Questions & Answers About the Library Fee

Why have a library fee?

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Prior to Fall 2019, UMKC did not have a library fee at all, and student tuition money doesn’t go to the library. The library gets a General Resource Allocation budget from the university, but the library’s budget has remained flat or been reduced every year for the past 10 years. This has meant that the library has not even been able to keep purchasing all the resources (books, articles, databases, etc.) that students need, and also can’t provide all the services students want and need.

What kinds of services do students want? The library has been collecting feedback directly from students through surveys, research, focus groups and more. The most popular request? Longer library hours!
The summary of the library's research and data collection is that UMKC students need:

  • A place to study on campus that is safe, secure, and open later than any of the current options
  • Individualized assistance with library resources and research strategies
  • Reliable, 24/7 access from anywhere to online resources
  • Continued access to subscription resources the library pays for (those that we currently have are subject to cuts)
  • Emerging technologies and software that students in many disciplines need, but are often only available to students in certain departments
  • Experience with technology, and information and digital literacy skills that employers want in future employees
  • Varied and accommodating study space and furniture

Without revenue from a Library Fee, the UMKC Libraries would not be able to improve the library spaces, resources, or technology to keep up with what UMKC students need. Instead, the Libraries would strive to maintain existing services and resources, but those are subject to budget cuts every year.