Bringing You the World

Scott Walter

The DePaul University Library contributes to the strategic goals identified in the university’s Vision 2018 strategic plan in a number of ways, but perhaps one of our “quieter” contributions has been to the goal of “[infusing] international and comparative perspectives throughout the teaching, research and service missions of the university.” In addition to providing services to our increasing number of international students and scholars and ensuring access to relevant DePaul collections through tools like the International Studies Research Guide, DePaul faculty and students are able to make use of a wealth of international collections through our membership in the Center for Research Libraries.

DePaul is one of 200+ members of the Center for Research Libraries (CRL), which provides our faculty and students with access to “approximately five million items, including the largest circulating collection of newspapers in North America, more than 38,000 foreign journals and 800,000 foreign dissertations, held in few if any other U.S. libraries; major microfilm and paper collections from Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, Europe, South Asia, Southeast Asia; and more.” In 2013-14, members of the DePaul community borrowed almost 100 items from this unique collection in support of their teaching, learning, and research, including: articles from specialized journals such as Yearbook of South Asian Languages and Linguistics, South African Journal of Science, and the European Journal of Pharmacology; runs of newspapers such as The Pittsburgh Courier and The Memphis Daily Appeal; and microform sets such as The Comintern Archives and The Sir Winston Churchill Papers. With borrowing from CRL up 14% from the previous year, we conclude that DePaul faculty and students are becoming increasingly aware of the unique resources available to them through the Center for Research Libraries, especially in regard to primary source materials and foreign language materials that would otherwise be difficult to locate.

DePaul’s CRL membership also provides our faculty with access to specialized research consultations, to unique materials that can be placed on reserve for longer-term use with a class, and to  instructional resources such as topic guides that can direct you to global resources in areas of DePaul interest such as Drama and Theatre, French Studies, Human Rights, and Latin American Studies. Finally, CRL recognizes the use of primary source materials in the classroom through its annual Primary Source Award for Teaching, which was given to DePaul’s Edward R. Udovic, C.M., in 2013 for his course, “The Lincoln Park Neighborhood, Then and Now.”

Membership in global resource-sharing programs such as OCLC and the Center for Research Libraries is only one way that the DePaul University Library provides faculty and students with the access they need to international publications (in English and in vernacular languages) to ensure that their teaching, learning, and scholarship are informed by global perspectives. More information about CRL membership is available at To learn how to borrow CRL materials through DePaul, please visit our Library FAQ or contact your liaison librarian.


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