Library Policies

Code of Conduct

The University of Idaho Libraries are committed to providing a safe, inclusive, and productive learning environment. Library users are expected to treat each other, the facility, and the collections respectfully, and to abide by the University of Idaho Student Code of Conduct; violation of the code of conduct is subject to sanctions, including but not limited to revocation of library privileges.

Library Technology Use Policy

The use of library computers is subject to the Library Code of Conduct, and to the same policies governing the use of other University of Idaho facilities, including all applicable state and federal laws, copyright restrictions, and license agreements. Please see the University of Idaho's Acceptable Use of Technology Resources Policy for more information.

Circulation Policies

Periodicals, Maps, and Reference Books

Periodicals, Maps, and Reference Books do not typically leave the U of I Library building and require special approval by full-time Circulation staff before being lent out.

Periodicals are designated as non-circulating, and in most cases must be used in the U of I Library. If a periodical needs to be taken out of the building a short loan is possible on a case-by-case basis. A map tube is needed for maps to leave the U of I Library, please check in with Circulation to obtain one. Reference books may be lent on a case-by-case basis.

Off-campus Faculty, Staff and Students

For UI, U of I law, IMTC, Herbarium and Women's Center books: Find the book in the catalog, click on 'find it', then 'sign in for more options'. After signing in, you may then request the U of I owned item, or request the item via Summit, or request the item via ILL. Books are mailed to the patron's address. They must be returned by the due date.

For Interlibrary Loan books: We mail books from other libraries to off-campus patrons who reside in Canada and the U.S. via first class mail. Due dates are determined by the lending library and average three weeks. One renewal may be possible. Books must be returned first class, FedEx or UPS by the due date. Overdue fees apply for all patrons.


The library no longer collects late fees or fines for items in our general collection as part of our commitment to equitable access to information and student affordability.

Some items in the library, such as print Course Reserves or U of I Multimedia equipment, are exceptions to this policy and will continue to accrue late fees. In addition, the library will continue assessing lost item fees to patrons. Items move into lost status when they have not been returned 15 days after the assigned due date, at which time patrons are charged a $100 fee ($80 replacement item cost and $20 processing fee).

If you have questions about which items have late fees and which don't, or want to supply your own replacement copy, please contact our Access Services/Circulation Desk at 208-885-6559 and we'd be happy to assist you.

Fines for Reserve materials are $2.00 per hour or partial hour for overdue items, maximum $20.00, for paper reserve. There are no fines for electronic reserve materials.

Cell Phone Policy

By working with you, members of the University of Idaho academic community, to better understand the issues before us, it is quite obvious that we all have different opinions about cell phones and their appropriateness in the Library.

Given that we (University of Idaho community members) recognize:

  • there is a need for quiet study in the library
  • there will be no active enforcement by library staff of this policy
  • that noise pollution should be reduced in this public place

The Library requests that cell phones and their users respect the wishes of the people who desire a quiet location for study by:

  • changing the setting on their phones to a non-audible signal
  • limiting their conversations in public areas, particularly on the third and fourth floors

The Library further requests that all users honor the space on the third and fourth floors as quiet areas, taking conversations and group work either to group study rooms or to other spaces in the building.

We hope that this policy is something we can accept as a behavior contract, and that this is liberal enough so the community can share in its enforcement. Thank you for your efforts in discussing this issue.

Food and Drink Policy

This policy is designed to create a welcoming atmosphere for all library users. Food and drink pose a potential risk to library collections, equipment, and furnishings. We, therefore, ask that you act responsibly when consuming food and beverages in the library. The Library reserves the right to enforce this policy at its own discretion. Thank you for your kind cooperation.

Reserve Policy

Course reserves

Instructors may place textbooks and other resources on reserve for use by students in their course. Students may request books or other resources that are used for coursework be placed on reserve.

All Course Reserves must comply with provisions in the U.S. Copyright Act and FERPA. If the nature, scope, or extent of copying is judged to exceed the fair use principles of the Copyright Act, the library will work with the professor to find alternative arrangements.

Loan periods

3 hour, 1 day, 3 day (determined by instructor) for physical reserve


$2 per hour or partial hour for overdue items, maximum $20.00, for physical reserve

No fines for electronic resources


Visit the Course Reserves Listings (Leganto) and look for your course by instructor, term, or subject.

To access resources hosted on Leganto, students will have to sign in using their NetID.

Library Group Study Room Policies

First floor group study rooms and third floor individual study rooms are available for reservation. If not currently occupied, they are first come, first serve.

Study rooms on other floors are not scheduled or reserved.

Groups take precedence over individuals. A group of two or more has priority over one person who is waiting for others to arrive.

Groups may not "camp out" for extended periods.

Windows and doors must remain uncovered and unobstructed.

Lights are to be left on.

Rooms are not available during the summer.

Please see other room policies at our Reservations page.

Study Lockers and Carrels

Study lockers are available to all U of I students on a first come, first served basis. The lockers are assigned for one semester only. The assignment may be renewed if there is no waiting list. A $3.00 key deposit is collected when a key is issued and refunded when the key is returned. Locker applications are available online and at the Circulation Desk.

Study carrels are available to U of I graduate students who have an approved thesis or dissertation topic and who do not have an assigned office, desk or carrel elsewhere on campus. Carrels are assigned on a first come, first served basis. A $10.00 key deposit is collected when a key is issued and refunded when the key is returned. Carrel applications are available online and at the Circulation Desk. Every semester, a student with an assigned carrel must check in with the circulation desk to determine if the reservation will continue or if the student no longer needs the room.

If all the carrels are booked, students may fill out an application and be placed on the waitlist.

Students assigned to a locker or carrel must abide by all library rules regarding food, drink, and conduct, and may not use lockers or carrels to store items that could be hazardous or detrimental to other patrons or the collections. The University does not allow space heaters inside any university buildings, only radiant heaters. Students are only allowed access to the carrels during library open hours. Any food items kept in the locker or carrel must be stored in sealed containers. All items must fit within the locker or carrel provided, and library items kept within lockers or carrels must be checked out to the assigned student.

Collection Management

The University of Idaho Library, as the state's flagship research library, connects our users with information, ideas, tools, and resources to support and advance research and scholarly activity. Our core values include the open, equitable, and efficient access to a diverse and interdisciplinary spectrum of information resources. We provide access to library materials in accordance with the principles of intellectual freedom outlined in the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights, Freedom to Read statement, and Freedom to View statement. Academic freedom is also required and protected by the University of Idaho's Faculty Staff Handbook (Chapter 3, 3160).

As a research library, our collections are inclusive and comprehensive by design, and the resources selected for purchase are chosen to meet the curricular, research, and service mission of the University of Idaho. Older materials that some may consider out of date or offensive often have relevance as historical artifacts in research that seeks to illuminate the evolution of an area of study and situate current thinking in context, and our policy as a research library is to retain such materials for these purposes. Current materials are selected for purchase by subject liaisons, who are informed by professional selection criteria and reviewing sources. If you have questions about items in our collection, please contact the Dean of Libraries, Ben Hunter, at

The following policies govern the addition, removal, and general management of library resources for specific areas of the University of Idaho Library collections. The U of I Library Subject Liaison is responsible for creating and implementing the policy. The following list is incomplete.

College of Art and Architecture (last updated 8/16) [PDF]

Department of Conservation Social Sciences (last updated 8/12) [PDF]

Department of Forest, Range, and Fire Sciences (last updated 1/13) [PDF]