Who We Are
From the Dean
Know the Libraries
The word "changing" is often used to describe today's libraries, for
both the perception and the reality of the library field are
experiencing transformations. Such transformations are increasingly
apparent in the Purdue University Libraries.
From nearly any location on the West Lafayette campus in the 1970's,
you were just steps away from one of the 28 libraries. Each library
placed subject-related books and journals close to primary users, and
each library provided space for use of the collections, as well as
access to librarians knowledgeable in the literatures of the
Today, while the libraries have been consolidated into 14 locations,
the emergence of electronic access places you even closer to
collections, services, and experts. Electronic access brings the
catalog as well as journals, theses, dissertations, archival materials
and more, to your computer screen, whether you are on campus, at home,
or anywhere in the world. It also enables you to communicate with
highly trained librarians and staff who answer questions, provide
guidance to collections and information resources, and assist with
effective use of the vast array of information that is available and
accessible through the physical and the virtual Purdue libraries.
The Libraries faculty teach both in the classroom and "one-to-one" in
person and on-line.
Virtual access to information will increase in the future as a
distributed institutional repository, now under development, will
permit storage, organization, access, and use of massive data sets of
research results in disciplines ranging from biomedical engineering to
remote sensing to the social sciences.
The Libraries faculty are committed to advancing knowledge through
disciplinary and interdisciplinary research.
But, even in a world becoming increasingly oriented toward virtual
access, the physical library continues as a vital and critical
academic resource. The Purdue Libraries' locations serve not only as a
resource for information but also as a classroom, workplace, or quiet
space for group study and work. They are places for individual
reflection and offer opportunities for consultation with the
Libraries' professors of library science who are committed to the
University's goal of information literacy.
Paralleling the University's vision of a dynamic interdisciplinary
environment of discovery and learning, the Libraries' facilities are
being designed to support this culture. New concepts in physical
information retrieval will be incorporated into the facilities.
Technologies such as high-density storage and robotic retrieval for
publications and documents will allow for the conversion of space
previously dedicated to shelving into locations for innovative
learning and group study, and provide increased space for open stacks
for access to more heavily used collections.
The values of the Purdue University Libraries, like those of the
University itself, are rooted in the basic traditions of higher
education: democracy, inclusiveness, and accessibility. Fair and equal
access to information is a hallmark of the Purdue University
Libraries. Linked to this is the Libraries' core value of preserving
intellectual freedom and privacy of information. Respect and
appreciation for all members of the University community are
demonstrated in the inclusiveness, collegiality, and collaboration
which characterize the Libraries' culture. Members of the Libraries
faculty and staff value continuous learning and, by ensuring the
competency of information literacy, support innovation and exploration
by all users.
Daily, the Libraries faculty and staff express our commitment to
user-centered service and to the preservation of the intellectual and
cultural record. We hold ourselves to the highest standards of
personal and professional behavior, and act with integrity in all we
The mission of the Purdue University Libraries is to foster a dynamic
information environment that advances learning, discovery, and
The Libraries faculty and staff apply sound pedagogical approaches to
create innovative and effective learning experiences which foster the
core competencies of critical thinking, communication skills,
information literacy, information technology, and methods of inquiry.
These competencies are integrated into disciplinary learning through
collaborative efforts with colleagues engaged in teaching.
The Libraries faculty and staff are grounded in the principles and
practices of library and information science, and of specialized
information-related disciplines. They bring their library science
expertise to collaborative initiatives with colleagues in other fields
to more effectively undertake interdisciplinary research which expands
the realm of knowledge.
Contributions to the engagement mission of the University arise from
the Libraries’ strength in support of learning and discovery, and a
commitment to help meet the information needs of the residents of
In support of all these activities, the Libraries seek to:
The Purdue University Libraries will achieve preeminence as an
innovative and creative research university library in meeting the
challenge of the Information Age.
The Purdue Libraries will be the definitive place to go, physically
and virtually, for information that fosters learning and discovery.
The Libraries will be physically represented through four or five
interdisciplinary community centers, with additional specialized
centers and service points located throughout the campus; all of which
will be designed to connect users with resources and services without
constraints of time, location, or format. The Libraries' virtual
presence will be enhanced by integration into the University learning
and discovery environment. Libraries and disciplinary faculty will
increasingly collaborate in a comprehensive information literacy
curriculum designed to prepare students to succeed in their academic
programs, their careers, and their lifelong enrichment. Libraries
faculty and staff will be involved as essential members of
interdisciplinary research teams and will continue to contribute to
the national research agenda for library and information science. The
Purdue Libraries will be recognized for leadership in advancing
innovation within academic librarianship. The focus on service,
collaboration, and research will result in innovative products that
will serve as models for libraries worldwide. The intellectual,
economic, and cultural lives of individuals and communities will be
enhanced by the Libraries' engagement activities locally, statewide,
nationally, and internationally.
Learning: Information literacy
Advance learning with information literacy initiatives and further the
University's learning goal with focused collections and information
Longitudinal scores from Information and Communication Technology
(ICT) Literacy Assessment testing.
Evidence of inclusion of information literacy in college/department
strategic plans and other documentation (websites, syllabi, etc.)
LibQUAL+ results on questions related to access to and use of
information resources, when next administered in Fall 2008.
Extent of use of the Libraries information literacy resources (CORE,
GS175, Libraries faculty collaboration with teaching faculty)
Discovery: Interdisciplinary research
Further the University's discovery goal by providing information
resources and applying library science expertise to interdisciplinary
Number of collaborative grant proposals
Number of Libraries faculty participating in collaborative or
Number of presentations at conferences and publications resulting from
Funding of sponsored research
Satisfaction with collections as measured by LibQUAL+ when next
administered in Fall 2008.
New funding allocated for interdisciplinary research
Engagement: Enhanced quality of life
Apply specialized knowledge and information resources to
collaboratively address challenges and to enhance the intellectual,
economic, and cultural life of individuals and communities at the
local, state, and national levels, and internationally.
Participation in K-12 collaborative programs
New collaborative programs with academic libraries in Indiana
Number of requests for information from Indiana businesses
Public and media recognition for achievements in engagement
Number of new services that directly impact the public
Align facilities, services, information technology, administration,
faculty and staff with the University’s learning, discovery and
engagement goals and key overarching strategies.
Door count: number of visits.
Funding raised to support facility expansion and renovation.
Reduced number of Libraries’ facilities
Enhancement of environment within Libraries facilities
LibQUAL+ results relating to service and facilities, when next
administered in Fall, 2008.
Number and quality of new programs, services, and initiatives
Use of Libraries' collections and information resources
Use of Libraries website
Diversity of the Libraries faculty and staff
The Libraries' selection of peer institutions for benchmarking
purposes begins with the characteristics and institutions identified
by the University. Data from the libraries in this group form a basis
for comparison regarding widely-shared elements of university
libraries. The Libraries' vision of achieving preeminence as an
innovative and creative research university library leads to the
inclusion of several peers which have demonstrated this preeminence.
In addition to the following list, the Libraries will also determine a
number of peers against which to benchmark particular Purdue
The following institutions are included due to their innovative and
creative leadership in research university librarianship.
Purdue University Libraries, Strategic Plan, 2006-2011
Approved by Provost Sally Mason and President Martin C. Jischke, July