At a glance

Falconer Biology Library

Coming January 2017: new Science Library

Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning

Library merger and new Science Library location

In December 2016, Falconer Biology Library and the Mathematics and Statistics Library will merge with Swain Library of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering to form the Robin Li and Melissa Ma Science Library. On January 9, 2017, the Science Library will open in the Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning, formerly known as the Old Chemistry Building, located at 376 Lomita Drive.   

The new library will occupy much of the third floor and all of the fourth floor of the Sapp Center, with additional spaces for study and collaboration on the first and second floors. The library will take advantage of the complex floor plan of the building and its large windows to provide naturally illuminated quiet study spaces. A classroom in the library will be used for workshops on finding, managing, and using information, and group study spaces will be available in the building.

Relocation schedule and collection availability

Falconer Biology Library, the Mathematics and Statistics Library, and Swain Library of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering will close at 5:00pm on Friday, December 16, and the Science Library will open on January 9, 2017. The collections of the three libraries will be inaccessible for the entire period between those dates.  If you will need any items from the collections during that period, please check them out before 5:00pm on December 16. After-hours access will be unavailable from Friday, December 16 through Sunday, January 8.

In order to ensure that the move can be completed before opening day, some parts of the collection will be merged prior to December 16. If an item you need is not on the shelf, please ask staff for help in locating it.

Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning

The Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning will open in a completely renovated century-old landmark building.  In addition to the library, the building will house teaching labs for biology and chemistry, classrooms, and other teaching and learning spaces. A history of the Center is described in a September 2016 Stanford Report article.

More about the Mathematics and Statistics Library

In December 2013, the Mathematics and Statistics Library merged with Falconer Biology Library in the Biology Library’s space on the third floor of Herrin Hall, and the merged library opened in January 2014.  The two libraries were merged physically but not administratively, and the two units have maintained distinct loan periods and other policies. In the Science Library, the collections will be merged both physically and administratively into a single unit with uniform policies.


While the Science Library will offer inviting study spaces, its shelving space is much less than the total space of the three merging libraries.  In preparation for the merger, the libraries have transferred large numbers of items to storage at SAL3, taking care to retain the most frequently used items in the on-campus collection. Use SearchWorks to search for items located at SAL3 and to request an item.

Further reading

Combined science library to open in fall 2016 (Stanford Daily, January 13, 2015)

Stanford's Old Chemistry Building to become an undergraduate science center (Stanford Report, June 21, 2013)

Stanford’s Old Chem Architectural Plan

Video view of the plan for the Sapp Center: Science Teaching & Learning Center (An outline of the project developed by Land, Buildings & Real Estate)

Science Teaching and Learning Center (This page is a part of the Heads Up site, a series of alerts regarding construction projects at Stanford)