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Science and Engineering Library Permanently Closed as of December 24, 2013

Due to recent budgetary challenges, the Science and Engineering Library will close on December 24, 2013 and the collection will no longer be directly accessible by users. What does this mean for you? The SEL collection can still be accessed through our online catalog from the convenience of your computer or mobile device. You will continue to have access to most SEL collections through our “Get It!” paging and electronic Document Delivery services, which deliver most requested materials within 24 hours. Some special collections such as the Elephant Research Foundation Library will be transferred to Purdy/Kresge Library’s new Reading Room to be located in room 133. For those of you who like to “browse the stacks” our new browsing interface, Stack View, provides a new way to view the collection digitally.

While this was a difficult decision to make, this change will allow us to continue to offer the high quality resources and services that you’ve come to expect from the Wayne State University Libraries.

How can I get access to the SEL collections?

Users will continue to have access to SEL physical collections via the “Get It!” Paging and electronic Document Delivery services.

For books and non-journal items, the “Get It!” Paging service will deliver your requested materials to the campus library of your choice within 24 hours or to our extension centers within 24-72 hours. New print purchases have been moved to the Purdy/Kresge Library, along with some reference titles.

For journal access, our 24-hour electronic Document Delivery service will deliver electronic copies of articles directly to you via email. Books can be requested via the “Request from Storage/SEL” link in the library catalog after Jan 1st. Additionally, we are working to convert print journals to electronic access through our many database providers.

For additional information on how to use these services, the libraries maintain some helpful videos on youtube, available at

Where can I use a computer?

More than 400 computers are available for student use in the Undergraduate and Purdy/Kresge Library. Computers are available on all floors of the Undergraduate Library and include both Windows machines and Macs. Microsoft Office software, special programs like EndNote, advanced computing software for science and engineering, Adobe graphics stations with scanners, Adaptive Technology stations for those with special needs and wireless Internet access throughout the library are just some of the features offered throughout all of the libraries.

For those with advanced research, technology or writing needs, the new Warrior WRT Zone on the second floor of the UGL provides a one-stop shop for Wayne State students to get assistance. From creating PowerPoint presentations and editing videos to assistance in researching and writing a challenging research paper, the WRT Zone can help guide you through the process.

What additional options exist for students who regularly studied at SEL?

The libraries have over 2,800 study seats available in the Undergraduate and Purdy/Kresge Libraries. Last year, the Undergraduate Library added 11 new study rooms, bringing the total number to 46.

The Purdy/Kresge Library has nearly doubled its study space by adding new study areas on the second and third floors. Additionally, we are making Purdy/Kresge more laptop-friendly by adding more electrical outlets and expanding Wi-Fi access. We are working to create a library that allows users to work collaboratively while maintaining those quiet corners that many of you have come to appreciate in Purdy/Kresge.

What else is the Library System doing to make the transition easier for users?

Our intent is to streamline operations to focus on providing the key services that our users expect, and to provide additional electronic access to print materials held by SEL. In addition to the “Get It” Paging and Document Delivery services, the libraries will make several changes to make access convenient.
• Virtual Book Shelf: A new service that allows you to virtually browse most of our collections from anywhere.
• Quicksearch: An improved way to search all of the library collections from a single search box.
• Increased eJournal Access: Greater online access to previously published and historical journals such as IEEE Journal Archive, JSTOR Life Sciences Collection, and Elsevier Nursing, Biochemistry, Organic Chemistry, Environmental Science titles.
• New Books: New book purchases will be shelved in the P/K collections.
• Print Journals: The latest issues will be shelved in the P/K Library.

What will happen to the Math and Computer Science computer labs in the basement of the SEL?

The Math and Computer Science labs will remain open in the basement of SEL. Lab users will still be able to enter the building and access the lab with no service interruptions. Only library access to the print collection will cease in the building.

Why did the Library System choose to close the SEL?

In the past three years, the Libraries have lost over $1.6 million from our budget. In order to continue to purchase the same level of resources, we have made drastic operational cuts including the loss of over 40 staff positions. By protecting the funding used to purchase materials, we have had to make difficult decisions about what services we can provide.

During the last five years, the SEL has also seen a significant decrease in building use despite the addition of the busy Math and Computer Science labs. The reason for this decrease is simple; access to science, technology, engineering and math materials has shifted heavily to electronic resources. With this decline, we transitioned reference service at SEL to our other libraries and enhanced our virtual reference. We moved the reserves to UGL to offer longer periods of access to those materials. Logons to library computers in the SEL have seen a nearly 50% drop since 2008. Currently, SEL users are using the Get It! Paging service for more than one-third of all circulation requests. These diminishing numbers let us know that our students and faculty are not using the physical space as they once did.

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