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Circulation Policies

Who May Borrow

Currently enrolled Five College students, faculty, and staff may borrow circulating materials upon presentation of a valid ID. Students on leave or field study do not have borrowing privileges.

Visitor Policy

Hampshire alumni/ae who live in the local area as well as area residents may apply for a visitor card in the library circulation office. This card entitles the visitor to borrowing privileges for books, journals, and CDs in open stacks at the Hampshire library. Visitors may also use Hampshire's research databases from workstations in the library, but do not have access to them from off campus.

Loan Periods

Stack Items

  • Books, bound periodicals, records, audio cassettes, and Division III exams circulate for four weeks to Hampshire and Five College students. Division III students, faculty, and staff may borrow material for three months.
  • Compact discs circulate for two weeks. Borrowers are allowed a limit of six at a time.

Reserve Material

  • Reserve material circulates for three hours, 24 hours, or three days at the instructor's discretion.

Non-Circulating Items

  • Reference books, unbound (current) periodicals, and microfilm do not circulate outside the library.


Currently valid borrowers may renew any item provided that...

  1. It has not been recalled for reserve or another patron,
  2. It is not a reserve item in demand, and
  3. It has not reached the renewal limit (see below)

Patrons may renew items online as long as they are not overdue. See the How do I...? section for instructions. Renewals may also be requested in person, by mail, or by telephone.

Items from other Five College libraries may be renewed only by self-renewal or at the lending library, and are subject to the renewal policies of the lending library.

Renewal limits

  • Hampshire stack books and phonograph records are limited to three renewals.
  • CDs and reserve items are limited to one renewal.

Holds and Recalls

  • Stack items may be recalled for reserve or for another patron.
  • Recalled items and/or items placed on hold may not be renewed.
  • A recalled item must be returned by the date indicated on the recall notice, or it will be subject to a $2.00 per day recall fine.
  • Reserve items may not be recalled or placed on hold.

Overdue (Warning) Notices and Bills

  • Overdue (warning) notices are sent regularly for circulating items. Overdue notices are a courtesy. Their receipt cannot be guaranteed, and they should not be considered a prerequisite to a fine or a bill. No overdue notices are sent for reserve items; overdue reserve items are subject to immediate billing.
  • There are no daily overdue fines for stack books.
  • Overdue recalled items are charged at the rate of $2.00 per day.
  • If an item is not returned or renewed within 35 days from the due date, a bill for replacement is issued. Replacement bills include the price of the item as well as a $15.00 processing fee and a $10.00 penalty fee. When the item is returned or renewed, the bill is adjusted down to the $10.00 penalty fee. The return of billed items after one academic year may not result in a bill adjustment. Bills may also be issued for the repair or replacement of damaged material.

Carrel Policies

  • Carrel space is limited. Carrels are not assigned to individuals and cannot be claimed as exclusively personal space.
  • Hampshire items that are checked out and that have green due slips may be left in carrels, as well as checked out Five College items. All other Hampshire items, including reference books and current periodicals, will be reshelved daily. We will occasionally spot-check carrels to ensure that books are in fact checked out. Books that are not checked out will be reshelved.
  • If you choose to leave personal or checked out items in carrels, please store them neatly on or under the carrel shelf. Items not stored in such a manner may be removed at the discretion of library staff. Please keep your carrel neat and do not leave trash or recyclables in the carrel. Carrels that become unsightly may be cleared completely at the discretion of the library staff. At the end of each semester, carrels are cleared completely.
  • The responsibility for personal items and checked out library items remains yours. Leave them at your own risk. Do not leave laptops unattended in your carrel; thefts have been reported in the library.

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Contact Us

Harold F. Johnson Library Center
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002
Fax 413.559.5419

© 2014 Hampshire College 893 West Street Amherst, MA 01002 . 413.549.4600