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Browse and search FAQs

  • The Library subscribes to or owns outright numerous non-journal electronic resources. Search for them by format using the "Find Databases by database title and description" search box at Article Databases. These resources can be linked to in course listings, electronic reserves, course websites and the learning management system. See the Electronic Collection Information for Librarians and Faculty (SFU Library) for the suitability of certain resources for use on Library Reserves. 

    Additionally, terms of use information for journals and article indexes and databases licensed by the SFU Library can be viewed via the A-Z Journals Listing in the Library Catalogue. Journal descriptions specify the publishers' terms of use with regard to copying material for use in electronic reserves, course packs and interlibrary loan.

  • Most reference management tools (e.g. Mendeley, Zotero) store your data on non-Canadian servers, which means your account information may be subject to US laws, specifically the US Patriot Act.  This act allows US authorities to have access to your personal information.  If you are concerned that your personal information is stored outside Canada, do not use these services. The SFU Library has been unable to identify any citation management products that store data exclusively on Canadian servers. 

    To protect your privacy and avoid exposure to the US Patriot Act, you may consider using a citation management tool that works offline. For example, the following tools can be downloaded to your computer and used offline exclusively: 

    We are not able to guarantee the privacy of these tools, and your use of them is at your own risk.  Please note that most of these tools also have online functionality, and using any online features - even briefly - will affect the privacy of your data. Also, note that using citation management software offline may reduce its functionality (e.g. you can't use the web importer tool).  

    For information about citation management tools supported by SFU Library, go to Referencing and Citation Management Software.

  • This depends on whether your works have been published and if so, the agreements that you signed with the publisher. If you retained copyright, you can copy, distribute, adapt, translate, republish and do all the other things protected by copyright. You can also give or withhold permission for others to do these things, at your discretion. If you signed copyright over to a publisher, then the publisher has the right to allow copies or uses to be made of the work, and you must request permission from the publisher to reproduce it. Sometimes publishers will grant some rights back to authors in their agreements; check your agreement or contact your publisher to see what rights you may have retained.

  • Copyright owners have the sole legal right to:

    • produce or reproduce the work
    • perform the work in public
    • publish the work
    • translate the work
    • adapt the work to another format (e.g. novel to film, film to play)
    • record a literary, dramatic or musical work
    • broadcast the work
    • exhibit an artistic work
    • rent out a computer program, or a recording of a musical work
    • sell a work in the form of a tangible object (in certain circumstances)
    • authorize others to do any of these acts

    A copyright owner can license any or all of these rights to another entity (individual or organization) temporarily, or assign them to another entity permanently.

    These rights are qualified by certain exceptions which balance the copyright owner’s interests with the public interest in allowing use of works for purposes such as education and research, such as fair dealing.

  • Multimedia equipment held by the Surrey Library is supported by the School of Interactive Arts and Technology (SIAT) and is circulated to SIAT students only.

    As much as possible, the SFU Library (which now includes Belzberg, Surrey and the Main Bennett library) policy and practice is that all materials should be available to any SFU person from anywhere. However, there are practical limitations on this policy and unfortunately they may inconvenience some users who would like to use these parts of the collection.

  • If you find a book that appears to be damaged, show it to the Circulation/Loans desk staff. They will insert a 'damage noted' slip and request that the item be returned to the circulation desk, not the book chute.

    Materials are assessed for condition when they are returned.

  • Software on library and lab computers changes on a semester by semester basis.

    For the Library see the IT Services page at Surrey.

    For software in other rooms at Surrey Campus, see: Surrey Labs.

  • Simon Fraser University copyright policies align with the Government of Canada’s copyright legislation (Copyright Act) and outline the institution’s requirements of faculty, staff and students to comply with all legal requirements. 

    Simon Fraser University is committed to compliance in all copyright matters. It is the responsibility of each individual to comply with copyright laws and respect copyright ownership and licensing. The use of copyright protected materials without proper consent may be actionable under both the Copyright Act and the Criminal Code. In addition to any actions that might be taken by any copyright owner or its licensing agent, the University will take any breaches of its copyright policy very seriously. In the case of employees, disciplinary procedures may be applied. In the case of students, disciplinary action for academic and/or non-academic misconduct may be applied.

  • In Canada, an original work is automatically protected by copyright as soon as it is created in a fixed form (e.g., written down on paper, saved on a computer, recorded, videotaped or painted on canvas), except for a sound recording, performer’s performance or communication signal, which may be transmitted instead of fixed. The work does not have to be in its final form.