Mission and History - Strategic Plan 1999


Consistently ranked in the top thirty of the 110 members of the Association of Research Libraries, the University Libraries are one of the University's greatest strengths and a point of pride.  Surveys of students and faculty reveal that the Libraries are held in high regard and provide outstanding support for instruction, research, and service.  The strategic planning process affords us an opportunity to consider strategic directions that preserve and build upon an excellent foundation.  The three strategic directions described below represent responses to changing conditions and also recognize that the Libraries must be agile, flexible, and ready to respond to opportunities and changes. 


Many people think of libraries as passive repositories of knowledge.  This was never the case, but libraries are developing the tools to become more active, vital partners in instruction and research.  Outreach programs, collaborative projects with faculty, information literacy programs, and electronic information resources bring the library into the office, home, and classroom.  Our goal is to become a teaching library that actively instructs students and faculty in the use of information and that provides a stimulating environment for independent learning. 

1. Ensure and enhance core library services while developing new and innovative services 

2. Through collaboration with teaching faculty, promote library resources and services that enhance classroom instruction. 

3. Partner with OISD and UCNS to fully exploit the potential of the Miller Learning Center, especially the Electronic Teaching Library component through, for example: 

  • Information literacy programs 
  • Faculty development in instructional technology 
  • Innovative use of the group study rooms 
  • Identify spaces for special programs such as readings and lectures 
  • Provide optimal combination of information resources and instructional applications on student workstations 

4. Continue to develop the Libraries' presence on the Internet into a powerful virtual library 

5. Building upon the cooperative success of GALILEO and GIL, continue to work with Regents staff, other university system libraries, and other libraries in the state to provide library resources and services 

6. Continually assess services and operations 

7. Seek outside funding to support the Teaching Library 

8. Recruit, develop, and retain faculty and staff who are collaborative, creative, and student-centered 

9. Look for opportunities to improve salaries 

10. Provide a training and development program that promotes organizational and individual objectives 


The number of publications available in electronic form is growing every year while the number of publications in print form is also increasing. With an expanding universe of recorded knowledge and a finite budget, libraries must strike the best balance of electronic and print resources to support the research, teaching and service mission of the university.  We must also rely upon cooperative arrangements with other libraries to share resources.  Thus, the new collection will blend traditional print publications, electronic resources, and expanded collaboration with other libraries. 

1. Build upon the strengths of our collections to support university programs 

2. Ensure an adequate budget to support the new collection 

3. Determine the best way to secure access to individual resources (i.e., print, electronic, or resource sharing ) 

4. Secure the necessary information technology and support personnel to effectively deliver expanded library resources 

5. Promote changes in scholarly communication and copyright that ensure freedom of access for the future 

6. Abide by prevailing copyright law while protecting the principles of fair use 

7. Continue to develop our Special Collections:  Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, the Media /Peabody Award Archives, and the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies 

8. Digitize book, image, manuscript and media collections especially in cooperation with other libraries 

9. Preserve library materials in all formats for future generations using the most suitable technology 

10. Seek outside funding to support these activities 


Library buildings will continue to be the physical heart of the university; places where students and faculty congregate to study and learn. The Libraries will strive to provide ample space for seating, collections, and services, in a comfortable and safe environment. 

1. Adhere to appropriate standards for library physical facilities (Board of Regents, Association of College and Research
Libraries, etc.) 

2. Complete HVAC retrofitting of the Main Library 

3. Complete and occupy the Electronic Teaching Library component of the Student Learning Center 

4. Design and construct the Special Collections Building following upon the success of our fund-raising program 

5. Renovate Main and Science libraries to provide an environment conducive to research and learning 

6. Explore ways to provide additional library space for Science library seating and collections 

7. Work with College of Arts and Sciences to design and construct a Fine Arts Library 

8. Include a new Media Department and Digital Media Lab in the building that will face the Student Learning Center 

SOURCE: Cabinet, June 21, 1999, revised August 24, 1999.