Information Services Regulations

Introduction

These Regulations are prepared so that all Information Services users may be informed about the rules governing use of Information Services facilities. The Regulations are designed to ensure that all our users have the fullest opportunity to make proper use of our many facilities and services. Ignorance of the Regulations may lead to inconvenience for other users and to fines and penalties for you, so please take the time to read them. The Information Services Service Standards https://www.aber.ac.uk/en/is/about/standards/ show the standards of service which you have a right to expect from us. In return we ask you to follow these Regulations for the benefit of yourselves and other users. We also produce more specific Guidelines to explain more fully how these Regulations relate to the use of specific facilities.

The Regulations cannot cover every eventuality and we recognise that there are occasions where a strict interpretation of rules may not be justified. Please contact a member of Information Services staff as early as possible if there are potential difficulties and we will try to assist before problems arise. If you are dissatisfied with the application of any of these Regulations or your treatment by our staff, University staff, visitors and members of the public should refer to the Information Services’ complaints procedure at http://www.aber.ac.uk/en/is/regulations/complaints/

Students should follow the University complaints procedure available at: http://www.aber.ac.uk/en/regulations/complaints/

General

1.1 Full access to Information Services facilities and services is normally permitted to registered users only and is conditional on observance of the regulations and associated guidelines in force at the time. These Regulations also apply to walk-in users, visitors and guests. The Regulations are from time-to-time updated to reflect changes in law and local experience. All users are fully bound by such changes. Major amendments are advertised via the AU weekly bulletin, which is emailed to all registered users, and via the IS News webpage. All registered users are therefore presumed to know and agree to these Regulations which are available via the University Web pages.

1.2 Throughout these Regulations the term Information Services means all or any of the library, computing, web and timetabling services of Aberystwyth University, and buildings where such services are delivered. Use of facilities means use directly associated with the academic, administrative work or business work of the University, or personal use by registered users. Throughout these Regulations the word University refers to Aberystwyth University.

1.3 Information Services staff are empowered to levy charges for specific services, as displayed within Information Services and in general publicity.

1.4 The Director of Information Services is authorised to suspend the Information Services privileges of any person and to impose fines or other appropriate penalties for breaches of the Regulations. The exercise of the power to impose a fine or suspend facilities may be delegated by the Director to a member of Information Services staff. Any action taken by the Director under this Regulation may be reported to the appropriate authorities.

1.5 All users of Information Services facilities undertake to indemnify Aberystwyth University against all actions, suits, proceedings, claims, demands and costs (including any legal costs or expenses properly incurred and any compensation costs and disbursements paid by the University on the advice of their legal advisers to compromise or settle any claim) occasioned by the University in consequence of any breach of Information Services regulations or breach of national or international law which they commit.

1.6 These regulations also apply away from Aberystwyth University, where network access is gained by the use of Aberystwyth University credentials.

1.7 Information Services produce a number of supplementary documents to help in following the Regulations and users have a responsibility to adhere to any relevant guidelines or policies, which are available via the Information Services web pages.

Access to Information Services

2.1 Members of the staff of the University and registered students of the University, together with any others who have appropriate privileges as members of the University are entitled to the use of Information Services facilities. Students who have taken their final examinations cease to have full access. On graduation they may register as associate readers under regulation 2.2.

2.2 Graduates of the University may use the libraries for reference purposes. A fee will be charged for borrowing privileges.

2.3 Staff and students of certain other institutions are entitled to use Information Services facilities in accordance with the terms of the agreement between the institution and the University. Such users agree to comply with the Information Services regulations of Aberystwyth University.

2.5 Access to Information Services facilities is primarily provided in furtherance of the University’s activities. Although a limited amount of non-academic activity is allowed as a privilege to our users, such access and any resources thereby used will not be allowed to conflict with our primary aims. For any use of Information Services facilities for commercial purposes any intending user must first obtain authorisation from the Director of Information Services and a fee may be levied for such activity.

2.6 Information Services staff do not normally inspect the contents of emails or data files belonging to users in any way except in cases such as the following:

1. Where a virus or large-scale emailing is threatening the functioning of the email system or is likely to delete or corrupt user data, in which case email headers and other patterns of data may be examined to identify and delete the material involved.

2. Where there is a firm suspicion that Information Services facilities have been misused under the terms of these Regulations or where it is suspected that other University regulations have been breached.

3. In co-operating with the police where it has been established that such co-operation is in the direct furtherance of a criminal investigation.

4. Where access is required to support use of Blackboard (and submission of assignments) under the Blackboard Acceptable Use Policy. Under these Regulations you are agreeing to the right of inspection by Information Services staff under these specific circumstances

Conduct

3.1 An Aber Card is issued only for the use of the person named on it. It must not be lent to, or transferred to, or used by any other person. An Aber Card is only valid if the user is a current member of staff of the University or a current registered student (not temporarily withdrawn or excluded), or is held by others who have appropriate current privileges as members of the University.

3.2 Users must carry their Aber Card or other identification with them and must be prepared to show this to Information Services staff or other authorised University staff on request.

3.3 An IT account personal password must not be divulged to any other person. Users will be held responsible for misuse of Information Services facilities attributed to them.

3.4 Any behaviour likely to disturb or inconvenience other users or be detrimental to the property of Information Services is forbidden. Users of Information Services facilities must not behave in a manner likely to bring the University into disrepute, must not disrupt teaching, studying, examining, research or administration in the University nor should obstruct any member of the University in pursuit of their studies or the performance of their duties.

3.5 Users must not mark or damage books, journals, computers, printers or other property of Information Services. Any such damage must be made good to the satisfaction of the Director of Information Services.

3.6 Users must not attempt to remove any property belonging to Information Services except such as may have been properly issued to them under the borrowing regulations. All members of Information Services staff are authorised to inspect any books, bags or other goods in the possession of users entering or leaving Information Services premises. Information Services staff are entitled to routinely access Library lockers and carrels hired out to users at all times and without notice to the user for the purposes of security, maintenance and repair, searching for unissued loan materials and all other purposes deemed necessary.

3.7 Smoking, hot food and alcoholic drinks are not permitted on Information Services premises. Users must abide by local regulations as displayed in Information Services premises relating to the consumption of food and drink.

3.8. Study spaces and individual and group study rooms in Information Services premises must be left clean and tidy after use.

3.9 Animals (other than those providing disability assistance) may not be brought into any Information Services premises.

3.10 The reservation of seats in any Information Services premises is not permitted. Books and other articles left unattended for any length of time may be removed by staff.

3.11 The University accepts no responsibility for personal belongings left anywhere in Information Services, including lockers, at any time.

3.12 Mobile telephones must be set to silent and there must be no audible sounds from headphones or audio devices in libraries and other Information Services premises.

3.13 Use of laptops and other mains powered equipment is allowed in Information Services premises as long as it is used in a safe manner and it does not cause an obstacle or hazard to other users. It is the responsibility of the owners of mains powered equipment to have it tested for electrical safety, and use is conditional on the owners’ acceptance of responsibility for damage to University property caused by their equipment.

3.14 Users must observe the law of copyright and the terms of any licenses for materials they use. Information about copyright and about the University’s licence agreements with the Copyright Licensing Agency and other organisations covering print, audio visual, electronic and other materials, is available on the University webpages. By registering to use Information Services, users agree to abide by copyright legislation. Use of JANET wide area network is governed by the "JANET Acceptable Use" policy which is available on the University webpages or on application in any Library. Use of software and databases is governed by individual product licences.

3.15 Information Services users must not use the University network to create or display information that could give offence to other reasonably-minded people, including material capable of inciting hatred of any particular individual(s) or racial or religious groups. This applies both to textual and graphical material. If, as part of your research work you do need to create or display material that reasonably-minded people would find offensive you must ensure that your Head of Department is made aware of your research requirements and that the Director of Information Services has similarly been informed.

3.16 All users must abide by the terms of the Data Protection Act 1998 (and, from May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation), or equivalent legislation in other jurisdictions where the University operates and have due regard to the guidelines provided on the University webpages.

3.17 Users must not access or attempt to use any computing facilities without authority. This includes using a password which belongs to another user, however obtained. Any attempt to alter or delete material belonging to other users or to tamper with hardware or software will be an offence against University regulations and may also be a criminal offence.

3.18 The University accepts no responsibility for problems caused by loss of service or for the correctness of data and no liability for any direct or consequential loss or damage.

3.19 Users are responsible for the transfer of any data which they may wish to keep before their University staff contract expires or they are no longer a current student at the University.

3.20 Users must leave the libraries and other Information Services premises by closing time, immediately on hearing a fire alarm, or on the request of Information Services staff.

3.21 Users must immediately report any accident, theft or other such incident to a member of Information Services staff.

3.22 Users must not film or take photographs in Information Services premises without prior permission from Information Services and completion of the online Information Services Filming and Photographing permissions form.

3.23 The University uses email as an official form of communication with staff and students. Registered users must regularly check their Aberystwyth University email for such communications.

3.24 Users must treat other users and Information Services staff with respect and courtesy at all times.

Borrowing

4.1 Users may borrow materials up to the limits applicable to their status. These limits are determined by Information Services and displayed in Information Services publicity.

4.2 Users will be required to use their Aber Card to borrow materials, including equipment loan stock, from any Library.

4.3 Users must not attempt to remove materials from any Library which are not available for loan except as permitted by Information Services staff. Certain materials will be subject to restricted loan availability.

4.4 Users must return library loans by the date specified or upon demand. Any item with a loan period of more than 2 weeks may have the loan period reduced, should that item be reserved by another user. It is the responsibility of users to ensure that they are in a position to respond promptly to recall notices. The Library will normally send notices, including recall notices for items on loan to the user’s University email address, unless a user can only receive or has requested to receive Library notices by post. External library users, such as Associate users, should inform the Library of any change of address for receipt of Library notices.

4.5 Fines or charges on overdue materials will be levied as determined from time to time by Information Services. Unpaid fines or charges and non-return of recalled items by their amended due date may prevent users from borrowing materials. Users will be notified of these restrictions as appropriate.

4.6 Users must not lend any book or other Information Services property issued to them to another person.

4.7 Any user who loses Information Services books or other property on loan will be required to bear the cost of a replacement and any fines incurred. Should the item subsequently be found and returned to the library, the replacement cost will be refunded but the user will still be liable to pay overdue fines.

Penalties

5.1 For the breach of any Information Services Regulations which are not simultaneously covered by the wider University Rules, the penalties may be a warning, a fine, or suspension or withdrawal of the right to use Information Services facilities.

5.2 Compensation must be paid for damage to, or loss of, Information Services property.

5.3 For the breach of Information Services Regulations relating to the borrowing of books and other items, fines may be levied at a rate to be determined from time to time by Information Services.

5.4 In any case involving a breach of University Rules, penalties may be imposed as set out in appropriate University regulations.

Procedure

6.1 In the case of penalties relating to borrowing or loss of items fines may be levied by any authorised member of Information Services staff in accordance with the rates currently in force for different materials.

6.2 In the case of any other breach of Information Services Regulations the matter will be referred to the Director of Information Services or their nominee for attention. The matter will be discussed between the user, who may be accompanied to the hearing, and the appropriate member of Information Services staff and if a case is proven a penalty will be determined in accordance with the severity of the offence.

6.3 Any student wishing to appeal against a disciplinary decision must inform the Senior Tutor within 14 days of the decision, setting out the grounds of appeal. Staff wishing to appeal must inform Human Resources in writing within 10 working days of the decision.

6.4 In any case of dispute as to an alleged offence or proposed penalty, the matter may be referred to a disciplinary committee who will hear the relevant evidence and make a decision, which shall be binding, within 14 days.

6.5 In the case of any serious breach of University Rules the matter will be referred to the appropriate authority, although Information Services will reserve the right to take further disciplinary action as appropriate.

Related Policies see https://www.aber.ac.uk/en/is/about/regulations/

These Regulations are maintained by Jonathan Davies, were last reviewed in August 2017 and are due for review in July 2018