Guidelines, Standards, and Frameworks - Listing 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.


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

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)

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Originally prepared by the ACRL Access Policy Guidelines Task Force December, 1992, these Guidelines were rescinded on October 27, 2006 at the Executive Committee meeting in Chicago. They have been superseded by the 2005 ALA Guidelines, available here.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

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

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

Education, Personnel, and Academic Status

ACRL Statement on Academic Freedom (June 2022)

Cultural Proficiencies for Racial Equity: A Framework (PDF - August 2022; joint document with ALA's Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services; the Association of Research Libraries; and the Public Library Association)

Guideline on Collective Bargaining (June 2008)

Guidelines for Recruiting Academic LIbrarians (June 2017)

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)

Information Literacy and Instruction

Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (February 2015, January 2016)   

         Companion Documents to the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education:

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

Guidelines for Instruction Programs in Academic Libraries (October 2011)

Information Literacy Standards for Science and Technology (June 2006)

Information Literacy Standards for Anthropology and Sociology Students (January 2008) 

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

Information Literacy Competency Standards for Nursing (October 2013)

Psychology Information Literacy Standards (June 2010)

Roles and Strengths of Teaching LIbrarians (April 2017)

Rare Books, Manuscripts, Special Collections, and Archives

Competencies for Special Collections Professionals (March 2017)

Guidelines for Loans of Special Collections Materials for Exhibitions and Resource Sharing (October 2023)

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

Guidelines Regarding the Security of Special Collections Materials (June 2023)

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

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

Academic Library Outreach Work, Competencies For (October 2023)          

  • PDF        

Assessment in Academic Libraries, Proficiencies for (June 2023)

Guidelines for Curriculum Materials Centers (January 2009)

Guidelines for Media Resources in Academic Libraries (June 2018)

Standards for Distance and Online Learning Library Services (February 2023)