Archive for Saturday, August 13, 1994


August 13, 1994


New students don't have to be intimidated by the KU library system. Although it may seem overwhelming, it can be the key to a successful school career.

Want to know which is faster -- the cheetah or the leopard?

Curious about what different scholars thought about Chaucer?

Dying to know what song made Barbra Streisand most famous?

The Kansas University library system can provide the answers.

Although it may seem overwhelming at first, when used properly, the library system can be a student's best source of information.

The information's stored in literally millions of volumes.

Just consider this fact: There are 3,193,850 books in the KU library system, said Mary Hawkins, assistant dean of libraries.

A few other numbers to ponder. The system has 33,047 subscriptions, 634,948 government documents 302,332 maps and 1,816,613 million photographs.

That's a lot of information -- so much so that KU's collections on the main campus in Lawrence and at the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan., ranks 16th in size among U.S. public universities, Hawkins said.

To aid students in locating information, the system provides on-line computer cataloging and is connected to a national link-up that allows students to locate and request material the KU system doesn't have available.

It's as easy as checking out a book.

To take a book from any of the libraries, students must present their KU identification card which entitles them to free access to the system.

However, students will be held responsible for damaged, late or misplaced books, Hawkins said.

The university library system includes Watson Library, the main library on the Lawrence campus, and several smaller facilities on both campuses.

Satellite libraries on the Lawrence campus include:

  • The Anschutz Science Library. It was opened in 1989 and houses 373,100 volumes and offers computer access to scientific databases on compact disk.
  • Gorton Music Library in Murphy Hall features a collection of phonographic recordings dating from 1896 to the present.
  • The law library in Green Hall houses legal volumes and information on court cases.
  • Murphy Art and Architecture Library, which is located in KU's Helen Foresman Spencer Museum of Art, houses numerous books and Asian art and photography history.
  • Spahr Engineering Library houses a 64,865-volume collection that covers aerospace, civil, electrical and computer engineering.
  • Spencer Research Library which houses one of the nation's foremost rare book collections. University Archives and the Kansas Collection are in Spencer.

For more information or to get acquainted with the library system, Hawkins suggests contacting the individual libraries for schedules and tour information.

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