Policy UL-AD04 Code of Conduct

Main Policy Content


  • Purpose
  • Introduction
  • Provisions of the Code
  • Cross References


To state the University Libraries’ provisions for behavior within the Libraries.


The University Libraries abide by Federal laws, the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, local ordinances, the University Code of Conduct, and other University policies that guide behavior on the campuses including the Academic Integrity Policy.  Presented here are particular provisions for behavior within the Libraries. Violations of this code may result in the loss of library privileges or further disciplinary actions from the University.


  1. Beverages

    Beverages in securely covered containers are permitted in the University Libraries unless otherwise indicated by “No beverages in this area” signs.  Library patrons should dispose of all beverage containers and contents in the appropriate receptacles or recycling bins.  No uncovered beverage containers are permitted in the Libraries.

  2. Food

    Food is not permitted in the University Libraries except in designated areas.  Library patrons should dispose of all food containers and refuse in the appropriate receptacles or recycling bins.

  3. Disruptive Behavior

    Disruptive behavior of any kind, including excessive noise, harassing other patrons, or harassing Libraries’ staff is prohibited.

  4. Defacing Libraries’ Materials, Equipment, Furniture, and Facilities

    Cutting, tearing, or defacing materials such as books, periodicals, pamphlets, microforms, compact disks, videos, or tampering with computers, software, software configurations, equipment, furniture, and facilities is prohibited.

  5. Denying Access to Library Resources

    Preventing or postponing timely access to library resources through theft or deliberate misplacement of materials or other acts is prohibited.

  6. Copyright and Licensed Databases

    The responsibility for the appropriate use of copyrighted and licensed material lies with the user.  The misuse of or unauthorized use of copyrighted or licensed information may lead to criminal prosecution or result in a loss of library and computing privileges or other disciplinary action.

  7. Courtesy and Responsibility

    The University Libraries are unable to guarantee the privacy and/or confidentiality of patrons using the Internet.  Nor is it possible to prevent other library patrons from observing online information or images they may find inappropriate.  All patrons using online and Internet resources are expected to show common courtesy and respect for both the privacy and the sensibilities of others.

  8. Use of Electronic Resources and the Internet by Minors

    In pursuit of the University Libraries’ mission to provide faculty, staff, students and the community with optimized and organized access to information in all formats, the Libraries have refrained from blocking access to any materials available through its electronic resources and the Internet.  In all cases in which minors are using the University Libraries, including its public workstations and other information resources, parents and other adult care-providers are responsible for overseeing and supervising the minor’s use of the University Libraries.  Parents and other adult care-providers should be aware that allowing minors to have unsupervised access to electronic resources and the Internet could result in their access to information or images that parents may find inappropriate for their children.  For the purposes of this policy, all Penn State students are considered adults.

  9. Bicycles, Scooters, Rollerskates, Rollerblades, and Skateboards

    The use of bicycles, scooters, rollerskates, rollerblades, and skateboards in the Libraries is prohibited. Bicycles may not be parked in buildings.

  10. Animals

    No animals, except those used to assist people with disabilities, are allowed in the Libraries.

  11. Photographs, Films, and Videos

    In order to maintain an atmosphere conducive to reading and studying, to ensure that the privacy rights of users of the University Libraries are respected, and to avoid disruptions of normal business operations, the University Libraries reserves the right to limit the use of photographic or video graphic equipment within the facilities.  If any supervisor within the University Libraries believes that such activity is being disruptive or encroaching upon the privacy of individuals, he/she may temporarily suspend the activity in question, pending further review of the activity and related circumstances by the dean, associate deans, or appropriate campus academic administrator.

  12. Soliciting

    Soliciting for donations or signatures on petitions is not allowed.


Other Policies in this manual should also be referenced, especially the following:

UL-AD01 – Patron Use of Computer Software
UL-AD07 – Use of Public Access Workstations

Effective Date: January 18, 2002
Date Approved: January 18, 2002 (Dean’s Library Council; University Legal Counsel)

Revision History (and effective dates):

  • January 1, 2002 – Supersedes January 1993 policy
  • January 1993 – New policy

Last Review Date:  November 2009