For the Pendlebury Library at the Music Faculty, the existing system is reasonably straightforward and is completely subject focussed.
The basic principle is that music students (of all levels) and music staff are allowed more items than non music students and staff: 10 for music, 6 for music and education and 4 for non music, all this with a limit of maximum 4 AV items for all categories.
There is a difference in borrowing periods between print and AV materials, and within the print collections there is a difference in length between core titles (related to reading lists and teaching), which are overnight loans only, and the main collections, which are term and vacation loans.
Since this summer, all AV items are now one day loans. For those of you who were already here, this will be excellent news: the trial we ran last year in response to user needs has been made into a permanent arrangement. We are very pleased about this! When I say permanent, this is of course relative. When needs are clearly changing, we will of course aim to adapt accordingly.
Because of the length of borrowing times (either very long or very short) we don’t believe in online renewals. We like to see overnight and one day loans returned promptly, and term and vacation loans at the end of each term or vacation. (We use official Full Term dates for this, not first and last days of teaching!)
The University Library lends different numbers of books to different categories of reader. The borrowing system is not subject based and all borrowable collections follow the same rules. At the Colleges, things will be different again.Confused? Don’t worry; “Your Library Account”, accessible via any web or mobile interface, will always tell you how many items you have out in each library and when they are due back. And there are no borrowing rules for e-books and other e-collections.
Enjoy Cambridge Libraries!