The McLure Education Library, a department of the University of Alabama Libraries, serves primarily the faculty, students, and staff of the College of Education and the Graduate School of Education. The Library is located at 918 University Boulevard across from Reese Phifer Hall, the home of the College of Communication and Information Sciences.
McLure Library is one of the University’s most historic buildings. Built in 1925,for years the building housed the student cafeteria, post office, and supply store. During that time, it housed a soda fountain, a favorite campus gathering place then. After World War II the third floor was used for several years as a dorm for male students. The building was remodeled in 1954 for the Education Library. In 1975 it was named in honor of John Rankin McLure, Dean of the College of Education, 1942-1959.
McLure Library is housed in a three-level building of 23,337 square feet, including the School Library and Curriculum Materials Center on the lower level, reference and periodical areas and public computer areas on the main floor, and study rooms and a computer lab on the third floor. The five levels of book stacks can be reached only from the main floor. Copiers are available on the main floor and the lower level, and microfilm/microfiche reader-printers are located on the lower level. The building is equipped for wireless computer access.
The main collection of the library is made up of professional books related to education (which includes sports and physical education) including a substantial reference collection on the main floor. The circulating collection is housed on four of the five stack floors (1, 3, 4, and 5) located on the back (north side) of the building.
Besides the professional collection, two additional collections are housed in the basement: the School Library, a collection of approximately 20,000 trade books for preschool through young adult readers, and the Curriculum Materials Center, with holdings of about 10,000 items including K-12 textbooks, curriculum guides and supplemental classroom materials, and educational media including CD’s, DVD’s, videos, kits, games, and other types of items. An Ellison die-cut machine is available for public use in the Curriculum Materials Center.
The library subscribes to several online databases related to education: Children’s Literature Comprehensive, Education FullText, ERIC, Professional Development Collection [slated to become Education Research Complete] and others. Full text online access to many journals is available through the databases, which may be searched using subject, author, title, and/or other information. Print copies of some journals are still available in the library; current print journals are shelved by title in the Current Periodicals Reading Area on the west side of the main floor, and bound journals are shelved by call number on the second level of the stack area. Printers and copiers are available on the two lower floors.
In 2003 the Libraries opened the Annex, an off-campus storage facility, and many older and little-used materials both books and journals–were transferred to the Annex. If an education item has been transferred the libraries’ catalog will give its location as “Education, Annex.” An item from the Annex may be requested on-line and it will be retrieved for you and may be checked out on the same basis as other books.
Computer terminals with access to the Libraries’ network (as well as internet access, word processing, and other programs) are located on the first two floors; these PC’s are attached to black and white and color printers. Laptops with internet access and word processing capacity may be checked out at the circulation desk for use in the library. A computer lab with access to the College of Education network is located in Room 33 on the third floor.
Subjects emphasized in McLure’s collections include educational leadership and administration; counselor education; educational/school psychology; educational research; educational technology; educational foundations; elementary and early childhood education; secondary education; higher education; fine arts education, and special education; as well as athletic training; kinesiology; and physical education and health studies.