Library and Computer Labs


Library Operations

During Stage 1 of the public health emergency, Montclair State closed the Harry A. Sprague Library, suspended borrowing of physical materials and interlibrary loan, and provided individual consultations and reference research services remotely.

During Stage 2, as of July 2, 2020, the State has permitted libraries to reopen to patrons at 25% capacity. Sprague Library will reopen by August 17, in advance of the fall term, and, during Stage 2 and Stage 3, will remain open in accordance with the plan set forth below.

The Library will be open seven days and five nights a week during the academic term, but hours will be reduced. Staff and patrons will be required to comply with the University’s general safeguards, including not coming to campus if they are sick, wearing face coverings, observing social distancing and practicing enhanced hand hygiene. University Facilities will provide the Library with face coverings it can give to patrons if needed.

Reduced Occupancy

The Library will cap the number of patrons allowed inside to 25% of allowable occupancy.

Montclair State faculty, students, and staff will be required to present a current University ID card to gain admittance to the Library. Non-University visitors are allowed but will be required to make an appointment and will only be admitted if they provide their name and address, which will be recorded to facilitate contact tracing. Visitors must be met at the front door by a staff member.

The Main Level Reading Room and Silent Study areas, as well as other designated study spaces in the Library will be available for use in accordance with the social distancing requirements specified below.

Instructional spaces and laboratories for the Visual Communication Design program will be available only to that program’s faculty and students.

Patrons will be encouraged to make use of remote resources and contactless pickup and dropoff options to reduce the need for in-person services.

Social Distancing

Seating will be configured to ensure 6 feet of separation. Signs and floor markings will provide visual reminders about social distancing.

Patrons will not be allowed to enter the Reference, Reserve, Circulating and Media collections in order to minimize contact of people with library materials. Materials will be retrieved by Library staff and checked out by patrons at the two Self-Checkout stations. Persons with disabilities will be served by the staff at the Access Services counter.

Public computers, scanners and photocopiers will be spaced to ensure 6 feet or more social distancing, with dividers. The use time of such equipment will be limited to 30 minutes per patron, in order to reduce queuing.

Elevator capacity will be limited to two persons at a time in the public elevator and one employee at a time in the staff elevator.

Furniture will be configured in offices, work areas, and service locations to support social distancing, and dividers will be installed where appropriate and necessary. Contact between employees will be further reduced by staggering work schedules, assigning some employees with back-office functions to work remotely, holding meetings remotely, and, when on-campus meetings are necessary, holding those meetings only on the Upper Level, which has sufficient space for social distancing.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

Hand sanitizer stations will be placed at exit and entrance doors, elevator banks, outside restrooms and throughout the library.

Staff will wipe down Self-Checkout stations and scanning stations after each use.

Sanitization wipes will be provided at each computer, scanner and photocopier. Signs will instruct patrons to wipe down the keyboard, mouse, monitor and work surfaces before and after each use. Coverings will be placed on keyboards to minimize contact and protect against effects of disinfectant use. In addition, a staff member will wipe down all equipment twice daily.

Public restrooms will be cleaned twice daily. Library staff will use separate restrooms, and only one person at a time will be permitted in a restroom.

The Library will sanitize materials according to specific Federal guidelines for the sanitizing of library materials. All returned materials, and items received through interlibrary loan, will be quarantined for at least three days and disinfected before reshelving or check-out by patrons.

Employees will use PPE as appropriate for their tasks and will be provided with frequent breaks throughout the day to allow hand washing.

Patrons with Increased Risk of COVID-19

Persons who are at increased risk of COVID-19 will be able to access library resources remotely and via contactless pickup. The designated Disability Resource Librarian will be available to support patrons with disabilities and special needs.

Curbside Pickup/Dropoff

Contactless pickup and dropoff will be available for patrons who may not wish to enter the building. Staff will place the requested materials in a bag and leave them on a table at the entrance for borrowers to pick up at a designated date and time. Materials may be returned by using the 24-hour deposit slot.

Computer Labs

In compliance with the requirements of the State of New Jersey, during Stages 1 and 2 of the public health emergency, Montclair State University closed all of its computer labs. When the State enters Stage 3, Montclair State will re-open its computer labs with appropriate safeguards in place. All personnel and lab users will be required to wear face coverings, practice social distancing, help keep surfaces clean and sanitized, follow University guidelines to monitor their health and not come to campus if sick. In addition, the following specific measures will be taken.

Operation of Computer Labs

The University’s computer labs will be open for use by students, and all labs will be required to adhere to the protocols specified below.

Social Distancing

  • The number of people allowed in each lab will be set to allow for safe distancing.
  • Computers and furniture will be spaced to ensure that users are at least 6 feet apart.
  • Barriers and shields will be installed on counters and wherever social distancing may be difficult to achieve.
  • Signs will be posted to remind people of the expectations concerning social distancing and use of face coverings, and to designate spacing to help maintain a safe distance, including “Wait Here” signage placed 6 feet from the podium or counters and markers showing 6-foot spacing for queues.
  • Markers will be placed on the tables for easy identification of where the keyboard and monitor should be placed.

Cleaning and Sanitization

Computer labs will be cleaned and sanitized regularly, with special attention to high-touch areas.

  • University Facilities staff will provide general cleaning (sweeping floors, removing trash, etc.) but will not clean computer equipment. All computer cleaning will be done by lab personnel and users.
  • Hand sanitizers will be made available at the door, and everyone will be required to use the sanitizer before entering.
  • Disinfectants will be made available and users will be required to wipe down keyboards, mice, printers and personal work surfaces before and after each use.
  • Lab users and staff (in labs that are staffed) will wipe down desks and countertops regularly.
  • Faculty will be expected to wipe down podium equipment before and after each use.
  • In labs that are staffed, the faculty member or lab staff will log cleaning and usage of equipment.
  • University Facilities staff will monitor and will replenish cleaning supplies as needed.
  • Signage will be posted near the disinfectant stand, providing information on the safe and proper use of the supplies.
  • In order to minimize the amount of food debris and to encourage consistent use of face coverings, food will not be allowed in the computer labs.

Reducing Room Occupancy

  • The University will provide loaner laptops to reduce the need for students to use computer labs.
  • Students will be reminded that they can access the internet by WiFi available throughout all campus buildings and many outside spaces, including parking lots. They will also be reminded that almost all online campus resources are accessible from off-campus.
  • Where feasible, and in all cases where students are approved for remote learning by the Disability Resource Center, the University will provide remote access to software that is normally accessed via the computer labs.
  • The maximum occupancy of each lab will be set to allow for social distancing and will be published on the computer lab website.
  • Students will only be allowed to remain in labs when using computers, printers or other lab equipment.
  • Computers not in service will be removed and stored, or be tagged with a sign indicating they are not to be used, or turned around and unplugged.

Controlling Traffic Flows

  • Directional signage will be placed in each computer lab.
  • Rooms with multiple access points will have doors clearly marked for entrance or exit only, with directional arrows installed to encourage proper traffic flow.
  • Rooms with single access points will have signage reminding users to avoid congestion.
  • Larger spaces will have clear directional signage in aisles.
Laptop Lending

As it did throughout the Spring 2020 semester when classes went to remote instruction, the University will continue to loan laptops to students who do not have access to computers or who require one as part of an accommodation approved by the Disability Resource Center.

The University will follow all general safety guidelines in the loaner laptop area, including making hand sanitizer available, requiring face coverings, prohibiting eating, and requiring social distancing. Other specific protocols include:

  • Staff will disinfect a machine when it is returned and before it is loaned out again.
  • Staff will be required to use hand sanitizer and to take frequent breaks for handwashing.
  • Curbside pickup or long-term loans will be offered for students with health concerns.
  • Employees who deliver the materials curbside will wear face coverings and gloves and place materials directly in a patron’s vehicle whenever feasible.

Last Modified: Monday, August 3, 2020 10:07 am