Online Library Cadet Booklet - Types of Libraries

Types of Libraries

The four main types of libraries are:

  1. School Libraries
    These were developed during the 20th century so as to provide materials to support the curriculum. They also provide students with the basic skills needed to use libraries effectively.
  2. Academic Libraries
    These are found primarily in colleges and universities. They support the curriculum and provide and preserve information and resources for papers, research projects, thesis and dissertations.
  3. Special Libraries
    Special libraries provide research and information needs of special groups of people for example, physicians, lawyers, scientists and artists. Special collections can be found in banks, engineering and shipping firms, hospitals, research laboratories, law offices and art galleries.
  4. Public Libraries
    These are the most common type of libraries. They serve all sectors of society. The general collections provide information for:
    • answering queries
    • leisure reading
    • research projects
    • class assignments
    • self improvement
    • general education

National Libraries

Many developed and emerging countries have national libraries. The main aim of a country's national library is to preserve and safeguard the national culture and heritage and fulfill the informational needs of its society.