StackMap Eight Years Later: Perspectives of a California University


In 2010, StackMap completed its first implementation of library mapping software at a private university in California. Since then, that same university has expanded its StackMap implementation from the main library to several other library facilities on campus. We recently spoke with the Deputy University Librarian about their long-term experience using StackMap, and how it has become an integral part of the catalog search and research process over the years.

People see things differently and respond to information in different ways, which is why we have multiple pathways for people to find the material. When people come to the reference desk or check out desk to ask for assistance, we point to StackMap and show them how to navigate it. We also hand them a copy of the finding guide that tells you where in the library various call numbers are, and we can also point them to the specific map for the item that they’re looking for.

We’ve been using StackMap since 2010, and it’s been helpful in directing users to where they want to go. Having a map or some kind of visual aid makes a huge difference — to be able to see things in context, and to understand the size of the buildings they’re dealing with so they can have some sense in navigating to the location.

I use this myself when I’m looking to find something in the collection. I have one collection that I have some responsibility for, and because it’s kind of a multidisciplinary kind of thing, the collection is spread around a little bit. StackMap really just helps me know where I need to go. I can pull it up on my phone, and I can see the map quickly.