With a collection of over 210,000 volumes, this library is considered one of the richest resources available in North American for research on Eastern Christianity. The collection is especially strong in the areas of Orthodox Church history, theology, philosophy and culture, music and art. The library has compact shelving in the stacks. Please ask a library staff person for assistance in using the system. Briefcases, book bags, knapsacks, etc. are not allowed in the stacks. Store them in the library bins, which are located in room 134 next to the Reading Room. Our primary aim is to meet the needs of the Seminary as a whole by acquiring, maintaining, and ensuring access to library materials for faculty and students. Please inform us in a timely fashion of any special projects or special needs not met by the current holdings. We will attempt to meet the needs first by use of Interlibrary Loan (ILL), secondly by the purchase of new books, and lastly by directing you to other libraries.
Rules and Privileges
Reading and borrowing privileges are extended to all residents of the academic community, which are subject to the rules and regulations of the Library:
- Eating, drinking, and smoking are not permitted in the Reading Room, the stacks or any other rooms in the Library.
- The two rooms to the right of the stairs (Rooms 133, 134) are designated as quiet rooms. Room 133 is also designated as The Lyceum. In addition, the study space near the windows on the lower floor is also a quiet space. Room 134 is used for multimedia purposes and storage. Patrons are welcome to store their personal items in Room 134 while using the library.
- Alumni are able to enjoy reading privileges in the Library and may apply to obtain borrowing privileges, subject to payment of an administrative fee of $100 per semester/summer.
- Remote thesis completion will be supported by the library in the following ways: copies of journal articles (at cost), and the thesis writer must request materials from the Library through a local library via InterLibrary Loan. Circulation at SVS or through SVS generated ILL requests are not included in the privileges of a remote thesis write.
Library Policies regarding Books, Study Carrels and Hours
All books leaving the stacks or reserve shelf must be checked out, no matter how short the duration of use. Neither faculty, students, or alumni is allowed to remove a book from the library without following the proper check-out procedure. The student handbook clearly states that taking books out of the stacks without checking them out is subject to disciplinary action.
Study Carrels and Tables
Study carrels may be reserved on a semester-by-semester basis but only by visiting scholars and full-time ThM students, up to a limit of six carrels per semester. Visiting scholars are assigned carrels by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, if requested. ThM students who would like to reserve a carrel must apply for the carrel through the ThM Program Director and the librarian. Reserved carrels will be clearly marked. Personal items must not be left unattended in a carrel, even in reserved carrels. Students who use unreserved carrels must remove all items from the desk surface after each use or when away from the carrel for more than 15 minutes. Gray plastic bins are available in the library to store these items. However, personal items (laptops, etc.) should not be left unattended and should never be left in the library overnight.
Restriction of Library Access
When a student does not follow the rules in the library, is not a responsible library patron, and does not communicate with the librarians, the librarian has the right to reduce the number of books allowed in circulation and even to restrict circulation privileges altogether. Abuse of the library includes, but is not limited to:
- Failure to check-out and return items, ignoring due dates and failure to renew items
- Failure to pay fines promptly
- Failing to responding to emails
- Failing to return books when requested to do so, particularly when leaving the SVS community on a leave of absence
Use of the Library in the Summer after Graduation
Graduates who will be remaining on campus after graduation may request circulation privileges for summer months at no cost. During their time at SVS, their library privileges cannot have been suspended or revoked.
As an alternative to requesting materials by ILL, SVS patrons can physically visit the New York Area Libraries belonging to NYATLA (New York Area Theological Libraries Association ) for on-site use only. See the SVS Librarian for a listing of addresses, hours of operation, phone #’s, etc. Some will allow on-site use of the library, but please call ahead to check on access and hours.
A copy machine is available in the library and the cost is $0.10 per copy. A change machine has been provided in the copy area for your use which exchanges $1, $5, $10 and $20 bills for quarters. Visitors and patrons also have access to a scanner for digitizing documents and pictures. Visitors must consult a librarian in order to have access to the scanner.
A microform reader/printer is located next to the copy machine. Present your call slip request to the circulation desk and a staff member will retrieve the materials and give you instructions on the use of the equipment. Copies are $.10 per frame.