Clicking, collaborating, and talking in the library

Our local paper did a story on how libraries are changing to meet the needs of students. I’m teaching a course on the history and future of the book, so we’ll be talking quite a bit about the physical medium; however, printed material is no longer central to a college education, so the print collection is not central to our library.

In a departure from the cardinal rule of most libraries, students gathering at Reeves are encouraged to talk and collaborate, said David Stanley, Seton Hill’s library director. The renovated library opened in 2014 and was designed to offer a “one-stop shop” for students’ research, writing, tech support and career advising needs.

Seton Hill isn’t the only school to rethink the role of the library on campus in recent years. Colleges and universities across the region are looking at ways to transform libraries to accommodate an increasingly digital learning environment, give students a place where they can work together and, if necessary, to be a little noisy. —