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Loan Policies

Borrower Responsibilities

When borrowers activate their library barcode for use, they enter into an agreement with the SMU Libraries to abide by library rules and regulations.  As a library user, you are responsible for:

  • presenting your card in person to check out materials
  • returning or renewing library materials on or before the due date
  • keeping the items checked out to your account in your possession
  • any financial obligations resulting from non-compliance with library policies
  • reporting lost or stolen cards to the SMU Police and to the Libraries

Account Blocks

Your library account will be automatically blocked whenever any of the following conditions occurs:

  • five or more books are overdue
  • one or more recalled items are overdue
  • you owe $20 or more to one or more SMU libraries
  • the expiration date of your library account has passed
  • your library or SMU ID card is reported stolen

All circulation activity, both in the library and online, will be suspended until the reason for the block is resolved.

Accessibility of Materials

In order to maximize accessibility and use of library materials, please observe the following guidelines:

  • return items before the due date whenever possible
  • return recalled items as soon as possible
  • return or renew library materials before leaving campus for extended periods

Hold/Recall Requests

SMU students, faculty, or staff may place a hold or a recall request on any item checked out for three weeks or longer.  Patrons in other categories may not request hold or recall.

  • A hold request simply reserves the item upon its return to the library.
  • A recall request shortens the original loan period and notifies the current borrower that another patron needs the item.  Items needed for course reserves are subject to immediate recall.
  • Once a requested item is returned, the requestor is notified and has seven days to pick it up.
  • Overdue fines for recalled items are $1 per day.
  • Once a hold or recall request is placed on an item, it may not be renewed.

Lost Items

If an item is not returned or renewed within 30 days after the due date, it is considered lost and the borrower will be billed for its replacement.  Standard charges include a minimum $50 replacement fee, a $25 processing fee, and any accrued overdue fines.  If the lost item is returned in good condition prior to being replaced by the library, the replacement and processing fees will be reversed.

A lost item may be replaced by a duplicate copy in good condition (the Head of Acquisitions makes the final decision regarding acceptability). Overdue fines will still apply and a binding charge may also be applied.