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User Behavior

Library users should be self-disciplined and show mutual respect to other users and library staff. Please follow the rules of behavior listed here. Offenders are subject to fines and loss of library privileges according to the demerit schedule.


  • The Library is a place for study and research. It is important for all library users to maintain a quiet study atmosphere.
  • The open areas on LG3 and Quiet Room on 1/F are zoned for quiet solo study. No group study or discussions are allowed. Mobile phone conversation or audio playing through speakers is prohibited.
  • In other areas, quiet group study and discussions are allowed. Users should be courteous to their fellow students, keep their voices low and do not cause disturbance to other users.
  • For any formal photo-shoot or video recording requests, please contact Library Administration ( for approval.

Food and Drinks

  • No food may be taken into the Library, with the exception of the Refreshment Zone in the Learning Commons. This includes fruit and other “shopping”.
  • Users may eat light snacks in the Refreshment Zone. Messy or aromatic foods such as French fries, noodles, pizza, etc. are not allowed. Library staff will determine which food items are acceptable. Users who do not comply will be asked to leave the Library or Learning Commons.
  • Drinks outside the Refreshment Zone in spill-proof containers are recommended. Alcoholic drinks are forbidden. Users should keep drinks away from electronic sockets and equipment to prevent damage.
  • Users should keep all areas tidy and must dispose of rubbish properly.

No Unattended Belongings

  • Users should not leave personal belongings unattended or use them to reserve study space.
  • Users should not leave an excessive number of personal items in the Library.
  • Laptops and other items, including library materials, left unattended on tables, desks, or chairs may be moved to the floor by other users. Library staff may remove valuable items to the Circulation Counter.
  • The Library cannot be held responsible for any loss or damage of personal belongings.

No Smoking

  • Indoors and outdoors, HKUST is a non-smoking campus. Smoking is prohibited in the Library and Learning Commons, including the terraces and Library Garden.

Proper Use of Collections and Facilities

  • To maintain the library collection in good condition, users should handle library materials carefully. Books and other library materials must not be mutilated or defaced. This includes underlining with pencil.
  • Users are liable to pay full replacement or repair fees for damage to any library property (including equipment, furniture, items displayed), or damage that is a result of evident negligence.
  • Computers are provided for users to have access to information for the purposes of research, study, and learning. Each user should occupy one computer for fair use. Users should use online resources responsibly. They should not use computers or facilities to play games or to view obscene materials.
  • Copyright law should be strictly observed by all users when making copies of library materials.
  • Compact shelving is not meant for browsing. Users should avoid spending a long time in the aisle so that other users have a chance to use the adjacent aisles.
  • The Library’s collections are developed for the support of HKUST faculty, students, and staff; few juvenile materials can be found here. Pre-school and elementary school children must be accompanied and supervised by an adult. Parents, not the Library, are responsible for what children read or view in the Library.
  • Bicycles, skate boards, roller blades, strollers, etc. are not allowed in the Library.

Use of HKUST Card

  • HKUST card gives users access to library space and services. Misusing the card is an offence, which may lead to suspension of library privileges and disciplinary action.
  • Lending or borrowing of HKUST card between community members for gaining access to the Library and/or borrowing library materials will incur demerit points.
  • Lending your HKUST card to a non-HKUST community member to gain access to the Library and/or borrow library materials is a serious matter. Heavy demerit points will be imposed.

Demerit Schedule

In order to maintain an atmosphere suitable for study, the Library has implemented the following demerit schedule in addition to the usual Borrowing Policy.

  • Demerit points will be recorded in the violator’s library record and will accumulate and stay valid for one year.
  • Action will be taken by the Library when a library user’s total demerit points reach the levels listed on the Library Action Table.
  • A note will be added to the violator’s library record once action has been taken.
  • The offender will pay for the replacement or repair fees when appropriate.
  • Extra demerit points will be added on all issues if the user is uncooperative.
  • The Library reserves the right to modify the demerit schedule.
  • Criminal activity will be reported to the Hong Kong Police.

Demerit Point Table

Issue Demerit Points
Not returning technology items or media equipment on the same day of borrowing 1 per day of delay
Uncooperative behavior 2
Eating food outside Refreshment Zone 2
Improper use of mobile phones or sound-emitting devices 2
Improper use of library facilities 3
Leaving laptops or other valuables unattended 3
Leaving personal belongings in bulk 3
Drinking alcohol 5
Vandalizing library collection 5
Borrowing or lending HKUST card between HKUST community members 6
Lending HKUST card to a non-HKUST community member 10
Smoking 10
Excessive downloading of e-resources or other license violations 10
Damaging library facilities 10
Theft 18

See information on Technology Items for Loan for details.

Library Action Table

Cumulative Demerit Point Range Actions taken by Library
  • All library privileges suspended for two weeks.
  • All library privileges suspended for one month.
  • HK$ 100 fine.
  • Report to the Department.
  • All library privileges suspended for two months.
  • HK$ 100 fine.
  • Report to the Department.
  • All library privileges suspended for three months.
  • HK$ 100 fine.
18 and over
  • Report to the Student Disciplinary Committee for further actions.
  • All library privileges suspended for four months.
  • HK$ 100 fine.



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last modified 19 April 2024