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Library Noise Norms (Brown Pilot)

The Library is piloting assigned noise norm areas in Brown Library during the Spring 2024 semester.

About Library Noise Norm pilot

The Library is piloting distinct noise level areas in Brown Library during the Spring 2024 semester. 

During the Fall 2023 semester Library staff surveyed students about noise levels in various spaces around Brown Library. Students voiced their need for clearly delineated noise norms in Brown Library. Consistently posted noise norms will help students find the right study area for their needs, supporting an atmosphere of scholarship throughout our library spaces. Noise norms also support equity in library spaces by explicitly stating behavioral expectations.  



   Collaborative Study

  • Collaborative work, group study sessions, and conversation are welcome in these spaces. They are intended for users seeking ambient noise and those who need to talk together. Please remain considerate of technology noise in these spaces. 


   Considerate Study

  • Individual study and groups working mostly independently are best suited to these spaces. Occasional conversation and quiet background noise are acceptable. All technology should be silent.   


   Quiet Study

  • Those seeking silence and working fully independently will be best served by these spaces. Users are expected to leave the room if they need to speak or answer a phone call. In these spaces, users should not create background noise such as clicking pens or tapping tables. All technology should be silent. 

Patrons may report noncompliant patrons via chat, phone, or in-person at the Brown Library Service Desk. Library staff will remind noncompliant patrons about the policy and inform them of appropriate spaces. 


As you use the various spaces around Brown Library, please take the following survey to help us understand how you use the space and whether or not clearly defined noise norms for each space is helpful. 




First Floor  

  • West Reading Room = Quiet Study     
  • Main Entrance Area = Considerate Study     
  • Fireplace Reading Room = Quiet Study     
  • East Reading Room = Quiet Study     
  • Classroom 133 (when available) = Collaborative Study     

Intermediate Floor 

  • Individual Study Carrels = Quiet Study     
  • Center Room = Collaborative Study     
  • East Reading (Blue) Room = Considerate Study     

Ground Floor 

  • West Study Area = Considerate Study     
  • Individual Study Carrels = Quiet Study     
  • Northeast Study Area = Quiet Study     
  • Southeast Study Area = Quiet Study