD items online using their ID and PIN log in. Other patrons can request items at the Circulation Desk.
If a patron has borrowing privileges but no Harvard PIN, such as MIT or Massachusetts Medical Society members, he or she can still check out circulating items. They should contact the Circulation Desk to have items requested from HD. Circulation staff place the request using the ‘Media Retrieval Request Form’ available at http://hul.harvard.edu/hd/pages/forms.html.
When the regular, circulating HD item arrives, it must be checked in via Aleph, press CTRL+L for a hold printout. The resulting printout should give the patron’s name and a hold period of one week. You can then place the item, with its hold slip (the printout), on the Circulation hold shelf.
Patrons can request circulating HD items from other Harvard libraries and can choose the pick up location via HOLLIS.
When returned, items must be checked in and placed in the green campus delivery bin to go back to the owning library, not returned directly to the depository.
Make sure to discharge all returned HD items via Aleph (F6), if there is a hold on the item, it must be deleted. Next, all returned items owned by Countway should be placed in the red bins to be shipped back to Harvard Depository.
In case of problems or rejected items, the Harvard Depository Circulation staff can answer any questions. They can be reached at (508) 481-3224 ext 19 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Non-Circulating items must be used inside the library. Patrons may view the materials at the department worktable.
Patrons may use non-circulating items at our Medium Rare reading area, adjacent to the Access Services desk.
If a patron requires the items to be on hold for a longer period, we can hold items for as long as the patron needs. MAKE A NOTE OF THE EXTENDED HOLD PERIOD ON THE ITEM PICK-UP SHEET.
Rare book department requests are made in advance. Requestors should call (617) 432-2170. Rare book items are non-circulating and must be used in the Center for the History of Medicine reading room.
Forms are available online at http://hul.harvard.edu/hd/forms.html. The forms can only be used for Countway-owned materials.
If a patron ever needs to cancel a Borrow Direct request, you can do it by: