Reading Room Guidelines

Reading Room Guidelines

In order to insure the preservation of our collections for you and those who follow, we ask that you follow these simple rules.

The New Jersey Reading Room is reserved for visitors using Special Collections and University Archives materials. This also applies to the public service computers at the Information Desk. Visitors must register, sign in, and sign out at the Information Desk at the entrance to the Reading Room.

  • Only material for conducting research may be brought into the reading room (notebook, pencil, laptop, etc.).
  • Place coats, bags (including laptop cases), packages, briefcases, hats and umbrellas in the coatroom (locker tokens are supplied at the information desk). These items must be retrieved by 5pm. Large items may be placed behind the Information Desk.
  • Materials do not circulate and must not be removed from the reading room, with the exception of microfilm.
  • Please limit conversation to avoid disturbing others.
  • Eating, drinking (including covered beverages), and use of cell phones are prohibited.
  • Personal scanners are prohibited.
  • Items leaving the Reading Room are subject to inspection.

Using Materials

  • Use pencils only; pens are prohibited.
  • Do not mark, erase, lean on, write, or trace on library materials.
  • Items in envelopes or folders must be kept in order. Advise staff of misplaced or missing items.
  • Patrons using manuscript collections, University records, rare books or Genealogical Society of New Jersey (GSNJ) materials must complete a yellow application form available at the Information Desk. Requests are limited to five books/file folders or two boxes at a time; complete a separate call slip for each item.

Some collections may contain restricted materials. Application forms for permission to use restricted materials may be obtained at the Information Desk. Materials can be paged until 4:45pm. Return paged materials to the Information Desk. Place items from the Reading Room shelves on the re-shelving cart next to the information desk. Please do not reshelve material.

Scans and copies

U.S. Copyright Law applies to all materials in Special Collections and University Archives (SC/UA); see "Warning Concerning Copyright Restrictions," which appears in the Rutgers University Libraries' Copyright Policy as well as on Special Collections and University Archives' Reproduction and Usage Request Form. In addition, reproductions of material from SC/UA may not be published in any without written permission for use.

Cameras, both traditional and digital, are permitted in the Reading Room, but flatbed and other personal scanning devices are not permitted. Cameras must be used in accordance with the Rutgers University Libraries’ Copyright and Reproduction Policy. Patrons taking photos must complete a Reproduction and Usage Request Form. It is the responsibility of each patron to keep complete and accurate citations for all items photographed. Requests for permission to reproduce materials and any subsequent orders for high-resolution scans cannot be processed without this information. Reading Room staff can provide access to the online Reproduction and Usage Request Form.

If you would like to order PDF or high-resolution scans or paper copies of SC/UA material, consult a staff member and complete a Reproduction and Usage Request Form.

If you wish to make a copy of any materials, there is a scanner available in the Reading Room that accepts Rutgers Copy Cards. Copy cards are sold on the first floor of Alexander Library, near the Reference Desk. Based on condition, some material may be copied only by the Special Collections and University Archives staff. Please note that some materials may not be copied, including rare books; folios; fragile and oversized materials; and bound manuscripts. Consult reference personnel for possible alternatives.

A copy stand is available for supervised use.