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Borrowing Materials from Cook Library

Students, staff, and faculty from Towson University (and other USMAI schools) can borrow books from the Albert S. Cook Library with a valid University ID card.  

University Alumni may borrow TU books with a valid, state-issued, photo ID and Towson University alumni card.  Local patrons unaffiliated with the University may be granted special borrowing permission on a case-by-case basis.

Standard Loan Periods for TU Books:

Borrower Type Loan Duration
Undergraduate Student 28 Days
Graduate Student 56 Days
Faculty / Staff Preset semester-length
TU Alumni 28 Days

Other item types (such as audio/video recordings, reserves, and leisure reading) have differing loan periods based on borrower type and collection. For more information, visit Circulation, or call 410-704-2456.

Fines and Fees

The Albert S. Cook Library assesses fines or fees for TU materials damaged, lost, or returned/renewed after their due dates.  The amount of these fines depends on the item type, time frame, and reason fines are being assessed. Fines, fees, and policies for Items borrowed from other USMAI schools or through interlibrary loan vary by the lending institution.

Reason for Fine Rate of Fine
Late Returns

$0.50 per day

Items 50 days overdue are Presumed Lost

Late Recall Returns

$2.00 per day

Items 25 days overdue are Presumed Lost

Late Returns of Course Reserves, DVD, and VHS 

$0.50 per hour

Items 8 days overdue are Presumed Lost

Presumed Lost / Lost $150.00 flat fee
Items Returned After Presumed Lost

$50.00 flat fee

($100 off the Presumed Lost fee)

Damaged Items Varies on a case-by-case basis

In the event an item is lost or damaged beyond repair, the Albert S. Cook Library allows borrowers to purchase replacement copies.  Please contact the Circulation Department at 410-704-2456, or library@towson.edu, for the specific requirements of replacements.

All fines/fees accrued on TU library items are transferred to the Towson University Bursar’s Office; please contact them for payment options and timelines. 

Please note that items requested from other schools may have different fines and fees, which must be made payable to the owning institution – not TU or Cook Library.

Borrowing Materials from Other Libraries

TU faculty, staff, and students may borrow materials in-person at other USMAI libraries using their TU ID cards.  They may also place requests for USMAI items to be shipped to the Albert S. Cook Library, by using the Request Item link on the catalog or Cook OneSearch. Requests usually arrive within 2-3 business days!

 Materials that are not available at Cook Library or other USMAI schools can often be requested and delivered to Cook Library through the ILLiad Interlibrary Loan Service (ILL). 

Additionally, TU patrons may visit and borrow books from the libraries at Goucher College, McDaniel College, MICA, and Stevenson University using their current TU ID and a second, state-issued ID.

Renewals, Recalls, and Returns

Patrons may renew their TU or USMAI loans online by logging-in to their Towson University library account using their unified TU username and password, and following the “Items borrowed/renewals” link.  The number of times a loan may be renewed varies based on the item, borrower, and lending library.  

Borrowed items may be recalled at any time if requested by another patron, which may shorten the current loan, and cause an alternate rate of overdue fines to be charged.  E-mail notification will be sent if an item’s due date is changed by a recall.

Books on standard loan from the TU or USMAI libraries may be returned to the library’s Circulation Desk (when the library is open), or at any time to the book drops either to the right of the Library’s main entrance, or to the left of the Media Center’s main entrance.