Library Policies

Many of our policies reflect the Library’s regular operating policies. Due to the current environment & that our physical library is currently closed, many of our policies, resources, & services must be altered or changed rapidly. Please see our Covid-19 Guide for current updates.

Usage Policies


Students: All students must submit the Berry Library User Agreement eform prior to checking out materials. The form includes information on circulating periods and fines, as well as behavior expectations. A printable copy of our borrowing policies may be viewed here: Library Usage Agreement Form.

Students must present a valid Cincinnati State ID card to check out materials. There is no limit to the numbers of books that may be checked out at one time; however, only 5 hold requests can be placed on Cincinnati State materials at one time. Most books are due in three weeks, and may be renewed up to six times, if no other user has requested the material in the meantime. For more details, please refer to the form linked above.

Faculty & Staff: Faculty, and staff must present a valid Cincinnati State ID card to check out materials. There is no limit to the numbers of books that may be checked out at one time; however, only 5 hold requests can be placed on Cincinnati State materials at one time. Most books are due in ten weeks, and may be renewed up to six times, if no other user has requested the material in the meantime. Faculty & staff are responsible for overdue fines accumulated from circulating fiction videos, OhioLINK, and SearchOhio materials, as well as replacement costs for damaged and unreturned items.

Overdue Notices

Overdue notices will be sent to the patron’s Cincinnati State e-mail account. E-mail notifications will also be sent when items placed on hold (either locally owned or OhioLINK items) are available. Courtesy e-mails will also inform patrons that items will be coming due in approximately 3 days. Please go to BLINK and choose “Renew” to check due dates and to requests renewals.

Replacement Fees

A replacement fee of at least $85 is charged for lost/destroyed/non-returned materials. Items which remain overdue for 30 days or longer are presumed lost and will be charged this replacement fee. If the item is returned in acceptable condition within one year of the original due date, the $85. fine may be reduced to an amount no lower than $35. Please contact the Coordinator of Circulation Services at 513.569.4690 for more information.

Electronic Resources

Electronic resources–including our eBook databases, streaming video collection, & databases for journals, magazines, & news–are available for use by registered users on or off-campus (requires 7-digit College Id). These resources are not available to community users from off-campus.

Library Use Only

Reserve materials are kept at the Circulation Desk, filed by course number. Length of loan varies.

Reference books, print periodicals, and non-fiction videos must also be used in the Library. Coin-operated black & white photocopiers with ‘scan to USB’ capabilities are available.

Interlibrary Loan

Patrons can initiate their own interlibrary loan for many materials by clicking the “OhioLINK Central” button from any search in BLINK, and following the instructions. Cincinnati State students are limited to five requests per day or five items on hold in their account at one time, while faculty may request up to ten items per day. E-mail notifications will also be sent when items requested through OhioLINK items are available for check-out. Most OhioLINK materials will be due in three weeks, and may be renewed up to six times, if there are no holds on the item. Some materials, particularly media programs, will be borrowed for a shorter period, and may be renewable. The fine for overdue OhioLINK materials is $.50 per day per item. Overdue notices will be sent to the patron’s Cincinnati State e-mail account. A replacement fee of at least $125 is charged for lost/destroyed/non-returned materials. This will be billed when the item is 30 days overdue. If you return an item which has been billed, you will be responsible for paying only a $50 late fee, and not the replacement cost.

Cincinnati State patrons with proper College identification (Surge card) may also check out materials in person at other OhioLINK libraries. Terms of use and overdue fees are determined by the cooperating libraries.

Community patrons may register for a library account with a valid photo ID. Check out is limited to 5 locally-owned books.

Computer Use / Printing


The Library provides computers with internet access to be used primarily for accessing academic resources, and library staff is available to help users at these stations. Registered students can also check out laptop computers for use in the Library, with internet access provided via a wireless network. Internet use must comply with the College's "Policy for Responsible Use of Information Technology and Resources”.

Community users are not able to use the Library’s computers during high-demand times, including Mon-Fri from 10am-2pm.


Students & college employees may print from the Library’s computers & Library laptops by using their Surge Cards. Printing is not available from personal devices, but the Library has a “Quick Print Station” that students may use to quickly print completed work from a flashdrive or web resource.

Print jobs can not be released without a Surge card & the Library cannot accept cash/coin as alternative payment.

Group Study Rooms

The library has 4 (four) group study rooms for student use located on the balconies. A current Surge card must be presented at the circulation desk in order to check out one of the room keys; keys can be checked out for a 2 hour period. Rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis for group work involving 2 or more students who must be present at check-out. Because the library is an overall quiet zone, we dedicate these rooms for work requiring conversations and collaboration, not individual study.


Children must be accompanied and supervised by an adult at all times and must adhere to library policies. Computers and resources are designed for adults and not intended for use by children. Unattended children are not allowed in the Library. Security will be called when unattended child(ren) are in the Library. Security will take the child(ren) and locate the parent. Children are not permitted to use the Library's computers.

A parent using the Library for study or research, and accompanied by a child, will be asked to leave if the child is noisy or is causing any disruption.


Cell Phones/Noise

The library is an over-all quiet zone with four study rooms specifically designed for group work. Patrons should choose areas that best fit their work needs so as not to disturb others or be disturbed by permitted activities. We ask that cell phone ringers be placed on silent/vibrate. Both phone and in-person conversations should be muted and brief or taken out of the library. Cell phones should not be used when seeking assistance from staff members.

The use of headphones is expected so as to minimize sound from computers and other devices.Patrons are expected to comply in a respectful manner with library policies and in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct.Patrons may be asked to re-locate or leave if behaviors result in noise levels or activity outside these guidelines which hinder the effective use of library space or resources.

Community Guests

Community members with a valid Cincinnati Public Library or other SWON library card may create an account that offers local borrowing privileges. Community users may only borrow up to five (5) books at one time. As a courtesy, public patrons may use library computers by presenting a photo ID to staff, but access is subject to availability and priority is always given to currently registered students. Computers are not available between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Public patrons are expected to comply with the behavioral guidelines set forth in the Student Code of Conduct and all library policies.

Collection Development

For questions regarding the Library's policies on donations or the selection and deselection of materials, please see the Library's Collection Management Policy (pdf) for guidelines.

Have you come across a book or video that you think will really benefit our students? We're happy to consider your suggestions for library purchases. Please email Kathleen Pickens at with the details of your request.

Accessibility & Privacy

Article VII of the Library Bill of Rights states that “All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use.” The Johnnie Mae Berry library is committed to providing access to resources and materials for users of all abilities, without judgment or surveillance,’ in accordance with the American Library Association’s Statement on Privacy.

For more information on accessibility and privacy regarding available content from our vendors, please visit: Accessibility & Privacy of Library Platforms.
Persons with documented disabilities should contact the Office of Disability Services for specific guidance, and visit our Able Guide for more information about what the Library offers.

Diversity, Multiculturalism & Inclusion

The Johnnie Mae Berry Library follows the American Library Association’s guidelines in regards to intellectual freedom & access to information. Below are some very brief ways that we work towards that end.

  • Print Collections: We strive to maintain an inclusive, balanced collection that provides exposure to global perspectives, multiple viewpoints, and a vast range of subject areas.
  • Library Guides:We promote inclusiveness and encourage resource exploration by creating library guides for specific populations, including LGBTQIA, Black Male Initiative, Women’s Network, Students with Disabilities, and International/ESL Students.
  • Student Support: We assist students with their information and technology needs without bias or judgment, while respecting their rights to privacy and intellectual freedom.
  • Faculty & Staff Support: We collect and promote resources that provide faculty and staff with best-practices and strategies for marginalized students’ success:
Library Mission

The Johnnie Mae Berry Library, an essential service of Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, provides students and faculty with easy, rapid access to information resources via up-to-date access tools and delivery systems.

All Library services support the College’s mission of providing student-focused, accessible, quality technical and general education, academic transfer, experiential and cooperative education, and workforce development.

The focus of the Library is on student learning and enrichment. The Library:

  • teaches students how to find, evaluate and use information;
  • offers opportunities for students and faculty to learn more about how information is organized;
  • enables the development of critical research skills;
  • provides students and faculty with personalized reference services.

The Library helps instill students with the research skills essential for lifelong learning.

The Johnnie Mae Berry Library is a member of the OhioLINK  consortium.