Library & Information Science Collection

I. Collection Description


To support the teaching and research of the faculty of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science; the faculty of the University Library; the students enrolled in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science; and to a lesser but no less important degree, the research needs of alumnae and the library community of the state. As a professional library, the collection is focused on library and information science, but also includes relevant materials from other disciplines such as administration and book publishing.

History of Collection:

The collection of books, pamphlets and periodicals that comprise the library science collection had its beginning with the founding of the school in 1893 at the Armour Institute. The school moved to Urbana in 1897 and brought its library collection with it. For many years, the collection was housed in the classrooms of the school. It was not until 1941 that a full-time librarian was appointed to be in charge of the library and collection. Lack of a special librarian probably did not detract from the development of the collection. Early reports indicate that the library "included manuscripts, notes and problems which had been prepared since the school opened in 1893 and, as the number of textbooks is so small, this collection is invaluable." Some of this manuscript material is still part of the library's collection. A 1921-22 circular boasted that "the library school receives regularly about twenty-five journals of library economy and bibliography, including the leading ones in foreign languages." The tendency in the first half of the century for the library to acquire all, even the most seemingly ephemeral material, is seen in the development of the library science collection. Only in the area of unpublished master theses and, later, doctoral dissertations does the library seem to have used restraint. As a result, the library has an invaluable collection of annual reports and newsletters from all kinds of libraries. This library is assigned responsibility for collecting annual reports, bulletins, newsletters, etc., in the Handbook of the Center for Research Libraries. The close relationship of the school to the University Library and the role of the school as a leading library science publisher has greatly enhanced the collection.

Estimate of Holdings:

100,000 volumes.

State, Regional and National Importance:

Cited by Lee in 1979 as an outstanding research collection, the Library and Information Science collection at Illinois, some feel, is second only to that in Columbia's Library Service Library. The collection includes an outstanding historical collection of library annual reports and bulletins.

Unit Responsible for Collecting:

Library and Information Science Library.

Location of Materials:

The Library and Information Science Library contains approximately 25,000 important and/or current monographs and serials in the field. The bookstacks house the remainder of the collection--some 75,000 monographs and serials.

Citations of Works Describing the Collection:

Downs, Robert B. "Resources for Research in Librarianship," Library Trends 13 (1964): 8.

Lee, Joel. "Collections in Librarianship and Information Science," Drexel Library Quarterly 15:3 (July 1979): 78-93.

II. General Collection Guidelines


Standard statement.

Chronological Guidelines:

No restrictions.

Geographical Guidelines:

No restrictions.

Treatment of Subject:

An effort is made to acquire all trade publications directly related to any area of Library or Information Science. In addition, as much literature as can be identified which is issued by professional associations is also acquired. A real effort is made to add in-house and state-of-the-art literature to the collection. Although the collection has less research strength in school librarianship, small college librarianship and some areas of special librarianship, no area of librarianship is excluded. The library, however, is not a laboratory or curriculum collection. The Reference Department and subject departmental libraries collect standard reference works and subject bibliographies, even though these works may be regarded as library tools. The library also collects in the following subject areas: history of books and printing, historical and critical works on children's literature, censorship as it relates to libraries, and such general works on book publishing and trade as are relevant.

Types of Materials:

Standard statement. Both Masters and Ph.D. dissertations and theses are extensively collected. Annual reports from public and academic libraries are collected and a broad assortment of in-house newsletters from all kinds of libraries are also collected.

Date of Publication:

Standard statement.

Place of Publication:

No restrictions. Most of the material is published in the United States and the United Kingdom.

III. Collection Responsibility by Subject Subdivisions with Qualifications, Levels of Collecting Intensity, and Assignments

Below is a table that lists specific subject subdivisions within the collection. Each row in the table lists a specific subject subdivision, followed by three columns noting: Collection Strength, Primary Assignments and Secondary Assignments. The Existing Collecting Strength column notes how well the existing collection covers that topic on a 1 to 5 scale with 5 being very strong. The Primary Assignments column lists departmental libraries that have the greatest collection intensity of subject materials, respectively. In the case of 2 or more libraries listed, the collection intensity is comparable. The Secondary Assignments column list departmental libraries where additional materials may be found.

Library & Information Science Collection
ADMINISTRATION OF LIBRARIES>U.S. and U.K. academic and public libraries 4 Library Science
Other types of libraries and foreign libraries 3 Library Science
BOOK PUBLISHING AND TRADE 4 Communications Library Science
History of books and printing 3 Library Science
Book arts 3 Rare Book & Special>Collections Library
CENSORSHIP (as relates to libraries) 3 Library Science
Primary literature and reference works 3 Instruction Materials
Historical and critical studies 3 Library Science
U.S. academic and public libraries 4 Library Science
Other types of libraries and foreign libraries 3 Library Science
(includes education for librarianship) 4 Library Science


Version Date: July 2006