Texas Public Library Standards
As our society becomes increasingly dependent on electronic resources to access information, those without access to computing resources are consequently denied the information they seek. Traditionally, the role of the public library has been to gather, organize, and preserve information, while also teaching those in their communities how to find and use it.
Public libraries must seek to always stay current with technology that will enhance services to patrons. Public libraries are tied in with formats and configurations that are standards for the cities they serve and therefore, difficult to recommend a standard.
Access to databases or online resources as well as access to email is a goal for all public libraries to work toward. Standards are suggested for numbers of computers available for patron use based on population.
Technology provides the public library an opportunity to reach out to the traditional patron as well as a whole new type of patron, one that stays digitally connected and involved.
- 1 computer per 2,500 population served OR a minimum of 2 whichever is greater
- 1 computer per 2,000 population served OR a minimum of 2 whichever is greater
- 1 computer per 1,500 population served OR a minimum of 2 whichever is greater
Libraries should consider the following enhancements to current services.
- Self check out equipment
- Scanning services
- Access to email
- Office applications software
- Distance learning facilities
- Satellite/video conferencing
- Digital cameras for checkout
- Audio/video editing suites
- Laptop computers for in-house use and checkout
- PDA/Handhelds for checkout
- iPods checkout
- Electronic tablets