A Government's decision to establish Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (formerly known as Universiti Darul Iman Malaysia) became a milestone in the development of national higher learning institutions and has delighted Malaysian society, particularly people of Terengganu.
Beginning with the announcement from the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato 'Seri Abdullah Haji Ahmad Badawi on March 26, 2005 followed by the appointment of Dato' Professor Dr. Elias Daud as the first Vice Chancellor on January 1, 2006, the university set off with the motto "Knowledge for the Benefit of Humanity".
Presently, Library services are managed and administered by a total of 65 personnel comprising 13 professional staff and 52 support staff levels.
The Library of Kolej Agama Sultan Zainal Abidin was established in 1980 when the first batch of students officially enrolled at the temporary campus in Sekolah Menengah Agama (ATAS) Sultan Zainal Abidin in Batu Buruk, Kuala Terengganu.
The establishment of the library was in accordance with the provisions in the Kolej Ugama Sultan Zainal Abidin enactment (Enactment No. 3 1981) which was approved by the State Legislative Assembly on August 22, 1981. In 1981, KUSZA and the library was transferred to it temporary campus at Jalan Hiliran, Kuala Terengganu before moving to its permanent campus in Gong Badak at the end of December 1982. Prior to that, on March 17th 1981 the foundation stone of the permanent campus covering the physical land area of about 144 hectares was laid by the late Sultan Mahmud Al-Mukhtafi Billah Shah. The first librarian of the Perpustakaan Al-Mukhtar has reported to work in 1982.
During the initial stage (at the temporary campus), the library was housed in a small room of a shop house in Pulau Kambing (1982), during which, all library materials were meant for form three to form six student of Islamic studies. Students were selected from all over the state and received full sponsorship from the state government.
In 1984, the library has moved into the permanent Gong Badak campus and was placed at a ground floor of a three storey building. The construction of the current library building, known as Perpustakaan Al-Mukhtar was completed in the middle of 1987. During that period the library management consists of five divisions, namely, as follows:-
- Procurement Division
- Reference & Reader Services Division
- Cataloguing Division
- Circulation Division
- Serials (Periodicals) Division
In 1995, we started using a computerized library management system by employing VTLS and, currently, engaging Integrated Library Management Utilities (ILMU) as our primary Library Management System.
Library of Universiti Darul Iman Malaysia began in 2006, the year the university was established. The Library, which was formerly known as Perpustakaan Al-Mukhtar of Kolej Ugama Sultan Zainal Abidin (KUSZA) was officially inducted into UniSZA in 2007.
In 2007, The management of UniSZA’s library has been restructured in line with the growth of service needs and requirement, and addition of staff. The library department has grown to five (5) main divisions and fourteen (14) units, which are:-
Library Development Planning Division
- Finance Unit
- Administration and Training Unit
- Quality and Audit Unit
Resource Management and Development Division
- Acquisition of Information Resource (Monographs & AV) Unit
- Acquisition of Information Resource (Gift & Exchange) Unit
- Acquisition of Information Resource (Serial & Database) Unit
- Indexing & Bibliography (Monographs) Unit
- Indexing & Bibliography (Electronic Materials & AV) Unit
- Indexing & Bibliography (Arabic Materials) Unit
- Conservation Management Unit
Information Technology Division
- Library System Management and Maintenance Unit
- Multimedia and Digital Resources management Unit
With the approval from Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin on 13 April 2010, the Universiti Darul Iman Malaysia is now known as Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin effective on 14 May 2010 after the government gazette of Universiti Darul Iman Malaysia (Incorporation) (Amendment) Order 2010 came into force on 13 May 2010. The Higher Education Minister, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said in the press statement that the change of name was made after taking into account the historical background of the institution. On 15 February 2013, the Prime Minister's Political Secretary Datuk Jailani Ngah said that Prime Minister Dato' Sri Najib Razak will announce that UniSZA will become the third Islamic university in Malaysia. Accordingly, the library is known as the Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin Library.
Medical Campus Library (previously known as Kota Campus Library) operated in 2007 to provide services to the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Medical Campus Library also offers information services and library services for all the Medical Campus population. (For the time being, only Faculty of Medicine operated in the Medical Campus after Faculty of Health Sciences moved to Gong Badak Campus).
Besut Campus Library
In Conjunction with the operation of a new additional campus in Tembila Besut, library also initiated its operation on that campus commencing on September 2013. This branch will provide services for students, faculty members and all staffs of the Besut Campus.