Buena Vista University
Buena Vista University
BVU Catalog

Library Patrons/Borrowers

All students, faculty, staff, and public patrons must have their library identification card with them in order to check out materials. Please contact a staff member if a patron does not have his or her ID card.

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New Borrowers

When a patron is not listed in the system he may need to be added. Contact a staff member or a Student Leader to register a new patron.

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Community Guests

Community Guests are individuals who are not associated with Buena Vista University or Iowa Central Community College who have paid an annual fee of $15.00. These patrons have been issued an identification card and may check out materials and request ILLs. Community Guests must have IDs in order to check out materials.

New Community Guests, or Community Guests who wish to renew their membership, must pay the $15.00 annual fee. Have a staff member or Student Leader enter them into the computer. The computer system will alert you when a Community Guest needs to renew his/her membership. You should collect $15 from that patron to extend the membership another year.

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Public Patrons

Public patrons are individuals who are not associated with Buena Vista University or Iowa Central Community College who wish to use the library's materials or computers in the library. Persons wishing to use a computer must sign in at the Circulation Desk. The computer passwords for the public patrons are kept on the shelf behind the Circulation Desk. DO NOT GIVE A PATRON THE COMPUTER PASSWORD UNTIL HE HAS HIS FULL ADDRESS IN THE SIGN-IN BOOK. No one under the age of sixteen is allowed to use the computers without an adult present. Ask for identification if you are not sure if a patron is sixteen. Remind patrons to log off their computers when they are finished with them.

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Graduates of BVU no longer have library privileges unless they purchase an annual Community Guest pass. They may use the computers and collections in-house as a public patron, but must purchase a Community Guest card to check out items.

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ICCC Students

Iowa Central Community College students (Storm Lake campus only) have library privileges. They must have a BVU blue library card or a library barcode sticker on their Iowa Central Community College ID card to check out materials. If they have not received a BVU card, a library staff member may issue them one when circumstances warrant. Find a library staff member for help.

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ICCC Faculty

Iowa Central Community College faculty (Storm Lake campus only) must have an ID card to check out material. They have the same library privileges as ICCC students.

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Proxy Borrowers

A Proxy Borrower is a student who is checking out material for a professor. A Proxy Borrower can only check things out for a professor if his name is in the Proxy Borrower Index Card File located at the Circulation Desk. Students are listed in alphabetical order by their last names. A student can only check out materials for the professor that is listed on the Proxy Borrower card. A Proxy Borrower should not check materials out in his own name for the professor because he will be responsible for the materials. See Florene to enable Proxy account.

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Circulation policies

  • Patrons may only check out books with THEIR I.D. card!
  • There are no overdue fines, but an overdue book will block you from checking out additional books. Overdue notices are sent via mail or email.
  • Books can be recalled if needed by another person and should be returned ASAP.
  • Books that are lost will be charged to the student's account at the replacement cost per book lost plus a nonrefundable $5 processing fee. Returning books will cancel the replacement charges. If charges have been paid and the book is found, a refund will be given, provided that the item has not already been replaced.

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Privacy/Confidentiality of Library Records

By law the library is prohibited from revealing the name of any person who has checked out, requested, or used library materials, except to the person him/herself. Our patrons have a right to privacy and therefore, all information is confidential. Students should not give out any information regarding a patron, the material he or she has checked-out, or the status of the material. It is important to clear the "check-in/check-out" windows on Horizon after each transaction to maintain the patron's privacy.

If you are presented with a search warrant by a law enforcement official, please refer to them to the Library Director or the staff member in charge. Do not offer them the information yourself!

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Loan Periods

  Number of Items* Books Media Journals Reference
BVU Undergraduate Students 50 30 days 14 days N/A N/A
BVU Graduate Students 50 60 days 14 days N/A N/A
BVU Faculty/Staff 100 90 days 14 days 7 days 24 hours
BVU Employee and
Family Members
50 30 days 14 days N/A N/A
Iowa Central CC
50 30 days 14 days N/A N/A
Community Guest Card Members 10 30 days 14 days N/A N/A

* number of items that may be checked out at one time

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Check out period varies at the professor's discretion:

  • Closed Reserve (in-house use only), 5 items may be checked out at a time
  • 24-hour status, a maximum of 2 items may be checked out at a time
  • 72-hour status, a maximum of 5 items may be checked out at a time.

Items in the Reserves collection do not circulate to Community Guests or to BVU Employee Dependents. Back to the top

Non-Circulating Materials

The following item types do not circulate to students: Reference Materials, Journal Collection, Microforms, Special Collections. Copies of pertinent pages can be made, but the item itself cannot be checked out.

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Gate Alarms

If the gate alarms go off ask the patron to step back to the Circ Desk. Do not allow a patron to enter/leave without stopping him. Ask the patron if you may check his or her bags for material that may be setting off the alarm, like books from the bookstore (particularly used books). Use the re-sensitizing machine (not the gates) to check each book. Call a staff member for further assistance if needed.

If library material is found in a patron's possession that has not been checked out, never accuse them of theft (often a patron will forget that they have something). Ask them politely if they need the material and then offer to check it out for them. If the patron is not a registered user, contact a staff member.

If magazines or journals or bound journals are found, explain that these items can not be circulated.

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Copies made on the photocopiers are ten cents per page.

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Guest Printer

Visitors to the library can print documents to the guest printer (located in Circulation Office), at a price of $.05/page. These users must be logged on as BVUguest.

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Changing Toner Cartridge

If the pages being printed are faded, remove the toner cartridge and shake horizontally to spread the toner. Once this has been done more than once, it's time to change the cartridge. Refer this on to a staff member or Student Leader.

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Printer and Copier Paper

The paper for the library's printers and copiers can be found behind the Circulation Desk. Copier and printer paper are NOT interchangeable - the paper is paid for from different budget lines, so there is a distinction! Each stack of paper is clearly marked as either "Copier Paper" or "Printer Paper", so pay attention that you pull from the correct stack. Work-study students and staff are the only ones who should refill the printers and copiers. Do NOT hand the paper to the patron and let them refill it. Any excess paper that will not fit in the machine should be returned to Circulation Desk.

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Checking the Book Drop

Please check the book drop for returned items at the start of your shift. You'll need to pass through the coffee-shop to do that. Please check them in promptly.

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Paging a Patron

The library does not have a PA system to page patrons. We do not look for people in the library unless there is a real emergency. Do not leave the Circulation Desk to check for people unless you have been instructed to do so by your supervisor.

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Room Reservations

Any requests for room reservations should be directed to Juliann Berg for Group Studies and Jodie Morin for the Seminar Room. If neither is available have the patron leave a message on their answering machine. Patrons may also send an email to library@bvu.edu to request a room. Rooms should be requested a day in advance when possible.

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Off-campus Database Access

  • Contact Margaret, Jackie or Jodie if there is a problem with remote access.
  • Only current BVU students, staff, and faculty have access to the databases from off campus.
  • Off-campus access to BVU databases is not an option for public patrons OR for ICCC patrons (database licenses prohibit it).

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Cash Drawer

The cash drawer is to be used strictly for library purposes. The drawer is counted 2-3 times a day. Any inappropriate use of the cash drawer may result in work dismissal as well as affect your future at Buena Vista University.

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Cash Journal

All cash transactions, with the exception of making change, should be recorded in the Cash Journal under the cash tray. Make sure to include the date, the amount of the transaction, what the money is for, and your initials. Please remember:

  • 5¢ is written as .05
  • 50¢ is written as .50

If for any reason you give money out you must make a note of it in the journal. The cash drawer is counted 2-3 times a day and must match the cash journal.

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Charge Journal

A faculty, staff, or Academic Assistant may occasionally make copies, send faxes, or print copies. These items may be charged to their department in the Charge Journal. The Charge Journal is located in the drawer next to the cash drawer. Be sure to enter the date, the department, what is being charged, and the total price.

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Items for Sale

  • Blank CDs: $0.75

Make sure you enter any sales into the cash drawer logbook.

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Checking Materials Out

Procedure for Checking Out Materials

  • Open Checkout window.
  • Scan borrower barcode from photo ID card. (Patrons must have an ID card or a small blue community guest card to check out materials).
  • If a patron is not in the database or if the barcode does not scan, contact a staff member.
  • Scan items to be checked out (and verify each entry on the screen as you go).
  • If item has a pocket card with a signature on it, dispose of it.
  • Print out due date receipt (F11 key).
  • Desensitize items. Do not desensitize videos or audio cassettes.
  • Give items to patron and thank them.
  • If item is a video or audiocassette, have patron pick them up on the other side of the security gate.

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Occasionally, when a patron is checking out materials, a block may appear on the window. This usually suggests that the patron has a lost or overdue book. The best solution is to renew the overdue items if possible, then check out the new materials. However, in certain cases, a block will remain. Library staff members and Student Leaders may be able to override these blocks under certain conditions.

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No Barcode on Item??

Take these steps if an item to be checked out does not have a barcode.

  • Affix "item" barcode to the item
  • Item barcodes are kept in the drawer next to the cash drawer. Note that item barcodes begins with the number 3 (as opposed to patron barcodes, which begin with the number 2).
  • Click Item in menu bar and select "New Item". Scan barcode.
  • Click "Bib & Item"
  • Enter Title, Author, call number
  • Scan new barcode into barcode area
  • Enter appropriate collection type (Correct description-NOT a serial).
  • Enter appropriate Item type (Circulation or Media).
  • Continue with checkout
  • If you have any problems ask a staff member

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What if there is no borrower record in the database?

Verify BVU or ICCC stu/fac/staff (if they have no current affiliation, notify a staff member or a Student Leader to set up a new account).

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What if the patron is a new borrower?

Only library staff members and Student Leaders are able to enter new patrons into the database. Contact one of those persons to register a new patron.

If a staff member is unavailable, follow these steps:

  • Secure payment from patron when necessary. (Remember: Community Guests need to pay!)
  • Have patron fill out a blue registration form.
  • Create a patron library card by affixing a patron barcode onto the small blue community guest card. Note: Patron barcodes begin with the number 2 (as opposed to item barcodes, which begin with the number 3).
  • Write down barcode number from the newly created card onto the blue registration form.
  • "Check out" each item by writing down barcode and brief title/author information. (Alternately, use the office photocopier to copy barcodes from items to be "checked out".)
  • Place all information together regarding both borrower and items "checked out" into the Circulation Supervisor's mail basket.

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Checking Out Closed Reserves

There are three types of Reserve materials. Those that are on a 24 hour or 72 hour Reserve may be checked out and leave the library for those time periods.

Material that is on Closed Reserve can only be used in the library. It still has to be checked out before leaving the Circulation Desk and the patron must give you their Picture ID before they can take the material. Patron IDs are returned when the Closed Reserve material is returned back to the desk. Closed Reserve materials include articles, headphones, markers, and remotes. Articles that are only going to be taken to the copier still must be checked out and the patron must give you their Picture ID.

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Checking out DVDs

DVDs are in the cabinets in the Circ Office. They are organized by a number behind the title. Remember: DVDs are in the skinny cases, where they will always stay. The display cases (just east of Circulation Desk) are always empty.

To check out DVDs:
A patron will hand you the empty display case. Take it, look at the big orange number in the upper left corner and find that number in the drawer. Pull out the skinny case and put the display case in its place.

Scan the barcode on the skinny case to check out the item.

To check in DVDs:
First, scan the barcode to check it in on the computer. Take the skinny case to the cabinet, match its number to the orange number on the display case. Pull out the display case and put the skinny case in its place, leaving the DVD in the skinny case.

The empty display case gets puts on a shelving cart in call number order. Shelve the display cases by call number order on the DVD shelves on second floor.

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Checking Out ILL Books

ILL books do not need to be checked out. They only need to be desensitized before giving them to the patron.

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Checking Materials In

Procedure for Checking In Materials

  • Open check in window.
  • Scan item barcode, verifying each entry on screen as you go. Take note of any routing messages that may appear upon checking an item in. Note: If there is no barcode on an item, give it to the Circulation Supervisor.
  • Re-sensitize all materials except videos and audiocassettes.
  • Place material on shelving cart in call number order.

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Shelving Flagging Guidelines for Students

  • Double check in the books on the cart.
  • Take the shelving flags out of the pouch on the cart marked Shelving Flags.
  • Initial and date the flags.
  • Stick the flags in the book, making sure that the flag sticks out of the bottom end.
  • Find out where the book goes.
  • Instead of shelving the book as usual, place it spine down (so the spine is resting on the shelf).
  • Make sure the flag is sticking out of the book into the aisle but not so it will disturb anyone.
  • Staff members will go around and check to make sure that the book was shelved correctly.
  • Do not flag CDs, Curr. kits, Microfilm/fiche, Current journals (the ones that still live on 1st floor), or Journals on 3rd floor that live in boxes.

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Checking in Lost Books

If an item is checked in and a window appears that says "Lost Book Returned", press F11 and print out a receipt for it. Write the patron's name and "lost book returned" on the print out slip and place in Juliann's mail basket.

NOTE: Make sure you check the computer notice to get the patron's name before closing the window.

Returned ILLs

What if returned material is an ILL? Do not check it in. Place the material in the ILL return basket behind the Circulation Desk.

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Damaged Books

If books or other library materials are damaged when they are returned, they need to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. Write down the patron's name, address and telephone number. Advise the patron that we will contact him later as to the amount of payment he will be assessed. This will be based on weather the damaged item is repaired, replaced, or left as is. Check the item in, place the patron information with it, and give to the Circulation Supervisor.

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Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

An Interlibrary Loan is a book, article, or tape that is not owned by BVU and is borrowed from another institution. If the Buena Vista University Library does not own the material needed, patrons may order it via the ILL form on BVU Library's website (http://www2.bvu.edu/library/illiad/logon.html). Our interlibrary loan system is referred to as ILLiad, which is an online ILL interface that allows electronic delivery of articles and allows patrons to view information about the status of existing requests.

We provide the following people with Interlibrary Loan Services:

  • All current students of BVU (residential, Professional & Online, graduate).
  • Students of Iowa Central Community College at Storm Lake.
  • Staff & faculty members of Buena Vista University.
  • Dependents of staff and faculty members of Buena Vista University.
  • Community members who have purchased a Community Guest card.

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ILL Articles

BVU Library does not charge for ILL. Patrons will be able to access their article on the "Interlibrary Loan" tab on the library web page.

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ILL Books

There is no charge for ILL books. Because the ILL staff automatically checks the ILL books out to patrons there is no need for work-study students to do anything with them other than desensitize the books and give them to the patron.

ILL books that have been processed are kept on the shelf behind the Circulation Desk.

When an ILL book is returned DO NOT check it in. It should be placed in the basket marked Interlibrary Loan Returns on the shelves behind the Circulation Desk.

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ILL Renewals

Requests for renewals of ILL material must be forwarded to Florene or Kelly. If there is a request for an ILL renewal, write down the name of the patron, the title of the item, and the TN number. Date and initial the information and place it in either Florene's or Kelly's mail basket. Note: To process a renewal request, we don't need the actual item - just the information about the item.

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Putting Items on Reserve


When a faculty member or academic assistant (AA) comes in to place an item on Reserve, the following things need to be done:

All materials must come to the Circulation Desk ready to be placed on Reserve. In other words: If a faculty member wishes to place something from our collection on Reserve, he must get it and bring it to the Circulation Desk.

  • We do NOT make copies for faculty members.
  • That means we do not photocopy articles from our journals.
  • That means that we do not photocopy chapters out of books.
  • That means that if they bring in only one copy, ONLY one copy is placed on Reserve. WE DO NOT MAKE COPIES. Give a faculty member or an AA a RESERVE MATERIALS form. Forms for placing items on Reserve are available and will be located at the Circulation Desk at the beginning of each semester.
  • Ask (tell) the faculty member or AA to fill out the form. This is the responsibility of the faculty member or AA.
  • These forms must be filled out completely or the material may not be placed on Reserve.
  • Place the material to be put on Reserve and the form into the basket behind the Circulation Desk. Please keep the forms with the material so they will be processed correctly.

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Overdue Reserve Items

Students who fail to return Reserve materials will receive a call and/or email on the day it becomes overdue. On the second day, the professor will be called to facilitate the return process. If a student currently has a block on their account, the only Reserve materials they may check out are Closed Reserves.

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Hold Shelf, or Request Shelf

Items on Hold for, or Requested by, a patron will have a slip inside, which includes the requesting patron's name, and other important information. These items will be filed alphabetically by patron's last name. As a rule, items need to be checked out by the patron upon pick-up.

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Phone Procedures

Answering Library Phones

  • Greeting
  • Always answer the phone in the following way, "BVU Library, this is (your name)".
  • Always be polite and let the patron know when you are going to transfer their call or put them on hold.

Transferring Calls

  • Tell the caller to "please hold while I transfer you".
  • Push the transfer button located above the hold button.
  • Dial the extension number of the person you wish to transfer the call to.
  • When the phone rings, hang up the phone and the call will automatically transfer to that extension. Don't wait for anyone to answer the phone.

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Taking Messages for Library Staff:

Written message: When taking messages for the library staff make sure you have the name of the caller, the message, the date and time of the call, and a number to reach them at. Initial the message in case there are any questions. Place the message in the staff member's mail basket located in the circulation office.

Voicemail: If a caller would like to leave a voice message with a staff member tell them that you are transferring their call to the appropriate extension. Press the transfer button and dial the staff's extension number. When you hang up the phone the call will automatically transfer.

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Opening Procedures

  • Turn on the automatic lights for the main floor as well as the lights for the second floor and third floors.
  • Take phone off "forward" †
  • Log in Circulation computers.
  • Unlock Circulation Office.
  • Unlock cash drawer and count money.
  • Make sure all books are picked up and checked in from library tables and computer islands.
  • Unlock front doors.
  • Fill paper in the printers and copy machines.
  • Write down gate count.
  • Retrieve all items from book drop.

† Removing the Phone from Forward:
When opening the library, the phone must be taken off "forward". To do this, press the "speaker" button. Next, press the "FWD" button. The phone should now be off Forward.

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Closing Procedures

  • Pick up any books lying around; check them in; and shelve them on the book cart.
  • Make sure all chairs are pushed into tables and computer stations, group study rooms, and balcony. It is also important to make sure all computers are shut-down properly at closing.
  • 15 minutes before closing, walk around and see where the patrons are and tell them you are closing soon.
  • If no one is on third floor, turn off the lights on the third floor.
  • At 10 minutes to close, turn off the automatic lights on the first floor. Check that the lights are off in the special collections room.
  • Make sure there is nobody left in the rest rooms.
  • Check to make sure the elevator is empty.
  • Count and lock the money drawer. Forward the phone. ‡
  • Make sure any festive lights are unplugged.
  • Log out of Horizon on the circulation computers.
  • Five minutes before closing lock the main entrance doors.
  • When all the patrons have left the library, clock out and turn off the lights in the circulation office. Make sure that the door to the circulation office is locked and closed, as well as double check main entrance doors as you leave.

‡ Forwarding the Phone at Close:
Before closing the library's telephone system must be forwarded. Press the "speaker" button on the phone and listen for the dial tone. Press FWD and dial 1400. After dialing you will hear a broken dial tone. Press "speaker". The Phone should now be forwarded.

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Additional Library Policies

Tobacco and Alcohol

The library has a strict policy against any form of tobacco or alcohol in the library. Any patron found with either should be asked to remove it from the premises. Politely explain that it is prohibited in the library.

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Food & Drink

To promote a comfortable atmosphere, covered drinks and dry food are allowed in the library. Sauces and dips are prohibited due to the potential for spills and stains. We request that patrons dispose of trash properly. Patrons are responsible for any damages that result due to spills.

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Designated Quiet Zones

The balcony and second floor are designated quiet zones. Work-study students should help to maintain a quiet atmosphere by giving polite reminders when needed.

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