Who Can Borrow?

The following patron groups can borrow materials from the UW Libraries:

  1. UW System Faculty, Staff and Students
  2. Community Members
  3. Visitors to Campus (including visiting faculty)
  4. Patrons of Other Libraries

For more detailed information see the Loan Periods section.

If you have questions about whether you can borrow material from the UW Libraries, contact us at (608) 262-3596, Monday-Friday 8:30 AM-5:00 PM, or via email.

Campus Document Delivery:

Articles and book chapters not available electronically can be digitized and sent to you.

Using the Interlibrary Loan request form articles and book chapters only held in print will be scanned and sent to you free of charge.

Fines and Late Fees

  Books Reserves Journals Video & DVDs ILL Items Lost Items
Fee for All Patron Groups No Late Fee $2/Hour
$35 Max
$5/day
$35 Max
$5/day
$35 Max
$15 $100 or Identical Replacement

Fines for overdue Math Library materials can be appealed by filling out the Library Fine Appeals Form, or by speaking to the Librarian. Fines can be paid online, by mail or in person at Memorial Libray.

Lost Item fees cannot be appealed.

Materials not owned by UW-Madison:

There are several routes to borrowing items either not owned or currently unavailable in Campus Libraries.

Using the button in MathSciNet will automatically populate a request form for that item.

UW System Search — Request books from any University of Wisconsin System library to be delivered to any UW campus library. Usually takes 2-3 days for delivery.

WorldCat — Request books from anywhere in the world to be delivered to any UW-Madison campus library. Usually takes a week to ten days for delivery.

Article and Book Delivery (including interlibrary loan) — Request materials not owned by UW-Madison. Questions can be directed to the Interlibrary Loan office at (608) 262-1193.

Recommend a purchase — The Librarian will readily consider purchase recommendations or provide assistance with any of the above options.

Dissertations and Theses — Full text of UW-Madison dissertations published since 1997. For non-UW dissertations abstracts along with the first 24 pages are available.
For older dissertations use the Library Catalog for UW and WorldCat for non-UW.

Loan Periods

Item Type UW System Faculty & Staff Graduate Students Undergraduates & All Others
Books Semester Loan / 6 Renewals Semester Loan / 6 Renewals

28 day Loan / 2 Renewals

Reserve Items 2 hour / May go out overnight 2 hour / May go out overnight 2hr before closing 2 hour In Library Use Only / May go out overnight 2hr before closing
Unbound Journals Ask Librarian In Library Use only In Library Use Only
Bound Journals 1 day / no Renewals 1 day / No renewals In Library Use Only
Reference Books Ask Librarian In Library Use Only In Library Use Only
Videocassettes & DVDs 7 days / No Renewals 7 Days / No Renewals 7 Days / No Renewals

Renewing Your Books

Items can often be renewed online using your Library Catalog Account feature.

Items that cannot be renewed using My MadCat Account include:

  • Items that have reached renewal limit
  • Items that have been recalled by another user
  • Reserve materials
  • Bound Journals
  • Items borrowed through Inter-Library Loan
  • Items that consist of more than one physical piece

If you have difficulty logging into My MadCat Account, go to the ID Problems page.

Returning Material

Books on regular loan can be returned to any campus library with an Open Return sticker (see image) on its book return.

Open Return Bookdrop

Items that need to be returned to the library they were borrowed from include:

  • Reserve materials
  • Materials on Short-Term Loans (7 days or less)
  • Journals/Periodicals
  • Fragile Items

Recalled Items

All regular loan books are subject to recall by another patron. The original borrower is guaranteed 14 days; after that, the item is subject to any recalls issued by another patron. If a recall is issued, the due date will be changed and you will be notified. If you have a recalled item and it is overdue, you will not be able to borrow more materials until the recalled item is returned.

Use the Campus Libraries Information page to locate libraries that feature Open Return.

Faculty Runner Card

Faculty can designate a currently enrolled student or staff to borrow material in their name. These materials are subject to the same borrowing policies as loans made in person by the faculty member.

To designate a faculty runner, submit a letter of authorization that is written on departmental stationery and includes the following:

  • The runner's name
  • The date until which the runner is authorized
  • An express statement of responsibility (ex. "I agree to take full responsibility for all overdue charges and/or replacement fees.")
  • The faculty member's signature

Letters should be addressed to Dineen Grow, User Services Supervisor.

Letters may be brought by the designated runner to the Memorial Library Card Application Desk, located in the lobby of the Memorial Library. The runner will need to bring his/her UW photo ID.

Letters may also be faxed to (608) 262-2568, or mailed to Circulation Office, Room 170, Memorial Library, 728 State Street, Madison WI 53706.

A Note about the Runner's User ID

A faculty runner will normally use his/her own ID when:

  • The faculty member intends to check out only materials from the UW Madison campus
  • The faculty member intends to use Library Express (Inter-Library Loan) but does not need to access the information in Library Express

A faculty runner will need a new, unique ID when:

  • The faculty member intends to use Library Express and needs access to the Library Express account information

In cases where a unique ID is needed, the faculty member will designate where email (for electronic article delivery or messages from staff) is to be sent. Requests using a unique ID number are assigned to the Library that serves the faculty member in Library Express.

Any questions about Faculty Runners should be referred to the Memorial Library Circulation Office at (608) 263-7360, Monday-Friday 8:00 AM-4:00 PM or by email.