Borrower Services Guidelines


Seneca Libraries collections are developed to support college programs. Priority is given to the information needs of current students, staff, faculty and the college's Board of Governors. The surrounding community is encouraged to use library facilities and individuals may register as a Community Borrower.

Seneca Libraries recognizes and honours the intellectual freedom and right to privacy of all persons. Seneca College protects the confidentiality of borrower records including the circulation of material, interlibrary/intercampus loan transactions, reference queries, reserve requests and the use of new media materials as collected under the legal authority of the College and Universities Act, R.S.O. 1990 c.M19, section 5 Reg. 770.

Borrowing Privileges

Seneca ID is non-transferable and required to borrow material.

Full-Time and Part-Time Students, Faculty and Staff

A Seneca OneCard or library card is required to borrow library material.

Yorkgate Students

Students at Yorkgate campus may request a library book through the library catalogue and have it sent to Yorkgate. Find out how to find and request a book from another campus library.

Nursing Students

Students who are enrolled in the joint nursing program with York University and are currently attending York University have full borrowing privileges. To register, two pieces of ID (photo ID and timetable/York University card) are required.


Seneca graduates must provide one piece of photo ID with name and address to obtain a library card.

Community Borrowers

Residents of the regions served by Seneca College may register as a Community Borrower for a non-refundable annual fee of $35. To register, two pieces of ID (photo ID and current address) are required. Cards are valid for one year and may be renewed upon payment of annual fee, unless materials or fines remain outstanding. Community borrowers may use library material in the library and may borrow items from the general collection that have not been designated as high demand materials.

Direct Borrowers (Terms)

To register, two pieces of ID (college ID and photo ID with address) are required. Part-time students and employees who do not have college ID may use a college document which has a start/end date, such as a registration receipt or employment contract. The library card will expire on the same date as the home college ID or on the end date of the college document. Direct borrowers may renew items once only.

Change of Address
It is the responsibility of the library patron to notify the library immediately of any changes of address. Mail returned to the library due to failure of a library patron to provide timely and adequate mailing addresses may result in additional fines.

Lost or Stolen Cards
If a library card is lost or stolen, the library patron must notify the library immediately. The patron to whom the card is issued will be held responsible for any material checked out with that card before the loss is reported.

Loan Periods & Renewals

The majority of collections circulate for two weeks. High demand materials have shorter loan periods.

Collection Loan Period Renewals
General Collection 2 weeks limitless
Periodicals 2 weeks limitless
Reference Collection varies by title no renewals
Reserve Collection varies by title no renewals

Extended Loan
Faculty and staff may request extended loans on any item in the General Collection. Seneca Libraries reserves the right to recall extended loans prior to the due date.

Borrowing Between Terms
Students enrolled in the term immediately following the current one may borrow material during the 2 week period between terms. Full-time students must show a copy of their timetable to staff and returning part-time students must show their registration papers. New students must wait until the first day of the term to borrow items.

General Collection
Borrowers are permitted three books per subject. The maximum number of items per borrower is 20.

Reserve Collection
Borrowers are permitted to borrow a maximum of two reserve books at one time. Holds are not permitted on reserve items. Community, alumni, and Direct Borrowers do not have access to the reserve collection.

Renewals can be done online, in person at the Library Service Desk or Self Check station, or by phone.  All borrowers, with the exception of direct borrowers, are allowed unlimited renewals on all circulating materials unless a hold is pending or if a patron has outstanding fines. There are no renewals for overdue materials or reserve items.

Holds and Recalls

Borrowers may request items already on loan be held for them (excluding reserve items). If an item requested is overdue, Seneca Libraries will recall the item. Recalled items not returned within three days of the recall are subject to a higher fine rate. When the item is returned, the requester will be notified and the item will be held for up to three days.

Intercampus Loans

Borrowers may request materials from any of the campus libraries (excluding reserve items). Holds/requests are placed through the library catalogue.

Interlibrary Loans (ILL)

Loans from other libraries may be negotiated for items not held by the Seneca libraries. If the lending library charges for the loan or for photocopies, the borrower will be required to pay the charges. Seneca Libraries will advise the borrower if charges are expected before placing the interlibrary loan request.

Reference, reserve material, textbooks, rare books and periodicals may not be borrowed through ILL. Borrowers are not permitted to request materials from public libraries. Students can request up to three books and four articles.


Late fees are outlined on the Fines page.

Theft and Vandalism

Theft and vandalism is a violation of Student Code of Conduct (Section 2.2).  Item replacement costs and processing fees will be charged for any materials that have been damaged beyond repair. In addition, a meeting may be set up with a Seneca Libraries manager and a report of the incident passed on to the Dean/Chair of the student's school. If the fine is not paid, library staff will flag the student record in Student Centre.

For other violations, please visit the Student Code of Conduct website at