Mission and Purpose

Allen Memorial Library supports the discovery, evaluation, and creation of knowledge in a learner-centered environment.

  • Support the university’s vision of delivering distinctive, learner-centered experiences
  • Promote critical thinking, inquiry, and intellectual engagement
  • Provide high-quality resources, information literacy instruction, and reference services to all members of the VCSU community, both on-campus and online
  • Collect and promote a diverse array of learning materials and resources
  • Serve as a student-focused destination for reference, research, collaboration, and study

Library Hours 
The library building follows Valley City State University’s hours of operation, as found in
V611.16, as well as additional evening and weekend hours during the academic year.  Digital resources are available via the library website.


Library Users
All Valley City State University students, staff, and faculty are considered library patrons and are provided with full access to materials and services using their university-issued ID card. Emeritus staff and faculty are also automatically considered library patrons and do not need to apply for a card. Community members may use library resources and/or may elect to become a local library patron by applying for and receiving a community patron library card. Priority for resources and staff time is given to university users.
Loan of Materials
Materials will be loaned to patrons with a valid library card/university-issued ID. Library staff may request verification of patron information during the circulation process.


Any student who is currently enrolled in at least one class taught under the auspices of Valley City State University is a student borrower. There are multiple collections of materials available for check out from Allen Memorial Library with a variety of loan periods. Every effort is made to inform borrowers of material due dates; however, it is ultimately the responsibility of the borrower to verify and adhere to due dates to prevent fines and fees from being issued.

Faculty and Staff/Faculty and Staff Emeritus

Faculty and staff employed at Valley City State University may borrow most library materials for one semester. Faculty and staff may renew materials at the end of fall semester but must return all materials at the end of the academic year.

Community Members

Valley City State issues community borrower library cards to residents of the city or county upon completion of a community borrower registration form and proof of current address. Community patrons are generally defined as permanent residents of Valley City or the surrounding area, or alumni of the university.

Community patrons may have a shorter loan period than university-affiliated users. Upon check out, they will be notified of the due date, but are ultimately responsible for the timely return of materials. Allen Memorial Library reserves the right to revoke or refuse borrowing privileges for community users who violate library rules or policy.

Overdue Materials

The library will issue overdue courtesy notices. Fines may be charged for overdue items and items that remain unreturned are declared lost.  After the item is declared lost, a bill for the cost of the item plus a non-refundable handling fee will be sent to the borrower and the Valley City State University Business Office for collection Borrowing privileges for a student or community member with an outstanding bill are suspended until the account is settled.

Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary loan services are provided to university-affiliated patrons of the Allen Memorial Library to provide access to materials not owned by the library. Items may be requested from other libraries throughout North Dakota or the world. Most interlibrary loans are available to faculty, staff, and students at no charge when requests are made following approved procedures. If, however, the lending library charges a fee, that fee may be passed on to the patron.

Course Reserves
Faculty may place personal or library-owned materials on either physical or electronic course reserve at the library. The library will not collect or share data on the circulation or use of materials. 
Library Instruction
Professional librarians offer information literacy instruction to help students gain information literacy skills necessary for life-long learning, and to help them complete research projects, term papers and class assignments. Information literacy instruction sessions are tailored to individual subjects and courses and must be scheduled in advance.

Allen Memorial Library is committed to providing equal access to information and services for all students, faculty, and staff members. We strive to provide an equitable experience for all individuals regardless of ability by following accessibility standards, responding to user feedback, and providing support and accommodations. Allen Memorial Library complies with VCSU policy statement V1203.01: Digital Accessibility

Computer Use
The library contains a limited number of public access computers. Students, faculty, and staff of Valley City State University have priority in using these computers.  All users must comply with the guidelines on computer and network usage set forth in Section 1901.2 of the 
Policies and Procedures of the North Dakota University System (NDUS) as well as the library rules for use. Library personnel reserve the right to restrict use of library computer equipment. Temporary guest wireless accounts are offered in conjunction with university technology services for campus visitors and community users. Users of guest wireless accounts must comply with both library and university system guidelines.  

Confidentiality of Library Records
In accordance with North Dakota state law, Allen Memorial Library does not release information on library users or their use of information. North Dakota Century Code, Section 40-38-12, states: “Any record maintained or received by a library receiving public funds, which provides a library patron's name or information sufficient to identify a patron together with the subject about which the patron requested information, is considered private and is excepted from the public records disclosure requirements of section 44-04-18. These records may be released when required pursuant to a court order or a subpoena.” 
Purchase of Library Resources
The primary objective in creating and maintaining the Allen Memorial Library collections is to support the learning and research objectives of the VCSU community.  This is accomplished through selecting and purchasing materials relevant to the curriculum offered at VCSU, and the associated research and teaching activities that accompany that curriculum.

A portion of the annual library budget is allocated for the purchase of physical and electronic resources related to each academic area of study. The final decision to purchase or subscribe is made by the Director and based on a variety of professional criteria, including but not limited to the following: availability of funds, professional reviews, applicability to curricular needs, expected usage data, cost effectiveness, and expected return on investment. Faculty suggestions for purchase of resources related to academic programs are given priority.
Deselection of Library Materials
The library withdraws materials from the collection on an ongoing basis as a part of the routine collection management procedures of the library. Decisions on deselection are made using professional collection development tools and procedures.

Gifts to the Library
The library accepts gifts of material and equipment that meet the library's collection development policy and reserves the right to dispose of or offer items to faculty and students which are not selected for addition to the collection. 

Sponsored by: Director of Library Services
Reviewed: Winter 1996
Reviewed: February 2005
Number Change: October 2010 (formerly V480)
Revised:  March 2015
Revised: November 2021