Scott Walter providing the keynote address at the OCLC Research "Libraries Rebound" Conference (June 2012)

Librarian and Library Leader

Scott Walter is University Librarian at DePaul University (Chicago, Illinois, USA), and served for over a decade prior to coming to DePaul in 2012 as a senior library leader at large research universities, including the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Kansas, and Washington State University. He has been selected for a number of leadership development programs, including the ARL Research Libraries Leadership Fellows, CIC Academic Leadership Program, and UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies Senior Fellows. In 2012, he was the recipient of the ACRL "Distinguished Education and Behavioral Sciences Librarian" award.


Scott began his career as a teacher, and has taught in teacher education programs at Indiana University, Washington State University, and the University of Kansas. He has supervised student teachers in Indiana and the Navajo Nation. His experience as a teacher has been critical to his work as a librarian and leader in the design, delivery, and assessment of information literacy instruction. At DePaul, his instructional leadership has led to new initiatives in information literacy instruction and instruction in the use of primary source materials, new campus collaborations with the Division of Student Affairs and the DePaul Art Museum, and community engagement efforts with K-12 schools and community college partners, especially in support of the Illinois Information Literacy Summit.

Speaker and Scholar

Scott has been an active speaker, scholar, and promoter of practitioner research, and has served as Chair of the ACRL Research Committee, as a member of the Advisory Board of the Institute for Research Design in Librarianship, and on the editorial boards of several journals in the field of academic librarianship, including 3 years as editor-in-chief of College & Research Libraries. Scott has authored several studies in areas such as information literacy instruction and assessment, education libraries and librarianship, multicultural student services, community engagement, and the future of library services. His research informs and improves his work as a librarian, and he has spoken on these topics around the globe, including library conferences across the United States, professional development programs in Asia and the Pacific, and programs in China.

Scott received his MLS from Indiana University and his PhD in Higher Education Administration from Washington State University, where his research focused on the ways in which research in higher education, generally, might be applied to the library context, e.g., in the study of how to improve teaching.

LIS Educator

Scott has been deeply engaged in Library & Information Science education for more than a decade, working both as an adjunct faculty member, a supervisor of LIS students in field experiences, and an advocate for a broader vision of the connections between pre-service professional education provided in ALA-accredited LIS programs and continuing professional education provided through professional associations, library consortia, and individual libraries of all types. A member of the adjunct faculty, at different times, in the LIS programs at the University of Illinois, San Jose State University, and Dominican University, Scott has been a strong advocate for the retention of "the 'L word'" in LIS education, but also recognizes that the professional skills now required for success in libraries extends beyond the traditional LIS curriculum.


Scott lives in Chicago, Illinois, with his wife and daughter, a student in the Chicago Public Schools who has served as a member of her Student Council and as "class librarian." Scott has continued his tradition of engagement with K-12 education through service as an elected parent representative to the Chicago Local School Councils, where he has worked with parents, community members, teachers, and principals to advocate for school libraries and librarians. The cat on the home page of this site is Faline, and the dog is Willow. Both are rescues, as is Lucky, his other dog (not pictured).