Montana State University

Library and Information Resources

Known for its nationally and internationally recognized scholars, MSU supports academic success through providing the equipment and resources necessary.

MSU Library

The MSU Library offers research and information resources to the institution's students and faculty, as well as serving Montana citizens and the State's business community. 

Conveniently located in the center of campus, Renne Library has a full range of library collections and services for students and faculty, including over 140 public computer workstations, printers, scanners, technology-rich group study rooms, and quiet study areas.  Knowledgeable and friendly professional librarians and staff provide assistance using the collections, access to online information resources, and instruction for individuals and groups. The MSU Library's collections support teaching, learning and research at MSU, with particular emphasis in the fields of agriculture, science, health, and technology.  The Library holds special collections in the areas of Montana agriculture and ranching, Yellowstone National Park and its ecosystem, Montana history, and trout and salmonid fish. 

A wealth of information is available around the clock both on and off campus via the Library's Web page, including the online catalog, electronic indexes, and many full-text E-journals and E-books. Personalized one-on-one research assistance is available to students on a drop-in basis at the reference desk, or online via E-mail or chat. Moreover, the Library offers the Research Assistance Program, or RAP: students may make an appointment for a consultation with a reference librarian who will thoroughly explore research options relating to a specific assignment or class.

Computer Facilities

MSU places high priority on the integration of information technology into the educational experience. To help meet this goal, the campus provides a wide variety of computer resources to students and faculty. Within departmental and campus wide computing facilities, students have easy access to nearly 800 microcomputers (mostly Windows), over 200 servers and workstations running the Unix and Windows operating systems, and a number of enterprise servers that meet campus demand for email, World Wide Web services, and other uses. A state-of-the-art, campus-wide, fiber optic network links seventy buildings to the campus network, to networks on other Montana University System campuses, to state government agencies, and to the Internet. Residence Life and Family & Graduate Housing have connected more than 3,200 residence hall rooms and married housing units to the ResNet network ( This service enables around-the-clock educational opportunities. Because email is a vital element of campus communication, all MSU students receive email accounts free of charge. An email account will remain active for as long as the student is registered at MSU, so projects can be carried along from year to year.

The Information Technology Center (ITC) operates several computer laboratories that offer over 300 Windows and Macintosh computers for general student use in Reid, Roberts, and Cheever Halls and in two-mini-labs in the Renne Library. In each of these locations, students can access any of a wide variety of software packages. Students commonly make use of word processing, spreadsheets, and graphics in preparing their homework. MSU currently provides the latest releases of the Microsoft Office Suite, AutoCAD, SAS, SPSS, and MCAD, as well as other software for student microcomputer work. Instructors often incorporate these technologies into assignments. For more information see:

Residence Life, the Renne Library, and many academic departments provide similar facilities in other buildings on campus.

ITC also provides over 30 Smart Podiums located in campus classrooms. The Smart Podium incorporates a variety of technologies such as an Internet-ready computer equipped with Microsoft PowerPoint, an overhead video projector, VCR, and DVD players, audio functions, and much more.

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