Supporting Effective Library Management for Over Thirty Years
Committed to assisting research and academic libraries in the continuous improvement
of management systems, ARL has worked since 1970 to gather and disseminate the best
practices for library needs. As part of its committment, ARL maintains an active publica-
tions program best known for its SPEC Kits. Through the Collaborative Research/Writing
Program, librarians work with ARL staff to design SPEC surveys and write publications.
Originally established as an information source for ARL member libraries, the SPEC series
has grown to serve the needs of the library community worldwide.
What are SPEC Kits?
Published six times per year, SPEC Kits contain the most valuable, up-to-date information on
the latest issues of concern to libraries and librarians today. They are the result of a systematic
survey of ARL member libraries on a particular topic related to current practice in the field.
Each SPEC Kit contains an executive summary of the survey results; survey questions with
tallies and selected comments; the best representative documents from survey participants,
such as policies, procedures, handbooks, guidelines, Web sites, records, brochures, and
statements; and a selected reading list—both print and online sources—containing the most
current literature available on the topic for further study.
Subscribe to SPEC Kits
Subscribers tell us that the information contained in SPEC Kits is valuable to a variety of
users, both inside and outside the library. SPEC Kit purchasers use the documentation
found in SPEC Kits as a point of departure for research and problem solving because they
lend immediate authority to proposals and set standards for designing programs or writ-
ing procedure statements. SPEC Kits also function as an important reference tool for library
administrators, staff, students, and professionals in allied disciplines who may not have
access to this kind of information.
SPEC Kits can be ordered directly from the ARL Publications Distribution Center. To order, call (301) 362-
8196, fax (301) 206-9789, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to http://www.arl.org/resources/pubs/.
Information on SPEC Kits and the SPEC survey program can be found at http://www.arl.org/resources/pubs/
spec/index.shtml. The executive summary for each kit after December 1993 can be accessed free of charge