Two students meeting in the library

Library Policies

Ready to explore MHCC's libraries? Here are guidelines to help you make the most effective use of the materials available to you. For assistance, call the library at 503-491-7161 or email a reference librarian. There are also online appointments via Zoom and online chat options. 

Ask a librarian

Library Cards

A valid MHCC ID activity card is required to borrow MHCC library materials, including course reserves that are restricted to library use only. All current, registered MHCC students, faculty, and staff may obtain a college ID card at the MHCC Library. Residents of the community college service district who are over age 16 may apply for an MHCC library card with valid picture identification, proof of current residence, and age.

Cardholders are responsible for the prompt return and the physical condition of any items checked out on their card. Lost or stolen cards must be reported.

Using your MHCC library card

The MHCC activity card is a library card, giving staff and students access to the multitude of services available within the library. The MHCC activity card is a means of identification and proof of program affiliation within the college's Allied Health Programs. The MHCC activity card provides on-campus security clearance for contractors. The MHCC activity card identifies members of the board, Incident Command System team, and university affiliations. The MHCC activity card allows access to the pool, theaters, dental facility, planetarium, and computer labs. The MHCC activity card will provide staff and students access to associated functions.

Receiving your MHCC library

To receive an MHCC activity card, you must be a currently enrolled student, an employee of MHCC, or an affiliate of the college. Individuals who cannot have pictures taken for religious reasons may receive an MHCC activity card with a blank silhouette. These individuals must present two forms of identification when presenting the MHCC activity card.

Validation stickers are issued throughout the term to currently enrolled students. The library accepts the following documents to ensure identity.

One picture ID:

  • Government-issued driver's license or ID card
  • Permanent resident card
  • Federal/state/local governmental ID
  • US military card
  • Consular card
  • Passport from any nation
  • High school ID card

If none of the above, two of the following:

  • Birth certificate
  • Tribal document
  • Voter registration
  • Lease with name and address
  • Credit or debit card
  • Utility or other bill with name and address
  • Club or organization ID
  • Social Security card

Borrowing Guidelines

Cardholders are responsible for the prompt return and the physical condition of any items checked out on their card. It is the responsibility of the borrower to notify the library check-out desk of any loss, damage, or defect immediately upon the return of the item.

Who can borrow?

Currently, registered students, faculty, staff, retirees, Summit visiting patrons, and MHCC public borrowers have borrowing privileges. Current enrollment is required for Summit and Interlibrary loan borrowing. Current and retired MHCC employees, currently registered students, Orbis Cascade Alliance members, and community members within our district can borrow library materials. Valid identification is required.

Summit Visiting Patrons

Students who are currently registered at Orbis Cascade Alliance member institutions have checkout privileges. The Orbis Cascade Alliance consortia consist of public and private colleges, community colleges, and universities in the Northwest. Only current credit students, faculty, and staff are eligible to borrow Orbis Cascade Alliance items. All fines and loss charges apply (even for MHCC faculty and staff). Charges are significantly higher than those assessed at MHCC library and are not negotiable. Replacement costs include a processing fee. The processing fee is non-refundable.

Public Patrons and Community Members

The library welcomes the use of its materials, facilities, and equipment by the general public. However, students and staff of the college are our primary users and assistance to them will take precedence over all other users. Public patrons must live in the district of MHCC to receive a library card and must be 16 years of age. Registrants that are 16 years and older must be accompanied by a parent until the age of 18. Public borrowers may not check out laptops or reserve items. Public borrowers do not have remote access to electronic databases.

MHCC library does not restrict access to any resources, nor do we employ the use of filters on any of our computers. MHCC has a professional commitment to ensure that all members of the community it serves have free and equal access to the entire range of library resources regardless of content, approach, format, or amount of detail.

Loan periods and fines

Employees can check out library materials for 60 days. Students and community members borrow most items for 30 days. Course materials for specific classes are borrowed from two hours to seven days. Fines will be charged to your MHCC account if you keep an item out longer than its due date. You will be responsible for the price of the item as listed in the library system if the item is lost. Fines for Summit materials are $25 per day for most items, and/or $90 if the item is lost. MHCC library reserves the right to deny checkout privileges indefinitely based on prior abuses.

Borrower-Specific Policies


Check out items with an MHCC ID card (current term) or photo ID with name and MHCC ID number. Check out items for 30 days on all items except reserves and Summit material. Limit: 20 items, one reserve at a time. Renewal: One time for an additional 15 days, for items without a hold request.


Check out items with a staff ID card or photo ID with name and MHCC ID number. Check out items for 60 days on all items except reserves and Summit material. Limit: 25 items. Renewal: One time for an additional 30 days, for items without a hold request.


Check out items with an honorary lifetime card or public patron card. Check out items for 30 days on all items. Cannot checkout reserve items or Summit items. Limit: 10 items. Renewal: One time for an additional 15 days, for items without a hold request. Laptops: two-hour checkout, no renewal.


Check out items with a visiting public patron card. Limit: 10 items.

Course Reserve Materials

Traditional course reserves allow faculty members to put selected readings, books, and videos on reserve to be used for varying lengths of time in the library so that many students can be assured of continuous access to required readings.

Call library staff at 503-491-7161 with questions on using or establishing course reserve materials. Or visit Ask a Librarian for live chat and Zoom options.

Loan Periods for Course Reserve Materials

Library materials required for class use are placed on course reserve. The instructor selects the loan period. Reserve fines accrue whether the library is opened or closed. Interlibrary Loan items will not be placed on MHCC course reserve. The library will accept the instructor's personal copies on reserve.

All two-hour, four-hour, 24-hour, 48-hour, and seven-day reserve materials can be checked out again after a one-hour wait. If there are two or more copies of the same book already on the shelf, the same book with a different loan period may be issued immediately.

Additional Library Policies

MHCC adheres to the Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Code of Oregon Libraries.

ILL is a means of requesting material not owned by MHCC library for our students, staff, and faculty from libraries around the country and the world. Loan requests primarily include books and articles. Reference materials, non-print materials, newspapers, and complete issues of journals are generally not ILL materials.

When requesting items, please verify that the item is not available locally before you place an ILL request. For articles, look for the journal title in the library's print and electronic collections. For books and videos, look for your item in the library catalog.

For further information, you may email the reference desk at [email protected], call 503-491-6171, or refer to the Interlibrary Loan Page.

The MHCC library collection has over 60,000 items in its circulating, reference, media, READ, and periodical collections. The library subscribes to over 100 online database resources which provide access to articles, eBooks, and videos.

The library's collection is developed primarily to support the academic, professional, and technical programs with relevant, up-to-date resources. Library collection development is responsive to the academic and extracurricular needs of the students, faculty, and administrative and staff members who form the core of the MHCC community. However, the library cannot provide copies of all assigned course texts. Reach out to library staff with questions.

All librarians, teaching faculty, college administrators, supervisors, staff, and students are encouraged to submit recommendations for both print and non-print materials that fall within their areas of expertise and that conform to the library's collection policies. Each librarian is assigned to select materials in specific subject areas. Further questions about the criteria used for adding materials to the library's collection can be addressed to the collection development librarian.

Weeding is the removal of outdated, superseded, damaged, or duplicated material from the collection. Materials that no longer meet the stated goals of the library will be withdrawn. The relevant subject librarian makes the final decision to remove an item from the library's collection.

The library code of conduct has been developed to ensure a safe, healthy, and productive environment for all library users. It is based on Mt. Hood Community College Board of Education policies, including the student code of conduct. In all cases, board policy and federal, state, and local laws will be followed. This code applies to all persons on library premises. Premises are defined as stack areas, study spaces, classrooms, group study rooms, meeting rooms, and stairwells.

The MHCC library offers services to students and community members. All library users have a right to expect these freedoms in the library:

  • Freedom from disorderly, lewd, offensive, threatening, or disruptive behavior.
  • Freedom from acts of intimidation, harassment, and threatening or coercive behavior that communicate a direct or indirect threat of physical or emotional harm.
  • Freedom from disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, or other college activities.
  • Freedom from solicitations, petitions, political canvassing, and proselytizing.
  • Freedom from theft, abuse, vandalism, or sabotage of college property.

In return for these freedoms, library users have a right to expect these behaviors from each other:

  • All users will comply with the directions of college officials acting in performance of their duties.
  • All users will identify themselves when requested to do so by college officials.
  • All users will refrain from using, possessing, or distributing alcohol, tobacco, and/or any state or federally-controlled substance.
  • All users will refrain from possessing explosives, firearms, dangerous weapons, or other hazardous objects or substances.
  • All users will report threats, acts of aggression, or disruptive behavior to college officials in accordance with this policy.

Students in violation of the code will be referred to the executive dean of student development and success. Community members in violation of the code will be referred to MHCC public safety or to Gresham police.

MHCC equipment is used for MHCC business only. Fax machines, copiers, scanners, or computers cannot be used for the benefit of another's gain or the benefit of another institution.

The use of any technological resource of MHCC implies acceptance of all current operational guidelines. Library users are expected to act in accordance with the following guidelines based on common sense, decency, and civility applied to the networked computing environment. Unauthorized, inappropriate, or illegal use may result in sanctions upon the user depending on their user status and appropriate MHCC board policy and regulation.

Library users are prohibited from violating copyright law, theft, file theft, violating other's privacy, deliberately crashing library or other's workstations or computer systems, modifying files without authorization, altering data, introducing viruses/malware, damaging files, interfering with the work of other users, maliciously disrupting network services, harassing or intimidating others, concealing or misrepresenting their name or intimidating others, concealing or misrepresenting their name or affiliation to mask irresponsible or offensive behavior, sending abusive or patently offensive or unwanted material to others, penetration or harm to operating system, reselling bandwidth, or any other illegal acts promulgated from or targeting the library's computers or MHCC computer systems.

These prohibited activities include devices and systems on the library's network, internet site, or other non-specified computer or network resources managed by the library or the college.

If abuse of computer systems occurs, those responsible for such abuse will be held legally accountable and subject to appropriate college, state, or federal regulations. By using the library's systems, the user agrees that neither the library nor the Mt. Hood Community College District can assume liability for any loss or damage to the user's data and hardware or for any other liability for damage or injury arising from the library's provision of the service or consequence arising therefrom.

The library policy prioritizes patron privacy. No inquiries will be made into a borrower's information requests, and checked-out materials won't be disclosed.

MHCC library adheres to confidentiality and ethical standards from the American Library Association (ALA). The First and Fourteenth Amendments support unbiased access to information, promoting informed citizenship. Librarians uphold this freedom by maintaining user record confidentiality and preventing misuse for fear or intimidation.

Privacy regulations are governed by federal, state, and local laws. The library may disclose information to law enforcement with a valid warrant, subpoena, or lawful directive. Compliance with the Oregon Public Records Act and the Federal Privacy Act is recognized, aligning with community college library practices. This policy doesn't impede Mt Hood Community College's use of records per its lawful policies.

Please be advised that the library computers are in a public area, and information viewed on the screen may be visible to other users. Library staff can provide a privacy screen for a computer monitor if you are concerned about the confidentiality or sensitive nature of online information. Library staff can also request a patron use a privacy screen if other patrons complain about the nature of their web browsing.

Laptops are available for borrowing from the MHCC library check-out desk on a first-come, first-served basis. Check-out is limited to one laptop per person for two hours for in-library use only. Return laptops to the check-out desk. To borrow a laptop, an MHCC activity or library card is required. The loan period is two hours, ceasing 30 minutes before the library closes. End-of-day loans must be returned 15 minutes before closing.

Laptops may be used anywhere in the MHCC library but cannot leave the premises. Removal of laptops may result in loss of future borrowing privileges. Laptops come with a power cord for checkout, which is strongly recommended over the battery due to quick turnaround times that may deplete the battery and risk data loss. You are responsible for the laptop until check-in. The library is not liable for loss during your loan. Do not leave the laptop unattended. Personal software cannot be loaded onto the laptop, and no user files will be retained on the hard disk. MHCC is not responsible for damage to removable drives or data loss due to hardware or software malfunctions.

Report any issues to the library check-out staff. For technical help with library laptops, visit the student help desk.

Electronic resources available through the library at MHCC are licensed by the library for use by current MHCC students, employees, and walk-in visitors to the library. Resource types include but are not limited to electronic databases, e-journals, e-books, image files, and practice test sites.

In general, authorized users may access licensed electronic resources for educational, non-commercial purposes only. Failure to comply with the terms of these licenses can result in an immediate loss of access to a resource for the entire college community. Disciplinary action for individuals failing to comply with the terms of these licenses will follow the MHCC student code of conduct process.

The library's electronic resources license agreements generally prohibit the following uses:

  • Downloading entire issues of electronic journals, large portions of electronic books, or attempting to create large databases from electronic resources content.
  • Systematic downloading of content, either manually, or with specialized software such as robots, scripts, or other software programs.
  • Using licensed resources for commercial purposes.
  • Sharing an access password with unauthorized users including but not limited to family, friends, or co-workers.
  • Redistributing copyrighted licensed content to non-authorized users including but not limited to posting content on a publicly accessible website.
  • Engaging in actions intended to circumvent access control measures of the library or electronic resource provider to licensed content.

When using any library electronic resources, all users must comply with MHCC's student code of conduct, MHCC Board Regulation AR-2060-B, and US Copyright Law (including the protections of fair use and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998). Many electronic resources have more detailed terms and conditions regarding acceptable usage. Please Ask a librarian for specific information related to acceptable use.


The library recognizes that the internet is a global, unregulated medium. Information on internet sites may not be current, accurate, or complete. There are also sites where content may be controversial or objectionable to some users. Sites may appear and disappear without notice. Because the MHCC library has no control over the internet and does not select or monitor the information available or accessed, the library cannot be responsible for internet content or the manner in which that content is used.

To protect your privacy and documents, please log off the computer when you are finished, and exercise caution when transmitting personal or sensitive information over the internet.

The MHCC library strives to provide a positive environment for study and research. To create a space that provides both quiet study places and group collaboration, we have divided the library into two distinct types of study zones. Each has a different noise level expectation.

The quiet zones are in the back of the library. There we provide patrons with individual study carrels. This area is intended to serve as an area for readers and students who need to concentrate. In this zone, no talking is permitted. The library instruction room and the group study room have been designated as quiet zones where low-level talking is permitted.

The library features a group study zone near the checkout area. This zone is intended for collaborative learning experiences and talking is permitted. The group study room is available when the library is open. The Bob Scott Room has also been designated as an active study zone when not scheduled for a meeting.

Self-service copy machines are available in the public area of the library. The machine settings are standardized to provide service to the majority of users. Student help desk staff can provide instruction and will handle basic troubleshooting. Library personnel cannot be responsible for the quality of copies or for copies produced because of user error.

Please see Saints printing for more information

MHCC belongs to a library consortium which allows us to access the collections of other libraries. Orbis Cascade Alliance is a consortium of most of the academic libraries in Oregon, Idaho, and Washington. Membership provides access to over nine million volumes. to borrow from these libraries, please place a request on the MHCC + Other Libraries section of our catalog near the search box.

MHCC library strives to accommodate users with disabilities in a variety of ways. The library actively includes consideration of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) concerns in policy and decision-making. Adaptive computer equipment is available in the library, on the south wall, near the computer lab. The library purchases media with closed captions or subtitles when they are available. The library encourages faculty to be aware of the need for closed captioning when they request the purchase of new material.

ADA-recognized service animals are permitted in the library with the proper documentation. 

The copyright law of the United States governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries, and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or reproduction. One of these specific conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research." If a user makes a request for or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. MHCC is legally obliged to pay attention to copyright law. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve a violation of copyright law.

Section 107 [of Title 17 of the U.S. code] describes the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair or determining whether or not a particular use is fair. Below are the four factors used to consider fair use:

  1. The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes
  2. The nature of the copyrighted work
  3. The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole
  4. The effect of the use upon the potential market for, or value of, the copyrighted work

The distinction between what is fair use and what is infringement in a particular case will not always be clear or easily defined. There is no specific number of words, lines, or notes that may safely be taken without permission. Acknowledging the source of the copyrighted material does not substitute for obtaining permission.

The library accepts gifts and donations through the auspices and according to the established policies of the MHCC Foundation or the office for college advancement. A library in-kind donation form may be filled out by the donor and library employee at the donor's request. The library then sends the form to the MHCC Foundation for further processing. Appraisals will not be provided.

Donations must be of such a nature and kind that they can be integrated into the collection without special handling, special controls, added facilities, or staff. Donated materials become library property whereupon the library is not obligated to retain or to return these materials to the donor. Donations may either be added to, or discarded from the collection at the sole discretion of the relevant subject librarian. Donations will be evaluated according to the same selection criteria as purchased materials: value added to the collection weighed against processing and any additional costs. All materials and/or equipment must adhere to the criteria that the item is course or campus-related, and must be a part of the permanent collection. Newspapers and periodicals will not be accepted as donations and will not be added to the collection. The MHCC library retains the right to determine lending/borrowing restrictions regarding all holdings.

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