Library Design Resources

I am extremely fortunate to work in a school that values school libraries. My secondary library is currently housed in a new building.

Following librarians on networks and social media, there seems to be a wonderful trend of school libraries being renovated or redesigned. Hopefully this is a sign that school libraries and their staff are being valued by their school leadership and communities.

In the process of moving into a new school library space, I needed a place to start collecting the library design ideas and the research I was finding. I’m putting it here in a hope it might be helpful for others as well.

This post will be updated as I come across more sites and resources. It will reflect my own design preferences, but also a general sense of the research and ideas out there.

Websites and Resource Curation

My Pinterest Library Design Board.

School Library Refurbishment Padlet created by Matt Deleon which is a collaborative space. 

School Library Designing Website created by Hilary Hughes. Includes research, case studies and resources. 

Designing Libraries


Library Spaces via Libraries Tasmania. 

21st-Century Libraries: The Learning Commons. 

(Re)Designing the library through school community participation by Dr Hilary Hughes via SCIS Connections.

Design Thinking for Ongoing Library Transformation. Anne Whisken, Sia Yannopoulos, Liz Campbell, Linden Carroll. 2017. 

Library Learning Spaces: One School Library’s Initial Design Brief. Anne Whisken. 2021. Synergy. 

Learning Landscapes: Teacher-librarians in the design process. Anne Whisken. 2014. Synergy. 

Reimagining the library landscape: an approach to school library design. Anne Whisken. 2017. Connections. 

Ten ways to transform your library into a flexible learning space. Liza Moss. 2018. Connections.

Stewart, P. (2018). School library design, facilities and resources for sustainable cognitive and social development of students: An evaluative case study. School Libraries Worldwide, 24(2), 30. doi: (Freely available through the State Library of Queensland)

Harper, M., & Deskins, L. (2015). Using action research to assess and advocate for innovative school library design. Knowledge Quest, 44(2), 24-33. Retrieved from  (Freely available through the State Library of Queensland)

Lorraine E. Maxwell, & Raechel French. (2016). Elementary School Library Design: Student Perceptions of a Learning Commons. Children, Youth and Environments26(2), 61–82. (Freely available through the State Library of Queensland)


Library Learning Commons – School Librarians United

Hygge and Happiness – School Librarians United

Communal Space – School Librarians United

Build it and See What Happens with Austin McChord – Make:Cast

Episode 86 Matt Pascoe – Ipswich City Council (about the design of the Ipswich Children’s Library)


School Spaces for Student Wellbeing and Learning: Insights from Research and Practice. 2019. Hilary Hughes, Jill Franz and Jill Willis (eds.). 

Erikson, & Markuson, C. B. (2007). Designing a school library media center for the future Rolf Erikson and Carolyn Markuson. (2nd ed.). American Library Association. (Freely available through the State Library of Queensland)

Bon, I., Cranfield, A., & Latimer, K. (Eds.). (2011). Designing library space for children. Walter de Gruyter GmbH. (Available through ALIA membership ebook library).

Sullivan, P. L., & Sullivan, M. L. (2014). High impact school library spaces : Envisioning new school library concepts : envisioning new school library concepts. ABC-CLIO, LLC. (Available through ALIA membership ebook library).