Borrowing policies

Borrowing policies

The services listed on this webpage have been affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. For current and up to date information regarding library services please refer to the Covid-19 services webpage. Alternatively you can contact us.

More information is available on our finding items webpage and our library regulations webpage.

Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about our borrowing policies:

Borrowing policies

How long can I borrow items for?

Items can be borrowed for 14 days at a time, unless they have been requested by another user. For students and staff, items are subject to automatic renewal, provided they have not been requested by another user. The maximum renewal period is 14 weeks after which items must be returned to the library.

If there is more than one request for an item (i.e. at least one other user has requested the title and no copy is yet available to them) you will only be able to borrow it for 7 days.

All items are issued subject to recall and you may be asked to return an item sooner than the original due date if it has been requested by another user.

What happens if my item is recalled?

If another user requests an item you have on loan, you will receive an email titled ‘Important: Library Recall Notice’ and will need to return the book to us within 7 days. You will then be able to request the book again on Discover. 

I still need my book for my course. Can I hold onto it?

We are only able to provide a limited stock of physical items and we rely on the courtesy of users to return these for other students who need them. 

You can:

  • Check if there is a digital copy on Discover.
  • Place another request on the item once you have returned it.
Will I be charged if my book is overdue?

We no longer charge fines for overdue items but will charge you for items which have been lost. When an item is 14 days overdue, we'll assume that it has been lost and a replacement bill will be sent to you. The standard replacement charge will be £40 (we reserve the right to charge more if the replacement cost is more than this). 

Disputes form

Under certain circumstances we will consider waiving the charge for a lost book. Please fill in an online disputes form‌. You can fill it in online. There is help filling in this form on the next tab. This is the only form we will accept to help us decide whether to waive a lost book charge. 

Help with form

Please note that fines will not be waived under the following circumstances:-
  • You forgot when the book was due back
  • You did not receive a courtesy email reminder
  • You were on holiday, on placement or abroad
  • You had no access to the internet
  • The book was on hold for another user
  • The book had been renewed for the maximum loan period (84 days)
  • You were unable to access your library account online
When should I send it in?

Please send the form in as soon as possible.
We will not waive fines from longer than 6 months ago, unless you can provide supporting documentation which explains the delay.

What kind of reasons will you consider?

We consider three main kinds of reasons:

  • medical - you were ill and could not get to university,
  • personal - for example, family illness, house fire
  • other - for example, you returned the books and have a returns receipt; you had jury service 
What sort of information should I put in the form?

You need to tell us why you could not return your books on time. If the reasons are personal or medical, we need only enough information to let us make a decision. You don’t need to tell us everything. Anything you say or write is confidential. If you have already returned the book and have a receipt from the self-issue machine, just say so and include the receipt.

What else should I send? 

It will help if you can give us these documents, or photocopies of them:

  • Medical - you were ill and could not get in to university, please submit a medical certificate or supporting statement from a University member of staff who can confirm the dates you were absent.
  • Personal - for example: family illness, please supply a supporting statement from your school or from one of the University Support Services confirming special circumstances. We do not need to know the details.
    Bereavement – under these circumstances fines can normally be waived at the Library desk.

  • Other
    • You returned the books and have a self-return receipt.
    • The books were stolen – you have a crime reference number. A pink Loss Report slip from the Police will not be accepted.
What sort of information should I put in the form?

You need to tell us why you could not return the library books on time. 
If the reasons are personal or medical, you need only provide enough information to let us make a decision. Anything you say or write is confidential.
If you have already returned the book and have a receipt from a self-return machine, just say so and include the receipt.

What else should I supply? 

Please attach the following documents, or photocopies of them:

  • Medical – a medical certificate or letter from a GP, hospital or hospital clinic.
  • Personal – a written statement from someone who knows what happened, for example your tutor or academic adviser, a student adviser or disability adviser. They should confirm the dates you were unable to attend university.
  • Other - for example a receipt from the self-service machine.
Can anyone help me with the form?

A student adviser, an academic adviser or tutor can help.

How soon will I get an answer?
  • If you have a medical certificate, supporting statement or receipt we may be able to waive the fines covered by the dates on these straight away.
  • If you don’t have supporting documentation but feel you have a special case, please tell us in part 4 of the form. We will aim to reply within 5 working days.
  • If you’re not happy with our decision, you can appeal using another Library Form for Fines & Disputes. The appeal must be submitted within 28 days of receiving our reply. Just fill in parts 1, 5 and 6. We will aim to get back to you within 5 working days.

We will treat your form in the strictest confidence.
We will complete part 7 of the form and hold this information under the terms of the GDPR.

Where do I send my completed paper form?

Please send the completed form by post to:

The Disputes Team, Sir Alex Ferguson Library, Cowcaddens Road, Glasgow, G4 OBA

Alternatively the form is available online.