Please be aware that the following is general information concerning circulation policies.  Branch Libraries and collections within libraries may have differing circulation policies.

Eligibility Guidelines-

  • Any adult Iowa resident who has no affiliation with the University of Iowa
  • Friends of the UI Libraries
  • Iowa K-12 students with written request from a school authority

Limitations-Library cards are issued only to individuals, not to groups or businesses.  The individual named on the card takes financial responsibility for each item checked out on the card.

A card may be revoked if a holder demonstrates poor borrowing habits (e.g., repeatedly returning materials overdue, failure to respond immediately to recall notices, or violation of the “personal use only” guideline).
A librarian may restrict any cardholder from borrowing normally circulating materials in collections for which s/he is responsible if, in the librarian’s opinion, such a loan will interfere with the needs of the UI community.  The UI Libraries are not intended to take the place of a public library – they are intended primarily for the use of UI students, faculty and staff.

Library Card– Your Community Borrower Card is needed to check out items.  It isn’t honored at the UI Law Library or Curriculum Lab.

E-Mail-The library uses e-mail to send notices. If you don’t have e-mail access, the library will send notices to your residing address.

Loan Information

  • Books, thesis, and Storage items: 4-week loan (two weeks for Hardin Library for the Health Sciences open stacks items)
  • Bound journals: 1-week loan
  • Items with a loan period of greater than three days can be checked out. (at the Main Library, unbound journals, media items, and Reserve Desk items are examples of items that cannot be checked out)
  • A maximum of 25 items can be checked out at any one time
  • A maximum of 3 holds (recalls and/or searches) at a time
  • Most items can be renewed up to 99 times
  • Newspapers and Reference items can’t be checked out.
  • One overdue recalled book and/or five overdue items will block further checkout privileges.
  • Overdue fines and replacement costs are charged according to the policies and procedures that apply to UI students.  The University Business Office processes library charges.
  • Each item will have a due date noted at checkout. Checking “My Account” on InfoHawk can help manage your library checkouts.


Renewals-Renewing via InfoHawk’s “My Account” is easy.  Once signed in, simply click “Loans”, and then on the word “Renew” next to the item to be renewed.  Renewals can be e-mailed, mailed or phoned in.  Items can also be brought into any library (except the Law Library or the Curriculum Lab) for renewal.  Recalled items cannot be renewed.

Recalls-If you need an item that is checked out, you can recall it. Simply click the “Recall” link on InfoHawk and follow the directions to place the recall.  The person who has the item will be contacted by the library and given a new due date.  When the item is returned, you’ll receive a notice that it is available for pick-up.

Items you have checked out can also be recalled from you. You will receive a recall notice giving a new due date.  Recall overdue fines are high and having overdue recalls will block you from checking out new items.  If you still need it, return it to a circulation desk and ask for it to be recalled back for you. Everyone is guaranteed two weeks with an item that has a four-week (or longer) loan, and then it can be recalled.  If an item is needed for Reserve for use by a class, then it can be recalled immediately (no two week guarantee), and it cannot be recalled back for you.

Searches-If you are unable to locate an item that should be in the book stacks, contact staff at a circulation desk to initiate a search.  If it is located, you will receive a notice that it is on hold for you.  The item will also remain on search for you for a year.

Overdue Notice-One overdue notice will be sent after the item is due.  Please contact staff at the library that sent the notice if you have any questions or concerns about the notice.

Fines and Book Charges-

  • Overdue recalls– $4.00 per day; maximum fine $40.00
  • Overdue journals–$4.00 per day fine; maximum fine $40.00
  • Overdue 2-and 4-week loan items–$10.00 fine if the item is so overdue that it is billed

All library charges appear on University of Iowa Business Office statements. 

If an item is billed, both the maximum fine and the item replacement cost charge will appear on the statement.  When the billed item is returned, library staff will forward a credit for the item replacement cost (the fine is not refunded) to the Business Office. 


Hours-The hours of the libraries vary according to the university calendar.  Paper copies of library hours are available, and hours information is also found at