A circulation system helps a library user in the use of books and other library material that have been sent by the technical processing division of the library to the maintenance division most effectively.
The components of circulation systems will normally include:
In addition to these, the circulation division may be required to take responsibility for the shelving of materials, recording and maintenance of circulation statistics and protecting the collection to ensure its fullest long-term use. It also helps to remove any obstacles between the individual user and the library material.
The charging system which presently exists in Indian libraries, has evolved over a period of time. From a simple register system of recording loan transactions, circulation systems have now evolved into sophisticated computer-based systems. A number of factors have contributed to this evolution and development: Firstly the concept of librarianship has shifted from excessive conservation and preservation of books to increased concern for public use of books. Secondly public library systems are fast developing. There has been a phenomenal increase in book collections which are accessed by a large user population. In fact, the development of charging systems is closely linked with the growth of public libraries. Therefore, it became necessary to develop more liberal set of rules and simplified procedures for the circulation of books. Several types of systems were developed. We shall attempt a quick review of these systems, in four broad groups as given below: Register systems