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Standards for Libraries in Higher Education: Sample Outcomes

Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) have designed these standards to guide academic libraries in advancing and sustaining their role as partners in educating students.

Sample Outcomes based on Mercyhurst's Mission and Goals

Principle 1. Institutional Effectiveness

Performance Indicator 1.6  The library contributes to student recruitment, retention, time to degree, and academic success.

Sample Outcomes:

Students improve their academic performance over their college experience through their contact with the library. Students are able to describe the role of the library in improving their academic performance from freshman to senior.


Performance Indicator 1.7  The library communicates with the campus community to highlight its value in the educational mission and in institutional effectiveness.

Sample Outcome:

The campus administration demonstrates library support through appropriate resource allocation. 


Principle 3. Educational Role

Performance Indicator 3.1  Library personnel collaborate with faculty and others regarding ways to incorporate library collections and services into effective education experiences for students.

Sample Outcomes:

Students increasingly use library collections for both curricular and cocurricular information needs.

Students engage with librarians in a variety of ways and contexts.

Students and faculty value libraries, the expertise of library personnel, and the importance of lifelong learning.

Students and faculty articulate the value of the library in the student’s educational experience.

Students and faculty consult with librarians on work requiring information resources.

Faculty convey the importance of lifelong learning to their students and in their syllabi.


Principle 4. Discovery 

Performance Indicator 4.6  The library provides one-on-one assistance through multiple platforms to help users find information.

Sample Outcomes:

Users enhance their research skills through one-on-one consultation with librarians.

Users expand the types of sources (e.g., multiple formats—books, journals, primary sources, etc.) consulted when doing research as a result of a one-on-one consultation with librarians.

Users readily transfer the skills learned through one-on-one consultation with a librarian to other research contexts/assignments.

Users recommend the one-on-one research assistance to their classmates and/or friends. 


Principle 5. Collections

Performance Indicator 5.1  The library provides access to collections aligned with areas of research, curricular foci, or institutional strengths.

Sample Outcomes:

Faculty and students judge access to collections sufficient to support their educational and research needs.

Faculty, students, and community users are satisfied with the collections provided by libraries for their educational, business, and research needs. (Sample for a community college or joint use public/academic library.)

Students discover the appropriate library resources needed for their coursework.