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Borrow and Return Items

Circulating items include DVDs, VHS tapes, CDs and cassettes; laserdiscs do not circulate.  Each has a call number and bar code. All items are subject to recalls for Course Reserve.  Depending on the media format, a recall may shorten your loan period.

Loan periods and limits

Each borrower may check out 15 items for a loan period of 7 days. Checked out items are eligible for 4 online renewals.

Fines and fees

The following fines and fees will be applied to overdue and lost items:

  • Overdue fines: Northwestern University affiliates are not assessed daily fines.
  • Replacement fee for lost items: $125 per item. An item is considered "lost" the 10th day it is overdue. Replacement fees will be automatically waived if an item is returned. All students, faculty and staff must return all media before leaving the University. Bills will be sent for any media that is charged out.
  • Holds and blocked privileges:  A transcript hold will be placed on a graduate or undergraduate student's record if there is 1 lost status item when the fine/fee deadline at the end of the quarter has passed. All patrons' privileges are blocked when fines and fees reach $100.

Fines and fees can be paid at the University Library Circulation desk.  All queries regarding fines and fees should be addressed to Circulation at:  847–491–7633, or through email at


Return media to outdoor book drops located near the University Library, or at the Main Circulation Desk on Level 1. In addition, patrons may return items at any time to the Audio-Visual Return slot located next to the Multimedia Center's entrance on the 2nd floor of the library.

Media checked out from main library reserve must be returned to the main circulation desk on Level 1.