Patron Policies


Welcome to the University Library at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The University Library seeks to foster a supportive environment for students, faculty, staff, visiting scholars, and members of the community to thrive in their intellectual pursuits. We aspire to provide access to resources and services that are both inclusive and accessible, and provide equitable opportunities to our diverse community to create, curate, and illuminate all forms of information and artifacts.

The Library is a space where all users should seek to ensure mutual respect for others, facilities, and collections. We regularly review our policies to ensure that they represent our values. We recognize that putting policy into practice requires regular interpretation and accept responsibility for aligning our actions and interactions with our values.


We recognize that it can be unclear what the rules are in every Library space. In this policy, we share guidelines we’ve implemented to ensure that the Library is a safe and respectful place for all. There may be different rules for individual Library spaces, but there are certain consistencies throughout the Library System.

All Library employees are expected to be committed to creating an environment – for each other and all patrons – that cultivates and values diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility in all forms.

Library employees can interpret and apply policies based on the individual circumstances. Our policies are informed by values such as the  ALA Code of Ethics and our statement on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility at the University Library.

Where possible the Library points to campus policies such as:

Below are some specific expectations for the use of Library spaces.

Disruptive behavior

We expect patrons will stop disruptive behavior that goes against Library policy when requested to do so by Library staff. Disruptive behavior is any activity in which a Library patron:

  • Violates the student code of conduct
  • Impedes or interferes with Library operations or acceptable and legitimate use of the collections, spaces, or services by other patrons
  • May cause damage to Library collections, equipment, or furnishings
  • Endangers the safety of themselves or others
  • Violates other Library or University policies

If disruptive actions continue, Library staff may ask patrons to leave the Library. In instances of threats to public safety or repeatedly disruptive behavior, Library staff may ask for additional assistance when necessary.

Noise levels – based on respect for others

The University recognizes that people prefer different noise levels when using a Library space. To assist our patrons with deciding what type of space works best for them, their needs, and other users needs, we provide a study space directory:

We also have several options for zoom- or other video-conferencing- friendly spaces:

Food policies – based on respect for collections and facilities

Each Library and unit may have different rules about eating and drinking in the space. Non-alcoholic drinks may be allowed in Library facilities in spill-proof, covered containers. Food is also allowed in some Library spaces. Individual Library units may impose stricter policies on food and drink to protect unique collections or adhere to the policies governing the buildings where they are housed.

Families and children

Children are welcome in the Library. Parents/guardians remain responsible for the safety of their children, as the Library cannot assume responsibility for minors. Parents/guardians and caregivers are encouraged to use family study rooms, available in both the Main Library and the Grainger Engineering Library Information Center.


If you have a question or concern about this policy, or how you were treated in Library spaces, please contact


Responsible Office: University Library Office of Services

Approved by: University Library Administrative Council

Approved on: October 16, 2023

Effective on: October 17, 2023

Review Cycle: As needed