Adopted August, 2004

Updated December, 2013


Any post-secondary institution which has library collections and services sufficiently established to warrant granting reciprocal borrowing privileges is eligible to enter into a reciprocal relationship with the Bemidji State University’s A. C. Clark Library so that the students, faculty and staff of each institution may receive borrowing privileges at the other institution. Qualified members of an institution with which the A. C. Clark Library has an agreement of reciprocity are considered by Bemidji State University to be a type of Non-University Borrower, albeit ones with borrowing privileges comparable, though not necessarily completely equal, to those of undergraduate students at Bemidji State University. The nature of this reciprocal relationship will be consistent with those principles of reciprocity established between MnSCU/PALS libraries. The nature of the circulation reciprocity agreement is bilateral: no agreement of circulation reciprocity between the A. C. Clark Library and another library shall extend to other libraries with which the signatory libraries have reciprocity agreements.

Necessary Precautions

A written agreement of circulation reciprocity has been signed by both parties and has not reached its expiration date or been terminated.

Current contact information has been exchanged between the participant libraries, identifying the participant library administrators and circulation unit contacts.

Implementation Procedures

The A. C. Clark Library prefers that reciprocity encompass not only the ability to borrow but also the process used to authenticate borrowers. To that end the A. C. Clark Library asks that a first time borrower from an institution having reciprocity agreement under this program submit a verification form, signed by his or her home institution’s librarian, stating that the borrower is in good standing with the home institution. The verification form should also provide the borrower’s name, institutional ID number, address, phone number and e-mail address. Upon request the A. C. Clark Library can provide a template of such a verification form. The A. C. Clark Library asks that when first visiting the library, the borrower present the verification form along with his or her valid institutional identification card to the staff of the Circulation Desk (main floor) for validation and processing. This filing of the verification form need only be done the first time a reciprocal borrower wished to borrow library materials.

Should the A. C. Library, in the course of its routine circulation activities, discover that a borrower from another institution have outstanding charges with the A. C. Clark Library or with Bemidji State University, the A. C. Clark Library reserves the right deny borrowing privileges to the individual until such time as full restitution is provided. Although it is unlikely to occur, any borrower may be denied borrowing privileges if he or she has a history of abusing library privileges at the A. C. Clark Library or refuses to provide information necessary for the creation and/or maintenance of his or her borrower record.

Privileges and Responsibilities of Reciprocal Borrower Status

The A. C. Clark Library grants the rightful holder of a valid reciprocal borrower card borrowing privileges comparable, though not necessarily completely equal, to those of an undergraduate student at Bemidji State University. A reciprocal borrower may check out circulating items from the General, Government Publications, K-12, Compact Disc, Circulation Book and Popular Reading collections. Non-circulating items in these collections may not be checked out of the Library. Items from separate collections may have different loan periods. Borrowers should be aware of these loan periods. An item may be recalled at an earlier date should it be requested by another borrower, particularly if an instructor should request that it be placed in the Course Reserve Collection. Reciprocal borrowers may also check out for in library use only items in the closed stack collections behind the Circulation Desk (i.e., Reserve, Newspaper, Video and 16mm Film collections). Reciprocal borrowers are not entitled to check out periodicals or newspapers. They are entitled to place a hold on an item which is currently checked out to another person.

The reciprocal borrower card is not accompanied by any privileges to use the library’s interlibrary loan services, nor does the card imply any rights or privileges at any other library within the system of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) or member library of MnPALS. Reciprocal borrowers may access the BSU Library Catalog (MnPALS Catalog); however, they are not entitled to remote access to any BSU library subscription databases. However, residents of the State of Minnesota with an active public library card are entitled to remote access to research databases through the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM).

The person to whom a reciprocal borrower card is issued is the only individual permitted to check out items with the card. The card is not intended to be used by spouses, children or friends of the applicant for checking out A. C. Clark Library materials. The A. C. Clark Library holds no responsibility for guaranteeing that the user of a card is the person to whom the card was first issued. The person to whom a card is issued is responsible for any and all fines or other charges incurred by the use of that card. Should a person believe his or her card to be lost or stolen, he or she should immediately notify the Circulation Department of the A. C. Clark Library.

It may be possible for the holder of a reciprocal borrower card to also hold a valid BSU ID card. If this should occur, the cardholder may elect to use either card. Upon checking out library materials, the cardholder will be held to whatever privileges and responsibilities are associated with the card used.

Acceptance of a reciprocal borrower card implies certain responsibilities on the part of the applicant. These responsibilities include:

  • Abiding by the “A. C. Clark Library Code of Behavior for Library Users”
  • Responding to notices and bills in a timely manner
  • Returning borrowed materials on time and in good condition and making restitution for materials damaged while in the borrower’s possession
  • Knowing which items are checked out on his or her card and being aware of their due date(s). Failure to receive an overdue or billing notice does not absolve the borrower from any penalties that may be incurred.
  • Reporting changes of his or her mailing address to the Circulation Department of the A. C. Clark Library. Should the Circulation Department have mail addressed to a Non-University Borrower returned as undeliverable, that borrower will have his or her borrowing privileges suspended until such time as the borrower provides a current address.

Overdue and Lost Materials

Should any Non-University Borrower (includes Reciprocal borrowers) fail to return a borrowed item by its due date/time, he or she may billed for the replacement of the item. Should a Non-University Borrower incur a charge, his or her library privileges will be suspended until such time as the charge has been paid. Repeated failure to return library materials on time or to pay charges in a timely manner may result in the suspension or revocation of a Reciprocal borrower’s borrowing privileges.

The A. C. Clark Library reserves the right to levy disciplinary fines against any borrower whom it believes has used library materials in a malicious or grossly irresponsible manner.

Grounds for Termination of Borrowing Privileges

The holder of any type of Non-University Borrower status may have such status modified or rescinded, or may not have such status renewed, for any one of the following reasons:

  • Applicant has outstanding debts to Bemidji State University
  • Applicant has had a history of abusing library privileges at the A. C. Clark Library
  • Applicant refuses to provide information requested on the application for borrowing privileges.

Bemidji State University and its library reserve the right to deny library privileges and/or library access to any person whom either unit deems may pose a threat to the safety, security and well-being of the library’s users, staff, collections, equipment and facilities. Neither Bemidji State University nor its library will deny access, during normal hours of operation of the library, to any person based upon reasons of race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation or national origin.

Implementation of Policies

This updated version of the A. C. Clark Library’s circulation policies goes into effect December 2013.