Shandong University Library descended from the libliotheca of Shandong Metropolitan University founded in 1901, which was one of the earliest modern libraries. In the process of its evolution, many well-known scholars and men of library science such as Pi Gaopin, Liang Shiqiu, Lu Kanru, Wu Fuheng, Sun Changxi etc. have presided over the operation of it. After the founding of the P. R. China, the SDU Library, enjoying a long history and a rich collection, has been one of a key comprehensive university directly under the National Ministry of Education.
July 2000 witnessed the merger of the former Shandong University, Shandong Medical University and Shandong University of Technology, the result of which is the new Shandong University. The three libraries belonging to the three institutions respectively also merged into a new one accordingly, which brought about new development to the university library. In 2010, the Chiang Chen Library got a new area of 11745.84 square metres in the Zhixin Building, the Central Campus, adding greatly to the former 33599. In October 2011, a new library of 19722.07 square metres on Xinglongshan Campus will be put into use. The original seats of the univerisity library numbering 1882, it is now 2823 with the addition of Chiang Chen Zhen Library. The library practises a general-branch organizational system. Under the general library are the six branches of arts and sciences, politics and law, medicine, engineering, the one on Xinglongshan Campus, the one on Software Campus and, two centres of literature resources building and network information technology.
The collection of paper literature of the university library at present is 4434296 copies, among which 1748668 in Chinese are for social sciences, 1158146 for natural sciences, 60760 for comprehensive reference; Books in foreign languages total at 453773 copies. 151584 copies of bound volumes of journals in Chinese for social sciences, 143197 for natural sciences, 61758 for comprehensive reference; Those in foreign languages amount to 209792. The number of ancient books is 385546. Master's thesis and doctoral dissertations are 61209 copies. In addition, the library has numbers of e-resources: 201 data bases, 800000 e-books in Chinese, 770000 in foreign languages; 9556 e-journals in Chinese, 28000 in foreign languages; 3150000 e-papers in Chinese, and 1900000 in foreign languages. The SDU Library is one of the first member libraries of China Academic Library & Information System (CALIS) in higher education institutions, the CALIS service centre of Shandong Province, the disciplinary centre of China Academic Social Sciences and Humanities Library (CASHL), the working station of new science and technology reference of the National Ministries of Health and Education, and a secratariat of the Library Commission of Higher Education Institutions, Shandong Province.
The working aims of the university library are: Keeping forging ahead, blazing new trails, endeavouring to promote the building of a first-class university of the world.