Maastricht University does not have a separate institute or faculty libraries: rather, it is home to a single library, housed in two locations, in the immediate vicinity of the faculties in the city centre and Randwijck.
The library’s book and journal collections, in both electronic and hardcopy form, are built up in close consultation with faculty researchers and tutors. The electronic collection is easily accessible via the internet.
Although the university is still relatively young, it possesses a large collection of old books (265,000 volumes) known as the Jesuit collection. In 1973 the Dutch government purchased the libraries of the former Jesuit colleges and the Great Seminary to form the basic collection of the then Rijksuniversiteit Limburg. This laid the foundation for the modern Maastricht University Library. Today, the Inner City Library houses a special reading room for precious works.
Learning resources and EleUM
Important features of the library are its learning and resource centres. These are unique facilities that support the Problem-Based Learning (PBL) methodology used at Maastricht University. They are home to selected, not-for-loan reference books relevant to each degree programme, and an assortment of different study places (two-person places, group rooms, study cells and individual study places, both with and without computers and/or laptop outlets).
To facilitate education digitally, too, the library manages the university’s electronic learning environment, EleUM.
The digital library
The library is more than just a physical location. The counterpart to the physical library is the digital library, which is accessible from anywhere at any time. It offers digital collections, a virtual information desk ('Ask your librarian') and online courses in searching for and dealing with academic information.