Carrels in Perkins and Bostock Libraries are available for use by Duke University doctoral students, faculty and visiting faculty.  Due to high demand for carrels, the Libraries maintain multiple waiting lists and adhere to the following term limits and policies:

Waiting Lists for Carrel Requesters

  • Pairs of Duke University doctoral students or faculty interested in sharing a carrel may place their names on the “Shared space” waiting list together. Up to 30 shared carrels will be assigned on a first-requested, first-accommodated basis. Carrel holders will each be given a key to their shared space.
  • Duke University doctoral and faculty who prefer individual carrels may also place their names on the “Individual space” waiting list. Carrels will be assigned on a first-requested, first-accommodated basis.
    • A requester may place his or her name on both the “Shared space” and “Individual space “ lists and, if a shared carrel becomes available first, may later transfer to an individual carrel for the remainder of his or her term should an individual carrel become available before term limit is reached.
  • Visiting scholars may place their names on the “Visiting scholar” waiting list.  Two carrels are available for visiting scholars on a first-requested, first-accommodated basis for a term of four months.
  • Postdoctoral associates and staff are ineligible for carrels.
  • Duke University doctoral students and faculty who have assigned offices in their departments are not eligible for study carrels in Perkins and Bostock Libraries. 
  • Students and faculty in the Duke University Schools of Business, Divinity, Law, Medicine and Nursing are not eligible for study carrels in Perkins and Bostock Libraries. Exceptions may be made for faculty holding joint appointments or doctoral students in joint degree programs with other schools at Duke if their research requires substantial use of materials housed in Perkins and Bostock Libraries.

Term Limits for Carrels

  • Carrel agreements for Duke University doctoral students and faculty must be renewed annually. Carrel holders who underutilize their carrels or fail to comply with carrel guidelines and policies may not be eligible to renew their carrels.
  • Duke University doctoral students may use carrels for up to two years after which they must vacate their carrels and return their keys.
  • Visiting scholars may use carrels for up to four months, after which they must vacate their carrels and return their keys.
  • After vacating their carrels, doctoral students and visiting scholars may place their names on the appropriate waiting lists for additional terms.

General Guidelines and Policies

  • All carrel assignments are final and made on a first-requested, first-accommodated basis. Patrons may not request specific carrels.
  • Carrels may be accessed during all hours Perkins and Bostock Libraries are open.

Important Carrel holders may not remain in their carrels when the building is closed or during facility alarms or emergencies.  Failure to follow rules for building occupancy may result in carrel privileges being revoked.

  • Patrons are responsible for maintaining their assigned carrels and may be held liable for any damage resulting from the use of the carrel.
  • Carrels will not be cleaned during your tenure except by request. If you would like your carrel to be cleaned and/or vacuumed please contact the Perkins Library Service desk.
  • You will be responsible for emptying your trash can. (If your carrel does not have a trash can we will provide one).
  • Duke University Libraries do not assume responsibility for any items kept in carrel and will not be liable for lost or damaged belongings.
  • Noise in carrels, including phone conversations and video or audio conferencing should be kept to a minimum. Earphones should be used when listening to audio in carrels.
  • Due to University emergency managment procedures all windows in carrel doors must remain uncovered.  If the window in your carrel door is covered you will be asked to remove the covering.  Failure to do so will result in the loss of your carrel privileges (this includes any clothing left covering the window).
  • Carrel holders will not be assigned lockers or given access to the Doctoral Research Space; carrel holders will be required to vacate lockers and return keys before being issued a carrel.
  • Carrel holders are responsible for keys to their carrels. Carrel holders who lose keys will be charged $15 for replacement keys.
  • All carrel assignments will be processed by Perkins Library staff. Carrel holders who wish to allow others to use their carrels during their terms of use must inform Perkins Library staff. All individuals using carrels must complete a copy of this Carrel Agreement.
  • All library materials kept in study carrels must be properly checked out to carrel holders. Carrel slips or request notices issued by Duke University Libraries must be visible in each library book kept in carrels.

    Important If library staff find items in carrels without carrel slips, hold slips or checkout receipts two or more times in a single semester (fall or spring), carrel privileges will be revoked.
  • Carrel privileges may be revoked if carrels are unused for long periods of time. Library staff may periodically ask carrel holders to indicate use of their carrels using a supplied form.
  • Library staff reserve the right to inspect carrels at any time to ensure compliance with this agreement. Violation of any of these rules may result in termination of carrel privileges.
  • Duke University Libraries reserve the right to make changes to this agreement at any point during a carrel holder’s term. Library staff will inform carrel holders of policy changes before changes take effect.
  • Smoking, vaping and the use of e-cigarettes or similar devices inside of carrels is strictly forbidden.  Smoking or vaping in a carrel will lead to immediate loss of carrel privileges and may subject carrel holder with liability for any related costs incurred by the libraries (including fire department fees and cleaning/deodorizing).
  • Use of toasters, steamers, or other electrical heating devices is strictly prohibited.  Violation will be grounds for termination of carrel privileges.