The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

Library makes the move to the Internet

A University library is a place where students can go for print resources.

However, with St. Augustine Hall currently undergoing renovations to the basement, third, and fourth floors, in addition to its removal of some books during the Spring semester, it may be a little challenging for students to access adequate materials.

As a result, the library has put more emphasis on encouraging students on campus over the summer to use their online resources.

Theresa Maylone, University Librarian, said that with the online services provided by the library, there will ultimately be a “difference in the way we provide service but not a less emphasis on service itself.”

Some of the online services offered include eJournals and eReserve, two services that give students access to print periodicals in their entirety online and course material from professors.

Another resource is Ask us!, an e-mail reference service where St. John’s students, staff or faculty can directly correspond with a library representative and view frequently asked questions.

According to Maylone, the Ask us! service as of June 19 had 58 inquiries, up from 30 for the entire month of June
last year.

She attributes the increase mainly to word of mouth.

“We did a fair amount of advertising for this service and I believe as one person hears about it, they go and tell others,” said the librarian.

Refworks is another online tool offered by the library that helps assist students in bibliographical citations.

“This is great because we all know trying to remember the correct format for references can be a pain but with this, it does all the work for you,” said Brian Mikesell, associate university librarian for Systems and Services.

Both Maylone and Mikesell mentioned that the library is looking to expand its online presence. They say wikis, blogs and podcasts are being looked at in an effort to effectively incorporate these tools into an academic setting.

“Up to now, we have created online services that are extensions of things we physically offer,” Mikesell said. “We currently are working towards providing services that are completely different from what we’ve done in the past.”

One such service that Mikesell pointed out was an online application the library recently subscribed to and should be available this fall. It is called LibGuides and is supposed to help make library web pages more interactive and more user-friendly with user uploaded content.

Mikesell said that he hopes this new addition will help bridge the gap between university librarians and the rest of the St. John’s community.

“This helps us move more towards a collaborative way of doing things, where librarians can share information with the people using the library, and vice versa, and we reach out to students and faculty instead of waiting for them to come to us,” he said.

He added that the library is always open to student and faculty suggestions and encouraged everyone to give them feedback.

“If there are things students feel the library should be doing, or things that we are doing well, we welcome people to let us know,” Mikesell said.

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