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VanderCook College of Music

About the Library

The Harry Ruppel Library's Goals

The Harry Ruppel Memorial Library is located on the first floor of VanderCook’s 3140 S. Federal Street building in room 113. The library’s collection encompasses music education and general music, as well as general education and psychology. Library materials include periodicals, books, reference sources, sound recordings, scores, method books, videos and CD-ROMs. Computer resources are also available.

History and Purpose

The library at VanderCook School of Music began as a collection of instrumental method books and music books. In the early 1950s, when VanderCook became an official college of music, the library broadened its scope to include general education books. The Ruppel Library was founded in 1967, shortly after the college moved to 3209 S. Michigan Avenue. Harry Ruppel was co-founder and co-owner of the Rubank Publishing Company, from whom the library received a large monetary donation.

When VanderCook moved to 3140 S. Federal Street, the library refined and refocused its collection to emphasize music education, including general music and general education to the extent of supporting the curriculum. Currently the collection consists of over 16,000 volumes that include books, scores and sound recordings as well as electronic resources to support the undergraduate and graduate curriculums at VanderCook. The Band and Choral Libraries are maintained separately.


Ruppel Library provides resources and services to support the education and preparation of music teachers at VanderCook College of Music.


VanderCook College of Music librarians and faculty collaborate to make the music library integral to course design. The resulting library becomes a dynamic learning environment and a part of each student’s daily activities.

Collection Development Policy

The Ruppel Library collection development policy is available here.

Ruppel Library Commitment

Ruppel Library staff are committed to providing free, open, unfiltered access to information to the VanderCook community. We strive to collaborate with faculty, staff and students to maintain the library as a vital part of the organization. Through teaching, provision of resources, collection development, and active participation in college-wide activities, the librarians endeavor to build on the existing strength of the institution. Through active participation in national and international organizations of librarians, scholars and musicians, the librarians continue to lead in their profession.

Library Policies

Who Can Use the Ruppel Library?

Current VanderCook students in good standing, faculty and staff. Please present your student ID.

Members of the Illinois Institute of Technology community. Please present your student ID. You will also need to fill out the following form and submit to a Ruppel Librarian: Illinois Institute of Technology Borrower Form (in pdf format, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

VanderCook College of Music alumni or members of the general community. You will need to fill out the following form and submit to a Ruppel Librarian: VCM Alumni / Visitor Borrower Form (in pdf format, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

The general public. You will need to fill out the following form and submit to a Ruppel Librarian: VCM Alumni / Visitor Borrower Form (in pdf format, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Circulation Policy

Books, musical scores and sound recordings (CDs and cassettes) circulate according to the chart below. Videos, reference books, LPs and periodicals are non-circulating to undergraduate students; graduate students, faculty and staff may have limited circulation privileges for these items.

All items that leave the library must be checked out by library staff. Fines for overdue materials are $.25 per day. Lost materials will be charged to the library patron and will cover the cost of replacement plus processing charges.

Reserve Policy

Material must remain in the building, except for overnight use. Loan period is two hours. All items removed from the reserve shelf must be checked out by a library worker. Reserve items may be checked out overnight an hour before the library closes, and must be returned the next morning within an hour of the library’s posted opening time (depending on the permission of the instructor). Fines for reserve materials are $2.00 per hour overdue.

Computer Use Policy

View our computer use policy here.

Loan Periods

Type of Barrower General Materials Circulation Period * Reserve Materials Circulation Period
VCM Undergraduate Students 3 weeks 2 hours
VCM Graduate Students 4 weeks 2 hours
VCM Faculty / Staff 16 weeks 3 days
IIT Students / Faculty / Staff 3 weeks 2 hours
VCM Alumni / Visitors 3 weeks 2 hours

* Certain materials may have shorter borrowing periods

Notice on Copyright

The copyright law of the United States (title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or other reproduction is not to be “used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research.” If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of “fair use”, that user may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order, if in its judgment, fulfillment of this order would involve violation of the copyright law

Contact Us

Ruppel Library
VanderCook College of Music
3140 S. Federal St.
Chicago, IL 60616 USA
Ph.: 312.225.6288 ext. 260
Fax: 312.225.5211

Rob DeLand, Head Librarian

Library Hours

Band and Choral Score Libraries

The Band Library is maintained separately by the Band Department. For more information, call 312.225.6288 ext. 222.

The Choral Library is maintained separately by the Choral Department. For more information, call 312.225.6288 ext. 224.

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The mission of VanderCook College of Music is to enrich the lives of present and future generations by developing uniquely skilled music teachers who exhibit strong character, professionalism, and a commitment to excellence.

© 2022 VanderCook College of Music. All Rights Reserved.
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