Guidelines, Standards, and Frameworks By Topic


ACRL’s Standards, Guidelines, and Frameworks are provided as a free resource to the academic library community. Your donation to the ACRL Advancement Fund, which supports initiatives that strengthen ACRL’s influence in higher education and its ability to create diverse and inclusive communities in the association and the profession, assists us as we continuing to provide these important resources.


ACRL-RBMS/SAA Guidelines on Access to Research Materials in Archives and Special Collections Libraries (January 2020)

ACRL Policy Statement on Open Access to Scholarship by Academic Librarians (April 2019)

Access Services Librarianship, A Framework for (PDF - April 2020)

Guidelines for the Preparation of Policies on Library Access (Dec. 1992)
Originally prepared by the ACRL Access Policy Guidelines Task Force December, 1992, these Guidelines were rescinded on October 27, 2006 at the Executive Committee meeting in Chicago. They have been superseded by the 2005 ALA Guidelines, available here.

Libraries in Higher Education

Standards for Libraries in Higher Education (February 2018)     
     Japanese Translation (PDF)

Guidelines for University Library Services to Undergraduate Students (October 2013)

Diversity Standards: Cultural Competency for Academic Libraries (April 2012)

Education, Personnel, and Academic Status

ACRL Statement on Academic Freedom (June 2015)

Diversity Standards: Cultural Competency for Academic Libraries (April 2012)

Guideline on Collective Bargaining (June 2008)

Impactful Scholarship and Metrics, ACRL Framework for  (PDF) (November 2020)

Joint Statement on Faculty Status of College and University Librarians (April 2018)

A Standard for the Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure of Academic Librarians (April 2021)

Standards for Academic Librarians Without Faculty Status (April 2021)

Standards for Faculty Status for Academic Librarians (April 2021)

Statement on the Certification & Licensing of Academic Librarians (April 2018)

Statement on the,Terminal Professional Degree for Academic Librarians (April 2018)

Guidelines for Recruiting Academic LIbrarians (June 2017)

Information Literacy and Instruction

Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education (February 2015, January 2016)   
     PDF Version
     Chinese Translation (PDF)
     French Translation (PDF)
     Italian Translation (external link)
     Persian Translation (PDF)
     Spanish Translation (PDF)
     Swedish Translation (external link)
     Framework WordPress site (for further resources)

Roles and Strengths of Teaching LIbrarians (April 2017)
     Persian Translation (PDF)

Information Literacy Standards for Science and Technology (June 2006)
     Chinese Translation (PDF)
     Farsi Translation (PDF)

Information Literacy Standards for Anthropology and Sociology Students (January 2008) 
     Chinese Translation (PDF)
     Farsi Translation (PDF)
     Spanish Translation (PDF)

Research Competency Guidelines for Literatures in English (June 2007) 
     Farsi Translation (PDF)

Characteristics of Programs of Information Literacy that Illustrate Best Practices: A Guideline (January 2019)

Objectives for Information Literacy Instruction: A Model Statement for Academic Librarians (Jan. 2001) 
     Greek translation (PDF)
     Spanish translation (PDF)

Information Literacy Competency Standards for Journalism Students and Professionals  (PDF) (October 2011)

Information Literacy Competency Standards for Nursing (October 2013)
     Turkish Translation (PDF)

Information Literacy Standards for Teacher Education (PDF) (May 2011)
     Farsi Translation (PDF)

Guidelines for Instruction Programs in Academic Libraries (October 2011)             

Psychology Information Literacy Standards (June 2010)
      Chinese Translation (PDF)
      Farsi Translation (PDF)

Politics, Policy, and International Relations, Companion Document to the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (PDF) (June 2021)

Social Work, Companion Document to the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (June 2021)

Visual Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education (October 2011)
   Persian Translation (PDF)

Women's and Gender Studies, Companion Document to the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (June 2021)

Rare Books, Manuscripts, Special Collections, and Archives

Competencies for Special Collections Professionals (March 2017)

Primary Source Literacy, Guidelines for (PDF) (February 2018)

Guidelines For Interlibrary And Exhibition Loan Of Special Collections Materials (January 2012)

Guidelines on the Selection and Transfer of Materials from General Collections to Special Collections,  (June 2016)

Guidelines Regarding Security and Theft in Special Collections (January 2019)

Special Collections Librarians, ACRL Code of Ethics for (PDF) (June 2020)

Standardized Holdings Counts and Measures for Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries, Guidelines for (PDF) (April 2019)

Standardized Statistical Measures and Metrics for Public Services in Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries (PDF) (October 2017)

Special Topics

Guidelines for Curriculum Materials Centers (January 2009)

Standards for Distance Learning Library Services (June 2016)

Guidelines for Media Resources in Academic Libraries (June 2018)

Assessment Librarians and Coordinators, Proficiencies for (January 2017)