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Materials Storage FAQ

What types of materials are kept in Storage?

The Storage department holds a wide variety of material, mostly books and journals, but we also have law documents, filmstrips, slides, phonograph records, wall maps and more. Storage does not hold any microfilm, microfiche, compact discs, DVDs or videotapes.

How can I tell if the items I need are Storage materials?

Items belonging in Storage typically have a Storage location which can be seen by viewing the library catalog record's location listing or the Summary of Holdings description. The typical item belonging in Storage appears as follows in the catalog:

Typical record for items with Location = Storage
Click to enlarge

It is important to note that many of the same journal titles are housed in Storage as well as other library units. In those cases, the Summary of Holdings will list the year(s)/volume(s) that are held by a library in general, then list what part of that journal run is actually housed in Storage. For example:

Holding information for Journals with issues at more than one location, including Storage
Click to enlarge

How can I get access to Storage materials?

Anyone can access the items in Storage in one of two ways, either filling out an electronic request or by filling out a paper version of the form and faxing it to (313) 577-0013. Requests are only delivered to select units and must be specified by the requester at the pickup point. All patrons will receive an automated e-mail message when their material is being delivered.

How do I use the request form?

The request form is designed to provide us with all the information we need to locate the information the user is seeking. The more information the requester provides, the more likely we will be able to locate the material quickly. The following tips should help you create the retrievable request:

  • Ensure your contact information is correct
  • If requesting a monograph, include the correct call number on the form
  • If requesting a journal, do NOT provide us with the article title you seek, only the journal title is necessary
  • If requesting a journal, provide us with exact enumeration or chronological information; i.e. v.15 [1935], or March-April 1967-1968

Does it cost money to have materials delivered?

The delivery services we provide are a service to the patrons of the library, so all deliveries are free of charge.

Do you provide copy services/document delivery?

The Materials Storage Operation does not currently provide this service, but please see the information under ILL.

When can I expect the material that I request?

See the delivery schedule.

What do I do when I try to pick up the material I requested, but it is not there?

There is always a possibility that requested items are unavailable. Storage personnel has the ultimate responsibility to report incomplete requests to patrons and to library staff alike by replying to the email address of the request originator or faxing a notice to the delivery location. Storage personnel will send notices by the request delivery time, usually well before. If you have not received such a notice and the pick-up point does not have your material, please double-check your records for any discrepancies or ask the library unit staff to check the online request list for more information about your specific request.

For how long do Storage items circulate?

Storage books have a circulation time of 28 days, while the journals are only available for building use - two hour checkout periods only. Special circulation arrangements for faculty members may be made.

How do I return materials back to Storage?

Storage items can be returned to the circulation desk in any library, regardless of where the material was delivered. Each circulation desk has an area reserved for Storage returns. This allows the Storage personnel to make routine pickups of returns in order to avoid potentially damaging material. We ask that no Storage books be placed in the university book-drop locations.

How should I handle damaged or fragile material?

Damaged, brittle or at-risk material is common to the Storage collection and should be handled very carefully. Prior to delivering fragile materials, Storage identifies it and provides some minimal protection for the circulation of the item - usually by tying with cloth and placing in a protective envelope or box. All measures should be taken to handle the material as gently and infrequently as possible. Barcodes will be printed on the enclosures for circulation use and are expected to be returned along with the item.

How may I contact Storage?

You may contact the Storage department by emailing the coordinator Vivian Palmer or by calling (313) 577-5595. You may also see our Contact page.