3 Libraries Pushing the Academic Library Boundaries

March 18, 2015 / by Mango (PS)

In the past, academic libraries were a place to check out books, find a quiet space to read and maybe scroll through some microfiche. It’s unfortunate, but this old-school perception has permeated society, keeping people from understanding the true awesomeness of the campus library. But Mangos know better.

Today’s academic libraries are a lot less stuffy and a little more sci-fi than people would expect. That dusty old library is actually a dynamic, forward-thinking resource hub where students can conduct research, explore new technologies and broaden their understanding of the globe. The academic library has become the place on campus where all students, regardless of academic major or year, can come together to learn and experiment with the most cutting-edge resources.

We think these three libraries are pretty cool. They’re definitely making innovative waves in the space. From friendly book-fetching robots to virtual reality machines, they embody the amazing possibilities of the academic library space.

North Carolina State University - James B. Hunt Jr. Library

As part of NC State’s Centennial Campus, the Hunt library serves as the intellectual and social center of the university. Not only is it advanced on the inside, but the bold outer design is a visual statement of Hunt library’s purpose: to be a place not of the past, but of the future. Some of its coolest features include technology-enabled furniture, high-definition video walls, 3-D computing and a game lab, all available for students and faculty to use. The Hunt sounds like a party we want to be invited to!

University of Chicago - Joe and Rika Mansueto Library

The cutting-edge Chicago library is a true modern marvel. The Helmut Jahn-designed glass reading room is a Chicago landmark and offers students a sunny study area. But the Mansueto library offers a lot more than just a cozy respite from the chilly Chicago winter--it’s also a futuristic mini-society inhabited by friendly, book-fetching robots. When a student requests a book online, it is tracked and located by one of these automated little friends, who then pulls the book up to the surface of the library. The whole process only takes three minutes from start to finish!

Pittsburg State University - Leonard H. Axe Library

The Iron City’s state university library boasts some innovative features to help students learn and excel. Students at who visit the library have access to 250 special collections of archival and historical records. If a student is unable to get to the library, no worries--The Leonard H. Axe Library has a collection of over 71,000 online books and 56,000 online periodicals. In more awesomeness, the library also offers Mango Languages for all faculty and students to learn about language and culture, so they can learn to speak French or even Talk Like a Pirate.

Is your library pushing the academic library boundaries? Take our quiz to find out!

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Topics: Higher Ed

Mango (PS)

Written by Mango (PS)

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