HWS Library’s Voyager System Aids Both Students and Faculty Through Electronic Resources – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

HWS Library’s Voyager System Aids Both Students and Faculty Through Electronic Resources

Now users can get many items on reserve through the Internet–no more checking them out at the Reserve Desk.

April 12, 2002 Geneva, N.Y. — Remember the days when your professor put assigned reading on reserve at the library–and you had to make time to get there (often to find the material was already signed out or a page missing), take it to a table in the library to read it and take notes, and return it, wishing you could take it with you for further review? Well, at Hobart and William Smith those days are rapidly becoming history. Through its new Voyager system, the Warren Hunting Smith Library now electronically offers much of the reserve material.

Already more than 10,000 journals and journal titles are available in electronic form. They are always available, to as many people as needed, who can read them at their leisure, and nothing is lost or damaged. Anyone logging in from a campus computer can access these articles. Students can search for the required reading by course, by instructor, or even by department. Browsers find notices as to whether the reserved material is available only at the reserve desk or electronically.

Bill Crumlish, librarian at the Warren Hunting Smith Library, said that it is his aim to get anything put on reserve by a professor online for students to access by this fall. “Now 'place” has no significance,” he noted. “It doesn't matter where the book actually is, where the student is, or what time of day or night it is–the material will be available to read as well as to print for later review.”

Crumlish explained that this electronic availability does not come without a cost, but that a copyright can be purchased for nearly all materials. Reducing the number of journal paper subscriptions from approximately 1,600 to 1,200 helped free up funds to purchase the copyrights, and students suffer no loss in that process. Sometimes entire journals are “purchased” in this way, and other times it is just articles that are paid for.

The system is helpful to professors, too, who can now be assured that their material is available to students. Also, professors using the Colleges' state-of-the-art electronic Blackboard system in their courses have automatic links to the required reserved material.

“It was a time-consuming process to change from multiLIS to the Voyager system last fall,” said Crumlish, “but we did our homework to be sure we had one of the top electronic catalog services available, and we are extremely pleased and proud to be able to offer the latest in technological resources to the faculty and students on this campus.”

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