The UL contains a collection of more than 1,000,000 books, periodicals, images, old prints, and manuscripts. Together with an extensive and rapidly increasing collection of e-books and e-journals, this provides a wealth of scholarly information. The number of printed books held by the library and the number of loans is decreasing, due to digital access. The library also contains a number of special collections: the Brabant Collection, the Haaren Collection (from the Groot-Seminarie), a collection of the Capuchin Fathers, and a collection of children's books.
Until 1992, the University Library was located in several locations on campus, the most important being Cobbenhagen Building. The new UL was based on a concept that could be called quite revolutionary at the end of the last century. The librarians themselves spoke of HT DICC: the High-Tech Digital Information and Communication Centre. This no longer in vogue name mainly emphasized the integration of classical library work and modern information technology. The UL in Tilburg was the first in the Netherlands where computers and students took center stage rather than books and scholars.
At the opening, the new UL was called the most modern library in the world. This library of the future proved to be an inspiring example for every other library in the Netherlands and far beyond into the 21st century: hundreds of delegations from all over the world visited the UL, including to attend summer schools. In 2017, the commemorative book Een kwart eeuw universiteitsbibliotheek van de toekomst – en wat daaraan voorafging (A quarter century university library of the future - and what preceded it) was published.
More about history and academic heritage
The Tilburg University academic heritage is a very diverse set of archives, visual materials, collections, devices, recorded stories, et cetera that relate to the history of the university.