Welcome to the Tarleton State University Libraries
The Dick Smith Library, named for a highly respected Tarleton professor and benefactor, has grown from one room into a three level structure with 83,500 sq. ft., seating for over 700 users, and housing over 1 million items. Beginning in 1894, when the school was known as Stephenville College and books were shelved in a church ante-room, the Library was shifted about and located in a strange array of college departments including the President’s office, the college bookstore, and the dining hall. The Library was given its own home in 1956, when a new building was erected. It was a two-story structure that surrounded an open mezzanine. A renovation and addition to the library in 1985 doubled its size, and enhanced the utility, and beauty of the library. Included in the expansion was an audio-visual room, computer lab, and meeting rooms.
The library has kept pace with the latest in technology to provide a variety of electronic resources, research databases, and services. A $5.2 million renovation and expansion was completed in 2006. While the library’s exterior remained relatively unchanged, the interior changes included spacious study areas, group study rooms, an instruction classroom, a multi-purpose meeting center, a comfortable student lounge with coffee bar, reconfigured stacks, AV listening rooms, and a Special Collection Suite.
The 2011 building renovation started with the relocation of seldom used items in the periodical and reference collections to remote storage. This made room for a renovation of the west side of the facility to accommodate the Center for Instructional Innovation (CII) offices, which was followed by a $2 million renovation of the remaining main floor area into the Library Learning Commons. Opening in 2014, the Library Learning Commons provides a campus “hub” for collaborative study and work spaces where students can interact with cutting-edge technology, research resources, and support services like the writing center, tutoring service, and technology helpdesk, as well as a cafe.
The Maker Spot, opened in 2016, provides the Tarleton community a place to create, design, and get hands-on experience with some of the latest innovation technologies. It offers 3-D printers and scanners, a laser cutter, large format printer, cameras, and computer kits.