Academic Libraries in For-Profit Schools of Higher Education

Jinnie Y. Davis, Mignon Adams, Larry Hardesty

Abstract

For-profit schools constitute the fastest-growing sector of higher education institutions in the United States.1 Yet accompanying the phenomenal growth of these proprietary colleges and universities has been considerable controversy over the role that the profit motive should play in higher education.2 The literature of higher education contains increasingly more works about proprietary schools. The library literature, however, offers little in this arena. Through this article, the authors seek to introduce the library readership to U.S. for-profit colleges and universities. We summarize their history and their characteristics, and we explore reasons for their success and present areas in which these schools appear to excel. With regard to their library services and resources, we focus on issues of concern based specifically on our experience with academic libraries in proprietary schools operating in the state of Ohio. Finally, we suggest ways in which these for-profit institutions can address the challenges faced by their libraries.

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Copyright © Jinnie Y. Davis, Mignon Adams, and Larry Hardesty


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