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About Us

About the National University Library, its services, staff, and available resources

Supporting Documents

Library Code of Conduct

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The Northcentral University Library follows the Code of Conduct detailed in the NU Catalog, under the Ethical Standards and Practices Section. All students, faculty, staff, and alumni must adhere to the NU code of conduct during all Library interactions and usage. 

Reference Services Policies

The National University Library reference services, which encompass reference and reference-related services such as chat and research consultations, support the mission and values of the National University. These services support the research and publication needs of the entire University.   

The Library incorporates a reference instruction model that educates on the use of Library resources, services, and web pages. Reference questions are handled as expediently as possible.  

The Library follows Reference and Users Services Association (RUSA) guidelines and upholds the American Library Association's Bill of Rights for guidance and ethical standards. In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the National University Library will not disclose or share personal information obtained through the reference service.   

All patrons must adhere to the NU code of conduct during all Library reference interactions. The Library team will terminate any reference interaction that violates the code of conduct.  

Reference Service Limitations  

Reference services do not include interpretation of legal, business, and/or medical information.  

Reference services do not include creating extensive bibliographic lists, editing/proofreading papers, interpreting assignments, finding a research topic, or any special research requests that require a great deal of staff time. Such reference requests will be directed to the appropriate department or outside specialist. Patrons with questions about statistics, writing, editing, and citing sources will be referred to the Academic Success Center.   

Librarians cannot analyze an assignment and develop an appropriate research topic, however, librarians can help focus a general topic in a more specific direction. Ultimately, choosing a research topic is the student's responsibility.  

While Library staff provides assistance and support for Library applications such as the catalog and electronic resources, Library staff may not be able to answer questions about applications such as Microsoft Office, SPSS, or Grammarly. We will direct students, staff, and faculty with non-library software-related questions to the appropriate departments.   

Librarians may direct patrons to information on websites; however, the Library is not responsible for content appearing on these websites. Due to the volatility and ephemeral nature of the Web, content appearing on websites is likely to change or be entirely removed. It is the patron's responsibility to evaluate websites and other information obtained during the research. 

Reference questions may be submitted online ("Ask a Librarian”) form, email, chat, or phone, and are answered on a first-come, first-served basis. Regarding unscheduled phone calls, Librarians reserve the right to arrange a call-back or meeting at a more convenient time.  

Librarians also reserve the right to decline requests that compromise legal or ethical guidelines followed by the Library.  

Librarians provide the best support when questions are asked that provide context. Librarians can recommend and locate resources but do not necessarily provide direct answers to questions (i.e., What, Why, or How questions). Additionally, it is the patrons’ responsibility to evaluate and synthesize information the Library staff provides.  




Authorized National University  
Library Patron  

1.    Contact the Library with your reference question(s) using one of the following methods, providing as much information as possible:  

  • Online form   

  • Chat  

  • Email:  

  • Phone: (888) 628-1569–  phone calls are preferred during California business hours  

  • Text/SMS: (928) 550-6552  

  • Research consultations  


2.    On receipt of a reference question, conduct a reference interview to better understand the context of the question, identify the needs of the patron, and formulate the best possible answer. A typical reference interview includes discussion of:  

  • Course and assignment information  

  • Research topic,  

  • Types of resources required and their purpose, and  

  • Deadlines for when the information is needed  

3.    Deliver reference information in an instructive manner to better help the patron successfully conduct subsequent research independently. Elements of instruction may consist of the following:  

  • Creation of search strings using various search techniques  

  • Use of appropriate database/resources and general understanding of controlled vocabularies, indices, and thesauri  

  • Explanation of primary vs. secondary resources  

  • Narrowing and/or expanding search results using limiters, filters and search strategies  

  • Identification and/or evaluation of resources (includes websites)  

  • Reference/citation management  

9/8/2023 Policy Updated