Survey of Library Services at Engineering News Record's Top 500 Design Firms: Implications for Engineering Education


  • John B. Napp

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    1. University Libraries The University of Toledo
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    • John Napp is Assistant Professor of Library Administration and Engineering Librarian at the University of Toledo in Toledo, Ohio. Previously he was the librarian for an environmental engineering firm in Toledo, Ohio. His research interests include engineering librarianship, and library instruction.

1024 Carlson Library, The University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606-3399; telephone: 419–530-2492; e-mail:


This paper reports on the findings of a national survey of the library services available at Engineering News Record's Top 500 Designs Firms. In mid-October 2002, a survey was mailed to all 500 firms. The survey was in two parts. One part was to be completed by a principal in the firm. The second part was to be completed by the degreed librarian (holding a Masters in Library Science or its equivalent) if the firm employed one. The findings indicated that 74.4 percent of responding design firms do not employ a degreed librarian. In 79 percent of those firms, engineers obtain information on their own. This situation, along with other results, seems to suggest that more information literacy instruction may need to be included in the engineering curriculum.