Policy

Borrowing by Distance Learning Students

Eligibility

UT Health Science Center students who meet the following eligibility requirements may request delivery of books and journal articles though the UTHSC Libraries.

  • Students living outside of San Antonio, Harlingen or Laredo area who are currently enrolled in a distance learning class at UT Health Science Center and are not attending any class that meets in person at least once a week.
  • Students and residents who are on rotation at sites outside San Antonio or Harlingen.
  • Doctoral candidates who have completed course work and are living outside San Antonio, Harlingen or Laredo area.

Library Account Registration

  • Students must have a library account and also an ILLiad account.
  • It is important to update your account with any changes to your email or snail mail address to ensure that alerts and materials will get to you in a timely manner.

Requesting Library Materials

  • Log in from off campus to access the library’s online resources, using the same UTHSCSA account login required for Blackboard use.
  • Use the library catalog  and e-Journals list to begin your search for books and journals.
  • Search library databases to identify specific journal articles on a topic.
  • Order print books and journal articles through the ILLiad system. Use one form per article and/or book.
  • Be familiar with guidelines on Copyright and Fair Use.

Loan Periods and Renewals

  • Standard loan periods apply and fines will be assessed for late items.
  • Books may be renewed online by logging in to your library account.

Types of Materials Eligible for Delivery

  • Print books, journal articles owned by UTHSC Libraries.
  • Books, book chapters, journal articles not in the library’s collection, ordered through Interlibrary Loan—allow extra time for delivery.

Types of Materials Not Eligible for Delivery

  • Reference and Rare books are non-circulating.
  • Print Reserve materials cannot be borrowed, but chapters less than 50 pages can be delivered electronically.
  • Online course materials are available through Blackboard.
  • Any electronic delivery that is subject to licensing or copyright restrictions.

Delivery Options

  • Books are checked out to you and delivered by Express Mail. Rush requests are delivered via Federal Express and carry a fee. A postage paid mailer is provided to return books.
  • Journal articles are delivered electronically to your ILLiad account and notification is sent via email.

How Much Does it Cost?

Type of service

Regular Delivery

Rush Delivery

Library-owned books

Free

$12.00

Fedex

Library-owned journal articles(Delivered electronically)

 (2-3 days)

Free

 (same day)

$8.00

Books not owned by the UTHSC Libraries (Ordered through Interlibrary Loan)

 (1-3 weeks)

Free

Not available

Journal articles not owned by the UTHSC Libraries(Ordered through Interlibrary Loan)

 (1-3 weeks)

Free

(48 hours)

$10.00

Alternatives to Borrowing from the UTHSC Libraries

If you don’t want to wait for delivery from the UTHSC Libraries, you may prefer to visit an academic library in your area. Most state university libraries are open to the public, and many in Texas allow UTHSC borrowers to check books out under theTexShare program.

Additional Resources for Distance Learning Students

Check out the Resources for Students site for links to tipsheets, research tools, copyright guidelines and general library information.

Contact Us

Contact the Library for further information or if you have questions.

Branch Libraries and Outreach Services: Peg Seger

Office Phone:  210-567-3051

Emergency Contact Information is on the Staff Intranet (not publicly available).

Duties related to Disaster Planning and Recovery

  • Coordinates communication with branch library staff during emergencies, keeping the Executive Director informed of developments
  • Assures that branch library staff communicate with building administration at branch location regarding emergency preparedness and branch closures
  • Follows guidelines in the Business Continuity Plan; coordinates requests for literature searches and delivery of articles to health care personnel and emergency response teams as needed
  • Communicates with CLHIN clients to assess needs and offer assistance when appropriate.

 

Back to Library Disaster Team list.

Briscoe Library Classroom Guidelines

Guidelines for Use of LIB 2.011 and the Collaboratory (LIB 4.074)

These guidelines are general and exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis.

The purpose of the Library’s classrooms is to support the programs and mission of the University.

Eligibility

Library classrooms are for the use of UT Health Science Center students, faculty and staff. The requestor must be affiliated with the UT Health Science Center, and the program must be sponsored by either a department or organization affiliated with the UT Health Science Center.

Reservations

  • Classrooms are reserved on a first come/first served basis. Reservations for the rooms are posted at the room entrances.
  • To make a reservation, contact 210-567-2450 or email to AskaLibrarian@uthscsa.edu .
  • Library classrooms may not be reserved more than 4 times per month, or for more than 20 hours per month, for a single course (or workshop/workshop series), or group meeting.
  • Only LIB 2.011 and LIB 4.074 may be reserved with library staff. Other Library Classrooms on the 2nd floor of the Briscoe Library may be reserved with Scheduling and Facilities Data Management, (210) 567-2655.
  • View photos of Library classrooms.

         LIB 2.011

    • LIB 2.011 is available for use Monday – Friday  7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m, closed nights and weekends. When the room is not in use for a class, it is open for computing use by affiliated students, faculty and staff.
    • Room LIB 2.011 may be reserved only for sessions requiring hands-on use of computers by participants. LIB 2.011 contains 25 participant computers with instructor station and projector.
    • When requesting a reservation in LIB 2.011, please indicate whether the following will be needed:
      • Instructor’s microphone
      • Video-teleconferencing equipment (see note below)
      • Special software (see note below).
      • Dry Erase Markers—may be checked out at Circulation Desk
    • Due to the high demand for LIB 2.011, a requestor will be asked for a Project ID to which a “no show” penalty of $50 will billed, unless the reservation is canceled up to 24 hours in advance.

         The Collaboratory (LIB 4.074)

    • The Collaboratory may be reserved by UT Health Science Center students, faculty and staff during regular library hours.  The Collaboratory is open for study when it is not reserved for meetings or classes. Students may reserve the Collaboratory for large group study or meetings within the Group Study Room Guidelines.
    • The room may be used as a meeting space.
    • When requesting a Collaboratory reservation, please indicate whether the following will be needed:
      • Smartboard (requires Collaboratory laptop with compatible software)
      • Dry Erase Markers—may be checked out at Circulation Desk. Do not use any other type of markers.
    • Instruction in use of the Smartboard and Electronic markerboard can be provided by appointment. Contact (210) 567-2450 or Askalibrarian@uthscsa.edu.

Video-teleconferencing

Downlink in LIB 2.011 must be pre-arranged by requestor directly with Videoconferencing Services, (210) 567-2214.

Special software

Special software may be requested to be installed in advance for classes in Room LIB 2.011. Special software may only be installed by Library staff. Special software requirements must be made known when the room is reserved. The Library will not purchase special software for classes; the requestor must own the software and have the license to have it installed on multiple computers. All software must be used in compliance with license agreements. Special software will be uninstalled after the conclusion of the class or workshop series. Complete the Software Installation Request form and return it to askalibrarian@uthscsa.edu.

Food and beverages

Only covered beverages are allowed in LIB 2.011.  Covered beverages and limited food are allowed in the Collaboratory. Permission must be obtained in advance to serve food in this room. Library staff must be notified of any food deliveries and the approximate time of arrival. If University Dining caters the event, the main Library entrance may be used, although serving carts should be covered and the service elevator used to transport the carts to the classroom. Other caterers should use the service entrance (loading dock) on the Library’s south side. All food service items must be removed within 30 minutes after the end of the class. The requestor must make sure the all trash is disposed of in trash receptacles and that the room is returned to its original state. Please report spills immediately to Library staff.

Cancellations

If a scheduled class is canceled, the Library should be notified as soon as possible. For reservations in LIB 2.011, a “no show” penalty of $50 will billed, unless the reservation is canceled up to 24 hours in advance. Changes in times or dates will be accommodated when possible, although Library classrooms are heavily used and changes are not always feasible.

Updated 11/22/2013

Briscoe Library Disaster Plan

 

Definition of Disaster

The UT Health Science Center Handbook of Operating Procedures defines a physical disaster as involving potential property damage and possible safety threat to persons. (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/8.3.2.pdf)  For purposes of this plan, a disaster is defined as an unexpected, adverse event that damages the Library’s facilities or systems and/or substantially diminishes the Library’s ability to offer its usual resources and services.  Disasters may be large events that everyone on site quickly notices (e.g. fire, tornado, explosion, flood), or more minor events (e.g., slow leak of water) – of little or no danger to persons and perhaps not quickly noticed – that still can cause great harm to the Library.

Emergencies include life-threatening situations, fire, explosions, severe weather, loss of electric power, accidents and medical problems.

Non-emergency situations that may warrant action include loss of network connectivity, unruly persons, discovery of vandalism, theft, mutilation, assault or harassment, and other criminal activity. Loss of telephone service to the campus is an emergency situation if the 911 line is unavailable. In general, it is at the discretion of the supervisor on duty to determine whether UT Police should be called or other actions should be taken.

 

Library Administration Chain of Command

Executive Director of Libraries

Director of Library and Outreach Services

Head of Collection Resources

Head of Library Technology

Asst. Director, Digital and Special Collections

Library Administrator

General Plan of Action in Case of a Disaster

  • Call University Police at 911 or 567-2800
  • Evacuate the library if lives are in danger
  • Contact the Library Administration Chain of Command listed above
  • The Disaster Team Leader will contact members of the Disaster Team.


Table of Contents

Library Disaster Team Members

Procedures for Campus Emergency Situations

Emergency Building Evacuation Procedures

Policies for Emergency Closure

Emergency and Recovery Contact Information

UT Health Science Center Disaster Support

Procedures for Non-Emergency Safety or Security Situations

Appendices

Appendix 1  Briscoe Library Floor Maps

Appendix 2  Emergency Evacuation Team

Appendix 3  Priority List of Collections, Administrative Records and Equipment (not publicly available)

Appendix 4  Emergency Salvage of Wet Books and Records

Appendix 5  Packing and Removal of Wet Library Materials

Appendix 6  Departmental Emergency Evacuation Procedures

 

Distribution of the Disaster Plan

  • Each member of the Disaster Team, as well as the Executive Director of Libraries, will have a personal copy of the full plan to be kept at home.
  • A current, electronic copy of the plan will be on the Library’s website at http://library.uthscsa.edu/2012/03/d-plan-overview/.
  • A pocket guide (maintained by Susan Hunnicutt) will be distributed to the Library Leadership Team.
  • A Business Continuity Plan is reviewed annually and updated as needed by Susan Hunnicutt.

The Disaster Plan will be updated annually as:

The Disaster Team evolves

New procedures are developed

The supply list is modified

The Library’s physical space changes

Different disasters or recovery methods are identified.

 

Updated by Jonquil Feldman, September 13, 2013

Briscoe Library Study Room Guidelines & Reservations

The Briscoe Library has individual and group study rooms on all floors of the library.  These rooms provide both quiet study and group collaboration space and are important to the educational mission of the university.

Who may use a study room? Briscoe Library individual or group study rooms may only be occupied by UT Health Science Center (HSC) students, faculty, residents and staff. All occupants must wear their ID badges so they are always visible. Open study seating is available on the 3rd, 4th and 5th floors. Classrooms on the 2nd floor of the Briscoe Library building are available for 24/7 study with after-hours access by HSC ID card swipe.

Room reservations: Individual study rooms are on a first-come-first-served basis and are not available for reservation.  Group study rooms can be used on a scheduled or unscheduled basis, with scheduled reservations taking priority. Users are encouraged to be considerate of others and only reserve rooms for the period they will actually use the room, up to a maximum of 4 hours per reservation per day. The scan code or URL located at each room provides information on availability.

How to reserve a room: A group study room may be reserved using the following options:

  1. Reserve online  at www.library.uthscsa.edu/rooms.
  2. Use a smartphone to scan the QR code located outside each room to check availability or reserve a room.
  3. Request a reservation in person at the Circulation Desk or call 210-567-2440.

Reservation policies:

  • A group consists of two (2) or more people.
  • Reservations are limited to HSC ID holders.
  • Group study rooms may be reserved for up to four hours per day.
  • Reservations may be made online up two weeks in advance.
  • Reservations are made for one time room use only. Recurring classes, meetings or events should be reserved through University Scheduling.
  • The library reserves the right to refuse to reserve a room for any group or individual who abuses the facilities or policies.

15 minute grace period:  Group study rooms are always in demand, so a reservation is forfeited if:

  • The group does not show up within 15 minutes of start time
  • Only one person is in the room for more than 15 minutes
  • The room is empty for more than 15 minutes any time after the reservation start time.

Study rooms are self-monitoring:

Groups are highly encouraged to reserve a room because non-reserved rooms are open for anyone to use. If a room is occupied by someone else, a group with a reservation should politely ask the person to give up the room or ask for assistance from library staff on the 3rd floor (210-567-2440). The scan code outside each room provides information on whether a room has been reserved.

Security of personal items: Persons using the library study rooms are cautioned not to leave personal items unattended in the study rooms or anywhere else in the library. The library is not responsible for lost or stolen items.

November 1, 2013

Circulation Policies and Privileges

Circulation privileges are available to students, staff, faculty, alumni and retirees of the Health Science Center, to area health professionals, and to citizens of Texas aged 18 or older who pay for an annual Courtesy Borrowers card. You must be registered to check out library materials.

Loan periods for circulating material

Material Type

Loan Period

# of Renewals Allowed

Books

14 days

Unlimited1

Journals

1 week2

none

Journals received in the last 30 days

none

n/a

Audio/visuals

1 week

1

Reserve materials

Varies3

none

  1. When a Hold has been placed on an item, no further renewals will be accepted.
  2. Journals may be checked out to eligible borrowers only.
  3. Reserve materials generally circulate for three hours. If checked out within three hours of closing, the materials will be due within one hour of opening the next day.

Returning Materials

Materials may be returned at the Circulation Desk or placed in the Book Drop outside the exit doors. Book drops are also located in the Nursing School, the Student Lounge area and outside the Library building near the entry stairs. Book drops are emptied one hour after opening each morning. Please return reserve materials and audio/visuals inside the Library.

Fines

Materials not returned by the due date and time will accrue fines:

  • Books, journals and audio/visual material fines are $0.50 per day
  • Reserve material fines are $1 per hour
  • Users’ privileges are suspended if fines exceed $15

Fines will not be waived for the following reasons:

  • Late or non-receipt of courtesy overdue notices
  • Failure to notify the library of a change of address
  • Items were lent to someone else who returned it late or failed to return it
  • Items were renewed after the due date
  • Vacation

Collection Resources: John Weed

Office Phone:  210-567-2414

Emergency Contact Information is on the Staff Intranet (not publicly available).

Regular Duties related to Disaster Planning

  • Maintains an inventory of the library collections (primarily using the OPAC)
  • Identifies specific priority collections to be saved or recovered first

During and After a Disaster

  • Supervises the staff and volunteers during collection recovery efforts
  • Assesses damage to the collections; works with Department of Environmental Safety and Health to determine if a mold assessment of the affected collections is necessary
  • Advises Executive Director on the extent of the damage to the collections
  • Locates specific priority collections to be saved or recovered first. Determines which parts of the damaged collection are not worth recovery efforts.
  • Advises Executive Director on the need for a recovery company
  • Determines which items can be recovered in-house and which need to be sent out for recovery. Maintains contact with recovery company until the materials are returned.
  • Supervises in-house cleaning and drying efforts
  • Supervises the processing of all damaged materials
  • Trains staff and volunteers, if applicable
  • Prepares a written report of the recovery and/or relocation activities

Back to Library Disaster Team list.

Computer Use Policy

Meeting the information needs of library users is integral to the Mission of the University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries. The library staff endeavors to develop collections, resources and services to meet these needs. It is within this context that the UTHSC Libraries offer access to the Internet and other electronic resources. Any health-related information searching is a legitimate use of these resources.

General Policy

  • Priority use of computers is given to UTHSC affiliates, area health professionals, and users seeking medical information. Health Science Center faculty, staff, and students must log in with their UTHSCSA Domain Username and Password.
  • A limited number of guest computers are available to the general public. Persons not affiliated with the Health Science Center must sign-in at the library Service Desk to use a computer and are limited to a maximum of one hour each day.  Additional time may be granted persons researching health-related topics. University sponsored e-mail programs are allowed and supported. Other web based e-mail programs may be utilized, but library staff may not be able to assist with problems.
  • Library computers may not be used for illegal, unauthorized, unethical, or commercial purposes. Please see the UTHSC’s Computer Ethics Policy and the Texas Penal Code, Chapter 33. Computer Crimes (http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/PE/htm/PE.33.htm).
  • Authorized users of commercially licensed digital products such as electronic journals, books, and databases include UTHSC faculty, staff, and students and walk-in users of the UTHSC Libraries. Remote access to these digital resources is allowed only to UTHSC faculty, staff, and students.
  • Faculty, staff and students with UTHSCSA Domain Accounts may connect to the HSCwave wireless network at any library location.  Wireless networking is not available for other library users, but those users may connect their own computers to the Internet at designated laptop workstations.
  • Computer peripherals (other than personal storage devices or mobile devices) may not be physically attached to library computers or printers except in designated locations.
  • The decision to load personal software is made by library staff on a case by case basis. Personal software may be loaded with the assistance of library staff.
  • Library computer users are discouraged from storing personal files and documents on the Libraries’ computers. Computer users should save their work frequently to a USB drive, to a writable optical disc (i.e. CD/DVD), to an online storage service, or email documents to themselves.
  • All user data is erased from the Libraries’ public computers at least once a day and whenever a computer is rebooted.
  • Viewing of pornographic material may constitute a Class C misdemeanor under Texas Penal Code §43.22 (http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/PE/htm/PE.43.htm#43.22) and may also violate the University’s policies on sexual harassment as stated in section 4.2.2 of the Handbook of Operating Procedures (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/4.2.2.pdf). Users of computers at the library should be aware of the public nature of shared facilities and should take care not to display images or play sounds that could create an atmosphere of harassment for others. For more information, please see the UTHSC Handbook of Operating Procedures Policy 4.2.2 (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/4.2.2.pdf). In addition, the university’s Internet Access Policy (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/5.5.10.pdf) states that “Accessing, posting, or sharing any racist, sexist, threatening, obscene, or otherwise objectionable material (i.e., visual, textual, or auditory entity) is strictly prohibited.”
  • Children under the age of 15 must be accompanied by a supervising adult at all times. An adult must sit at the same computer workstation with the child.  At the Ramirez Library, to comply with the building access policy, library users under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a supervising adult at all times.

Acceptable Uses

  • Accessing electronic resources provided by the UTHSC Libraries, such as electronic journals, books, and databases.
  • Use of Internet resources for academic, personal and/or professional study, communication, and/or networking.
  • Accessing the campus wired or wireless network anywhere in the library. Users with UTHSCSA Domain accounts may connect to the HSCwave wireless network using the instructions at http://ims.uthscsa.edu/computer_networking/network_wireless.aspx .
  • Syncing mobile devices.

Unacceptable Uses

  • Any viewing, listening, downloading or copying of material that constitutes copyright infringement, including making unlicensed copies of copyrighted CDs or DVDs.
  • Installation or use of unauthorized peer-to-peer software. See the UTHSC Handbook of Operating Procedures Policy 5.8.11 (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/5.8.11.pdf).
  • Viewing of material considered to be pornographic.
  • The institution reserves the right to audit and review access logs for any given user if it is suspected institutional assets were used in an inappropriate way.

Internet Use

  • The Internet contains a wealth of valuable information resources. However, users should be aware that some information may be inaccurate, outdated or offensive. Library users are advised to exercise judgment and discrimination when evaluating the usefulness and reliability of material found on the Internet. The UTHSC is not responsible for the content, security or reliability of web sites outside the uthscsa.edu domain.
  • Users should be aware that the Internet is not a secure medium and that third parties may be able to obtain information regarding users’ activities.
  • All persons accessing the Internet through UT System computers must abide by The UT System Information Resources Use and Security Policy (UTS 165, available at http://www.utsystem.edu/bor/procedures/policy/policies/uts165.html) or the UT System Information Resources Acceptable Use and Security Policy (INT 124, available at http://www.utsystem.edu/policy/policies/int124.html) and all Texas state laws and regulations concerning use of state property and computing resources.
  • Copyrighted works are protected regardless of the medium in which they are created or reproduced; thus, copyright extends to digital works and works transformed into digital format. Any copyright statements or symbols should be retained when printing a digital document. Please see the UT System Policy on “Use of Copyright Material” (UTS 107, available at http://www.utsystem.edu/policy/policies/uts107.html)
  • UTHSC personnel must abide by the HSC’s Handbook of Operating Procedures Internet Use policy 5.2.8 (http://www.uthscsa.edu/hop2000/5.2.8.pdf)

Printing and Digital Transmission of Documents

  • There is a per page charge for printing in the Library. The charge is 10 cents per page for TRAC accounts and 11 cents per page for departmental accounts.
  • A UTHSC ID can be used to create a TRAC account to pay for printing.  Service Desk staff provide guest printing and copying cards for users who do not have a HSC ID card.  The user must provide a valid state-issued ID and pay the total charge when they return the guest card.  Coins or bills cannot be used in the copy machines.
  • In some cases, users can download information to a USB drive instead of printing. Many library databases allow users to e-mail search results instead of printing. License agreements for some electronic journals, books, and other documents stipulate that users may not send a digital copy of an article or other document to other users. If in doubt about an authorized use of a commercially published article, book, or other document, please ask for assistance at one of the Service Desks.
  • No envelopes, labels or transparencies may be placed in the laser printers. Users may insert their own letter or legal size paper into the Manual Feed tray only.

Compliance

The HSC Libraries reserve the right to take appropriate action to ensure compliance with this policy. Library staff have the right to determine appropriateness of workstation use and can, at any time, require the patron to leave the workstation.

Policy effective November 20, 2012
Revisions approved by HSC Executive Committee

Confidentiality of Library User Records

The UT Health Science Center Libraries respect the privacy rights of all customers regarding the use of library facilities. In general, the First Amendment, and the confidentiality of library records, takes precedence over everything except for national security, the threat of immediate injury or harm, and illegal activity.

Appendices 1-4 define the policies and codes that support the library’s position on confidentiality of records. Upon receiving a request from a law enforcement agent, library staff should not turn over any user records but should immediately contact the Executive Director of Libraries or a division director and the Office of Legal Affairs.

Policy

Library user records will not be made available to any individual or to any agency of local, state or federal government, except under the following circumstances:

  1. The library may disclose personal records at its discretion if it is necessary to carry out library policy (i.e. borrower records may be turned over to University Police in the course of attempts to collect overdue library materials).
  2. A library user may request his/her own records.
  3. The library may turn over library use records, if the library is served a valid process, subpoena or court order by a law enforcement agency or prosecutor, or a National Security Letter (NSL). The Office of Legal Affairs is the appropriate office on campus to receive the process and will direct the library in complying with the valid process, subpoena, etc. Whenever possible, library administration will consult with the Office of Legal Affairs before turning over personally identifiable information.

Responsibility

All library staff with access to library user records are responsible for implementation of this policy.

Scope

This policy applies to all library records, including but not limited to records relating to registration for use of BLIS, Ovid or EZProxy, circulation transaction records, computer database searches, use of electronic full-text resources, online search requests, interlibrary loan requests, reference queries, requests for photocopies of library materials, electronic article delivery requests, title reserve requests, use of library computers, browser history, software, servers and the Internet, and the use of audiovisual materials.

Procedures

  1. If approached by a law enforcement officer or prosecutor wishing access to user records, library staff should not respond immediately, but should refer the officer or prosecutor to the person in charge of the library at that time. During normal business hours, the Executive Director of Libraries, a Director or Associate Director should be contacted. If the records request should occur outside of UT Health Science Center business hours (Monday- Friday, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.) Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries, should be contacted using the library’s emergency contact list located on the intranet. If the Executive Director of Libraries is not available, staff on the main campus should call in this order Jonquil Feldman, Director of Briscoe Library Services, Luke Rosenberger, Director of Library Technology, John Weed, Head of Collection Resources, or Keith Cogdill, Director of South Texas Regional Information Services. Staff at branch libraries should contact Keith Cogdill if Rajia Tobia is not available; if neither is available, branch staff should follow the calling sequence for the main campus. Depending on the situation before complying with the request, library administration should contact the Office of Legal Affairs for handling or further instructions, (210) 567-2020. Subpoenas and other documents issued by a court should be delivered by the server to the Office of Legal Affairs.
  2. The Executive Director of Libraries or the director’s representative will speak with the officer or prosecutor, and explain policy as necessary. If the officer or prosecutor has a process, subpoena or court order, the Office of Legal Affairs will verify that the order is in proper form and has been issued with sufficient cause. If no valid papers are presented, the library may refuse to turn over requested records but this determination should be made in consultation with the Office of Legal Affairs. If the subpoena or court order is found to be valid, library staff will produce all records covered in the scope of that order. Staff should follow the subpoena strictly and should not provide any records that are not specifically requested in the legal document. It should be noted that because of the university’s records retention policy, limited retention of circulation records and routine maintenance of equipment such as computer hard disks, requested records may no longer be available. Once a valid legal request for a library use record has been made, if the record or records still exist, then the record should be retained and not destroyed.
  3. Requests for library user records issued under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), as amended by the USA PATRIOT Act, may contain a “gag” order: the request must be kept confidential and staff may not discuss the incident except with a supervisor, the Executive Director of Libraries or the director’s representative, and the Office of Legal Affairs. No information about the request may be disclosed to any other party including the library user whose records are the subject of the search. A federal district court recently ruled this provision of FISA unconstitutional; however, the government is appealing the court’s decision, and the lower court’s decision is stayed while the government appeals. Therefore, the library must continue to follow the provisions of FISA.
  4. Library staff should contact University Police if they have reason to believe that illegal activity is taking place as result of a user’s inappropriate use of the library’s computer resources. Examples of illegal activities include accessing child pornography or terrorism related activities. In these circumstances, it is preferable that the illegal activity be directly observed by the law enforcement officer.
  5. Occasions may arise when a library patron is using a library computer in violation of the library’s Computer Use Policy (http://www.library.uthscsa.edu/about/computeruse.cfm) which states that playing games or viewing pornographic material is unacceptable. If observed or if a library staff member receives a complaint, library staff is authorized to make the patron aware of the Computer Use Policy. If the patron persists with the unacceptable activity, then library staff are authorized to contact UT Police for further assistance.

Appendices

Appendix 1: Texas Government Code, Section 552.124 (2000) Exception: Records of Library or Library System.

Appendix 2: The USA PATRIOT Act

Appendix 3: ALA Policy Manual (c2002) 52.4 Confidentiality of Library Records

Appendix 4: Library Bill of Rights

Approved by Virginia Bowden, Library Director 6/5/2003
Approved by Mary Moore,
Director of Libraries 2/11/05
Revised and approved by Rajia Tobia,
Executive Director of Libraries 10/17/2008

Revised and approved by Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries 8/26/2010

Appendix 1

Texas Government Code, Section 552.124 (2000) Exception: Records of Library or Library System.

  1. A record of a library or library system, supported in whole or in part by public funds that identifies or serves to identify a person who requested, obtained, or used a library material or service is excepted from the requirements of Section 552.021 unless the record is disclosed:
    1. because the library or library system determines that disclosure is reasonably necessary for the operation of the library or library system and the record is not confidential under other state or federal law;
    2. under Section 552.023 [Note: This refers to a person's right to see his/her own records]; or
    3. to a law enforcement agency or a prosecutor under a court order or subpoena obtained after showing a district court that:
      1. disclosure of the record is necessary to protect the public safety; or
      2. the record is evidence of an offense or constitutes evidence that a particular person committed an offense.
  2. A record of a library or library system that is excepted from required disclosure under this section is confidential.

Appendix 2

The USA PATRIOT Act (Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism) of 2001 became law on October 26, 2001. Details of this law can be found at the ALA web site: http://www.ala.org/alaorg/oif/usapatriotact.html.

Appendix 3

The following is from the ALA Policy Manual (c2002):

52.4 Confidentiality of Library Records

The ethical responsibilities of librarians, as well as statues in most states and the District of Columbia, protect the privacy of library users. Confidentiality extends to “information sought or received, and materials consulted, borrowed, acquired,” and includes database search records, interlibrary loan records, and other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities, or services.

The American Library Association recognizes that law enforcement agencies and officers may occasionally believe that library records contain information which may be helpful to the investigation of criminal activity. If there is a reasonable basis to believe such records are necessary to the progress of an investigation or prosecution, the American judicial system provides mechanism for seeking release of such confidential records: the issuance of a court order, following a showing of good cause based on specific facts, by a court of competent jurisdiction.

The American Library Association strongly recommends that the responsible officers in each library, cooperative system, and consortium in the United States:

  1. Formally adopt a policy which specifically recognizes its circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users with specific materials to be confidential.
  2. Advise all librarians and library employees that such records shall not be made available to any agency of state, federal, or local government except pursuant to such process, order, or subpoena as may be authorized under the authority of, and pursuant to, federal, state, or local law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discovery procedures or legislative investigatory power.
  3. Resist the issuance or enforcement of such process, order, or subpoena until such time as a proper showing of good cause has been made in a court of competent jurisdiction.

(Revised July 1999)

Appendix 4

Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

  1. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  2. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
  3. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
  4. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  5. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
  6. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Adopted June 18, 1948, by the ALA Council; amended February 2, 1961; amended June 28, 1967; amended January 23, 1980; inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 24, 1996.

Courtesy Borrowers

Residents of the State of Texas age 18 years or older are eligible for a variety of services, including:

  • Books and audio/visual materials
  • Journals—print or electronic, accessed from any of the UT Health Science Center Libraries
  • Library computers (time limit)
  • Online search service (fee)
  • Photocopy and printing (fee)
  • Typewriter

Due to licensing agreements and contracts, off-site access to electronic journals, books and databases is available only to currently employed or retired faculty and staff, and currently enrolled students.

Loan periods for circulating material

Material Type

Loan Period

# of Renewals Allowed

Books

14 days

none

Journals

none

n/a

Audio/visuals

none

n/a

Print Reserve materials

3 hours

none

Library Registration

  • Create an account for book checkout.
  • The annual fee for Courtesy Borrowers is $35
  • You may register in person at the Briscoe Library Circulation Desk or at the Ramirez or Laredo Regional Campus Libraries
  • A state-issued ID (current driver’s license or passport) is required to register
  • Registration is valid for one year from date of issue and may be extended annually with payment
  • Registration cannot be renewed until all fines and other obligations have been cleared.

Library Collection Use

Users may have up to 3 items checked out at any given time.