A key component of HCLS’ educational mission, HCLS’ vast and diverse collection of materials in all formats supports HCLS’ curriculum. The library’s How We Choose: Materials Selection Policy, provides information on how materials are selected for the library’s collection.
- Fiction: The adult fiction collection consists of novels and short stories in the English language including classical literature, popular best sellers, critically-acclaimed contemporary fiction and genre fiction.
- Nonfiction: The nonfiction collection encourages students of all ages to research a wide range of subjects and interests. You can use materials from this part of the library to satisfy your curiosity or do a research project.
- Research Tools: The in-house research collection and specialized online research tools include encyclopedias, directories, dictionaries, handbooks, guides, etc.
- Magazines and Newspapers: HCLS subscribes to many magazines and newspapers, including non-English titles. You can also checkout digital magazines via the Zinio platform.
- Children’s: The HCLS Children’s collection includes print, non-print and electronic materials to provide a well-balanced collection for children from early childhood through grade 5. Children and their caregivers appreciate the many picture books, toys for birth to three, easy readers, fiction and nonfiction, magazines and research tools we provide.
- Teens: Fiction and non-fiction materials whose themes, content, and format indicate that they would be of interest to teens (grades 6-12) are included in the Teen collection.
- Music: The music collection includes recordings that are representative of many types of music. In addition to a large collection of popular and classical music compact discs for all ages, HCLS provides free, convenient access to an extensive selection of streaming electronic content.
- Audiobooks on CD and Playaways: The audiobook collection includes a variety of fiction and nonfiction recorded books. Many titles, both current and popular, are available to borrow or stream.
- Fiction DVDs and TV Series: Both popular and highly acclaimed full-length films and TV Series, children’s and family titles as well as selected classic feature films are available for checkout. In addition to borrowing DVDs, you can stream and temporarily download movies and television shows.
- Non-fiction DVDs: The non-fiction collection includes DVDs covering a broad variety of topics, documentaries and PBS productions of plays. There also a wide variety of classic and current TV shows available to stream or temporarily download.
- World Language Resources: HCLS offers a broad world language collection with materials in almost 25 different languages, among them being Russian, Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean, Chinese, and Arabic for all ages.
Materials for Customers with Special Needs
HCLS provides access to a wide range of materials for people with special needs. Recent and popular titles, as well as fiction and nonfiction classics, are selected from large print publishers. The American Sign Language collection includes videos and DVDS on a wide variety of topics.
If you can’t find what you want – just ask us. If we don’t have what you need, we’ll try to find a way to get it for you.
Books by Local Authors
Today many authors choose to publish their works themselves. At HCLS, we recognize local literary and creative efforts and provide Howard County authors with the opportunity to share their work with other county residents through the Howard County Author Collection. For a title to be included in the Howard County Author Collection, the author must currently reside or work in Howard County, and the author must be willing to donate one or more copies of the title to their local branch. Please fill out this form and submit it with your donation at your nearest branch. Works of local authors are added only if these materials meet general selection criteria and donations are not returned.