New Florida university has a library without books

September 2, 2014

Students at Florida Polytechnic University won’t have to worry about misplacing the books they sign out from the institution’s library. That’s because the library’s collection is entirely digital. “We have access to print books through the state university system’s interlibrary loan program. However, we strongly encourage our students to read and work with information digitally,” said Kathryn Miller, Director of Libraries. Instead of shelves, the 11,000 square-foot library features an open floor plan, computers, desks, and seating. Students will be able to access approximately 135,000 e-books, and the FPU has a budget of $60,000 that will be devoted to automatically purchasing books that are viewed twice on its system. This approach, Miller said, “allows for many more books to be available for the students, and the university only has to pay when the student or faculty member uses the book.” Miller adds that the bookless library also supports the university’s mission to prepare students for the high-tech workforce. Memorial University implemented a similar purchasing program in 2013. The Guardian (UK)