Texas Tech University


[Minor revision–posted 10/16/13 (replaces 10/24/11 edition)]
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 Texas Tech University academic coat of arms

Operating Policy and Procedure

OP 66.01: Texas Tech University Libraries

DATE: October 16, 2013

PURPOSE: The purpose of this Operating Policy/Procedure (OP) is to ensure understanding and a standardized approach to matters relating to the libraries.

REVIEW: This OP will be reviewed in September of odd-numbered years by the Senior Vice Provost and the Dean of Libraries with substantive revisions presented to the Provost and Senior Vice President.


1.  Mission and Vision

Through individualized service, the Texas Tech University libraries connect users with resources that advance intellectual inquiry and discovery. The Texas Tech University libraries will have the resources necessary to offer uncompromising service, be a research library of international stature, magnify the reputation of the university and the value of education, and be a key component in the intellectual life of the university.

2.  Values

The values of the libraries are:

• learning
• service
• accountability
• collaboration
• mutual respect
• initiative

3.  Goals

The goals of the libraries are to:

a.    Serve a larger, more academically prepared and diverse student body;

b.    Attain national recognition as a top research library;

c.    Build connections through library services that enhance the quality of campus and community life;

d.    Maximize the use of technology in the delivery of library services;

e.    Build strategic library partnerships and alliances;

f.    Maintain a quality work force and work environment within the libraries;

g.    Contribute to the establishment and continuation of traditions and pride in our university; and

h.    Strengthen library fiscal stability and public accountability.

4.  Description

a.    The libraries are members of the Texas Digital Library; Association of Research Libraries; Online Computer Library Center (OCLC), an international bibliographic network; Amigos Library Services, a seven-state regional network; TexShare, Texas Institutions of Higher Education; the Greater Western Library Alliance; and the Ex Libris Users of North America. These memberships facilitate cataloging, communication, and resource sharing.

b.    An online computer catalog provides bibliographic and circulation information for collections of the libraries. The online catalog and other electronic collections and services can be accessed from any library workstation or any networked computer anywhere in the world.

c.    In addition to the online catalog, the libraries' website provides access to many bibliographic and full-text databases, electronic books, and journals. It is also used in transmission of document delivery requests, and it provides news and information about the libraries. TTU libraries will serve TTU's students, staff, and faculty anywhere and any time.

d.    The University Library collections include materials in support of curriculum and research in the schools, departments, and centers at Texas Tech University. The University Library is a regional depository for U.S. government documents, U.S. patents and trademarks, and Texas state documents.

e.    Some study carrels are available for individual assignment to faculty, graduate students working on theses and dissertations, and Honors College students. Group study rooms are also available. Applications for these may be made at the Circulation Desk.

f.    The Digital Media Studio (DMS) provides for authoring and review of media, borrowing from a 10,000 item video collection, borrowing from an extensive collection of digital equipment such as digital cameras, and open access to the 3D Animation Lab where many very high end 3D and scientific applications are available for use.

5.  Policies and Procedures for Using the Libraries

a.    Access Services Department

Circulation of books and other material varies, depending on the type of material, the location, and the type of user. Materials such as rare books, reference books, current periodicals, and some U.S. government documents have restrictions on circulation. Materials in the main collection circulate for loan periods based on patron classification. Undergraduate students and staff have a three-week loan period, graduate students and students in the Honors College receive a semester loan, and faculty have a loan period that ends in May of each year. Valid student IDs function as library cards. Faculty and staff use their Tech ID to enable library services.

Materials may also be borrowed by students and faculty at Wayland Baptist University, South Plains College, and Lubbock Christian University. Community users may also borrow materials after registering.

Most loaned items may be renewed. Items may also be recalled.

The reserve service provides a convenient way for students to access materials selected by faculty for class use. Some materials can be scanned and made available on the libraries' website. Reserve items include library-owned materials, faculty copies of books or articles, and samples of previous exams and class assignments. Pick-up and delivery services are available for faculty-owned copies.

Students, faculty, and staff have access to materials not owned by Texas Tech through the Document Delivery unit. Materials in remote storage may also be accessed. Typically, turnaround is less than 24 hours.

b.    Information Access and Assistance

The service desks are prepared to assist with both general and specific research questions. Subject librarians are assigned as liaisons to each academic program on campus and they consult with faculty and students for research projects, theses, and dissertations. Questions are answered online via e-mail or in person.

Electronic databases, online indexes, full-text e-journals, e-books, and e-documents can be accessed in the libraries, on campus, and by remote access. Special formats (microforms, newspapers, current periodicals, government documents, patents and trademarks, maps, geographic information systems data, and science data sets) are also available.

Information literacy instruction includes a one-credit course (LIBR 1100), general database demonstrations, subject-specific classroom instruction, workshops, and individual instruction and research assistance.

Services to University College mirror those available to on-campus students, except when restrained by legal contracts and licenses.

c.    Special Collections

The libraries hold several special collections, which, due to their unique nature, require restricted use and handling. Because these collections consist of original materials, circulation is not permitted.

(1)    Southwest Collection: Located in the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, the Southwest Collection serves as both the university archive and as a regional repository of historical information pertaining to the American Southwest. Use inquiries should be addressed to Southwest Collection staff. Portions of this collection can be accessed online at http://swco.ttu.edu.

(2)    Rare Books/Special Collections: Located in the Southwest Collection/Special

Collections Library, the Rare Books/Special Collections unit is composed of several categories of rare books and manuscript materials dating from 1493. Use inquiries should be addressed to staff.

(3)    Vietnam Archive: Located in the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, the Vietnam Archive collects and preserves material pertaining to the Vietnam War, and supports and encourages research and education regarding all aspects of the American Vietnam experience. This collection can be accessed online at http://www.vietnam.ttu.edu/virtualarchive/.

(4)    Archive of Turkish Oral Narrative: Located in the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, the Archive of Turkish Oral Narrative functions as one of the world's primary repositories of traditional Turkish folk tales. The archive can be accessed online at http://aton.ttu.edu.

(5)    University Archives: Located in the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, the University Archives collects, preserves, and makes available materials pertaining to the history of the Texas Tech University System. It also oversees the university's records management program. An overview of its holdings and resources can be accessed at http://swco.ttu.edu/University_Archive/mainpage.php.

(6)    The James Sowell Family Collection in Literature, Community, and the Natural World contains the personal papers of award-winning contemporary American writers whose work deals with the natural world, the significance of communities, and questions of social justice. In addition to published books, materials available for research include correspondence, drafts of manuscripts, research notebooks, diaries, calendars, photographs, and film. A complete list of writers in the Sowell Collection can be found on the website www.swco.ttu.edu/Sowell/SowellCollectionSWC.php.

d.    Acquisition of Library Materials

(1)    Subject librarians work closely with faculty and students to build and manage collections to support the teaching and research mission of the university.

(2)    The libraries also acquire current materials through diverse means such as an approval plan that covers books recently published in the U.S. and some foreign countries, through vendors of electronic products, and through individual orders.

(3)    Periodicals and other serials are reviewed on an annual basis for both cancellations and subscription decisions.

e.    Special Library Privileges for Faculty for Published Materials

(1)    Faculty borrowing privileges include a loan period that ends in May of each year. A renewal-by-mail service is offered to faculty. Books checked out by faculty are subject to recall when needed by other users. Faculty privilege is extended to all faculty at the rank of full-time instructor and above.

The University Library also provides a delivery service for library-owned books and journal articles. Faculty can place a delivery request via the website, e-mail, fax, or by phone. Requests for materials not owned by the library are automatically referred to the

Document Delivery unit.

(2)    New faculty members and visiting professors who do not yet have a university identification card need a letter from the chair of their department in order to be issued a library card.

(3)    The faculty/staff family library card may be issued at the Circulation Desk by making the request. This privilege is extended to the families of all staff and faculty at the rank of full-time instructor and above. Items borrowed by family members may be loaned for a three-week loan period.

(4)    Document Delivery acquires materials not owned by the libraries. Books usually can be obtained within a week and journal articles can be transmitted within 48 hours. Document Delivery materials are delivered to faculty offices Monday through Friday between 3:00 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Most Document Delivery materials will be delivered electronically.

Requests can be submitted in paper form, via phone, fax, or e-mail, or submitted online. There are no charges for items acquired through Document Delivery.

(5)    The University Library provides a delivery and pick-up service for materials loaned out to faculty and for faculty-owned materials for class reserve use.

(6)    For DMS materials see http://library.ttu.edu/services/technology/dms/policies.php.

f.    Architecture Library

The Architecture Library, a branch of the University Libraries, is located in the Architecture Building. The service desk offers circulation, reserve, and reference services. The Architecture Library staff includes librarians who offer information literacy instruction to students and consult with faculty and students for research projects. The librarians continue to develop a collection of architecture-related materials in various formats. The Architecture Library includes an image library that is responsible for developing a local digital collection of architecture-related materials.

g.    Special Needs

Disabled persons requiring special assistance should contact any service desk. The libraries follow guidelines set forth by Student Disability Services and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Operating Policies & Procedures