Library Services

2009 Suggestions

Subject: 24 hour library
Suggestion:What is the use of having a 24 hour library if no one is around to check out books? 

Response: Cooper is open late hours to provide study space and access to computers or collections.  We staff for the heavy times and can’t afford to schedule employees during the slowest times of the week. Self-check machines cost over $20,000 and while it is on our “wish list” funding for that piece of equipment isn’t currently available especially in tight budget times.  Just keeping up with the cost of inflation with material costs is a hard task.  We hope you understand.  Thanks for the inquiry.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Signage on 4th floor
Suggestion:The signs on the 4th floor were confusing and in the way.  I couldn’t find the book I was looking for.

Response: An industrial engineering project was conducted in the spring of 2009 and the signs are a part of the study.  Some patrons are positive about the subject indicators but we’ll certainly take your comment under advisement.  Thanks!
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Laptop Check Out Program
Suggestion: have some mac laptops to check out.  

Response: The Libraries do not have the resources to commit to additional laptop purchases. Our primary mission is to support teaching and research and the majority of students own laptops. Thanks for the suggestion but in these tough budget times, we just can’t commit to it.
- Emily Gore, Head of Digital Initiatives – IT

Subject: Hours - Special Collections
Suggestion: I think you should post all the Summer Hours for your Special Collections on the Web site. Right now it only says Intersession May 4-8, 2009. What about the rest of the summer? Thank you. 

Response: Thanks for noticing and the web page will be corrected as soon as possible.
- Mike Kohl, Head of Special Collections

Subject: Fountains
Suggestion: There are 5 fountains (3 near the football practice field and 2 beside the baseball field) that are running. If these run why can't the ones at the reflection pool in front of the library run? Thanks.   


Unlike the sediment basins near the football field that are fed by storm water runoff, the library pond is fed from the potable water line, hence, not a great idea given we are still in a drought status. Besides the water costing money, there is evaporative loss and overspray loss. Also, Athletics pays for the maintenance and energy costs for their football field fountains.

- Bob Wells, Associate VP Facilities


Subject:Campus Phone

Suggestion:Please take a look at the public phone near the coke machines to see if it is working properly. i can hear but can't be heard by the person on the other end of the line. Thanks! 

Response: Fixed and thanks for the report.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager

Subject: Scanners
Suggestion: Desktop scanners on floor five don't work. As a side note, its very difficult to scan books/journals without breaking the binding on desktop scanners. Certain scanners have glass that goes all the way to the edge which makes book scanning easier (but I have no idea how common that is or generally useful). 

Response: When checked, all scanners are operating correctly. FYI - copiers in Cooper have a free scan-to-email feature and have a special top that protect books.
- Emily Gore, Head of Digital Initiatives & Information Technology

Subject: Media complaint
Suggestion: Ever since the Media department has moved from the 2 nd floor, it has been very messy and I cannot find anything.  I’ve been unsuccessful in my past 4 visits even with the help of Circulation.  

Response: It is our experience that the media collections are in the BEST shape ever.  Staff and students are committed to that area and are constantly shelf-reading and maintaining the area.  Please send more information so that we can adequately address your concerns.  Further, ask for a supervisor if you don’t receive good service at the Circulation Desk.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: NOISE
Suggestion: The staff on the circulation desk creates too much noise therefore making it difficult for us to concentrate while studying on the main 4th floor. 

Response: Thanks for the comment. We do take your suggestions seriously and it has been shared with all desk staff.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Newspaper Racks
Suggestion: Might the newspaper racks be moved somewhere else so they're not blocking any windows? We need all the natural light we can get in the library! 

Response: Thanks for the idea - we'll consider it.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Circulation Desk
Suggestion: CU is now characterized by diversity.  It seems inappropriate, therefore, for employees at the main desk to wear religious pendants.  I’m certain this makes segments of our campus population uncomfortable, or even offends certain people.  It would seem as if employees could desist from in –your-face religious expression while they are on duty at the Circulation Desk.”  Uncomfortable Faculty Member. 

Response: Thanks for your comment.  We’ll take it under advisement.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Pop Reading and Current Periodicals
Suggestion: More magazines per shelf would make more room for popular reading.

Response: The move to bring media up to the 4 th floor over Christmas break was a hurried and temporary project.  The entire arrangement and space is under review.  Look for changes this summer (2009).
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Suggestion: If you have any of the laptops you would like to dispose of please offer them to the students (ie:me)

Response: Thanks for your question about laptops.  Since all equipment is considered to be state property it must be disposed of through the Surplus Property Department on campus.  Call the office for more information (656-2053).
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject:6 th floor noise
Suggestion: It was a bad idea to put group tables in the back of floor 6.  People’s voices carry down to people working on the 5 th floor.  Those (including me) use the desks in the back of 5 th floor to do work in relative quiet.  However, it’s becoming hard to sit there when I hear voices from above.  Book cases should have been moved from the sides of floor 6 since there already are tables there and it wouldn’t disturb anyone below.  It’s good you added more tables but they were put in the wrong place.  Please look in to this.  Thanks!

Response: Thanks for the information.  Those tables were moved to that location during the heating and air conditioning project (to avoid moving tables off the floor entirely).  Please contact the security guard at the desk 656-6194 or by instant message “culibraryguard” and the noise problems will be addressed.  Thanks.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Noise
Suggestion:I was pleased with the Library staff.  But it seems that too much noise is allowed in this library.  I suggest more “control” if at all possible.  We are here to study not socialize!

Response:Can you provide more details?  What floor?  What date or time did this occur?  We’ll try to monitor noise levels more closely.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Noise
Suggestion: Many people were studying respecting the volume levels of other students.  However the staff was very loud talking about controversial topics.  This is a poor example for teaching students to respect others and the library integrity.

Response: Thanks for the report.  We’ll follow-up.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Popular Reading
Suggestion: (3) I don’t like change to Popular Reading-less books, unable to view titles-less user friendly. Current Pop Reading bad lay out, is cramped and discourages browsing.  What happened to Audio Book & Pop reading- very confusing.  New location has many problems, very hard to find what you are looking for.

Response: Thanks for letting us know about these problems with the new arrangement of Popular Reading books and audio-books.  I agree that it is confusing, not as conducive to browsing, and much less user-friendly.  This arrangement came about because in December we had to move all the media from the second floor into this area very quickly.  So that everything would fit, we had to reduce the number of books and put the audio-books into a much smaller area.  The good news is that this less-than-optimal arrangement is just temporary.  We are currently working to determine the best way to rearrange the room so the problems you mention will vanish and we hope to reorganize it within the next few months.
- Pam Draper, Popular Reading Librarian

Suggestion:The HOLD/RECALL form does not work. It has not worked for a very long time.

Response:PLEASE we need more detail. We are not aware that holds/recalls aren't working. Can you send an example? Please contact me ASAP.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Microfilm
Suggestion: Where is the microfilm for Newsweek. Only 2000 forward is in the cabinets but the catalog says much MUCH more should be there. I need it.

Response: Older volumes are being pulled to send to storage and are located at the back of the room in boxes. Which exact volume do you need? Perhaps we can pull it for you or Newsweek is electronically available through Lexis Nexis back to 1975 (text only) and 1999 forward in many other databases (pdf images).
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: My Library Account
Suggestion: I am not able to log into "My Library Account." What do I do?

Response: Send an email to us at with the pertinent information such as your userid and Clemson id number and we'll investigate.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Suggestion:I tried many times to request the book "Handbook of Interpersonal Communication" but the system refused. Could you please request that book for me to get it from architecture library. Thanks.

Response:Thanks. We'll investigate and place a recall for you. Call the Circulation Desk for more information.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Returns
Suggestion: I received notice that I have not returned the book I checked out. I returned it some time ago to Gunnin Library with the request that it go to Cooper.

Response: Thanks for the report. We'll investigate and get back to you via email. Books are picked up from Gunnin daily Monday - Friday; however, not over weekends so that may account for a slight delay.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Interlibrary loan/Pascal Delivers
Suggestion: Is it a problem to drop the PASCAL books in the drop box? Along with other books in the library I have returned the PASCAL book ( 110002106858z1suc ) on Friday 02/20/2009. All the other books are cleared from my account, but the PASCAL book is still there. Last time also happened with a PASCAL book for may be 2 months. If you please let me know about this, I will have to return the PASCAL books at the reception Desk.

Response:The Resource Sharing Office is only open during business hours Monday - Friday; therefore materials returned on Friday are not cleared from your account until Monday. Please feel free to call my office if your account isn't cleared on Monday.
- Jens Holley, Resource Sharing Unit Head, 656-5177

Subject: Interlibrary loan (3)
Suggestion:I ordered books through interlibrary loan and haven't heard anything. Could someone tell me the status of the book? message: My library account shows that the following book has been checked out to me:

Response:Someone in Resource Sharing will be in touch via email. Thanks.
- Jens Holley, Resource Sharing Unit Head, 656-5177

Subject: Returns (2)
Suggestion:I was sent an e-mail today concerning an overdue warning for the book A Shakespeare Glossary by CT Onions. If I put this in the Book Drop outside the library last week, shouldn't it have already been checked in? Thank you.

Response:Yes it should. We'll follow up and get back with you via email. Over 100,000 items are checked in annually so you can imagine that we miss some. Thanks!
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Error Message (2)
Suggestion:Hello, I have tried to renew these books online but I keep getting an error message. I wanted to notify you all of this so I will not get charged. Thank you. #2 I tried to renew some books on line and I couldn't. It said that my registration has expired. What does this mean. How do I renew my registration? Thank you.

Response:We'll check your account to determine the problem and try to fix it. Don't worry about fines or charges. Thanks.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Suggestion: Please renew the seven books that I have checked out.

Response: Please use "My Library Account" on the home page to renew books
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject:Credit Card Payments
Suggestion: I just paid all of my fees through a credit card, and I wanted to renew the books that I have out but there is a message saying I owe too much money. My books are due today and if I cannot check them out again it means I have to pay more fees on them which does not seem fair.

Response: No, you will not be assessed any more fines. There is a delay between posting the payment to your credit card and posting to the Library system; however you will not be fined. Call the Circulation Desk at 656-1557 for assistance if fines are posted to your account or you need help renewing.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject:Book Drop Returns
Suggestion: I placed the One up on wall street book by Peter Lynch in the drop box when I was finished and it is supposed to be turned in before 5:28 pm. I was wondering if I will be charged if they do not check the book back in before 5:28 pm.

Response: No, books returned to the book drop are automatically back-dated to the last time the drop was emptied. Questions, call the Circulation Desk at 656-1557.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Reminders
Suggestion:Are you no longer sending out "Friendly Reminders" for upcoming due items?

Response:Yes we are; however, please don't rely on the mail system. Check due dates, etc. by using "My Library Account" on the home page We cannot guarantee delivery.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Replacements

Suggestion: If I cannot locate this book, how much will it be to replace? Can I buy a new book on Amazon and bring it to you??

Response: Yes you can. Please purchase the same edition or more recent. You'll only need to pay a small replacement fee (around $8) and/or a binding fee (if you replace with a paperback instead of a hardback also around $8) plus any overdue fines. Be aware that if you later find the missing item after six months, no refunds are issued. Questions, call the Circulation Desk at 656-1557.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172


Suggestion:The last toilet in the 1st floor women's room (the handicapped stall) seems about to come out of the wall. It's loose and there's a bit of unpleasant odor around the hole in the wall behind it. Maybe it needs some attention?

Response:Thanks! Reported to Facilities and will be taken care of today (Friday February 27, 2009).
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Book Drop

Suggestion: Hi, I was disappointed to see that even the book drop was closed on the east side of the library. I came by on Saturday afternoon. Even though the library was closed, the book drop should have still been open. I am from out of town and now I have to make another trip to Clemson to return these books. Is not the point of a book drop to be able to return a book after hours?

Response: thanks for the heads up. The East book-drop was open but was jammed with materials. We got a call from the Police Department and responded as quickly as possible to empty the drop and correct the problem. My apologies for the inconvenience. If there are overdue fines involved, I'll be happy to waive them. Again, my apologies! Please contact me if I can help you in any other way.
- Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172

Subject: Title Search Problem

Suggestion: When you search for title =  American journal of alternative agriculture, there is no call number in the catalog. We do own it but the screen shows only that we own it, no call number.

Response: Thank you very much for the heads up. Inconsistent display of serials holdings in the web catalog has been a real problem since our last system upgrade. We are actively working with our system vendor to find a solution. Meanwhile, we have looked at the record for the American Journal of Alternative Agriculture and made some adjustments. The call number is now displaying in the web catalog. If you encounter any more display problems with journal titles, please contact Lisa Bodenheimer at
- Lisa Bodenheimer, Cataloging Unit Head,


Subject: Construction Noise

Suggestion: Why are you doing construction on the library (specifically 1st and 2nd floor) during exams? Its not the noise that bothers me but rather the fact that you've taken away a lot of desks and room to study. Please think these things through!

Response: The short answer is that all construction will cease Friday December 4th at 5:00pm for QUIET WEEK.  That is the official start of exam hours and Cooper will be open 24 hours a day until Friday December 11, 2009.  Portions of both 1st and 2nd floors are open for your use; however some are closed for your safety.  We apologize for the inconvenience but there's no GOOD time for construction in a heavily used facility.  Please be patient.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Toll free number

Suggestion: The toll free number for the library should connect to the checkout desk. That's where fine info can be gotten.

Response: The toll free number connects to the Reference Desk at Cooper Library.  Librarians who answer the phone are knowledgeable about all library operations and can forward calls to the person or department that is able to address the caller's question or concern.  The toll free line is promoted to students who take classes and perform research at off-campus locations and is frequently used by students who need assistance with database searches. Please feel free to use the toll free number and ask to be transferred to the circulation desk, where you can receive information about fines or items you have checked out.  Let me know if you have difficulties with this service.

Response from Suzanne Rook Schilf, Head of Reference, Clemson University Libraries

Subject: 1st floor construction

Suggestion: Your 1st floor is partially closed. on weekends and at nights you need to open the row of books up for students to access. There is no danger to students, all it lacks is carpet. Simply put up caution tape to keep students away from the back portion, they dont need to be there anyway since there are no books there. Also make it pop up when you are searching a book on the computer, im not going to walk up 3 levels of stairs just just so someone is present as i cross the line. . . its pointless. The librarian who talked with me was exceptionally rude. I am an eagle scout and have worked construction before, there is no reason for her to spend her time chasing me down. Maybe it gives her a power trip, idk but id rather my tuition money go to someone who is there to help me rather than pester me. As you can tell i am very unhappy so if I came of as disrespectful i apologize. Please take my recommendations into account and let us try to find a happy middle point.

Response: We are sorry that you had an unhappy experience at the library.  In response to the attached I personally inspected the construction site to see if the areas could be safely opened.  It is my opinion that the construction contractor has acted responsibly in closing off the areas of construction. The construction is proceeding in phases and as the areas become safe for the students it is open to the public.  The rows of books in question are not ready for safe retrieval of books by unskilled operators. The staff has been briefed on the safe operation of the partially completed areas and is aware of the inherent conditions however the students are not. 

Training in the scouting program is commendable, however the first thing taught in the scouts is that safety was first ahead of convenience. Not all students have had the safety training provided by the scouting program and even skilled workers have accidents. The sections of the library closed off were done so for the safety and protection of the students, Library staff and the construction workers.  Please encourage your staff to continue enforcing the safety needs as required until this construction can be completed.

Sorry for the inconvenience.  The contractor is working as efficient as he can to complete the work with the least disruption.

Response from Sam Zanca, Project Manager, University Facilities

P.S. Also, we are attempting to change the display in the on-line catalog - thanks for bringing that to our attention!

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Freedom of Access

Suggestion: Don’t allow grown men to look at pornography on the internet.  It’s gross.

Response: CU Libraries Freedom of Access policy states that CU Libraries does not restrict access to materials & resources in any format (electronic, paper, media, etc.) due to content. Resources may be challenged by submitting the appropriate form in accordance with the “Challenged Materials Policy”. If a patron reports that other patrons are using materials as a means to harass, the patron will be referred to the security officer on duty for assistance. If you feel that the patron is harassing you, please report it to the Security Officer.  You may also report it directly to the CUPD at (864)656-2222.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Noise

Suggestion: Please don’t have bands in the Library.  It’s really hard to concentrate when I have to listen to that crap!!!

Response: Cooper Library is committed to providing musical entertainment once per month for a 30 minute period.  Many patrons enjoy the brief respite.   Perhaps with the opening of 1st floor after the compact shelving project is completed, you can find alternative quiet space there.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: New Book Shelves

Suggestion: I really miss having new books in its former, more prominent place.  Now, I never think to look at the new titles.

Response: There are a couple of reasons that helped guide our decision to move the “New Book” Shelf.  We wanted to move it closer to other materials that are similarly “browsable”.  One of the features of moving the new books is that the section is now visible right as you walk in to the front door.   In addition the location next to the circulation desk makes it easy to pull a book and check it out.    Thanks for the comments and we hope that you will enjoy the new location over time.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager and Suzanne Rook-Schilf, Head of Reference

Subject: Newspaper Racks

Suggestion: Since you don’t see fit to move the newspapers away from the windows, can you please put the chairs back on the other side by that window so there is at least one nice place to sit in here?!

Response: No sooner than the racks are moved, then others make a move again.  So we tried another tactic and moved the racks further away.  Perhaps this relocation will last a bit longer than the last one.  Students in search of plugs locate furniture to suit their needs. Thanks!

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Lighting

Suggestion: My eyes feel very painful from intensive glare from lighting  when I use the computer in this semester on the fifth floor. So, I can't study in the library for long time as the last semester.  I know we should aware in Energy Conservation , but I don't think the really poor quality of light  such as big glare should be appeared at the computer area in the library.

Response: University Facilities installed new fixture during the summer of 2009 which are indeed energy saving and also maintenance friendly.  The new bulbs are brighter than normal when first installed; however should burn down a bit over time.  We will continue to monitor this problem.  Thanks.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Hot Water

Suggestion: Please make available a HOT water spigot for use. We could make tea or use in instant food preparation! Thanks. 

Response: Hot water is available in all restrooms. Does that help?

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager, 656-5172.

Subject:  Outdoor Cleaning of Cooper Library

Suggestion: Why is the library spending money to wash the outside of the building and make it pretty when they are cutting the book budget??

Response: This project is not being funded by CU Libraries but instead is a maintenance project funded by Facilities. The cleaning only happens once in a certain number of years so we are happy for the improved appearance. Spider webs were taking over!

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject:  Squeaky Doors

Suggestion: Is there any way to stop the exit doors from squeaking? I'm trying to study and it's driving me crazy!!!!!!

Response:  thanks, you were correct and it is now squeak-free!

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Subject: Movies

Suggestion: Will there be any more movies added to your present selection.  We need more new movies.

Response: Thank you for submitting a suggestion to the Libraries.  Librarians love to add DVDs to the collection!  However, with a limited budget available for new materials, librarians have to be very selective in what they purchase.  Typically, DVDs are added to the collection at the request of a faculty member who needs it for a class to view.  If you have specific DVD requests, please feel free to send  Your request will be forwarded to the librarian who purchases books and other materials for the subject area that best fits the movie topic.  They will evaluate your request and determine if it fits the scope of our collection and if funds are available.  Please let us know if you have additional questions.

Response from Suzanne Rook Schilf, Head of Reference, Clemson University Libraries,

Subject:  Newspaper Racks

Suggestion: Could you please move those ugly brown racks with the newspapers from in front of the windows? 

Response:  The racks are now pulled slightly away from the windows to allow for more light. That particular space is "under review" and we may find a better location in the near future. Thanks for the suggestion.

Response from Teri Alexander, Circulation & Facilities Manager.

Clemson University Libraries