Use of the Library

About Using the Library

The University of Virginia Library system seeks to provide all patrons with a welcoming, comfortable, and safe environment that promotes free intellectual exploration, research, and learning. The libraries of the University offer well-managed, diverse collections of library resources and a knowledgeable and helpful staff.

The UVA Library’s primary mission is to serve University of Virginia students, faculty, and staff, as well as researchers and alumni. Members of the community are also welcome to use Library facilities, consistent with our Circulation Policy and our Access to Databases Policy.

The UVA Library prioritizes certain services, resources, and space to the University community and affiliated researchers. In particular, Library computers are limited in number, and often in high demand. Therefore, priority use of library computers is reserved for students, faculty and staff engaged in education-related activities.

All Library patrons are expected to comply with these library use policies. Failure to comply with these policies may be Grounds for removal from the UVA Library system on a temporary or permanent basis. Use of the libraries at UVA is a privilege, not a right.


Library patrons are expected to adhere to generally applicable University of Virginia policies and regulations regarding the use of University facilities and property, including but not limited to:

In addition to UVA policies and regulations, the following specific library use and conduct policies apply:

  1. Library patrons are expected to respect the rights of other patrons to use library resources and facilities in a quiet, clean, and peaceful atmosphere.
  2. Library patrons are expected to respect and care for all library materials, equipment, and property and may not remove such items from the Library without proper checkout or authorization.
  3. Library patrons must not engage in disruptive activity or other behavior that interferes with the normal use and operation of the libraries. Such behavior includes but is not limited to: verbal abuse, intimidation, or harassment.
  4. Library patrons must not maliciously access, alter, damage, or destroy any Library computer or database.
  5. Library patrons must respect a staff member’s request to relinquish a computer or other equipment for use by another patron.
  6. Children under the age of 16 must be supervised by a parent, tutor, youth program coordinator, or other responsible adult while in the Library. Exceptions will be made on an individual basis for children under the age of 16 who are directly engaged in research or educational activities and need to use Library resources. Children should be prepared to show proof of age upon request.
  7. Library patrons are responsible for their personal property at all times, and should never leave personal property unattended. The Library is not responsible for any loss or damage to personal property.
  8. In order to provide an optimum environment for using the Library, users should conduct cell phone conversations away from study and research areas and turn off ringers while in the Library.
  9. Food and drinks, within reason, are permitted in many Library locations. However, Library patrons are expected to be considerate of others and to avoid messy, smelly, or noisy food items. Aluminum cans and waste paper should be recycled in the proper receptacles. All other trash is to be disposed of properly.
  10. Food and drinks are prohibited in Special Collections areas and restricted at computer workstations and microform or other equipment susceptible to damage.
  11. Library restrooms are not to be used for bathing or other similar purposes.
  12. Library patrons are expected to comply with the Library’s policies (found at Circulation Desks) regarding online viewing of sexually explicit materials.
  13. Library facilities are open only to UVA students, faculty, and staff from midnight to 8 a.m.  Do not trespass when the building is closed. (Your image may be recorded.)