This article presents a conceptual framework for understanding long-term trends relevant to the scholarly research process. The topic is introduced by a discussion of scholarly communication and the early use of computers among academics. An analysis of information technology trends most pertinent to the conduct of research follows. The third section explores, through case examples, trends in the use of currently available information technology by social scientists and humanists. The fourth section considers model efforts by those in the library profession to respond to changes in the research process. The article concludes with policy recommendations that address key changes needed in archival practices and methods to respond to transformations in scholarly research methods, and the growing prominence of a new electronic communication medium--research and education networks.