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Facilities

The library facility should be well planned; it should provide secure and adequate space, conducive to study and research with suitable environmental conditions for its services, personnel, resources and collections. The library's equipment should be adequate and functional.
  1. Does the library provide well-planned, secure, and adequate space for users?
  2. Are building mechanical systems properly designed and maintained to control temperature and humidity at recommended levels?
  3. What are the perceptions of users regarding the provision of conducive study spaces, including a sufficient number of seats and varied types of seating?
  4. Is there enough space for the library's collections?
  5. Does the staff have sufficient workspace, and is it configured to promote efficient operations?
  6. If there are branch libraries, do they have sufficient space for the collections and staff?
  7. Is the library's signage adequate?
  8. Does the library provide ergonomic workstations for its users and staff?
  9. Are electrical and network wiring sufficient to meet the needs associated with electronic access?
  10. Does the library meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act?
  11. Are facilities provided to distance learners in accordance with the ACRL guidelines?

1. Does the library provide well-planned, secure, and adequate space for users?

Yes. Opened 19 July, 1993, the library boasts exceptional patron access, adequate employee workspace, and a generally well maintained overall physical presence. It is a central anchor on campus, connected by walkways to several other major buildings on campus. Generous funding for the building and its technological fittings made the project possible. A security team housed within the library, prompt response time by campus security, and the building itself, all ensure patron safety. Lockers are also available for both patrons and part-time employees.

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2. Are building mechanical systems properly designed and maintained to control temperature and humidity at recommended levels?

Yes. Modern mechanical systems provide, with a few exceptions, a comfortable environment for employees and patrons. Special attention is paid to temperature and humidity control for the Special Collections storage area.

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3. What are the perceptions of users regarding the provision of conducive study spaces, including a sufficient number of seats and varied types of seating?

Private study rooms , faculty studies , ample carrels with network connections and outlets, open study areas, large tables, lounge areas with soft seating, and scholar's workstations throughout the library provide more than adequate and varied study space. User surveys indicate that patrons are pleased with the facility, often mentioning physical amenities as their reason for visiting the library.

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4. Is there enough space for the library's collections?

Yes. Good planning when the building was constructed has allowed for adequate space for the collection for years to come. There is still room for expansion of the collection, and each floor was made load-bearing for compact shelving if necessary in the future. The maximum capacity of the print collection was planned at approximately 1.2 million volumes. From the onset the building infrastructure was geared toward taking maximum advantage of digital collections and access to complement the print collections.

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5. Does the staff have sufficient workspace, and is it configured to promote efficient operations?

Generally, yes. There is ample space for operations and the environment is comfortable and conducive to effective operations. A few of the offices are windowless despite being located on an exterior wall. Major general staff areas have been configured with modular furniture to allow maximum flexibility. Most general staff areas have been reconfigured several times since our opening to meet needs related to staff restructuring or redesigned work flows.

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6. If there are branch libraries, do they have sufficient space for the collections and staff?

The Herron Art Library is severely challenged for space for both collections and staff. However, plans are underway for a much enhanced facility as part of the newly renovated Herron School of Art which is soon to be located on the main campus near the University Library.

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7. Is the library's signage adequate?

Generally speaking, efforts have been made to maintain appropriate signage, e.g., sign clips for call number ranges in the stacks were changed from flat ones to those that protrude more to be more easily seen at a distance. However, there are a few locations in the building that would benefit from improved signage.

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8. Does the library provide ergonomic workstations for its users and staff?

Overall, work stations for faculty and students are ergonomically sound. Special needs of staff members are certainly addressed, e.g., special keyboards or mice.

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9. Are electrical and network wiring sufficient to meet the needs associated with electronic access?

The University Library excels in its infrastructure. There are both "dirty"and "clean"power outlets throughout the library. There is a backup diesel generator for the "clean" power. All staff workstations, all rooms, and most student areas have redundant twisted pair and fiberglass connections capable of digital and voice connectivity. The wiring runs in channels throughout the building, and most areas have periodically spaced, cement plugs that can be removed to bring up wiring for new access.

Almost two years ago, the University Library joined with the University College to bring the first major implementation of wireless technology to campus. This allowed students with wireless laptops to gain connectivity to the campus network anywhere in either institutions' buildings and to roam back and forth between the buildings without losing their network connection. This functionality allows students and groups to work and study in new ways and new places without the restriction of being tied to a wired computer.

The University Library building also houses the main hub for the University Information Technologies servers and Internet 2.

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10. Does the library meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act?

Yes. Modified workstations allow access to computer terminals and scholar's workstations. Access to the building is possible from the ground level through doors controlled by a push-button. The second floor entrance is accessible entirely under cover from the garages to the building. All levels of the building are accessible via elevator. A small number of doors within the building would be difficult to open by a patron in a wheelchair, for example, but generally, these doors are held in the open position during regular operating hours. There is room for wheelchairs between book stacks. The reach of wheelchair bound patrons is kept in mind when shelving print materials, but as we grow nearer to capacity, there will be some areas out of reach of such patrons. Staff are assigned to assist disabled patrons in case of an emergency. A room on the third floor also houses a well-equipped area to service those needing adaptive services.

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11. Are facilities provided to distance learners in accordance with the ACRL guidelines?

Electronic resources and reserves are available to all registered distance learners as licenses allow. There are some classes connected to "Weekend College" that are held at various shopping malls throughout the city. Library services are not provided at these sites other than through the possibility of dial-up access. However, most of these classes are not designed for heavy use of library materials.

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Last updated by lcalvert on 08/03/2007