University Library Australia
University Library Australia is a national borrowing scheme that allows all staff and students of all Australian universities to borrow in person from any other interstate university in Australia. The scheme is a cooperative arrangement between CAUL member libraries.
ULA is a national scheme which complements existing regional borrowing schemes and is simple to use for both the borrower and the library staff. It aims for:
Procedures that minimise effort at home and host librariesIt is recommended that the guiding principles of this scheme, the vision of a free, open, simple national scheme, be considered by members of remaining regional borrowing schemes when reviewing local operations.
Host libraries retain the right to set local conditions of access, and local fees.
Potential users should check the FAQ for Borrowers to verify eligibility, host access conditions and registration conditions.
All students and staff from AVCC member universities. This will include inter alia:
a. distance education studentsULA is not intended to supplant the home institution as the primary supplier of information resources. If there is evidence that the home institution is persistently under-supporting its students, the host institution may take this up at CAUL level.
Eligibility will be as wide as possible, until proven that it is unsustainable.
All universities should note the ACRL guidelines for services to distance education students.
Both are needed to establish that the borrower is the person eligible to participate in the scheme. Affiliation eg visiting scholars, must be approved by the home university library; academic affiliation is not sufficient given that it is the library that is carrying the indemnity.
In some states, TAFE members of universities may be indistinguishable from the tertiary members. This is acknowledged but not considered to have any remarkable bearing on the program.
Libraries which issue cards will be responsible for the person who holds it.
If a borrower is eligible to register then he/she is indemnified by their home library.
The home library indemnifies, and will indemnify, the host institution for loss of, or damage to, library materials as a result of their students or staff borrowing from the other library. The borrower is responsible for any penalties incurred.
Borrowers should be made aware that their personal details and details of their loans may be conveyed between home and host libraries.
Registration is completed at the host institution. The goal is for the borrower to walk into the host library and register "on the spot." Tthe time to complete the transaction is at the discretion of the host library. If registration cannot be completed immediately, then the borrower card will be mailed to the borrower, or may be collected at a later date if the borrower prefers.
A secondary goal is to reduce the involvement of library staff in the enrolment process.
Host libraries may wish to offer partial registration online.
The expiry date of all enrolments will be 28th February of the year following registration.
The host library will determine levels of access for ULA borrowers, ie numbers of loans and which collections are available to ULA borrowers, but it is recommended that access levels be commensurate with those of the equivalent home borrowers.
Host libraries should consider the impact of generous levels of access on the indemnity exposure of the home library.
The original aim of ULA was to be fee-free for both registrations and loans as it was agreed that libraries are pre-competitive and should be considered a national resource. The imposition of charges of any kind imposes an additional administrative load, and consequent costs.
Notwithstanding the national guidelines, should a library choose to impose charges, these are imposed directly on the borrower registering at the host institution, as any recoup of these charges from the home library would impose an additional administrative load and consequent costs.
Some libraries now charge a $50 registration fee + GST. Charging libraries are noted with an asterisk on the Participating Libraries page.
Fees are used in some regional borrowing schemes to deter registrations. It is not considered necessary for the ULA. Link to Other Borrowing Schemes.
The minimum level of statistics to be maintained by the host library should include the number of:
a. registrations of ULA borrowersIt is recognised that some Library systems are not easily able to identify borrowers by institution ‘type’, however this should be something all ULA participants aim to do whenever possible.
It is noted that loans data is not strictly comparable because of varying loan conditions such as loan period, but a comparison of loan data will show trends.
A web-site constitutes the primary infrastructure of the ULA and includes an FAQ for borrowers and Guidelines for library staff.
Additional comments for the FAQ should be forwarded to the ULA Working Group for action. Once accepted the CAUL Office will add to the ULA web site.
Information about ULA should be clearly conveyed to library staff.
A closed discussion list for staff of ULA institutions is accessible at http://mailman.anu.edu.au/mailman/listinfo/ula
Guidelines updated by ULA Working Group April, 2008
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