University Libraries

With access to more than 4.1 million print and electronic resources, University Libraries, a system of five separate discipline-related libraries, provides both traditional print collections and cutting-edge technology. The University Libraries website, lib.ua.edu, provides all library users with access to integrated collections, services, and information resources. Currently, the University Libraries system provides access to 199,515 full-text print and electronic journals. In addition, approximately 600 databases, including indexes, abstracts, and other reference resources, are linked from the Libraries website. In addition to our strong research collections in digital and print formats, we provide academic software, laptop and desktop computing resources, and digital media production tools to aid in student creativity. 

The University Libraries discovery interface, Scout, is accessible through the Libraries website and provides access to the full catalog of local holdings, as well as a wide variety of database content – including scholarly and trade journals, popular magazines, current and historic newspapers, microfilm, federal government documents, digital archives, and streaming audio and video. Links to books and electronic materials on reserve, Interlibrary Loan services, and other self-initiated services, such as renewing books and requesting materials from the Libraries Annex, are also available. 

University Libraries provides access to millions of scholarly articles electronically and in print, and millions of print books and E-books, through purchase plans and licensing with various providers. Scholarly holdings in the 600 database products available to students and faculty are also discoverable through Google Scholar. In addition to the wide array of print and electronic resources available, several borrowing programs with national, regional, and state libraries (including RapidILL, ALLIES, and Project Reshare) extend the total resources available to students and faculty through interlibrary loan. We also offer a Document Delivery service, where the libraries will scan and electronically deliver print materials to faculty and students by request. 

Through the creation of video tutorials, online and in-person instruction sessions and orientations, virtual and in-person reference services, and an online course developed by instructional design professionals that explores resources, services, and the steps in the research enterprise, University Libraries offers students many ways to stay in touch and learn about using our services and resources. 

Students pursuing coursework from a distance, either online or at other sites, have access to librarians who serve as the primary point of contact for any given subject area. The Ask-a-Librarian service also provides students, faculty, staff, and community members relevant FAQs as well as a means of chatting or emailing with liaison librarians. University Libraries also provides online Research Guides that are available to students 24/7 that guide students through the research process in a specific class or subject area.   

University Libraries maintains five state-of-the art facilities that provide space for collaborative and independent study, with group study spaces and presentation practice rooms available for reservation. Each library serves a unique purpose. The Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, located on the central campus quadrangle, houses central library administrative functions and has holdings for humanities, social sciences, and government information, while the Angelo Bruno Business Library, the McLure Education Library, the Sara and Eric Rodgers Library for Science and Engineering, and the William Stanley Hoole Special Collections Library contain discipline-specific holdings and materials. Additionally, the Law School’s Bounds Law Library and the College of Community Health Sciences’ Health Science Library are linked to University Libraries virtually, and are also available to support student success. 

University Libraries facilities offer extended hours during fall, spring and summer sessions. The Writing Center and the Center for Academic Success routinely use University Libraries facilities to offer tutoring services during each semester. Gorgas Library is open 24 hours a day seven days a week during study and finals weeks at the end of each semester. Rodgers Library offers 24 hour, five day a week access for 12 weeks each semester.  

University Libraries Special Collections Library also provides online access to large parts of the University’s rare and unique maps, manuscripts, documents, and archival collections through its digital collections. Students, faculty, and staff have access to browse and search the libraries’ special collections through our online portal powered by CONTENTdm. 

University Libraries supports on-site color and black and white printing, photocopying, and scanning as well as 3D printing production support in all branch libraries. University Libraries also provides spaces for students and faculty to produce audio projects, such as voiceovers, podcasts and simple keyboard and acoustic instrumental recordings. University Libraries also supports student and faculty use of citation managers RefWorks and Endnote which allow for the collection, management and output of scholarly works cited and bibliographies for various purposes.

In addition to the large number of desktop computers available to students throughout the library, laptops are available to be checked out for up to 72 hours (students are allowed to take these laptops outside of the physical library). The libraries also check out a wide variety of audiovisual equipment

Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library houses the Sanford Media Center, located on the second floor. The Sanford Media Center was created to provide University of Alabama students with a leading-edge facility for digital media production. With the Center's computers, audio-visual hardware, software, and instruction, users have the experience of becoming producers and authors of multimedia content. Media specialists staff the Center and are available for consultation and one-on-one instruction.  

Other library services include The Alabama Digital Humanities Center which provides project management and digital development services to faculty and students who would like to undertake a digital humanities project. We also unveiled our Institutional Repository in 2017, which provides faculty and students with an open access platform and stable URLs for their works. The IR will house electronic copies of theses and dissertations moving forward, as well as datasets and other University of Alabama work-product that aids the research enterprise of the University.  

University Libraries maintains memberships in the Association of Research Libraries, the Center for Research Libraries, HathiTrust, the Coalition for Networked Information, centerNet, LYRASIS, the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, the Network of Alabama Academic Libraries, the Digital Preservation Network, and the Alabama Digital Preservation Network. As a U.S. Government Documents Regional Depository, the University Libraries serves Alabama libraries and the public.

Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library

Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library is the main campus library supporting the teaching and research needs of the College of Arts and Sciences' humanities and social sciences programs, the College of Communication and Information Sciences, the College of Human Environmental Sciences, the Honors College, the School of Social Work, and the College of Continuing Studies. 

Located on the first level, the Gorgas Library Learning Commons provides students with computers equipped with the latest productivity and academic software used in classrooms and laboratories. The area provides space for students to study together for group projects or individually. In addition, students, faculty, and staff can ask for personal research assistance at the Information Desk located in the Commons area. Also located on this level is the Digital Humanities Center, a hi-tech environment for faculty and graduate students exploring the digital humanities; the Music Library with two Whisper Booths; and Java City Café, a fun place to relax and meet friends.

The Circulation Desk, located on the second level, serves as the central check-out area for media production equipment, laptops, headphones, books, and other materials. Items requested through InterLibrary Loan can also be picked up at the Circulation Desk. The Sanford Media Center, a leading-edge facility for digital media production for students, is also located on the second level. 

Special features in Gorgas Library include areas with designated noise levels, from silent to quiet talking; several types of seating and study accommodations, including group study rooms for collaborative assignments; event spaces for hosting campus groups for various educational and social purposes; designated study carrels for graduate students and faculty; printers; and 3D printers. University Libraries partners with the University Writing Center, which maintains a satellite center in Java City Café. 

Gorgas Library is located on the Quad opposite Denny Chimes. 

Angelo Bruno Business Library

Angelo Bruno Business Library serves the business information needs of the campus and in particular the students, faculty, and staff of the Culverhouse College of Business and the Manderson Graduate School of Business. The library also houses the college's Sloan Y. Bashinsky Sr. Computer Center.

Bruno Library's resources comprise a wide variety of scholarly and professional business databases, along with a significant collection of print and electronic books and journals. Library faculty and staff offer users specialized information assistance and services, including individual and class instruction in library research and effective use of library databases. 

Special features include areas with designated noise levels, from silent to quiet talking; several types of seating and study accommodations, including group study rooms for collaborative assignments; and designated study space for graduate students. A wide range of software is offered on computers throughout the facility and on circulating laptops. 

The 64,000-square-foot facility is conveniently located on Stadium Drive within the Culverhouse complex.

McLure Education Library

McLure Education Library serves primarily the students, faculty, and staff of the College of Education and the Graduate School of Education. 

McLure Library includes the School Library and Curriculum Materials Center on the lower floor; reference and periodical areas and public computer areas on the main floor; and study rooms, a presentation practice room, and a computer lab on the upper floor. Several Promethean Boards and SMART Boards are available throughout the facility for student use. Instruction sessions are offered at all levels, including training for pre-service teachers.

The main collection of the library comprises scholarly and professional books and journals related to education (including sports and physical education). The School Library collection contains over 25,000 trade books for preschool through young adult readers. The Curriculum Materials Center holds approximately 10,000 items, including K-12 textbooks, curriculum guides, supplemental classroom materials, and educational media including DVDs, kits, games, and other items. 

McLure Library is located on University Boulevard near Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Eric and Sara Rodgers Library for Science and Engineering

Eric and Sara Rodgers Library for Science and Engineering serves students, faculty, and staff in the sciences, engineering, and nursing programs. Rodgers Library offers a 3D studio and other makerspace resources; seven group study rooms; and equipment and special space for students to prepare, practice, and record presentations. 

The library is equipped with a generous number of computer workstations offering a wide range of productivity software, including specialized software for use in science and engineering. 

Rodgers Library is open 24 hours daily from Sunday through Thursday during portions of the semesters, giving students more opportunities to learn, study, and do research. 

Rodgers Library is located immediately south of Shelby Hall and the Science and Engineering Complex, north of the Math and Science building, and one building west of the Campus Drive Parking Deck.

Special Collections

Special Collections is comprised of the W.S. Hoole Library and the A.S. Williams III Americana Collection

Hoole contains rare and unique materials dealing with U.S. history with a focus on Southern history and culture and Alabama history and culture. Areas of concentration include the exploration and settlement of territory in the Gulf of Mexico; the antebellum period; the Civil War and Reconstruction; slavery, abolition, and emancipation; the socio-economic and racial history of the New South; the Civil Rights movement; and Latin America with a particular emphasis on Mexico and Brazil.

Hoole has more than 40,000 volumes of rare books and incunabula, serials, and newspapers; approximately 4,000 manuscript collections; more than 2,000 maps, including several hundred from the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries; over 500,000 photographic images; and nearly a million University records. Extensive digital collections comprising several hundred thousand images are accessible through Hoole’s home page. 

The Williams Collection includes an additional 20,000 volumes, hundreds of maps, and an extensive collection of manuscripts and historical documents pertaining to the history and culture of the South, particularly the Civil War. The Civil War materials in both Hoole and Williams document the war from the perspectives and observations of participants in the Union and the Confederacy, and include several hundred Confederate imprints. 

Hoole Library is located on the second floor of Mary Harmon Bryant Hall, Hackberry Lane, and the Williams Collection is located on the third floor of Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library.

Additional Libraries

Under separate administration are the Health Sciences Library in the University Medical Center, the Bounds Law Library in the School of Law, and the Map Library, department of geography, in Farrah Hall.