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Library Book Collections on the Move

DEPARTMENT(S): 
June 14, 2022

At Gordon Library this summer, books are on the move! Based on student and faculty input including surveys and focus groups, we have begun an exciting multi-year initiative to transform our book collections and respond to the changing needs and practices of our community.

While access to ebooks has exploded in recent years (WPI students can now access over 1.3 million books online), our book collection remains a valued resource for WPI students and faculty. By removing outdated books with little or no likelihood of future use, we can increase the value of this resource, creating more inviting and accessible book stacks, and at the same time open up more space for students to work, read, and study.

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Social sciences books in Ground Floor shelving alt
Social sciences and other books are being moved this month from the Third floor to the Ground Floor.

This book review and reselection process will take place over several years.  To begin the process, this month we’re relocating the entire third floor collection of social science, history, and art books to temporary shelving on the Ground Floor.  Later this year, new shelving will be reinstalled on the third floor, where it will feature selected library collections in mathematics, computer science, physics, and chemistry.  Additional individual study seating nearby will offer a more modern study environment with more natural light and access to power.

Over the next few years, spaces on the lower (first) floor will also be renovated, with new seating, new carpet, more natural light, and additional tech suites. Once the first floor has been renovated, the social science, history and art collections will move again, joining humanities and literature collections in a beautiful new quiet reading floor that will be dedicated to these fields of study that are core elements of the WPI curriculum.

We’ll continue to post updates on library building projects including pictures of our progress and news about new locations of books, throughout the summer and fall. We will work to ensure your uninterrupted access to all the books you need, whether for research, teaching, learning, or relaxation and enjoyment.

We invite you to read about how this work is part of our five-year strategic plan, and we welcome your questions and comments about these plans - please contact University Librarian Anna Gold, or library@wpi.edu.