The Oviatt Library welcomes on and off-campus groups to schedule library tours. Tours can be tailored to meet the needs of each tour group and enable students and community members to see the state-of-the art facility which houses a physical collection containing 1.4 million volumes. We receive many tour requests throughout the year and we make every effort to accommodate them. However, tours are not available during the months of May and December due to final exams.
Highlights of the tour include:
The Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS). Built in 1991, the Oviatt Library's ASRS was the world's first robotic library storage and retrieval system. It consists of 13,260 steel bins on a rack structure that occupies 8000 sq. ft., with a capacity of 1.7 million volumes. In the Northridge Earthquake on January 17, 1994 almost all of the library's openstack collection was dumped on the floor. Not one book in the ASRS was damaged.
The Learning Commons. The Learning Commons opened in August 2013 to provide a flexible dynamic space for collaboration and innovation. It features an open computer lab with PCs and Macs, laptop and tablet lending, group study rooms equipped with screen-sharing and write-on walls, and configurable furniture. The Creative Media Studio was added in Fall 2014 and includes professional media creation and processing software, audio/video equipment checkout, and a sound studio.
The Robert and Maureen Gohstand Leisure Reading Room. The Robert and Maureen Gohstand Leisure Reading Room provides an attractive space for the enjoyment of the quiet pleasures of reading and a collection of works intended to encourage reading for recreation and pleasure, for an appreciation of good and exciting writing, for introspection and insight, and for the acquisition of general knowledge. Renovation funded by a generous gift from the Gohstands.
Special Collections and Archives. Special Collections and Archives is the home of CSUN's rare book and periodical collections, as well as its archival and manuscript collections. Archival and manuscript collections can consist of many different kinds of materials, including correspondence, diaries, maps, university records, organizational records, photographs, and audio or video recordings. Any current exhibits will also be included on the tour.
Music & Media. Music & Media supports the music, cinema and theater curricula at CSUN, and provides instructional media complementing many other campus disciplines. The department holds the Library’s collection of music books and scores, plus instructional videos and DVDs, CDs, LPs and audio books. Patrons can checkout items or view or listen to all material in the area’s media carrels or review room. In addition, faculty transmit media to their classrooms over the University Video Network.
Teacher Curriculum Center. The Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC) is the K-12 curriculum materials library for California State University, Northridge (CSUN) and as such serves as a resource for instructional materials to CSUN students, faculty, and community educators. As a curriculum library within the Oviatt Library at CSUN, the TCC specializes in providing access to both print and nonprint materials that would actually be used within an elementary or secondary school classroom.
CSUN Student Groups
Tours for CSUN students focus on Library resources and services that will benefit students throughout the academic year. Tours generally run 45 minutes in length and can be tailored as needed. Please book two weeks in advance for groups of 20 students or less; four weeks in advance for groups larger than 20.
Non-CSUN Student Groups
Tours for non‐CSUN students (including K‐12 Schools) last approximately 45 minutes and can be tailored as necessary. In order to ensure the best possible experience, tour groups may not exceed 20 students. Please schedule at least two weeks in advance. If your group will be larger than 20 students, please contact the library at least four weeks in advance to make appropriate arrangements. For groups in the eighth grade or younger, one adult.
The Friends of the Library provides docent-guided Library History and Culture Tours for community groups and visitors. During these tours, you will hear about the history of the library and its various areas, such as the Learning Commons, the automated storage and retrieval system (ASRS) and the Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC).