e-Library
LIBRARY POLICY 2015

June 2015

Printed at Academic City College Ghana,

Abena Ateaa Towers, Ring Road Central, Accra. PO Box AD 421
Contact: info@accghana.com +233 2253630/31, +233-9542433

For any queries regarding this Library Policy document, please contact Dean (Student Affairs), Academic City College.
I. Introduction

Welcome Message

The Academic City College, Library welcomes all lecturers, students, staff, and visitors to its threshold. The Library’s congenial environment, it’s effective application of day-to-day operating procedures, and collaborative services from its staff ensure the provision of support and assistance required by users to enhance their research work.

II. Mission of Academic City College, Ghana Library

To support the teaching, learning and research pursuits of the College by providing access to quality information resources and services.

III. Vision of Academic City College, Ghana Library

To build a library that will provide excellent information services that demonstrate a commitment to meet the individual and collective information needs of its users/patrons.

IV. A Brief History of the Library

The Library was established in May 2012 to support the growing information needs of students and lecturers in their research, teaching and learning activities. It started with an initial collection of 1,200 books. Currently, it has 2,792 collections, a seating capacity of 80 and Its operations are fully automated. It is located at the Academic City campus on the Ring Road in Accra.

V. The Library’s Collections and Collection Formats

About the Library’s Collections

The library’s collections include printed and electronic books, DVDs, CDs, periodicals, online databases and journals. Online databases provide access to articles and other reference materials, much of which are full-text. The library also provides computers with internet access for its primary patrons to enable them to avail themselves of the benefits of the world of electronic information. Books are organized according to the Library of Congress Classification System: designated areas are set aside for circulating, reference, and rare collections; periodicals are arranged alphabetically by title; and current editions are mounted on display shelves.

Staff of the Library

The Library is under the management of a professionally trained competent librarian assisted by a support team of dedicated staff.

VI. Operations, users and prohibitive activities

Periods of Operation

The Library opens from Mondays to Saturdays, except on public holidays, and operates as follows: Mondays to Saturdays: 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

Closing Periods

The library closes on Sundays & during vacations, and public holidays. Emergency situations such as severe weather may require that the library be closed for some time. At the discretion of the librarian with the approval of the Library Management Committee, the library may be closed for other reasons such as stock taking or maintenance.

Users/Patrons of the Library

The Library is open to the following categories of users/patrons:

  • All members of staff
  • Students
  • Alumni of the Academic City College
  • Research Fellows and Visiting Scholars
  • Academic staff and research students from other universities, on request and with appropriate permissions obtained.
  • Other categories of persons on the authority of the Library Committee.

Prohibited Activities

All library patrons are expected to be considerate towards each other and cooperate with other users and staff of the library to ensure the maintenance of a reasonably quiet environment for the benefit of all persons using the library. In support of that policy, the following activities, the violation of any of which may result in the institution of penalties, including eviction from the library where need be, against offenders are prohibited in the Library:

  • Cell phone communication-cell phone users must turn off their phones or set them in silence/vibration mode when in the library;
  • Discussions, talking and laughing;
  • Defacing or destruction of property and materials;
  • Unauthorized removal of library materials;
  • Boisterous behavior including running, throwing of objects;
  • Fighting;
  • Inappropriate display of affection;
  • Inappropriate language;
  • Possession of firearms, fireworks, or other weapons;
  • Smoking;
  • Placing of feet on tables and chairs;
  • Pets;
  • Foods and drinks;
  • Loitering;
  • Failure to return recalled items by the due date may result in fines and or suspension of borrowing privileges.
  • Taking any item out of the library without completing the appropriate loan procedure; Patrons and must satisfy the Librarian that any library item being taken out of the library has been duly borrowed.
  • Entry to the library with Gowns, raincoats, umbrellas, cameras, scanners, tape recorders, etc. These items must be deposited at the security desk.
  • Having bags on you: no bags shall be permitted entry into the library.

VII. Reader services and Circulation

Books allowed for Borrowing

  • The library shall acquire materials relevant to the programmes offered bythe College.
  • Rare and reference materials are not to be borrowed but referred to in the library only.
  • Circulating materials are available for borrowing for a 2-week period to lecturers, registered students who hold valid ID cards, and staff of the College.
  • Loan periods are reviewed from time to time by the Librarian in consultation with the Library Committee.
  • DVDs and CDs usually circulate to lecturers and staff only. They may circulate to students when placed on reserve by lecturers for specific courses.
  • Reference books, periodicals and newspapers, no matter what format they are in, may not be taken from the library, except at the request of an academic department with the approval of the librarian.
  • Lecturers and members of staff are expected to return all books during the end-of-semester recall. Permission is granted for the renewal of such books that may still be needed.

Check-out/Borrowing Limits

Limits on the number of books/items that may be/borrowed are as follows:

  • Senior members of Academic City College may borrow up to 3 books/items at a time.
  • Students of the College may borrow up to 2 books/items at a time.
  • Administrative staff of the College may borrow up to 2 book/items at a time.
  • Research fellows, Visiting scholars etc. may borrow up to 3 books/items at a time.

Renewal of Borrowed Books/Items

A book/item may be renewed if presented in person at the library if no other patron has requested for it or if the library has not recalled it. Lecturers and members of staff are expected to return all books during the end-of-semester lecturers/staff recall. Books that are still needed may be renewed during that time.

Overdue Penalty

A patron who keeps borrowed books beyond due dates shall pay a fine or have his/her certificate withheld until the book/item is either returned or a replacement fee is paid. As courtesy to borrowers, the library shall send regular notices on overdue books/items. However, it is the borrower's responsibility to return the items on time, whether or not the notice is received.

Failure to settle library obligations

Failure to settle library obligations such as unpaid library fines or overdue books/items may result in the following penalties:

  • Returning students will not be allowed to register.
  • Graduating students may not be allowed to receive their certificates or transcripts.
  • The library’s computer-based circulation system will place a "block" on a user's borrowing privileges.
  • As such, library clearance shall be a requisite for registration and collection of certificates, in the case of students; and payment of salaries/allowances in the case of lecturers and staff.

Books/Items Circulation period

Books/items generally circulate for a two-week period at a time and are due by the last date of borrowing. However, Lecturers and staff may keep books/items longer than the two-week period but such books are subject to immediate recall.
Some rare books in the collection do not circulate at all. They include:

  • Reference Books and items.
  • Newspapers and periodicals
  • Dictionaries and Encyclopedias
  • Course manuals
  • CDs
Senior members, Lecturers, research fellows and visiting lecturers may, however, borrow such books and restricted materials for reference and research purposes, but for only one week at a time.

Circulation files

Circulation files are considered confidential. As such, library staff will not reveal the name of the person to whom an item has been checked out.

Lost / Damaged book

  • A patron shall pay the full cost of a lost book. In lieu of this payment, the library will accept a new replacement copy of equal or greater value.
  • Damaged books, while assessed by the administrator of the library on a case-by-case basis, may also be replaced in like manner.
  • Library books and other materials cannot be purchased. Even if a lost item charge has been paid, the item remains the property of the institution.
  • Any person who falsely claims to have lost an item simply to retain possession of it may be charged with illegally possessing the institution’s property.
  • If a book is found within one year, upon presentation of the receipt, a refund may be made minus the service charge and any fines owed.

VIII. Collections of the Library

The library takes decisions regarding development, maintenance and collection based on principles that aim at correcting any weaknesses in the collection and also maintaining the strengths of the collection. Management policy on collection covers three main areas: acquisition, evaluation and selection.

Acquisition of Library Materials

It is the policy of the library to build a collection containing the materials that best suit the objectives of its primary clientele both now and in the future. It is the aim of Academic City College Library to build in all appropriate fields, a collection of the highest degree of excellence, both qualitative and quantitative, that its monetary resources will provide. The Library Committee and the Librarian shall jointly work towards this end. Building collections to meet the objectives expressed in the policy requires making provisions for evaluating the collections and for expending funds designated for the development of collections.

Evaluation of Collections

Continual examination of the collections is necessary to affirm their relevance for curricula and sufficiency in variety and number of materials per discipline. Evaluation of the collections shall be accomplished through direct and indirect means. Usage statistics shall be analyzed every year to determine the extent to which the collections meet the needs of patrons. Inter-library loan requests and reserve requests are useful feedback tools. Core bibliographies shall be consulted regularly to build up needed areas of the collections. The expertise of lecturers will also be sought.

Allocation of Funds

The management of Academic City College will make funds available for all library expenditures. The librarian will ensure that this fund that accrue, is utilized appropriately on the library by identifying shortfalls in the collections, as well as equipment requirements and making appropriate suggestions to the Library Management Committee for purchases. This will take care of gaps in the collections, materials in subject areas that are not represented in the curricula, materials that have been damaged or lost, materials to be repaired and equipment to be maintained or replaced.

Selection of Library Materials

Materials shall be selected for the library with due regard to the opinions of members of the academic departments of the College and will be linked to sources of standard bibliographies, dependable review journals, and lists of publications considered to be outstanding by authoritative boards of review. The specific criteria applicable to almost all library purchases will be adopted to include:

  • Subject scope of the material
  • Authority, honesty and credibility of the author and publisher
  • Time value of the material
  • Cost of the material
  • Special features: index and bibliography
  • Accuracy of the material
  • Usefulness of the material with respect to other works already in the collection or easily available from other collections, including:
    • Representation of all sides of controversial issues
    • Avoidance of materials that duplicate information already held
    • Avoidance of expensive materials of limited use when they are held by other member libraries in the district.
    • Scarcity of material on the subject
    • Price of the work in comparison with other equally useful material
    • Format of the work
    • Appropriateness of the material with respect to curricula
    The primary responsibility for the building of the collection resides with the Librarian. Within the Library, the librarian is responsible for ordering and receiving requested materials and maintaining the business records necessary for the fiscal control of library budget. Cooperation between members of academic departments and the librarian in the selection of materials allows individual members of academic departments to bring their intellectual knowledge to bear on the task of selection and assures their support for the collection of specific curricula needs. The responsibility of the librarian is to ensure that no areas of development appropriate to the collection is ignored or slighted and that the collection as a whole is developed objectively, consistently and thoroughly.

Orders for Books and Periodicals

Suggestions for orders for books and periodicals are the prerequisite of academic departments of the College and the library staff. Students and staff of the College may, however, suggest book purchases to the librarian who may consider placing orders for them. But, in all these, the final decision to purchase any library material rests with the Library Committee, which, along with other criteria, bases allocations on the funds available to the library for such orders from the annual academic departmental budget allocations.

IX. Special Aspects of Collections Management

Paperbacks

When there is a choice between hard cover and paperback, the paperback will be purchased unless its usage is expected to stand up to frequent and heavy use.

Periodicals

Subscriptions of current editions are made at the request of academic departments and on the basis of the expressed needs and interests of the users of the library. Every year, prior to renewal dates, the library informs members of the academic departments about which titles are available in the library's full-text databases, upon which information, members of the academic departments review their orders and consider cancelling the print versions that are duplicated online.

Newspaper:

The library shall subscribe to representative national newspapers,

Foreign Language Materials

Materials in foreign languages will be purchased to support the language curricula offered by College, particularly when a specific need is evident for a foreign language edition.

Materials not used regularly

Resources (books, manuals, indexes, periodicals, dissertations) and information needed to support the research of an individual student or members of academic departments are obtained, whenever possible, through the inter-library loan facility rather than through purchase.

Out-of-Print Materials

Out-of-print materials are sought for from catalogs and web pages of out-of printbook dealers and services of major book jobbers.

Textbooks

Textbooks are purchased, and free copies are accepted, only when they supply information in areas in which they may be the best or the only source of information on the subject.

Audio-Visual (A-V) Media

The library acquires a limited number of recordings, CDs, DVDs and videos. These are selected on the basis of course needs and the needs of the library's clientele, largely on the recommendations of the academic departments. As for adding other A-V materials to the collections, the general policy is to select materials which will best serve the purposes of Academic City College.

Thesis and Project Work

Through its thesis and institutional repository office, the library may accept and maintain printed copies of graduate theses, project papers, and scholarly papers.

Electronic Resources

For the purpose of the collections policy, electronic resources are defined as reference or indexing sources, either as full-text and/or as citations, which require computer access. The Library Committee will collectively vote on new acquisitions. Electronic resources are subject to contracts negotiated with the respective suppliers. In selecting electronic resources, the following criteria will be used:

  • Speed and efficient access for users as compared to print version of material
  • Cost effectiveness (start-up and maintenance costs in relation to the number of academic programs served)
  • Ease of manipulation
  • For bibliographic databases, a high percentage of the titles found in the indexing/abstracting database should be owned by or be accessible to the Library
  • Shelving space available for physical forms of the database contents


Additional criteria:

  • Accuracy and authenticity
  • Scope and depth of coverage
  • Historical perspective as well as currency of data
  • Ease of use (e.g., special indexing/browsing features).

Gifts

The library welcomes gifts but accepts them with the understanding that it has the right to handle or dispose of them in the best interest of the College. The library will determine the classification, housing and circulation policy relating to all gift items.

Maintenance of Collections

Library materials are expensive to purchase, process, and house. The library acknowledges the necessity of preserving all holdings, both traditional and nontraditional. Library staff and users are informed about proper care and handling of library materials in all formats. In addition, temperature and humidity within the building are controlled for maintenance of library materials. Deteriorating materials in the collection shall be reviewed by the librarian. He/she shall determine if the material can or should be preserved. If the material can and should be preserved, appropriate action will be taken to restore the material to a useful state. If the determination is that the material should not be restored, it will be weeded from the collections. The librarian, with advice from the academic department, will determine if the material is to be replaced.

Weeding of Collections

Academic City College’s library shall keep the collections current through a regular, continuous process for removal of materials which are no longer useful. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the professional librarian to survey the collections throughout the year so as to determine the usefulness of the materials in the curricula. Members of the academic department in affected subject areas will be consulted before materials are removed from the collections. Academic City College, Ghana Central Library shall conduct systematic programs of weeding from the general library collections. Decisions to withdraw materials are made in consultation with the members of the academic department linked to the academic discipline most directly concerned with possible future use of the resource. Resources affected by weeding are largely:

  • Works having timeworn appearance which are not necessarily rare or of considerable value in terms of either content or actual marketability
  • Unneeded duplicates
  • Earlier editions which have been superseded
  • Editions in non-English languages in which the English version is held by the library and the foreign language material does not relate to course offerings or do not support academic department scholarly needs
  • Works with outdated or incorrect information
  • Ordinary textbooks and dictionaries
  • Superseded almanacs, yearbooks, and manuals
  • Old course outlines
All materials which are weeded should be properly reported in the annual inventory report and should be properly marked so as to not re-appear on the shelves.

Intellectual Freedom

The Library is not biased on any issues and seeks to maintain free flow of information in the selection of books. The disapproval of a book by one group shall not be reason for denying that book to all groups if, by library selection standards, it belongs in the collections. Any patron who wishes to challenge a library material on the shelves should contact the librarian.

X. Reference and Access Service Policies

Introduction

The Library plays an active role in supporting the overall mission of the College by providing access to relevant information through the development of library collections, their organization and arrangement for access and use, and the provision of appropriate information and instructional services. To be most effective in fulfilling its mission, the Library offers a wide range of services for students, academic departments, and staff of the Academic City College. These services include:

  • Provision of personal assistance to library users in the use of the library
  • Assisting library patrons to search for information both within and outside the library
  • Offering Question and Answer Services (QAS)
  • Providing Referral Service
  • Providing Library research and evaluation activities
  • Providing Inter-library loan services
  • Providing information and access to information
  • Offering Book lending services
  • Providing Reference and information services
  • Providing Internet/ photocopy services
  • Assisting with Manual/ electronic literature searches
  • Training in information literacy and user orientation skills

Library Reserve Policies

Both owned library materials and those supplied by members of academic departments shall be accepted and put on reserve. Items that could be put on reserve include books, course packets, journal articles, chapters of books, electronic files and multimedia materials. Reserve materials cannot be borrowed by any category of patron. A patron may request that the Library places on hold or reserve a book that is currently checked out. Such requested books shall be kept for the patrons for two (2) working days.

Inter-library Loan (ILL) Policies

  • Inter-library Loan services are available to provide access to books and magazine articles not owned or readily available at Academic City College, Ghana Central Library.
  • Inter-library Loan services are available to the primary clientele only. There is no charge for this service unless a fee is assessed by the lending institution.
  • Academic City College cannot borrow the following: rare, old or valuable materials; "best sellers"; materials: reference books; genealogical materials; bulky or fragile items; or materials intended to be placed on reserve, non-print materials.
  • Items borrowed through inter-library loan (ILL) may be renewed if the lending institution agrees. Borrowed materials not picked up by requesting patrons during the loan period will be returned to the lending library and will cancel the borrower's ILL privileges unless the borrower reimburses Centre for its costs.
  • The borrower shall assume all financial responsibility for ILL items which are lost or damaged.
  • Prompt return of materials is necessary in order to adhere to due dates established by the lending library.
  • Renewal requests should be made at least two days before the due date in order to process the request. There is no guarantee that the lending library will grant a renewal.
  • The lending library determines the length of the loan period and whether or not renewals may be granted.
  • The borrowing library honors all restrictions of the lending library.
  • Any charges or fees assessed by the lending library are billed to the library user for whom the material is acquired.
  • The library user requesting the materials is responsible for payment of all fees incurred as a result of the request.

XI. Responsible use of Library equipment and e-resources

Introduction

Desktop computers are located in the Library to provide direct access to the online catalog, web, and online databases and resources. Access to resources on the internet through library terminals is provided to support research and pedagogical activities only. All library patrons who utilize library computers are expected to do so responsibly, respecting library property and the rights of others. The Library cannot control the information available over the Internet and is not responsible for its content. The internet contains a wide variety of material, expressing many points of view. Not all sources provide information that is accurate, complete or current, and some may be offensive or disturbing to some viewers. Users should properly evaluate internet resources according to their academic and research needs. Links to other internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement by the Library of the content or views contained therein. The library respects and supports the concept of intellectual freedom. The Library also supports access to information and opposes censorship, labeling and/or restricting access to information. In accordance with this policy, the Library does not use filters to restrict access to information on the internet or web. Behavior that adversely affects the work of others and interferes with the ability of library staff to provide good service is considered inappropriate. It is expected that users of the library's public access computers will be sensitive to the perspectives of others and responsive to library staff's reasonable requests for changes in behavior and compliance with library and College policies. The Library reserves the right to remove any user(s) from a computer if they are in violation of any part of this policy and may deny further access to library computers and/or other library resources for repeat offenders. The Library will pursue infractions or misconduct through the campus disciplinary channels and/or law enforcement as appropriate.

  • All students who want to use the library computers must book with the library staff.
  • The initial time of booking for each student is one (1) hour; this can be extended if there are no students waiting to use the computers.

Users are not permitted to:

  • Copy any copyrighted software provided by the College. It is a criminal offence to copy any software that is protected by copyright, and College will treat it as such.
  • Use licensed software in a manner inconsistent with the licensing arrangement.
  • Copy, rename, alter, examine, or delete the files or programs of another person or Centre without permission
  • Use a computer with the intent to intimidate, harass, or display hostility toward others (e.g. sending offensive messages or prominently displaying material that others might find offensive such as vulgar language, explicit sexual material or material from hate groups).
  • Create, disseminate or run a self-replicating program ("virus"), whether destructive in nature or not.
  • Use a computer for business purposes.
  • Tamper with switch settings, move, re-configure or do anything that could damage terminals, computers, printers or other equipment.
  • Collect, read, or destroy output other than one’s own work without the permission of the owner.
  • Use the computer account of another person with or without their permission unless it is designated for group work.
  • Access or attempt to access a host computer, either at Collegeor through a network, without the owner’s permission, and/or through use of log-in information belonging to another person.
  • Download software from the internet onto library computers, altering settings or files, and tampering with computer security in any way.
  • The use of external drives e.g. pen drives, CDs or diskettes must be supervised by library staff.
  • The installation of programs on the computers is not allowed.
  • The use of computers for games, watching of pornographic/other films is also not allowed.

Library Telephone and Scanner

The library telephone and scanner may be used in emergency or hardship cases only and with the permission of the library staff in charge.

Copy Machines

The copiers are self-service; available for a fee, and in compliance with the copyright law.

Library Reproductions, Copyright protections and License Agreements

Many of the resources found on the web are copyright protected. Although the internet is a different medium from printed text, ownership and intellectual property rights still exist. Users must check the documents for appropriate statements indicating ownership. Most of the electronic software and journal articles available on library servers and computers are also copyrighted. Users shall not violate the legal protection provided by copyrights and licenses held by the Library. Copyright law and contractual license agreements govern the access, use and reproduction of the electronic resources that the College library makes available to its users. Users shall not make copies of any licensed or copyrighted computer program found on a library computer. Unless resources are covered by license agreements, reproductions (print or electronic) are governed by copyright laws which generally require that:

  • Materials reproduced are for non-profit purposes.
  • Materials reproduced are for educational purposes such as criticism, comment, teaching, scholarship and research.
  • The reproduction does not become the property of the user.
  • The reproduction is for a single copy or one original, as opposed to multiple copies.
  • The reproduction is reasonable in length given the nature of the material.