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Mordecai M. Kaplan Library

  1. Use of Library
  2. Library Circulation
  3. Course Reserve Resources
  4. Photocopier, Computers and Printers
  5. Reciprocal Library Agreements
  6. Materials Selection Policy
  7. Library Committee

The library houses books, journals, and other print materials, electronic and multimedia resources, computers, printers, photocopier, and study desks and carrels. Library resources and staff members are present to support students’ academic needs. All matriculated students are automatically registered for library use and have the privileges and responsibilities enumerated below.

1. Use of Library
The library accommodates various activities including silent, independent work; hevrutah study; individual and small-group instruction; and computer and photocopier use. In order for such multipurpose use to succeed, library users are asked be considerate of one another and to follow these guidelines:

A. Cooperate with instructions indicating which areas of the library are reserved for hevrutah study, independent study and totally quiet study.

B. Do not use cell phones anywhere in the library.

C. Minimize use of computers, printers and photocopier when others are waiting to use them.

D. Observe directions for replacing all materials and supplies used.

E. Maintain the cleanliness of the library by not bringing any food into it. However, drinks in spill-proof containers are allowed.

2. Library Circulation
A. The circulation period for library resources is four weeks for matriculated students. No limit is placed on the number of items that may be borrowed. Materials may be renewed in person or by phone or e-mail, as long as no one else is requesting them.

B. Periodicals, reference books, Bet Midrash, Text, and special file collections, computer software and CD-ROMs do not circulate (exceptions are made for use during a class).

C. Reserve books may be checked out of the library only at the following times: after the last class of the day ends on Monday through Thursday (due back the following morning); and two hours before the library closes on Friday or Sunday (due back on Monday morning).

D. Borrowers’ identities are confidential. If another borrower requires checked-out material for immediate research needs, the library staff will arrange for its recall for a limited period. The materials will then be returned to the original borrower if so desired.

E. Students are expected to return all outstanding library materials as soon as possible after the end of the spring semester. However, the library remains open all summer, and students may check out library resources as needed for the standard four-week period.

F. Borrowers are responsible for the condition and prompt return of all materials borrowed. To facilitate this, students will be charged for any damage to or loss of library materials. Fines on overdue materials may also be imposed if the library director determines that this is necessary to ensure student compliance with circulation periods. The director, in consultation with the Library Committee, will determine the amount of such fines.

G. Students who fail to return library materials and fail to pay for their loss in a timely manner will have their library circulation privileges suspended.

H. All graduating students must return all library materials and/or settle any outstanding library bills in order to receive their diplomas.

3. Course Reserve Resources
A. Most course readings are available to students online while they are enrolled in a course. Students may make copies of these readings for their individual use.

B. All required resources for courses—i.e. those students are required to purchase, as well as any materials specifically requested by instructors—are placed on reserve in the library each semester for student use.

4. Photocopier, Computers and Printers
A. The library photocopier is available for student use for a fee.

B. Computers and printers are available for student use in the library via an assigned password at no charge. Students may access their RRC e-mail accounts, the Internet and other computer applications on library computers.

5. Reciprocal Library Agreements
A. Interlibrary Loan (ILL) reciprocal agreements with other libraries enable the Kaplan Library to borrow most books and journal articles from libraries throughout the country, generally at no charge to library patrons. However, depending on budget and staff constraints it may be necessary to charge and/or limit the number of items requested.

B. Students are expected to pick up and return ILL materials promptly. Renewals may be possible, but the Kaplan Library must adhere strictly to the lending library’s due date or risk losing its ability to borrow from them. Students are liable for the cost of any ILL items damaged or lost.

C. The Kaplan Library’s membership in the Southeast Pennsylvania Theological Library Association (SEPTLA) gives students on-site and (usually) borrowing privileges at 19 theological libraries in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Information on these libraries is available on request.

6. Materials Selection Policy
A. The faculty director of each academic department is responsible for submitting acquisition requests to the library staff after consulting with other instructors and soliciting input from students.

B. Students should make their suggestions for acquisitions to the appropriate member of the faculty or directly to the library staff. Such suggestions are welcome and will be carefully considered.

C. Final purchase decisions are made by the library director, based on the necessities of ensuring adequate support of all facets of RRC’s curriculum and complying with budget guidelines.

7. Library Committee
A. A committee consisting of the vice president for academic affairs, the library director, the assistant librarian, one faculty member and one student representative meets several times a year to review library activities and approve new policies and initiatives.

B. Students are welcome to bring comments, suggestions and requests concerning the library to their student representatives, who will relay them to the committee. Students are also welcome to discuss their concerns directly with the library director or library staff.