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Circulation: Borrowing Policies

Information on library borrowing policies, Interlibrary Loan procedures, and library visitor information

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Academic Library

NWC Library Circulation Policy

Circulation policies are designed to ensure that library materials are returned on time and in good condition for use by as many people as possible.

Contact Information

Circulation Desk:

Phone: (401) 856-5590

Fax: (401) 856-4804


Interlibrary Loan:

Fax: (401) 856-4804



Phone: (401)856-5614


Eligible Borrowers

Loan Periods

Borrowing Limits



Students, including

  • NWC resident (U.S. and International)
  • Military Staff Operators Course (MSOC)

1 month

50 items



Faculty & Administration, including

  • NWC resident civilian faculty
  • NWC resident military staff
  • Emeritus

1 year


No limit

No limit


1 year

200 Items

No limit



4 weeks

10 Items



Community Borrowers (local residents)[1]

4 weeks

10 items



  • Rare books: The Rare Book Collection is a non-circulating collection housed in the Naval Historical Collection (HHC), Mahan Hall. The Rare Book Reading Room is located on the main level of Mahan Hall. Holdings can be searched using the Library’s general catalog. Requests for viewing materials may be made at either the NWC Library or NHC Help Desks.
  • Renewals: Renewals are allowed for all eligible library borrowers. Renewals may be made online, in person, or via email (
  • Eligible Interlibrary Loan Users: All Eligible Library Borrowers except Reservists and Community Borrowers may participate in the Library’s Interlibrary Loan program. The lending library sets the loan period and renewal policy.  The loan period is set by the lending library and one renewal is the standard for most libraries.   The renewal of items borrowed from other libraries is not guaranteed.

Non-Circulating Items:

            Reference materials


            Journals and newspapers, whether current or bound

            Rare books

Loan Periods for Special Items:

            Audiobooks: 14 days

            DVDs:  3 days

            CD-ROMs: 14 days      

Lost Interlibrary Loan materials

Materials that have been borrowed from another library and are not returned prohibits the Naval War College Library from borrowing anything more from the lending library until the situation is corrected.  This threatens the College’s future borrowing privileges with this institution.  The borrower is responsible for replacing lost interlibrary loan materials and all associated costs, including processing fees that may be associated with this item.  The borrower is also subject to the same overdue notice procedure established for NWC materials.

All Other Lost or Damaged Materials

Patrons who check out library materials are responsible for returning them to the library in good condition.  If a patron lends library materials to someone else, he/she is still responsible for the items being return to the library.

Materials that are lost or damaged should be replaced by the person who checked them out.  If an exact replacement cannot be found, then an item of equal value in the same subject area may be accepted at the discretion of the library.  Please check with Circulation before replacing any lost materials.


This recall policy applies to all normal loan materials borrowed by any library card holder at the NWC, regardless of patron status.

To help ensure equitable access to all, the Library provides a recall service which shortens the loan period of materials charged to one borrower so that they can be used by another borrower. All charged items are subject to recall after fourteen days when requested by another patron or when needed for placement on the reserve shelf. When an item has been requested for recall by another user, the borrower to whom it is currently charged is notified by e-mail that they must return the item within fourteen days. Once the recalled item is returned, it is placed on hold for the requesting patron, who is sent a notice that the book is available to be picked up.

Recall Notifications

Recall Notice is issued on the same day or the day after a recall is requested. When a borrower receives a Recall Notice, the item must be returned by the new due date specified in the notice. Four (4) automated notices are sent to the individual holding the item and one notice to the requestor if the recall goes unfilled.

If a book is recalled from a borrower who still wishes to use the material, the borrower should inform the staff at the time she/he returns the material and his/her name will be added to the HOLD queue in the system.

Overdue Materials

The NWC Library operates using an automated overdue notification system where six different machine-generated notices are sent to patrons over a two month period of time. The process begins with a courtesy notice announcing materials are about to become due and ends with a final notice stating the status of the account.

Eligible Library Borrowers except Faculty and Administration:  At 22 days overdue, a fourth and final notice is sent to the patron. NWC students and staff will be alerted that their Chain of Command is being notified.  If after 60 days, the material is still not renewed or returned and the patron has not contacted the library with an explanation or corrections, the status of the item is changed to long overdue and the patron is barred from checking out more materials. If the patron wishes to checkout materials after that, she/he must talk to the Head of Information and Access Services to have the account manually reinstated. If material is later returned before materials are deemed missing, circulation staff shall unbar the patron and mark the items returned.

Faculty and Administration:  Faculty and Administration are not barred automatically. Faculty and Administration Fourth and Final Notice is forwarded to Head of Information and Access Services who will make every effort to accommodate faculty and assist by renewing or determining whether long term use warrants ordering another copy for circulation. Materials are automatically deemed “assumed lost” by the ILS when they reach 29 days overdue. The ILS system generates an assumed lost report after one month, which is emailed to Head, Information and Access Services.

Claimed Return

In instances where library patron claims she/he has returned items and the library has no record of such, the patron is taken at his/her word. Item is then manually marked missing and patron retains borrowing privileges.

In instances where library patron notifies the  Library that the book is lost, the patron is given the option of buying a replacement and bringing it to the library. The automated overdue system continues to notify the patron and the patron is barred on third notice. Once item is replaced, circulation technician reinstates borrowing privileges.

[1] Access to Naval Station Newport and to the U.S. Naval War College is determined on a case by case basis. Please see the Visitor’s Application Form for more information.


Classified Library

Individuals with the appropriate security clearence may check classified materials out of the vault if the items will be stored in a secure safe. If a secure location is not available, materials must be returned the same day (by 1600) to the Classified Library.


You may keep the item(s) indefinitely; HOWEVER, item(s) may be recalled after 7 days if requested by another patronor immediately when needed for placement on the reserve shelf.

At three-month intervals, you will be asked to SIGHT and RENEW, or RETURN, what you have charged out.

Lecture CD/DVDs

There is a Four (4) CD/DVD limit:

  • Monday-Thursday overnight check-out; return by 1400 the following work day
  • Friday check-outs are due at 0800 Monday morning 

Reserve Materials

Faculty may request to have selected items placed on RESERVE in support of an elective OR due to anticipated student demand.

  • RESERVE materials circulate one document at a time, for three (3) hours at a time until 1600
  • OVERNIGHT (or over the weekend) circulation begins at 1600, on a first come, first serve basis, providing the material is unclassified. All material must be returned by 0830 on the next work day

Naval Historical Collection

Materials DO NOT CIRCULATE; they must be used in the library located in Mahan Hall.

Please Note:

The Privacy Act and Library Policy DO NOT PERMIT names of persons holding borrowed material to be disclosed