LIBRARY BASICS: Penn State University Libraries

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Just as Penn State is considered “one university, geographically dispersed,” so are the University Libraries regarded as one collection.  Students, faculty, staff, and affiliates of Penn State have access to the  resources of the 15 libraries on the University Park campus as well as the libraries at the 23 other campuses.  As of 2000, the Libraries’ holdings included over 4.6 million volumes and more than 49,000 current serial subscriptions. 

The Libraries’ collection includes a variety of materials—books, journals and magazines, music scores, maps, video and audio materials, government documents, and electronic resources—to support the teaching and research missions of the university.  These library materials are represented in the online catalog (“The CAT”).

The Pattee and Paterno Libraries are in two connected buildings that house several subject specific libraries: Arts & Humanities, Business, Education & Behavioral Sciences, Gateway Commons, Life Sciences, Maps, Microforms & Newspapers, Social Sciences, and Special Collections.

In addition to the subject libraries housed in Pattee/Paterno, the University Park campus also has several branch libraries (including Architecture, Earth & Mineral Sciences, Engineering, Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and the Pollock Laptop Library), which you can find using this map.  Consult the library hours for access to services and materials in the Libraries.

Each of the libraries on the University Park campus is a subject library, with subject specialist librarians available to help you begin major research projects.  The sections below highlight a few of the libraries that may be most useful to art education.

Arts and Humanities Library

The Arts and Humanities Library is located on the second and third floors of Pattee Library and covers disciplines including area studies, classics, dance, film, history, languages, literature, music, philosophy, religious studies, theater, and the visual arts.  Arts and Humanities also include the Music and Media Center, which houses sound and video recordings, musical scores, and books with limited circulation. 

Education and Behavioral Sciences Library

The Education and Behavioral Sciences Library is located on the fifth floor of Paterno Library.  Its collections include holdings in the history, philosophy, research, theory, and established practices in education and the behavioral sciences. Major collections include periodicals, monographs shelved in the "BF" and "L" call numbers of the Library of Congress Classification System, and all reference materials for psychology and education, as well as the "hands on" collections used in the preparation of teachers, trainers, counselors, school psychologists, educational psychologists, and administrators. Other collections include curricula and instructional materials such as textbooks; manipulatives, kits and games used in instructional settings; instructional multimedia, and children's literature.

Special Collections Library

The Special Collections Library, located on the first floor of Paterno Library, consists of three units: Penn State University Archives, Rare Books and Manuscripts, and Historical Collections and Labor Archives. 

Although its focus is the University and the local area, the University Archives holds many monographs and collections related to art education (with emphasis on the history of art education).  The University Archives hold the records of the National Art Education Association (NAEA), including papers, publications and conference proceedings from the four regional art teachers' associations that joined with the National Education Association's Art Department to form NAEA in 1947.  The University Archives also hold the papers of the Pennsylvania Art Education Association going back to 1925, as well as records from the Pennsylvania Alliance for Arts Education and the Art Education Program at Penn State.  Collections of personal papers accessible to researchers include those of Viktor Lowenfeld, with his illustrations for the first edition of Creative and Mental Growth; and of Florence L. Goodenough and Dale B. Harris, with extensive examples of children's drawings used in developing the Goodenough-Harris Draw-a-Person Test. A number of 20th-century art educators have given their papers to the library, notably Alice Schwartz Mattil. Audiovisual materials in the collection include films, and audio- and video- tapes from early instructional television programs on the arts for children and from national, regional, and state art education conferences.

Rare Books and Manuscripts holds the Albert A. Anderson, Jr. and Evelynnn M. Ellis Art Education Collection and of 19th-century drawing books and related materials on art education. Gathered by a former faculty member in the Art Education Program, this collection includes examples of early illustrated books, text-book series for art instruction, and more theoretical materials on art teaching and learning.  Rare Books also holds numerous publications on art education as well as a major collection on art and architectural history.

The Special Collections Library is open Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.  Because Special Collections materials are often old, fragile, valuable, and irreplaceable, all patrons must comply with a few general rules for consultation and handling, such as registering upon entry and working under supervision.  Books and other materials may be used in the room only; photocopy service, however, can be arranged.  Since some of the materials in these collections are not listed in The CAT, users should consult the separate catalogs and handlists that are available in Special Collections.