Public Library Statistics Statewide Library Performance Indicators

For additional information, visit the Reports and Charts section of the Statistics Manual.

Circulation Per Capita

View the most recent Circulation Per Capita statistics

Circulation Per Capita relates the number of items a library circulates to the population served. It can be thought of as representing the average number of items checked out in a year by a member of the community. Circulation Per Capita is calculated by dividing the library's total annual circulation by the service area population or census/estimated population.

Service Area Population


Census/Estimated Population


Factors that Influence the Measure

  • Fluctuation in the size of the service area population
  • Increase or decrease in the number of items circulated annually
  • Library circulation or acquisitions policies, loan period, fines
  • Special programs--prizes, reading programs, etc.
  • Community awareness of library service
  • Library hours of service
  • Number of library users
  • Age, condition, and size of the library's collection
  • Physical arrangement and convenience of library facilities

Interpretation and Use

  • The library's collection may not meet community needs or interests;
  • Community residents may be unaware of the library's resources;
  • The library may have an extensive collection of non-circulating materials.