College & Research Libraries News

Guidelines for extended campus library services: Proposed revision

Prepared by the Task Force to Review the Guidelines for Extended Campus Library Services Mary Joyce Pickett, Chair

Hearings on this draft will be held on June 25,1989, at the ALA Annual Conference in Dallas.

The following proposed draft revision of the “Guidelines for Extended Campus Library Services” was prepared by a Task Force appointed prior to the ALA Midwinter meeting in 1988. The members are Lynn LaBrake, University of Central Florida; Barton Lessin, Wayne State University; Colleen Power, California State University, Chico; Julie Todaro, Austin Community College, Rio Grande Campus; and Mary Joyce Pickett, Illinois Institute of Technology (chair). In establishing the need for revision the task force examined the professional literature, testimony from hearings on the existing guidelines held at the July 1988 ALA Annual Conference and at the October 1988 Off- Campus Library Services Conference, input from previous users and the Extended Campus Library Services Discussion Group, and information received from regional and professional accrediting agencies.


Library resources and services in institutions of higher education must meet the needs of main campuses, off-campus or extended campus programs, courses taken for credit or non-credit, continuing education programs, courses attended in person or by means of electronic transmission, or other programs which extend beyond the usual concept of higher education. The 1981 Guidelines for Extended Campus Library Services, designed to assist in the organization and provision of these resources and services were scheduled for ACRL review. The task force determined that a revision was necessary based on the following factors: nontraditional study becoming a more commonplace element in higher education; an increase in diversity of formats of information sharing and educational opportunities; an increase in the number of unique environments where educational opportunities are offered; an increased recognition of the need for library resources and services at locations other than main campuses; an increased concern and demand for equitable services for all students in higher education, no matter where the “classroom” may be; a greater demand for library resources and services by faculty and staff at extended campus sites; and an increase in technological innovations in the transmittal of information.

These revised guidelines are offered, as the previous guidelines were, in a non-prescriptive manner. They are designed to outline direction, support a process, stress overall coordination and to support the educational objectives of the extended campus program. The audience for the Guidelines includes library staff planning for and managing these extended campus services, other library staff working with extended campus library staff, administrators at all levels within the educational institution, and sponsors of academic programs, as well as accrediting and licensure agencies.


The phrase “extended campus community” covers all those individuals and agencies which are directly involved with academic programs offered away from the traditional academic campus including students, faculty, researchers, administrators, and sponsors. “Extended campus library services” refers to those services offered in support of academic courses and programs which are available at sites removed from the main campus. These courses may be taught in quite traditional or very non-traditional ways. However, they are offered away from the main campus of the institution responsible for the academic program. This definition also includes services to individuals who are involved off-campus even while receiving on-campus credit for their endeavors. The definition does not include non-traditional students pursuing oncampus academic programs. “Parent institution” refers to the institutional entity responsible for the offering of academic courses and programs offcampus; this definition is not extended to include the on-campus library as the parent of a branch library or of a non-traditional library service. “Library” is used here to denote the academic library directly associated with the parent institution offering the off-campus program unless otherwise noted.


This document assumes the following statements:

•The library’s parent institution is responsible for providing support which addresses the information needs of its extended campus programs. This support should provide library service to the extended campus community equitable with that provided to the on-campus community.

•The library is primarily responsible for identifying, developing, coordinating, and providing library resources and services which address the information needs of the extended campus community.

•Effective and appropriate services for extended campus communities may differ from those services offered on campus. The requirements of academic programs should guide the library’s responses to defined needs.

•Where resources and services of unaffiliated local libraries are to be used to support information needs of the extended campus community, the library, or where appropriate, the parent institution, is responsible for the development of contracts or written agreements with those local libraries.

•As a component of the library, the extended campus library program shall have goals and objectives that support the provision of resources and services consistent with the broader institutional mission.


It is the responsibility of library management to identify, plan, and oversee library services and resources in support of extended campus programs. The library administration should:

1) assess the needs of its extended campus community for library resources, services and facilities;

2) prepare a written profile of the extended community’s information needs;

3) develop a written statement of immediate and long-range goals and objectives which address the needs and outline the methods by which progress can be measured;

4) involve academic community representatives, including the extended campus faculty and students, in the formation of the objectives and the regular evaluation of their achievement;

5) determine the existing library support, its availability and appropriateness;

6) participate with administrators and teaching faculty in the curriculum development process and in course planning to insure appropriate library resources and services are available;

7) promote library support services to the extended campus community.

Additional areas of management responsibility are covered in the sections on Finances, Personnel, Facilities, Resources, and Services.


The parent institution should provide continuing financial support for addressing the needs of the extended campus community. This financing should be:

1) related to the formally defined needs and demands of the extended campus program;

2) allocated on a schedule matching the parent institution’s budgeting cycle;

3) identified within the parent institution’s budget and expenditure reporting statements;

4) accommodated to contractual arrangements involving external agencies, including affiliated, but independently supported libraries.


Personnel involved in the overall management and coordination of extended campus library services may include campus and library administration, the librarian managing the services, additional professional staff in the institution, and support staff from a variety of departments. The library should provide:

1) professional and support personnel sufficient in number and of the quality necessary to attain the goals and objectives of the extended campus program;

2) a librarian to plan, implement, coordinate, and evaluate library resources and services addressing the information needs of the extended campus community;

3) persons with the capacity and skills to identify needs and respond to them flexibly and creatively;

4) classification, status, and salary scales for extended campus library staff that are equivalent to those provided for other library employees.


The library should provide facilities and equipment sufficient in size, number, and scope to attain the objectives of the extended campus programs. Examples of suitable arrangements include but are not limited to:

1) contracts with a non-affiliated library to provide resources and/or services;

2) an off-site library office for consultations, access to ready reference collections, electronic transmission of information, online data base searching and interlibrary loan services;

3) telephone consultation services;

4) pairing of students and faculty with a staff member who will respond to their needs;

5) a branch library.


Access to library materials in sufficient number, scope, and formats should be provided to:

1) support the students’ needs in fulfilling course assignments, including required and assigned readings and research papers; and to supplement and enrich the students’ academic programs;

2) support teaching and research needs of faculty;

3) accommodate other information needs of the extended campus community as appropriate.

Programs granting associate degrees should provide access to collections which meet the “Guidelines for Two-Year College Learning Resources Programs” and the “Statement on Quantitative Standards.” Programs granting baccalaureate or master’s degrees should provide access to collections which meet the standards defined by the “Standards for College Libraries.” Programs offering doctorate degrees should provide access to collections which meet the standards defined by the “Standards for University Libraries.”


The library services offered the extended campus community should be designed to meet effectively a wide range of different information and bibliographic needs. Examples of arrangements which may meet these needs include:

1) reference assistance;

2) computer-assisted bibliographic and information services;

3) a program of library user instruction designed specifically to meet the needs of the extended campus community;

4) assistance with non-print media and equipment;

5) reciprocal borrowing, contractual borrowing, and interlibrary loan services;

6) prompt document delivery such as a courier system or electronic transmission;

7) publication of library services to the extended campus community.

Copyright © American Library Association

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