Figures obtained by UniEel have revealed huge fines being spent at University’s across the United Kingdom at library’s. Part of our ongoing study focused on Sheffield Hallam University, where it was revealed students spent £11,039 on library fines during the 2016-17 academic year. This figure is well below the average value seen at UK institutions. Putting this figure into perspective – with approximately 31,000 students at Sheffield Hallam, this equates to a spend of around £0.36 per student. It is worth noting that this figure purely takes into account fines for overdue items. Other fines, such as those for lost or damaged books/resources, have not been included.
While this figure may be much lower than other institutions – it could still be disappointing. While there is plenty to do as a student at Sheffield Hallam, spending money on library fines isn’t generally recommended. It should be noted that not all University’s adopt a fine system – with the University of Westminster an example of an institution that instead temporarily bans students from taking out books. This would surely offer enough of a deterrent. It is often unclear where the money gained from library fines ends up. The University doesn’t include printing costs in the library in the tuition fee – one of several things we expected!
Students are urged to return their library books on time – in order to avoid the scale of fines we’ve seen emanate from the 2016-17 academic year. There is no denying how frustrating it is when the book you have reserved hasn’t been returned on time, but the library fine system is clearly not working. Lower fines, or a switch to the before-mentioned banning process could be recommended. Figures witnessed at UK institutions is likely to prompt discussion regarding the fairness of library fines.
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