Frequently Asked Questions


My Library Account

How do I renew my books (DVDs, CDs)?

The Web-based catalogue system allows you to see a list of the items you have on loan, items on request / hold, to renew your materials, and to check your fines from any computer that has access to the Internet.  From any catalogue page choose the "Log In" button and enter your name (Smith, Jane) and Allison Library Card number (05221...) to access your Allison Library account.

Can I see a list of all the items I have on loan?

The Web-based catalogue system allows you to see a list of the items you have on loan, items on request / hold, to renew your materials, and to check your fines from any computer that has access to the Internet.  From any catalogue page choose the "Log In" button and enter your name (Smith, Jane) and Allison Library Card number (05221...) to access your Allison Library account.

How do I check for fines?

The Web-based catalogue system allows you to see a list of the items you have on loan, items on request / hold, to renew your materials, and to check your fines from any computer that has access to the Internet.  From any catalogue page choose the "Log In" button and enter your name (Smith, Jane) and Allison Library Card number (05221...) to access your Allison Library account.

Where do I pick up my library card?

Library cards can be obtained from the circulation desk in the Allison Library. If you are a Regent student, please bring your registration form with you to show payment of fees. UBC students must show a valid UBC card. VST student names will be checked against a list sent to the Allison Library.


Research

Why do materials from the Allison Library, Vancouver School of Theology Library and the St. Mark's Library display when I type in a search?

The catalogue is a combined database of both the John Richard Allison Library and Vancouver School of Theology Library collections. However, each library is autonomous and maintains an independent website with separate library policies, library hours, services, other resources, etc.  You can link to each library's website from the catalogue’s homepage (http://innovative.library.regent-college.edu/) Note that you must have a separate library card for both libraries to check out materials and place holds/ renew at both libraries.

Can I search for materials that are only in the Allison Library?

Yes.  When you link to the actual search page, there is a box with a drop-down menu that allows you to search both collections at the same time, or simply John Richard Allison or Vancouver School of Theology alone.

What is the difference between 'scholarly' or 'peer reviewed' sources and 'popular' sources?

Please see "Writing a Research Paper / Scholarly and/or Popular Sources"

What are 'primary' and 'secondary' sources and how do I find them?

Please see "Writing a Research Paper / Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Sources"


Borrowing and Requests (Holds)

Can I request (place a hold on) an item if it is check-out to another borrower?

Yes.  Placing a hold on an item prevents the borrower who has the item checked-out from renewing it.  Borrowers who fail to return recalled items on time will incur fines and borrowing privileges will be suspended until the recalled items are returned.  (See question below on using “My Library Record”  to further explain the process of requesting an item.)

You may also notice items that are checked out for an extended period of time.  Faculty members from various institutions are provided with extended borrowing privileges, with the understanding that any item can be recalled/ placed on hold.  Do not hesitate to recall an item you would like to use even if the due date seems far off.

Why do I need to log in to "My Library Record" if I want to place a hold on an item?

In order to place a hold correctly, you must log in to your account using the library card where the item is housed.  For example, if an item is from the Allison Library collection, use your Allison card to login.  In the box for Pick-up Location, you must also choose the library where the item is housed.  You must pick-up, check-out and return items to the same library where the item(s) requested is permanently stored.

Why does the loan period change on some items after I check them out?

When another borrower places a hold on an item that is checked out on your library record, the system allows you to have it for a certain number of days, depending upon the type of material.  For example, a Regent student may potentially have a book on loan for 28 days. However, if another borrower places a hold on it the loan period will likely be shortened.  Note that for a regular book loan (not a book on the reserve shelf), you are guaranteed a loan-period of 2 weeks from the time you check out a book, but not necessarily more, before being alerted by an e-mail that you must return the book to the library for another borrower’s use.  The electronic notice will inform you of the number of days you have to return the book before it is considered overdue and you begin to accrue fines.  Check  My Library Record on the library website periodically to determine whether another borrower has placed a hold on any of the materials you currently have out on loan.         

Will I be notified before my books are due so I can renew them and avoid getting fines?

Yes.  In order for the system to notify you prior to your due dates, you must provide the library with an up-to-date email address. These courtesy notices are automatically sent out to borrowers by the system so it is the responsibility of the borrower to check their email regularly to avoid incurring fines. Note: failure to receive courtesy reminders from the library will not excuse borrowers from late fees.

If you do not have an email address, there are a variety of free email providers available, such as yahoo, etc. UBC also offers accounts to UBC cardholders that provide 20 hours of free Internet usage with a UBC Interchange account. 

Why am I allowed only 3 renewals?

Since the loan period for students is now 1 month (28 days) for books, you can potentially keep these for 4 months if they are not requested by another borrower. By restricting the number of renewals, the potential to lose items is decreased and other borrowers have easier access to the materials as well.

Note:  It is important not to renew your items until you receive an email notice or you will be using your allotted number of renewal times too quickly.

Can I renew my books if I have fines?

For Regent students and staff, a balance owing which is less than $10 does not have to be paid in order to for you to continue to borrow or renew materials. Once the balance reaches $10, however, the system automatically prohibits you from further renewals or checkouts. In order to resume borrowing privileges, fines must be paid in full or below $10.

Can I pay fines by credit card or debit card?

No. Fines can only be paid by cash or cheque.

How do I renew my library items / track items checked out to me?

The Web-based catalogue system allows you to see a list of the items you have on loan, items on request / hold, to renew your materials, and to check your fines from any computer that has access to the Internet.  From any catalogue page choose the "Log In" button and enter your name (Smith, Jane) and Allison Library Card number (05221...) to access your Allison Library account.

Do I need to present my library card to checkout materials?

Yes.  A valid library card is required in order to checkout and renew library materials.  Materials will not be checked out without a card.  This is to help prevent mistakes that may occur if a patron provides a wrong number to the circulation staff, or if the staff member types a wrong number manually into the database.  Borrowers are responsible for all material charged out to their cards and for reporting lost or stolen cards to the circulation desk (604.221.3340).  A $5.00 replacement fee may be charged.

Can journals be checked-out?

No.  All journals are for use in the library only. If an entire volume is lost or damaged, it is almost impossible to track down and purchase so many back issues.  There are photocopiers in the library next to the circulation desk where articles can be photocopied.

What is the loan period for library materials?

Please see our Policies.

Where do I return my Allison Library items?

Each theological library is independent and autonomous.  And it is VERY important to note that items MUST be returned to the proper library.  Items borrowed from the Allison Library must be returned to the Allison Library.

During library hours items can be returned to the 'Book Returns" slot at the Circulation Desk.  After library hours items can be returned to the "Book Drop Bin" on the parking lot side of the Atrium (South East door).

NOTE: Library materials mistakenly left at the wrong theological library will be placed aside for safekeeping, but not returned to the owning library by library staff.  The owning library may be alerted that materials have been improperly returned and may contact the patron who has checked the materials out. It is the responsibility of the patron to retrieve the materials and return them to the appropriate library. Any overdue fines will continue to accrue until the materials are returned to their proper location.