Digital Library for Universities

 Digital Library for Universities

In many countries, most college students have access to smartphones at home. The surge in smartphone usage has changed the way university students acquire knowledge. Most university students prefer eBooks to print books while understanding a topic or concept. Also, many students prefer watching educational videos or listening to audiobooks instead of reading eBooks.

Hence, no university can meet students’ needs and expectations without ensuring access to multi-format digital learning content. Digital libraries make it easier for schools, colleges, and universities to enable students to access digital learning content in multiple formats with reduced costs and complexities.

The diverse repository of off-the-shelf content provided by the software enables university students to access learning content in their preferred format. Also, every student can access digital content anytime and anywhere using computers or mobile devices. A university can boost remote and online learning by integrating the digital library with virtual classroom software or a learning management system (LMS).

While selecting a digital library for universities, decision-makers must consider cloud-based digital library software provided by leading eLearning solution providers. However, they must consider different factors to choose the best-suited digital library software. Likewise, they must compare digital library software using various parameters or criteria. We are discussing some key factors or parameters decision-makers must consider while comparing digital library software.

12 Criteria for Selecting the Perfect Digital Library for Universities 

1. Content Requirements

Every university provides a wide range of tech and non-tech courses. It needs a digital library that provides the content required by each course or training program. Before comparing digital libraries, decision-makers define content requirements clearly. The clarity will help them evaluate the off-the-shelf content provided by the digital library software.

2. Content Diversity

As noted earlier, university students these days access digital learning content in a variety of ways. Every university needs a digital library that enables each student to access content in his preferred way. For instance, each student must have the option to understand a topic by reading eBooks, watching videos, listening to audio, or taking quizzes. Hence, decision-makers must ensure that the digital library for universities supports content diversity.

3. Curated Content

Every digital library comes with a repository of off-the-shelf content. However, university students collect information from multiple sources while learning a complex topic or conducting research. It becomes easier for them to save time and effort when the digital library shares valuable and relevant content curated from external sites. Decision-makers must prioritize software that shares curated content along with providing off-the-shelf content.

4. Learner Engagement

A university needs a digital library to foster knowledge acquisition, retention, and applications. It needs digital library software that drives the learning process by engaging and motivating students. Decision-makers should consider digital libraries that gamify learning experiences by providing features like virtual coins, badges, and scorecards. Additionally, they must prioritize software that supports gamified and collaborative learning models.

5. Multilingual Support

In addition to offering language learning courses, reputable universities support learning in vernacular languages. They need to ensure that each student can access the digital learning content in his preferred language. Hence, decision-makers must choose digital libraries that support multiple languages. At the same time, they must ensure that the virtual content repository contains multilingual content.

6. Search Interface

While configuring the digital library, administrators will map content to specific courses or training programs. The mapping will ensure that a student can access relevant content according to a course. However, the digital library software must enable students to understand a topic deeply by accessing additional learning resources. Hence, decision-makers must check if the software features an intuitive search interface with filters and tags.

7. Management Tools

Digital libraries are easier to manage than conventional libraries. However, the administrator needs robust tools to automate routine library management tasks like catalog making, circulation monitoring, report generation, and enrollment management. While comparing digital libraries for universities, decision-makers must evaluate the library management tools or features provided by the software.

8. Tracking Tools

Universities can boost online learning programs only by understating what is working and what is not working. Monitoring of courses, content, and students makes it easier for them to make data-driven decisions. Hence, decision-makers should opt for digital libraries that come with built-in tracking tools. The tracking tools will make it easier for them to assess learning content needs and measure the content gap.

9. Mobile UX

Decision-makers must remember that most university students these days use mobile devices while accessing learning content. Hence, you must choose a digital library that features a mobile user interface (UI). Also, the software must deliver a seamless user experience (UX) across mobile devices and platforms. However, universities must implement a digital library that students can access using a desktop, laptop, smartphone, or tablet.

10. Options to Customize and Scale

Universities must implement digital libraries that can be customized according to precise learning content needs. Also, they must be able to scale the digital library on demand to accommodate new courses and content. Decision-makers should remember that cloud-based digital libraries are more customizable and scalable than onsite digital libraries.

11. Integration Capabilities

Universities often boost online and remote learning by implementing an integrated or unified learning platform. It becomes easier for them to build a unified learning platform when the digital library software comes with robust integration capabilities. The IT team can integrate the digital library with a learning management system or online classroom software if it comes with application programming interfaces (APIs).

12. Awards and Recognitions

While choosing a digital library for universities, decision-makers must evaluate the reputation and credibility of the eLearning solution provider. The awards and recognitions won by the provider depict the superior quality of its eLearning solutions. Hence, decision-makers must prioritize digital library platforms provided by companies that stand out from the crowd by winning multiple awards and certifications.


A university can implement, customize, scale, and integrate a cloud-based digital library on demand. Also, it can leverage the cloud-based digital library without escalating infrastructural and staffing overheads. However, decision-makers must boost students’ learning experiences by evaluating the cloud-based digital library for universities using multiple parameters and criteria.