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Entries from October 2007
Monday, October 29. 2007
Public printing in the library has become a big headache for everyone. A decade or so ago, when we first began to have a significant amount of material available electronically, we very intentionally elected to not charge students for printing. Previously, we made these kinds of resources available in paper and students could easily read them. If they chose to pay to make photocopies of material for their convenience, they could -- it was up to them. For many people, including me, reading intellectually challenging material on a computer screen is an obstacle to understanding. Many of us need to see the material in print, on paper. This perspective was the basis for our decision to not pass on the cost of printing to UM-D students. Little did we know!!!
Over time, the depth and breadth of materials that are available electronically have grown tremendously. At the same time, word seems to have spread around the region that ANYONE can come to the Mardigian Library and print whatever they want for free. I have heard many horror stories about students who attend other universities and colleges in the area coming here to take advantage of our free printing. Sadly, it is also true that some UM-D students abuse the free printing privilege. Of course, printing is not free--it costs the library a considerable amount of money to offer this service, which is intended to benefit UM-D students in completing course work and conducting research. Things have clearly gotten out of hand. We are in the process of doing something about it.
Specifically, by January 1, 2008 the library will have a means of distinguishing between UM-Dearborn users and "guests." We will continue to allow UM-Dearborn students, faculty members and staff members to print at no cost, while requiring that guests pay a fee for printing. We are not yet certain of the mechanics, but tentatively, our plan is that, temporarily, beginning in January 2008 EVERYONE will pick up printing jobs at the Circulation desk. Students will not be charged for printing; guests will be charged for printing.
As soon as we are able to put the technology in place, those who authenticate as UM-Dearborn students/faculty/staff will be able to print as they do currently while those who sign in as "guests" will go to a service station where their print jobs will be released by a library staff member in exchange for payment. We are trying very hard to put the system in place to allow authenticated UM-D users to continue printing as they always have (and only route guests to the Circulation desk) by January but we need the temporary plan in case we are unable to get everything in place by January. We will try to do that.
It is our expectation that a further step in the process to get a handle on printing will be to institute a printing quota for UM-Dearborn users. If users choose to print beyond their allowed quota, they will need to pay, either on a per-job basis or by adding money to an "account." We do not yet know what that mechanism will be or what the print quota will be. Stay tuned.
Thursday, October 25. 2007
We received the question:
I would like to know if the Library will ever require students to show an ID to study here. Yesterday the noise was excessively loud & most of the students were not UMD students. I know Wayne State requires an ID to enter the library; I think a similar policy would help make the library a better experience for UMD students. Thank you
Thank you for your recent question. Excessive noise is a problem that we experience from time to time. From our perspective, the core issue is not who makes the noise but that excessive noise occurs. Sometimes this noise is created by non-UM-D students, sometimes it is UM-D students who create the noise. We have clear policies, publicly displayed, that discourage excessive noise. We also have procedures for warning -- and removing from the building if necessary -- anyone who makes excessive noise. The essential first step in this process is to alert us to the problem. If you experience another instance of this kind of behavior, I urge you to go to the Circulation Desk and make a complaint. Our staff will confront the person(s); if that does not have the desired effect, our staff will call the University's Public Safety Officers to handle the problem.
We very much appreciate your observation that requiring people to present an ID to enter the building "would help make the library a better experience for UM-D students." Making the library a welcoming place that maintains an environment that is conducive to learning is very important to us.
While we are reluctant to say "never" or "ever," we are not at all certain that requiring students to show IDs to enter the building would create a more welcoming environment to students -- it could have the opposite effect. Indeed, some of us have worked at libraries that employed this practice and we can say without qualification that the practice creates its own problems and has its limitations. One challenge to implementing such a practice involves our reciprocal agreements, which allow UM-D students to check books out from the libraries at other colleges and universities in the region and for their students to use the resources of this library. If all the academic libraries in the area started restricting students, there would be an adverse impact on UM-D students. WSU libraries are open to UM-D students during the day.
Before we decide to take the step of requiring the presentation of a valid student ID to enter the library, we would want to be very thorough in understanding how big the noise problem is, what the source of the problem is, and what options are available to resolve the problem short of requiring presentation of a valid student ID card to enter the library. Incidentally, we do require student IDs for those who wish to enter the library after 10 p.m., when we have 24-hour study during Final Exam time.
Thursday, October 18. 2007
The University of Michigan-Dearborn's Mardigian Library is interested in learning more about your awareness and use of the library so that we can improve existing services to better serve UM-Dearborn students. We will be conducting a survey of all current UM-Dearborn students as part of the evaluation.
Click on this link to get to the online survey:
If this link does not work, cut and paste it into your browser. The survey should take about 10 minutes to complete. Please answer all questions fully. Your responses are confidential.
To thank you for your participation, your name will be entered in a drawing for one of two $50 gift certificates to the UM-Dearborn University Bookstore. In order to select names, we ask for your UM-Dearborn unique name at the end of the survey; this will not be linked to your answers.
Please complete survey by Monday, November 12, 2007.
If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, please feel free to contact the Mardigian Library's Core Operations Group at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Mardigian Library, Core Operations Group
University of Michigan-Dearborn
4901 Evergreen Road
Dearborn, MI 48128
Periodically, the library conducts fire and tornado drills. Why do we do this? Primarily, there are two reasons.
1. In an emergency, one is less likely to go into shock or a state of panic if one has rehearsed what to do. Our goal is to make sure that everyone in our building knows what to do in case of emergency.
2. We want to make sure that mechanical systems, such as sirens and doors, and communication between library staff and Public Safety are working properly.
Take every alarm seriously and treat it as an actual emergency!
Wednesday, October 3. 2007
Early American Imprints: Series I, 1639-1800
Researchers interested in the social history of the British North American colonies and the early United States will find a wealth of information in this database. Digitized materials include more than 37,000 items including textbooks, concert programs, children's books, philosophical literature, and more. Early American Imprints is based on the renowned American Biography by Charles Evans and is enhanced by Roger Bristol's Supplement to Evans' American Bibliography; the collection was first published by Readex in cooperation with the American Antiquarian Society (AAS).
There are also two sister databases: Early American Imprints, Series II: Shaw-Shoemaker, 1801-1819 and America's Historical Newspapers, all of which make up the Archive of Americana. Users can search all three of these databases at once or limit their search to just one or two of the three. There are basic and advanced search functions available and material can be browsed by author or genre.
The Declassified Documents Reference System contains digital images of documents declassified from the United States Presidential Libraries. This database contains 75,000 documents and more than 465,000 pages of information from Congress, the White House, and its departments. Some of the most important events since World War II are covered by this database.
Nothing was written with the intent to be published, so these documents can be difficult to interpret as some contain additional notes and others may be part of other departmental communications. The database provides the ability for the user to zoom in on smaller parts of the document. There are keyword and advanced searching capabilities and some search tips are provided. Searches can also be limited by the classified level of the document as well as by whether the document has been censored. This is a fascinating resource that reveals previously unknown facts about the key events of the post-war era.
Find up-to-date market research and trend analysis information about e-business, emerging technologies, online marketing, media and Internet with eMarketer. eMarketer compiles information from more than 2,800 sources, including government agencies, research firms, and consultancies worldwide.
The database can be searched by keyword, subject category, full text, country, and source. Results are in the form of articles, charts, or reports. Searches can be narrowed by these categories as well. Other features and sections of the database include: Analyst Report Access (more than 80 specially prepared industry reports), daily research articles, and eMarketer’s key indicators. eMarketer is available to currently registered students, faculty, and staff, on and off-campus.
ERes, the library's electronic reserves system, will be decommissioned on May 31, 2008. ERes has served the campus for nearly a decade. No new account requests have been accepted since December 31, 2006. We encourage faculty members who are still using ERes to move their course materials to CTools, VLT, or Blackboard (School of Management).
These newer courseware programs are better equipped to handle the diverse needs of the classroom and are supported in the major academic units of the campus. They are undergoing continual development and provide support for electronic reserves and much more. Library staff has been, and will continue to be, working with each of the schools to make the transition as smooth as possible.
During the 2006-2007 academic year, our students, faculty, and staff received more than 3,500 items using the MeLCat service, a 53% increase over the previous academic year and triple that of the 2004-2005 academic year. The ease of use, the quick receipt of materials, and the growing number of participating libraries may help explain this dramatic increase in requests.
MeLCat, short for Michigan eLibrary Catalog, is a statewide resource sharing service that enables our users to request books online from participating libraries and receive their requests within 3 to 5 business days. The service is easy to use and items arrive much faster than from traditional ILL services.
The Mardigian Library has been a member of MeLCat since its pilot phase in 2002 when only 15 libraries participated. Today, more than 160 libraries participate in MeLCat, including 12 of the state’s 15 public universities and many community colleges and private colleges. Local participating libraries include Wayne State, Henry Ford Community College, Oakland University, and Washtenaw Community College as well as a number of public libraries. Visit http://elibrary.mel.org/screens/participating.html to see a complete list of participating libraries.
The library encourages users to select MeLCat before filling out the traditional ILL forms when trying to locate books or audiovisual materials that our library does not own. To use MeLCat, start by searching for the item in our catalog, http://wizard.umd.umich.edu/. If the title is not owned or is not available, click on the MeLCat button that appears on the right side of the screen. On the MeLCat website, click “Get this for me" and enter your name and 8 digit UMID number. If needed items are not available at our library or via MeLCat, users can fill out the traditional ILL forms.
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