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Core Requirement 2.9

The institution, through ownership or formal arrangements or agreements, provides and supports student and faculty access and user privileges to adequate library collections and services and to other learning/information resources consistent with the degrees offered. Collections, resources, and services are sufficient to support all its educational, research, and public service programs. (Learning Resources and Services)  

Judgement: Compliant



The library employs 11 full-time plus 1.5 FTE part-time library faculty with earned Master’s in Library Science degrees from graduate programs accredited by the American Library Association (ALA).  The library also employs 14 full-time plus .5 FTE part-time support staff, and student workers.  Additional technical support comes from staff members of the USC Thomas Cooper Library in Columbia who perform cataloging and processing for select materials.  These include the books designated for the Juvenile collection and DVDs. 

The University of South Carolina Upstate (USC Upstate) provides appropriate facilities and learning/information resources to support the University’s mission.  The USC Upstate Library Mission Statement and Goals serves as a guide for the Library to promote the metropolitan mission of the University by serving the curricular information needs of USC Upstate students, faculty and staff, and where possible, the educational needs of the broader community.  

The USC Upstate Library is housed in a multi-floor building shared with classrooms and other campus services such as the Scholars’ Academy and the Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC).  The Library occupies approximately 36,643 net square feet of space in a 61,739 square foot building (approximately 59% of the building).  Library operations and services within the building include access services (circulation, reserves, interlibrary loan), the reference desk, two library classrooms that are also used as open computer labs, a 24/7 computer lab, technical services, library administration, library faculty offices, library staff workspaces, group study rooms and individual carrels, circulating collections and in-house use collections (including reference, archives, and special named collections).

Although a new library building (New Library 1st Floor Plan, New Library 2nd Floor Plan, New Library 3rd Floor Plan, New Library Campus View, New Library Campus View Close-up, New Library Road View)  is planned, bond funding from the state has not been forthcoming.  While the number of possible seats within the current library has remained stable at 420, as enrollment increased, the percentage of students that can be seated decreased.  Numerous measures have been taken to guarantee appropriate and adequate support.  The second floor of the library building was renovated in 2010 to give more floor space to the library.  The library now occupies the entire first floor of the building and almost 9,000 square feet on the second floor.

The first floor of the library offers comfortable sofas and chairs for individual study, small tables for quiet group study, computer pods for individualized research opportunities, and group study rooms for those who require discussion and demonstration space.  There is also an Assistive Equipment Study Room for library users with disabilities.  This room is equipped with adjustable lighting, a computer with Job Access With Speech (JAWS) software, and a Kurzweil reader.

Two library classrooms are located on the first floor.  One accommodates 28 students; the other, 37 students.  When not being used to teach information literacy classes, they are open general use computer labs.  Both contain Dell Optiplex 620 PCs.  Because of the increasing number of instances that the general labs must be closed for classes, an additional “24/7” computer lab, accessible from inside the library, was created.  During the library’s open hours, it serves as an additional general computer lab for students.  When the library is closed, secure access is available via the student ID smart card at the external entrance to the lab.  The 24/7 lab houses 12 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs and four Intel-based iMacs.  Finally, there are 16 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs available in the public reference area.  Printers are available in all areas mentioned above.  Ear buds are available for purchase at the circulation desk for use with any computer equipment anywhere in the library.

Moveable compact shelving was installed to house bound print periodicals, reducing the footprint of the bound periodicals shelving by 872 square feet (from 2,016 to 1,144), approximately a 43% reduction.  Bound print periodicals that were duplicates of electronic information available (such as JSTOR and PsycArticles) were weeded from the print collection as use of the print copies dropped to zero over the past three years.  A duplicate list is now run each summer and duplicates are removed.

Stationary shelving that was replaced on the first floor by compact shelving was moved to the 2nd floor.  This allows for continued growth of the circulating collection for the next several years.  Named collections now have unique spaces within the library – this includes the University Publications, Hub City Writers’ Project Archives, Thomas Moore Craig Southern History and Literature Collection, and Pre-1900 Collection.  In addition, new space was acquired for an initiative begun in 2010 known as the “Archives of the Upstate”.  The second floor of the library also offers individual study carrels for students and is designated as a “quiet floor.”

When available, electronic resources are added to assure access for distance learners as well as onsite learners. Via subscription to more than 200 databases, the USC Upstate Library provides direct access to the full-text of more than 36,000 journals.  An annotated list of databases is available on the library’s website.   All databases are available remotely using the campus proxy server.  Faculty, staff and students may access these information resources from their homes, offices, residence hall rooms, etc.

The library’s resources are available in a variety of formats including 121,747 electronic books, 584 print journal subscriptions, over 131,000 print books, 51,182 microforms, and more than 6,000 CD/DVDs.  In addition, the library has begun a digitization project and the following items are available electronically:  all university yearbooks, all university catalogs, former SACS self-study and reaffirmation documents, and numerous student literary publications.

As part of the University of South Carolina System, the library also provides students and faculty with access to the system’s 3.1 million books, 3.9 million microform items, and 24,000 current serials in print. 

USC Upstate is a member of the statewide academic library consortia Partnerships Among South Carolina Academic Libraries (PASCAL).  PASCAL fosters cooperation in many ways including shared licensing of electronic resources, universal borrowing, and inter-library loans.  The USC Upstate participates in the “PASCAL Delivers” program, a rapid book delivery service to students and employees. With its effective communication system and an efficient delivery system, library users may search the online PASCAL Catalog, locate books in any member library, submit an electronic request for delivery of a book to their home institution, and receive those books within a few days. This service provides access to an additional 6 million volumes. During the 2010-2011 academic year, PASCAL Delivers initiated their “PICK-UP ANYWHERE” service which allows users to specify any location within the state for the documents to be sent.  This feature is of particular value in support of USC Upstate’s Education Program offered on the USC Sumter campus, its online RN to BSN Nursing Program. 

USC Upstate Library extends its fiscal responsibility by participating in the Carolina Consortium – a group of academic libraries in North Carolina and South Carolina who use their bulk purchasing power to obtain favorable pricing on a variety of electronic resources that are of significant interest to the scholarly community. As of 30 June 2011, the Carolina Consortium included 134 community colleges, public universities, and private institutions of higher learning. The total amount members paid to participate in consortium purchases was approximately 230 million dollars less than if the member institutions had each paid independently. Carolina Consortium also provides professional development opportunities for USC Upstate librarians.


One of the responsibilities of each library faculty member is to serve as liaison to an individual academic unit at USC Upstate.  As a liaison, each works with the unit to identify materials for purchase as well as to provide information literacy instruction and unique services as the unit requires.  All but one library faculty member shares in staffing the reference desk.  The Library Reference Desk Policy provides guidelines that all faculty are expected to follow when staffing the desk.   The one faculty member who does not participate in staffing the reference desk is the Coordinator for Access Services and manages the service desks in circulation and in the computer labs.

Library Budget
Over the past 10 years, the budget for the USC Upstate Library has remained between 3.7% and 4.2% of the total university budget.  This is well within accepted national guidelines that range from three to five percent.  Within the library’s budget, 30.2% is allocated for library materials.  This includes print books and journals, media, and electronic formats.   Although microforms remain part of the collection, they are no longer actively purchased.

Library Collections
The USC Upstate library’s collections include the following (current as of 30 June 2010):

  • Print Monographs: 140,602
  • E-Books: 121,747
  • Print Serials: 584 active subscriptions; 36,369 items
  • E-Journals and Newspapers: 31,063
  • Microforms: 51,182
  • Media: 6,775
  • Maps: 345
  • Databases: 228


The University Writing Center
The Department of Languages, Literature, and Composition (LLC) maintains the Writing Center.  Available 35 hours per week, it is dedicated to assisting both experienced and inexperienced writers at all stages of the writing process in any discipline.  Students are assisted with pre-writing and revision strategies as well as with proofreading techniques.  Tutors offer help with global aspects of writing such as thesis construction, organization and paragraphing, and local aspects such word choice, mechanics, grammar and research documentation.  In addition, tutors assist with other writing projects such as resumes, cover letters, admissions essays, and scholarship letters.

A faculty member serves as Director of the Center.  Administrative duties include hiring and training student tutors, facilitating in-class and freestanding workshops, tutoring, and maintaining statistics.  Tutors are students who have been selected to work in the Center because of their outstanding writing and teaching ability and are paid through the LLC budget.  Students who utilize the Writing Center benefit from sharing their writing with a fellow student who is both knowledgeable and service-oriented.  By working with tutors, students have the opportunity to learn more about writing and to become better writers over time.

The Writing Center provides free 50-minute one-on-one tutoring sessions.  Scheduled appointments are encouraged, but efforts are also made to accommodate walk-ins.  The center is furnished with a reception area with one PC, three tutoring cubicles (one with a computer), and two computer clusters of five PCs each.  The center also functions as an open computer lab during operating hours.

The Mathematics and Computer Science Lab
The Mathematics Tutoring Lab is available 55 hours per week.  Attached to the Math Tutoring Lab is a separate computer lab containing eight computer stations.  Computer Science tutoring is offered in that lab.  The Math Tutoring Lab is supervised by a faculty member but student-tutors staff the lab.  Tutoring is offered as a drop in service; no appointments are necessary.  The goal of the tutoring lab is to provide assistance to students for 100 and 200 level mathematics courses. 

The Language Lab
The Department of Languages, Literature, and Composition (LLC) maintains a Language Lab available 32 hours per week.  The Lab offers free tutoring to students in Spanish, French, and German.

A faculty member coordinates the hiring and training of student tutors with the necessary skills in foreign languages.  The Lab features 25 computers with headphones and microphones, allowing students to complete listening and speaking exercises. 

The Stäubli Robotics Laboratory
The Stäubli Robotics Laboratory houses eight industrial robotic arms provided to USC Upstate by the Stäubli Corporation and J&J Industrial Services.  Selected Computer Science courses provide hands-on working knowledge of these machines and also teaches the theoretical underpinnings of such technologies.

Paid internship programs have been established with robotics industries in the region. For example, a unique relationship has been forged with SEW Eurodrive, a leading company in the field of drive engineering, establishing the SEW Eurodrive Research Assistantship Award.  This award pays a student research assistant to work on research projects in the lab.  Awards are available every spring and fall. SEW also provided funding every year to support Robotics Summer Camps and the purchase of additional lab materials.

Undergraduate Research Lab
Undergraduate students who assist professors in conducting research graduate with enhanced analytical and communication skills; knowledge of a specific discipline; and work etiquette.  The Undergraduate Research Lab supports Mathematics and Computer Science students who are:

  • Undergraduate Research Assistants supported by research grant funds
  • Participating in an Internship
  • Taking an Independent Study

Networking Lab
The Networking Lab facilitates instruction in local and wide area networking, providing the resources for hands-on application of the theoretical concepts that are studied.

Nursing Labs
A Learning Resource Center (LRC) (11,000 square feet), located on the Spartanburg campus, is state of the art, equipped with two adult high fidelity patient simulators and multiple medium fidelity simulators. A partnership with a local hospital system resulted in a creation of a Joint Center for Nursing Research and Scholarship with a focus on a critical care simulation room and a state-of-the-science home health teaching/learning environment.

USC Upstate Greenville Campus
At the USC Upstate Greenville campussite, the F.W. Symmes Library and Media Center provides 6,144 square feet of physical space.  Within that space are eight group study rooms and separate seating for approximately 50 people.  There is a small print reference collection of 115 volumes available.  Sixty computers are available with 12 of those specifically reserved for USC Upstate students.  Students at the Greenville campus have access to the same online catalogs and databases as students at the Spartanburg campus.  Librarians from USC Upstate are onsite at the Greenville campus at least two days each week.

For the nursing program, the Greenville LRC includes two lab rooms and another lab room in SimHub ©, three high fidelity patient simulators, medium fidelity simulators with equipment, teaching resources, and supplies. 

USC Upstate Education Program at USC Sumter
Students attending the USC Upstate education program at the USC Sumter campus use the USC Sumter library. The Sumter library has designated space for USC Upstate to have a small juvenile collection of 181 books onsite.  Upstate students physically located at the USC Sumter campus have access to all USC Upstate databases and catalogs by using the USC Upstate proxy server and their IDs and logins.


Information Technology and Services Departments
  • Client Services assists faculty, staff and students to effectively incorporate technology into their endeavors.  This department is responsible for campus-wide computer and technology support, and the ITS Client Help Desk.
  • Network Servicesis responsible for the network backbone, wired and wireless access environment, active directory structure, and server applications for the campus. They also manage USC Upstate's telephone and digital network services, including all hardware and equipment repairs.  This group also handles student telephone service and voice mail.
  • Information Systems is responsible for USC Upstate's administrative databases used by offices and departments across the university.  They support the gathering, processing, and interpretation of information relative to the administrative tasks that support the academic mission.
  • Media Services provides other non-computer needs for all departments at USC Upstate, such as audio and video production services, media (videotape, CD, and DVD) duplication, and project consultation as time allows.
  • Learning Technologies guides and supports the use of technology to enhance the academic environment.  This service creates and sustains innovative and interactive programs to support student engagement and excellence in teaching and learning.  The department provides an on-going program of development opportunities including workshops, seminars, customized programs, webinars on a variety of topics, as well as individual and group consultation and instruction for faculty, staff and students.

Service goals include:

  • Explore pedagogical innovation by partnering with faculty to pilot and evaluate new instructional technologies
  • Provide formal and informal support of faculty in the use of instructional technology
  • Make available a variety of resources and practical ideas in the adoption and use of instructional technology
  • Serve as a communication channel to facilitate campus-wide collaboration and sharing of instructional technology innovation
  • Support faculty scholarship in the area of teaching and learning with technology.

In addition to the regular program of development opportunities, services include:

  • Blackboard training and support for hybrid and online courses.  USC Upstate uses Blackboard course management software.  Blackboard is employed by many faculty to provide syllabi, assignments, reserve readings, and links to authoritative sites on the Internet. A growing number of faculty are using interactive tools such as discussion boards, the virtual classroom, and group email.
  • Instructional applications support
  • Online teaching and learning support
  • Online resource materials maintenance.

Open Labs
Labs are open to current students, faculty, and staff for general use; regular class periods are not scheduled in these labs.  Computers are loaded with Microsoft Windows XP, Office 2007, and software requested by the department monitoring the lab.  Apple computers are running OS X 10.5 with Microsoft Office for Mac 2008.

Location Department Equipment 
Administration 117 
Information Tech. & Services – Advanced Digital Media Lab 10 Dell Precision 390 Workstations
1 Power Mac G5
2 Dell XPS One PCs
Hodge 264   Math & Computer Science 15 Dell Optiplex 755 PCs
Library 115   Library 37 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs
Library 24 Hour Lab   Library 12 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs
4 Intel-based iMac’s
Library 118   Library 28 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs
Library Reference Area   Library 16 Dell Optiplex 620 PCs
Palmetto House   Housing 20 HP t5740 thin clients using VMWare View
Campus Life Center   Campus Life 10 HP t5740 thin clients using VMWare View
University Center Greenville   UCG Library 12 Dell Optiplex 760 PCs

Instructional Labs
Instructional labs are generally restricted to classroom use only.  Regular class periods are scheduled in these labs.  PCs in these labs are loaded with Microsoft Windows XP, Office 2007, and software requested by the department monitoring the lab.  Apple computers are running OS X 10.5 with Microsoft Office for Mac 2008 and department specific software.

Location   Department   Equipment  
Admin 116   Information Technology & Services 31 WYSE C90 Thin Clients using VMware View
CASB 151   Psychology 18 Dell Studio Laptops
HEC 2009   School of Education 24 WYSE C90 Thin Clients using VMware View
HEC 2036   School of Nursing 64 IBM Laptops
Hodge 254   Math & Computer Science 24 Dell Optiplex 755 PCs
Hodge 255   Math & Computer Science 24 Dell Optiplex 755 PCs
Hodge 265   Math & Computer Science 24 Dell Optiplex 755 PCs
HPAC 121   Fine Arts & Communications – Graphic Design 17 Apple iMacs
HPAC 123   Fine Arts & Communications – Theatre Design 5 Dell Optiplex 520 P’s
HPAC 134   Fine Arts & Communications / Languages, Literature & Composition 20 Dell Optiplex 760 PCs
George Dean Johnson College of Business & Economics - "The George"   George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business & Economics 36 HP t5740 thin clients using VMWare View
Media 220   Informatics 18 Dell Optiplex 760 PCs
Media 124   History, Political Science, Philosophy, and American Studies 24 Dell Studio 15 Laptops
Media 321   Information Technology Services 24 Dell Optiplex 760 PCs
Smith 416   Natural Sciences & Engineering 22 Dell Optiplex 760 PCs
University Center Greenville (1 to 1 Pilot)   School of Education 50 Dell Latitude Laptops
Location   Department   Equipment  
University Center Greenville (1 to 1 Pilot)   School of Education 50 HP mini Laptops
Visual Arts Center 116   Fine Arts & Communications – Graphic Design 18 Intel-based iMacs

Departmental Tutorial Labs
These labs are open to members of the student body who need assistance with their studies or need access to discipline-specific software.  Tutorial labs are not general-use labs and, in some cases, may be restricted to students majoring in the department in which the labs are found.  PC’s in these labs are loaded with Microsoft Windows and Office and discipline specific software requested by the department monitoring the lab.

Location   Department   Equipment  
HEC 2014 (LRC)   Mary Black School of Nursing 14 Dell Optiplex 760 PC’s
Hodge 242   Math & Computer Science 12 Dell Optiplex 755 PC’s
HPAC 136   Writing Center 14 Dell Optiplex 760 PC’s
HPAC 234   Languages, Literature & Composition – Foreign Language Lab 26 HP t5740 thin clients using VMWare View
Rampey   Center for Student Success 8 Dell Optiplex 745 PC’s

Support Documents:  


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USC Upstate
800 University Way
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Toll-free: 800-277-8727
Phone: 864-503-5000
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