University of Toronto LibQUAL+™ data

LibQUAL+™ is intended to provide a measure of the value of library service quality across multiple academic and research libraries. The current LibQUAL+™ instrument measures library users' perceptions of their libraries' service quality and identifies gaps between minimal, desired and perceived levels of service.

LibQUAL+™ is a suite of services that libraries use to solicit, track, understand, and act upon users' opinions of service quality. These services are offered to the library community by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). The program's centerpiece is a rigorously tested Web-based survey bundled with training that helps libraries assess and improve library services, change organizational culture, and market the library.

The instrument addresses three service quality dimensions that have been found to be valid in previous assessments of library services: Affect of Service, Library as Place, Information Control. Each question has three parts that ask respondents to indicate (1) the minimum service level they will accept, (2) the desired service level they expect, and (3) the perceived level of service currently provided.

Data creator

University of Toronto Libraries


University of Toronto Libraries
University of Toronto Libraries
Date of distribution
2008 Mar 10th
Geographic coverage

Toronto, ON

Time period

A random sample of email addresses has been drawn from the Library's patron database, representing 1200 undergraduate students, 800 graduate students, 800 staff and 800 faculty members


University of Toronto Libraries

Date of collection
2007 Mar to 2013
Mode of data collecton

Web-based survey

Library's patron database
Unit of observation
Extent of file

3 data files (logical records vary)


The LibQUAL+™ survey evolved from a conceptual model based on the SERVQUAL instrument, a popular tool for assessing service quality in the private sector grounded in the "Gap Theory of Service Quality". It was developed by Leonard L. Berry (Distinguished Professor, Texas A&M University), A. Parasuraman, and Valarie A. Zeithaml. The Texas A&M University Libraries and other libraries used modified SERVQUAL instruments for several years; those applications revealed the need for a newly adapted tool that would serve the particular requirements of libraries. From 1999, ARL, representing the largest research libraries in North America, partnered with Texas A&M University Libraries to develop, test, and refine LibQUAL+. 

Funding agency

Development of the LibQUAL+ instrument was supported in part by a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education Fund for the Improvement of Post-Secondary Education (FIPSE).



Access status
Access conditions and restrictions

University of Toronto students, staff and faculty.