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Library and School Study Carrel Buying Guide


Study Carrel Buying Guide




The main purpose of study carrels is to minimize distraction between students whether during testing or just an ordinary school day. Study carrels come in many styles so please consider the following before making your purchase:

  • Configuration
  • Height
  • Materials
  • Accessories



These study carrels are great for one-on-one learning such as tutoring sessions or language lessons; since there is no back, two units can face each other giving two students or one student and one teacher distraction-free learning environment. If not being used for one-on-one learning, backless study carrels can be placed against walls, shelving units or partitions since they only have a desktop and side walls.


These units are exactly what they are names, stand-alone. They offer students a private work area and can be placed anywhere in the classroom. If you are wanting an entire row of study carrels for students, you can purchase one starter carrel and the number of add-on carrels that you want.

Starter Unit

As mentioned above, if you’re planning on making a row of study carrels, you will need at least one starter unit. These have two side walls.

Add-On Unit 01295-95769-1411009079-1280-1280.jpg

These units can be added on to a starter unit or another add-on unit to create your row. These are normally a little less expensive than the starter unit because they only have one side wall.


If the available space your classroom has is limited, you may want to purchase a portable study carrel. These carrels have 3 walls and no desktop. They can be placed on existing desks to give your students privacy and can easily be stored away when not in use.



The work surface on these units will always be at the same level and usually have a fixed height of 29” (work surface height) which will work for adults and older students.


The legs on these units can be adjusted which will raise or lower the work surface height. These units are great if you will have wide range of ages of students using them or if they are being used in a library, this way they can accommodate anyone. The average height range is 21-29” but some carrels are ADA compliant and range from 25-35” in height.

Tabletop Height

These carrels are usually about half the size of a standard carrel and are placed directly on an already existing desktop.



Most of our study carrels are made with laminate walls and work surfaces. There are color options for these units which are usually some type of wood tone. Laminate is easy to clean and makes any classroom or library look professional.


Some units can come with fabric-surfaced walls which can double as a tackboard. The fabric side panels also adds extra cushioning which absorbs more sound than the laminate carrels.


Most study carrels are supported by a tubular steel frame which is measured in gauges. The lower the gauge number, the stronger the frame will be.


For additional costs, some carrels are available with power strips, lighting or wire management to better fit your classroom’s needs.