Services & Policies

CTU Patrons

CTU faculty, adjunct faculty, scholars-in-residence, students, and staff are the primary patrons of the CTU Library and must obtain a valid institutional identification card to use the Library. Hours of operation are betwen 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.Monday through Friday. The CTU ID also serves as a library card when visiting I-Share libraries.


CTU patrons who use the libraries of ACTS Schools (Association of Chicago Theological Schools) need to obtain a valid ACTS Borrower Identification Card at the circulation desk before going to these libraries. The ACTS card must be renewed every six months in the library. In order to use the University of Chicago library, CTU patrons must present both their CTU ID and valid ACTS Borrower Identification Card at the ID & Privileges Office located in Regenstein Library.


CTU patrons who are distance learners are eligible for participating in the ATLA Reciprocal Borrowing Program. A map of participating institutions shows where the libraries are located. Please contact public services/circulation for more information.


Reciprocal borrowing agreements do not apply to local public libraries, which require proof of residence before issuing library cards. Patrons who wish to apply for a Chicago Public Library card can do so by providing the required identification at any CPL branch. In addition, the PBL participates in InfoPass which will allow one-day use of other libraries in the Chicago area. Please contact public services/circulation for more information.


Graduates of CTU are given a card for access to the Paul Bechtold Library upon verification of their status as graduates. This card must be updated annually. Please note that we are not able to place interlibrary loans (ILLs) or extend borrowing privileges from I-Share or ACTS libraries to alumni.


If you are a graduate of CTU there are also three databases you may access: ATLAS for Alums, JSTOR, and Project Muse (Religion Books ). Contact to receive username and password information for these databases.


ACTS, University of Chicago, American Islamic College and ATLA Reciprocal Borrowing Program patrons registering for CTU Library borrowing privileges must visit the circulation desk Monday-Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Borrowing privileges do not include access to interlibrary loan services for requesting items not held at the CTU Library.


All ACTS (Association of Chicago Theological Schools) users must have an institutional ID from their school and a valid ACTS Borrower Identification Card. ACTS users are required to register with the CTU Library and receive a 14-digit library barcode, which will be attached to the identification card from their home institution.  CTU Library privileges for ACTS users expire on June 30 of each year and must be re-validated at that time.


University of Chicago users can obtain access to the CTU Library by displaying their UChicago Card to library staff at CTU. CTU staff will contact the University of Chicago Library’s ID and Privileges Office to confirm that the applicant is currently affiliated with the University of Chicago. Students will need to renew their privileges each semester. Faculty and staff will be given privileges on an annual basis.


American Islamic College users (faculty, students, staff) must have an institutional ID from AIC with a valid date of expiration. AIC users are required to register with the CTU Library and receive a 14-digit library barcode, which will be attached to the identification card from AIC.


Patrons whose libraries participate in the ATLA Reciprocal Borrowing Program must provide appropriated identification information as required by their home institution.


Patrons from the I-Share member schools must have a current and valid identification card from their institution.


The library participates in RAILS InfoPass which allows some Chicago area library patrons to use the PBL. Please contact your home library for information.

Researchers unaffiliated with CTU may use the Library for short time periods with the approval of the Library Director, but without borrowing privileges. If you would like to request access to the library, please contact Kris Veldheer.

Patrons from any category who have registered for borrowing privileges can borrow any of the library’s circulating materials. Materials labeled as “Local Request Only,” such as theses, can be borrowed in person, but may not be requested through interlibrary loan.


Non-Circulating Materials


Periodicals and reference books are for in-library use only. Two copiers, one with scanning capability, are available in the library.


Reserve Books and Materials


Books and materials placed on class reserves are to be read or photocopied in the Library. Students may borrow two items at a time for in library use only. Reserve items may be borrowed overnight one-half hour before the library closes and returned by 9 a.m. on the next school day [There is a two (2)-item limit]. Books returned late are fined at $1.00 for any portion of the first hour overdue and $1.00 for each additional hour up to a maximum of $5.00 per each reserve book overdue.

If a book is needed for Reserve or recalled by another patron it should be returned immediately. Books that are only available in the CTU library can be recalled by another student after two weeks from the date borrowed. All other titles may be requested through I-Share or Interlibrary Loan (see Book Requests below.)

Loan Periods:


The loan period for books for CTU patrons is one semester.

One renewal of 60 days is allowed for books.

For all other patrons the loan period for books is 30 days with one renewal of 30 days.

The loan period for AV materials is 7 days with one renewal of 7 days.


CTU Reserve books that circulate overnight are fined at $1.00 for any portion of the first hour overdue and $1.00 for each additional hour up to a maximum of $10.00 per each reserve book overdue. Books recalled for Reserve should be returned immediately, or will be subject to a fine. Books not returned in (5) working days will be charged $5.00 per book per day.

Lost/Damaged Books

Library borrowers are responsible for all materials charged to their library account.  These library materials must be returned on time by the due date and in good condition or borrowers may renew materials one time on or before the due date.  The Bechtold Library does not charge fines for overdue regular circulating materials, only for those materials on CTU Reserve (see Fines above).


When materials are overdue, you will receive via email a 1st overdue notice 7 days after the material’s due date and a 2nd overdue notice 14 days after the original due date.  However, if regular circulating materials are not returned or renewed within 21 days of the due date, you will receive a final notice and the material will be considered lost. At that time the borrower will be sent an invoice for the lost item and the borrower’s library account will also be blocked.  When a borrower’s account is blocked, she/he cannot check out, renew, or request any library materials until the overdue materials are returned. If the borrower returns the overdue materials, the replacement cost (beginning at $100.00) is waived but the borrower is still responsible for the $25.00 lost item processing fee and his/her account is unblocked.  Library borrowers who return materials which are damaged will be charged the replacement cost (beginning at $100.00) plus a $25.00 processing fee.


Students must resolve all outstanding fines before graduation or their diploma will be withheld.


Approved by CTU Executive Committee 2/21/18

Book Renewals

Renewals are the responsibility of the patron and can be done by computer either in the library or remotely by accessing the My Account button in the library catalog.

Book Requests

Requesting books that are currently in circulation, is the responsibility of the patron. Book requests should only be made for books from other libraries. If a book reads “available” in the catalog, the patron should retrieve the book. Staff cannot retrieve books available on the shelves of the CTU library. A request for books can be transacted by clicking on the REQUEST feature for the item in the I-Share catalog.

Suggestions for Purchase

CTU patrons with purchase suggestions for the Bechtold Library should e-mail publication details of suggested items to Library Director Kris Veldheer.

Computers and Wireless Access

There are six computers located near the entrance dedicated for library research. Students can use these to check the online catalog or look for periodical articles. In addition there are several lab computers set up in the Northwest corner of the library. The printer is located near the lab computers. Please contact the IT office in room 528 (in the library) for assistance with the lab computers.

The library is wireless, and you are welcome to use your laptop. Please contact the IT office at 773-371- 5470 or room 528 (in the library) if you are having difficulty connecting to the wireless network.

Scanning and Photocopying

There is a book edge scanner available to make electronic copies of books and articles, which can be emailed or saved as a file to a USB drive at no charge. Two photocopy machines are also available, one of which is also capable of scanning a document to be sent by email.

Conference and Study Rooms

The library has two conference rooms and a study room available for use. The Stuhlmueller Room seats 8 and the Weber-Killgallon Room seats 10. The study room is across from the circulation desk and seats 3. All rooms are available on a first come, first served basis. Come by to use as needed, or make a reservation at the  Circulation Desk to guarantee availability (groups only in the Stuhlmueller and Weber-Killgallon rooms; individuals may use the small study room).

Interlibrary Loan Request Form

Use this form to request books and articles unavailable from the I-Share catalog.  I-Share materials should be requested using your Library online account. For assistance, call the Library at 773.371.5465 or e-mail us at


If we can't get the item by the date indicated, your request will be canceled (optional).

Item Details

If you're requesting a journal article, please put the journal title here (leave blank for books).
Volume/ issue for journals can also be included here, if known


The Library is open to the CTU community, including study rooms, which may be reserved for two hours at a time. Distance from other users is required. You have the option of in-person or remote meetings for reference assistance. If you’d like reference assistance, please submit this form by 5:00 pm the day before you’d like to come. Requests received after that may not be able to be scheduled. A staff member will confirm your appointment by e-mail.


Please create separate requests for each different library use you desire
Maximum time allowed: 2 hours per day.

Contact Us

For general information, contact:
Paul Bechtold Library
Ph: 773.371.5465

Make an Interlibrary Loan request.


Make an appointment for reference assistance or to use the Library space.