Circulation Policies

Loan Periods

You must have a current valid Columbia or affiliate ID to receive borrowing privileges.  All circulating items may be recalled by another patron, or for course reserves.

Regular Circulation

  • Semester loan for all Columbia University ID holders

Reserves Circulation (same for all borrowers)

  • Reserves materials circulate for 2 hour intervals. Items circulate overnight 3 hours before library closes. Books that circulate overnight are due back 1 hour after the library opens the following day.


Any borrower with more than $99 in fines or replacement fees will have borrowing privileges suspended at all Columbia libraries.

Regular Circulation

  • 25 cents per calendar day, up to a maximum of $7.50
  • An additional $100 fee is charged after 45 days to replace the item.


  • $1.00 per hour or part of an hour for each overdue item, up to a maximum of $50.
  • An additional $100 fee is charged after 7 days to replace the item.

Recalled Items

  • $1.00 for each calendar day that a recalled item is overdue, up to a maximum of $30; borrowing privileges blocked.

Special Materials

  • Current and bound periodicals circulate for 2 hours.  No overnight or weekend loans.
  • Newspapers do not circulate.
  • Maps (depository and non-depository) do not circulate.
  • U.S. Government Documents collection and South Asian Language material adheres to the regular circulation periods stated above.
  • Reference material (any item with a gold or red star on the spine) does not circulate.
  • Videos on reserve circulate for 1 week.
  • Slavic microfilm may be used only by special arrangement with the Slavic Bibliographer in room 206.
  • Microfilm and microfiche do not circulate.
  • Tibetan Material
    A key for room 210.1 can be checked out at the circulation desk.  Bound volumes adhere to the regular circulation periods stated above; boxed, unbound materials do not circulate.

All materials may be returned to the book drop in the lobby outside of the main entrance when the library is closed.