Courtesy in the Library

The mission of the Marvin K. Peterson Library is to provide the University of New Haven community with state-of-the-art informational, research, and instructional materials, as well as services and facilities.  Secondary purposes involve supporting scholarly endeavors and informational needs in the local, regional, national, and even international communities in selected subject areas, and to help preserve library collections in those subject areas for use by future generations of scholars.  The Library staff values and will maintain safe and comfortable conditions for library users and staff alike, and create an environment conducive to serious intellectual work.  In order to fulfill this mission for all members of the University community, we ask that those using the Library observe the following courtesies: 

Cellular Telephone Use

The Library environment must be conducive to research and study.  Since cellular phones are commonplace, we expect cell phone users to be respectful of the rights of others and to help maintain a quiet environment while in the Library. 

Owners of cell phones are expected to turn their cell phone ringers off, or to turn the ringer to the lowest possible volume level, or to put them on vibrate, so as not to disturb others. 

When using their cell phone, patrons are expected to move to a location away from fellow patrons, so their conversations will not disturb those around them.  Please move to the phone foyer at the entrance of the Library, to the Library Cafe, or to the lower level for your quiet, brief cell phone conversations.  Cell phone users should talk softly and in a conversational tone.

The third-level reading room, Library Information Commons, all stairwells, stairwell landings, and all book stacks are off-limits for cell phone use.

Noise Levels

The Library environment must be conducive to research and study.

The Lower Level of the Marvin K. Peterson Library is designated as an area where discussion and group work are allowed at  normal conversation not disruptive to others.

The Upper Level is designated as a “Quiet Study Floor” where no talking is permitted. 

While working at any of the computers in the Library Information Commons on the Main Level, quiet conversations should not disturb others.

Other areas of the Library, such as the book and journal stacks, are areas were quiet conversations should not disturb others.

When necessary please ask Library Staff for assistance.

Food and Drink Policy

Beverages in closed containers are allowed in the Library.

Food should be consumed while in the Library Café located on the Main Level of the Library.  Food is not permitted in all other parts of the building.  The main reason is that spilled food can damage books, computers, journals, carpeting, and furniture.  The crumbs and spills that are left behind attract ants, roaches, and mice, which are a serious health concern.

We ask for your cooperation with this.

Acceptable Behavior

Patrons and staff alike are expected to treat each other with dignity and respect.  Cordiality and collegiality are the accepted standard. 

Some examples of behaviors that are NOT acceptable in the Library include:

  • Raised Voices
  • Verbal Abuse
  • Becoming argumentative, belligerent or disruptive
  • Not leaving the Library at announced closing times whether planned or emergency in nature
  • Entering posted staff areas without express permission of Library Staff
  • Using emergency doors, exits and stairwells in non-emergency situations
  • Not following requests by Library Staff to cease disruptive and inappropriate behavior
  • Consuming food outside of the Library Café while in the Library


Those who fail to follow these policies will be asked by Library Staff either to comply or leave the library.  Additional sanctions, including loss of library privileges and/or referral for disciplinary action to the Dean of Students, may be imposed on repeat offenders.

Non-University of New Haven offenders may be barred from the library entirely.

University Police will be called whenever necessary.     

rev. 9/12