Binghamton University is renovating the third floor of Glenn G. Bartle Library to include a Digital Scholarship Center, a recording studio and an updated study space with more electric outlets.

Library construction officially began in March 2021 with renovations to the Science Library, which currently houses the third floor collection. The renovations of the Science Library ground floor are expected to be completed by the spring 2022 semester, while construction for the third floor will begin in October 2021. The entire renovation project is expected to be completed in spring 2024.

If students need to access research-related materials from the third floor collection, they can use the Libraries’ Browse Shelf in Find It!, which is a virtual service. This online tool organizes books as students would see them on the shelf. Students can also sort book searches by subject.

For students returning to campus for the spring 2022 semester, the library will be offering a document delivery paging service for books.

According to Deputy University Librarian Jill Dixon, the Bartle Library third floor renovation is long overdue.

“With funding approved and provided by New York state, the Bartle Library’s third floor renovation is needed for a critical and extensive mechanical update and maintenance,” Dixon said. “The renovation project provides the ideal opportunity to redesign the floor to meet the current and future needs of our campus community. The goal of the third floor redesign is to transform the floor into an innovative and inviting space for study, teaching and research, and provide growth space for our valued print collection. The new space will include areas for quiet study, collaborative work, instruction, research, digital scholarship and our unique collection.”

Research-wise, the renovations will include the introduction of BU’s Digital Scholarship Center. This will be a designated space for collaboration, presentations, technology and software for all facets of the research process. There is a pilot Digital Scholarship Center currently available for class or group purposes, and the link to make reservations for this space can be found here:

“We are very excited about the new Digital Scholarship Center that will create improved space, technology and furnishings to enable us to better support the emerging community of practice deploying digital technologies in support of research and scholarship,” Dixon said.

Nancy Um, associate dean for faculty development and inclusion at Harpur College and a professor of art history, has been a part of organizing the Binghamton Digital Humanities Research Institute (DHRI) through the digital scholarship and projects services offered through BU libraries. She has worked with faculty and students in support of digital humanities research.

“I am very excited to see the Digital Scholarship Center established in such a visible and central place on campus,” Um said. “The University Libraries offer amazing resources for the community, and the [Digital Scholarship Center] will facilitate new and exciting faculty and library collaborations, while also contributing considerably to student learning.”

The newly renovated floor will also include a new recording studio. This space will be equipped with hardware and software to create and edit video and audio content.

Brianna Thompson, a sophomore double-majoring in theatre and English, is excited about the services and opportunities the University is offering students interested in music and art.

“I think [the construction plans] are incredible,” Thompson said. “At my community college, every computer on campus came with the Adobe package for free. At first I was upset that BU didn’t do the same, but as it happens, they have something even better — the ability to create art directly along with the tools to refine it. I feel that this is indicative of much of why I love BU. They never just give you the tools and leave you to figure it out. They always give you the opportunity to actually make the art, make the learning happen and make the world a better place.”