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The Newsletter of the New Mexico State University Library

Vol. 12, No. 3
October 1997

Researchers at Work : Dr. William C. Eamon

Gwen Gregory, Head of Post-Cataloging

Dr William C. Eamon, director of the Honors Program, is an active 
researcher in the history of science and medicine and the history of 
Renaissance Italy.  He is interested in the philosophical and academic 
tradition in science and medicine, especially in medieval and early modern 
Italy.  He is currently researching the 16th century Italian surgeon 
Leonardo Fioravanti, who was an important figure in the popular medicine 
of his time.  We spoke with Eamon in August, to learn about his research 
and how he uses scholarly information.  

Eamon's Fioravanti project focuses on this lesser-known medical figure and 
how he influenced popular views of medicine.  Eamon has visited 
government-run archives in Florence, Venice, Rome, and other Italian 
cities in search of original source materials relating to Fioravanti.  He 
has created a database containing the names of over 500 contemporaries 
Fioravanti mentions in his writings, and he searches for information by or 
about these people.  He has also traveled to the National Library of 
Medicine in Washington, DC, to study some of their manuscripts and rare 
16th century medical books.  For more general background reading and 
current awareness, he uses the NMSU Library's books and journals.  He is 
also a heavy user of our interlibrary loan services.

Since joining the NMSU faculty in 1976, Eamon has seen definite changes in 
his research methods.  In the beginning, he did not have funds to travel.  
Thus, his research was limited to what he could conduct locally.  He 
confined himself to the "more conventional questions in the history of 
science" that could be researched using readily-available books and 
journals.  He used interlibrary loan to obtain items from other libraries.  
As he has become successful in getting grant funding, he is able to travel 
and use the primary source materials in the U.S. and other countries.  
This has enabled his research to move to new topics, which have not been 
explored by others.  He advises junior faculty to begin writing grant 
proposals as soon as possible: "getting research grants gives you a lot 
more flexibility".  

UMI Dissertation Express Now Available

Deanna Valdez, Interlibrary Loan dvaldez@lib.nmsu.edu The Interlibrary Loan Office has a new pilot program for all dissertation requests. Dissertations will be obtained through UMI Dissertation Express, if available. The dissertation will be delivered to the library via express carrier within a few days. It will be loaned to the patron for one month. After the loan, the dissertation will be added to the library's collection for future use. If you want a copy of a dissertation to keep, you should indicate it on your ILL request form; cost is $24.50. A copy of most dissertations can be obtained within a few days for this amount. To aid in locating pertinent dissertations, First Search now has the database Dissertation Abstracts available for searching. A dissertation which is not available through UMI Dissertation Express will be borrowed from another library. There will occasionally be a dissertation that is not obtainable, even directly from the university involved. Requests can be placed three ways: in person at the Interlibrary Loan Office in New Library; through the interlibrary loan option on the Cafe Ole menu through telnet; or through the interlibrary loan Web form. For additional information , please call the Interlibrary Loan Office at 646-4737.

FirstSearch Offers 60 Databases on the Web

Donnelyn Curtis, Interim Head of Collection Management dcurtis@lib.nmsu.edu The World Wide Web continues to improve as a resource for scholarly information. Beginning this semester, the NMSU Library's home page provides access to 47 additional bibliographic and full-text databases for the NMSU community through the FirstSearch service. Last spring semester the library provided access to only 13 FirstSearch databases. Some of the new databases available are: Dissertation Abstracts, Book Review Digest, Disclosure, EconLit, INSPAC, GeoRef, Public Affairs Information Service (PAIS), and RILM (music). The FirstSearch package covers a wide range of academic disciplines as well as areas of general interest. Some of the databases are being provided to NMSU users electronically for the first time, while others have been available in the library in CD-ROM format. Access to the 60 FirstSearch databases is made possible through the library's participation in a consortium of academic libraries in New Mexico and Texas and through the cancellation of the print and CD-ROM versions of some of the databases. Faculty, staff, and students at NMSU can access FirstSearch on the CafeOLE web page at http://lib.nmsu.edu/article.html. Select FirstSearch from this page. Text-only access is available through the telnet version of Cafe OLE at lib.nmsu.edu. For help in using FirstSearch contact a reference librarian in either library (646-5800).

New Web Pages for Interlibrary Loan

Jivonna Stewart, Interlibrary Loan jstewart@lib.nmsu.edu In an effort to provide better service and to respond to the interest shown by our patrons, the Library has created an Interlibrary Loan area on our web page at http://lib.nmsu.edu/depts/illdds/index.html. Through this site, NMSU faculty, staff and students can fill out request forms for needed materials or find answers to questions about the interlibrary loan process. Browsers from other libraries can access our lending policies. Visit our site and let us know what you think! As always, your comments and suggestions are valued.

Sun News Index Available on the Web

Cheryl Wilson, Head of Special Collections chwilson@lib.nmsu.edu The Special Collections staff is pleased to announce the availability of the Las Cruces Sun News Index on the web. The Las Cruces Sun-News Index currently provides researchers access to the articles appearing in the newspaper from January 1, 1995 through April 30, 1997. Please note that this is an index to articles. Full text of the articles is not available online. The address is http://lib.nmsu.edu/resources/sunnews/index.html. The scope of the index includes all news and feature articles relating to Las Cruces and Dona Ana County. Editorials and Letters to the Editor concerning only local issues are included. Sports stories relating to NMSU, Las Cruces and Dona Ana County high schools, and other local teams and athletes are indexed, but elementary and middle school sports stories are not. Obituaries and death notices are indexed. Birth, engagement, wedding, and anniversary announcements are not indexed. Club and organization meeting announcements, the Police Blotter, Sound Off and advertorials are also excluded. The Las Cruces Sun-News is available on microfilm at the NMSU New Library. Current issues are retained at the Periodicals Desks in New Library and in Branson Hall. Current issues and microfilm are also available at the Thomas Branigan Memorial Library in Las Cruces. Special Collections staff members began indexing the newspaper in September 1986 and eventually all of the database will be available on the web. If you are trying to locate articles in the September 1986 - 1994 issues of the Las Cruces Sun News, please call 646-6122 for assistance.

Special Collections Extends Hours

Cheryl Wilson, Head of Special Collections chwilson@lib.nmsu.edu The NMSU Library Special Collections research room will be open Thursday evenings from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. during the 1997 fall semester. These hours are in addition to the regular hours of 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Special Collections is located on the 2nd floor east in Branson Hall. For more information or reference assistance please call 646-6122. Special Collections collects, preserves and makes available for research published materials related to the history and culture of New Mexico and the Southwest. We also have several collections which support specific NMSU programs.

Anna H. Gardiner Library Endowment

Charles Townley, Library Dean ctownley@lib.nmsu.edu The NMSU Library recently received a gift of $270,000 from the estate of Anna H. Gardiner. Income from this endowment will be used to support library services and collections in the interest of the university, with emphasis in the sciences. Anna Gardiner held a master's degree in mathematics from Yale University. She began teaching mathematics part-time at NMSU in 1946. She also worked as a mathematician at the Physical Science Laboratory. She later served as head of the Physical Science Laboratory's Ballistic Data Reduction Section. The late widow of George W. Gardiner, first head of the NMSU Physics Department and founder of PSL, Mrs. Gardiner also established an endowed professorship in the physics department as part of her bequest. Library endowments are very important to help extend library services, to take advantage of new technologies, and to provide access to scholarly information in this time of dramatic price increases. If you are interested in establishing a bequest for the University Library, please contact Dean Charles Townley at 646-1508.

Library Web Page Usage Up

Gwen Gregory ggregory@lib.nmsu.edu The Library's web page is used more every month. In 1996/97, total use of the web pages was up 275% from the previous year. We now have information about many library services available on the web, including reserves, renewals, interlibrary loan, reference, and Pegasus document delivery. We have recently added access to web-based indexes and full-text journal articles. See our web site at http://lib.nmsu.edu. Please let us know if you have any comments or questions!

Library Plays Vital Role in General Education Program

Jeanette Smith jcsmith@lib.nmsu.edu NMSU's General Education Program, first created in 1991, requires undergraduate students to take 38 credits of general education courses. The general education requirement is intended to broaden students' educational horizon beyond the requirements of their major fields. As the information center of the university, it is the goal of the University Library to serve the research needs of general education coursework as well as to support all other university curricula. As set forth in the NMSU Undergraduate Catalog, general education attempts to foster intelligent inquiry, abstract logical thinking, critical analysis, and the integration and synthesis of knowledge. It strives for literacy in writing, reading, speaking, and listening; it teaches mathematical structures, acquainting students with precise abstract thought about numbers and space. General education encourages an understanding of science and scientific inquiry; it provides an historical consciousness, including an understanding of one's own heritage as well as respect for other peoples and cultures. General education includes an examination of values and stresses the importance of a carefully considered values system; it fosters an appreciation of the arts, and provides the breadth necessary to have a familiarity with the various branches of human understanding. Courses are included in one of three parts of the general education program: Part I, Developing Critical Thinking and Modes of Expression; Part II, Establishing a Common Background; or Part III, Viewing a Wider World. An orientation tour of the library is included among the Part I requirements. In addition, Part III courses must include a library "literature search." In order to better serve the university community, the library now offers multiple options on how this search may be conducted. For the most extensive range of resources and assistance, the library literature search may be conducted in person at Branson Library or New Library with the help of reference librarians in using library information resources in a variety of traditional and electronic formats. Instructors may also wish to have their students use the "Resources by Subject" section of the library home page (http://lib.nmsu.edu/subject/subj.html) as a gateway to Internet information resources on a wide variety of subjects. This option is especially useful for distance education courses. The links to online information in "Resources by Subject" are selected and evaluated by librarians, and suggestions for new links are welcomed. Please contact Education Librarian Edward Erazo at ederazo@lib.nmsu.edu or at 505-646-6930. The library has also developed its own Part III, Viewing a Wider World course, LSC-311G, "Information Literacy." This popular 3 credit course is designed to help students become full participants in today's information society. Both practical and theoretical in scope, it uses a mixture of lecture, hands-on assignments, and written research projects to enable students to develop the technological skills and critical thinking abilities needed to use the printed and electronic information resources found in libraries and on the Internet. Any student who successfully completes this course will be able to locate, critically evaluate, and apply information in his/her academic courses and professional and personal life. Several library faculty have taught the course. Additional information on L SC-311G, including a current syllabus, may be found on the library home page at http://lib.nmsu.edu/instruction/lsc311.html During the routine recertification process every four years, the adherence of each general education course to all general education requirements, including the library component, is examined. The library is happy to play a vital role in general education at NMSU, and eager to work with all instructors of general education courses to ensure that their classes' contact with the library is a positive and successful experience.

Journal Cancellation Update

Donnelyn Curtis, Collection Management Last spring, every department at NMSU had the unpleasant task of deciding which library journals could be canceled. The state bond money that had been helping the library cover the cost of journal inflation (10-15% per year) was almost gone, and it looked as though in order to balance our budget for 1997-98, the library would have to cancel subscriptions for 1998 totalling $400,000 (about 32% of this year's journal budget). In one of his last administrative acts, President Orenduff re-directed $250,000 of university funds to the library to maintain crucial subscriptions and develop some alternatives that would help control the problem in the future. President Conroy has honored that financial commitment. Immediately before the spring semester ended, we were able to give departments the good news that we would retain some of the subscriptions they had identified as possibilities for cancellation. The new target is close to $200,000. We now have a revised list of titles that has been sent to departments along with their original list of cancellation possibilities. Some departments will want the library to keep a journal another department has targeted for cancellation. Each journal is coded to only one department, but that doesn't mean that only faculty and students in that department use it. We can re-code a journal to a department that doesn't want to lose it as long as that department can give us the title of another journal of equivalent value that we could cancel instead. The final list of canceled journals has been compiled and posted on the web at http://lib.nmsu.edu/depts/collserv/cancel.html In keeping with administrative directives and our own planning, we are using some of the $250,000 supplemental university funds and what is left of the 3-year bond to develop our document delivery program and increase access to electronic information. With the loss of journals for browsing, it is increasingly important to provide the tools to help researchers find out what is being published and to get individual articles on demand.

PAN is Dead - Long Live PAN!

Donnelyn Curtis dcurtis@lib.nmsu.edu Library users accustomed to finding citations to articles using the index PAN may have noticed that it isn't in its familiar place when you go through the library's OLE system and type /lib. The library had been providing access to this general index for more than two years. What was good about it was that you could search it the same way you search the online catalog; you could use it outside the library in your home or office; and it let you know if the library owned the journal and gave its call number (if you could figure out the strange way to get that information). Bad things about it were that it gave the oldest listings first; and the listings were never very up-to-date. As of July, this index was no longer available in its OLE-compatible format. But there's good news! A database that is similar in coverage but which also provides the full text of many of the articles has been available since February on the library's CafeOLE homepage on the web. We call it PAN Plus. It was a newly developed product and had some problems, but a recent improvement of the software makes it an excellent resource. Students and faculty who have used it love it. It is available to any NMSU user who logs in through a university e-mail account. A web browser such as Netscape allows you to take advantage of its easy-to-use graphical interface, but there is also text-only access for those who telnet to lib.nmsu.edu. Users who are out of town, using an outside internet provider, or use telnet will be asked to enter their NMSU PIN numbers. To use PAN Plus on the web, go to http://lib.nmsu.edu/article.html.

Rio Grande Historical Collections Celebrates Twenty-Fifth Year

By Tim Blevins and Marah deMeule, University Archives/RGHC tblevins@lib.nmsu.edu and marahde@lib.nmsu.edu 1997 marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Rio Grande Historical Collections, created to support advanced scholarship at NMSU and to aid New Mexico's preservation of its cultural heritage. Interest in developing a manuscript repository within the University Library had begun in the early 1960s. Dr. Laiten Camien, a professor of sociology, served as Chairman of NMSU's Museum Committee. During his chairmanship he highlighted the need to collect not merely the artifacts but also the unpublished materials illuminating the history of both the university and the region. Early areas of concern included development of agriculture in New Mexico, and development of the academic disciplines and the College of Agriculture and Home Economics. University President Roger B. Corbett, supportive of the Museum Committee's recommendations, established the University Archives in 1965. Dr. Camien; Chester Linscheid, university librarian; and Dr. Ira Clark, professor of history and government, served on the newly created Archives Committee, providing oversight and advocacy. The committee reported the need to aggressively collect research materials and make them available. They offered three reasons justifying the creation of such a repository: the university required the support of a large archives to do graduate work at the doctorate level in the social sciences; no central agency had been charged with the task of collecting archival materials from southern New Mexico; and southern New Mexico's documentary heritage was disappearing. When Gerald W. Thomas became president in 1970, he provided the support and commitment needed to create a successful manuscript repository in addition to the University Archives. Thomas appreciated the need to preserve the documentary history of southern New Mexico, and quickly threw his support behind the proposed unit. Other campus leaders, including former university president Gen. Hugh M. Milton II, history professor Dr. Monroe Billington, and new library director Dr. James Dyke, rallied support both within and outside of the university. Civic leaders such as J. Paul and Mary Taylor, Opal Lee Priestly, and Mrs. A. E. Huntsinger agreed to serve on the Rio Grande Historical Collections' first Board of Directors. The Rio Grande Historical Collections was formally chartered on January 29, 1972. During its initial year, the Board hired an archivist, Dennis Rowley, and solicited a number of important collections focused on ranching and agriculture. The board celebrated the RGHC's success at its second annual meeting in 1973, then adjourned and "enjoyed a buffet supper and the hospitality of President and Mrs. Thomas at the basketball game afterward." Austin Hoover, who succeeded Rowley in 1974, was able to offer the fledgling repository stability and greater visibility. He began engaging in extensive fieldwork, traveling throughout the state to meet with potential donors and offering presentations on the repository to local organizations. The RGHC also benefitted from the continued support of its Board and friends group. Through ties to the community, the RGHC and its friends were able to acquire significant documentary materials for the repository. State Representatives J. Paul Taylor and David Townsend offered crucial support. They secured appropriations from the legislature which allowed the RGHC to greatly improve both its services to researchers and the facilities for preserving and housing its materials. In 1991, one of the most ambitious and most successful RGHC efforts, the Durango Microfilming Project, began. The goal of this cooperative effort with the Archdiocese of Durango, Mexico, is to microfilm and preserve the entire contents of the Archivos Historicos del Arzobispado de Durango. Founded in 1563, Durango was the seat of the diocese which, from 1620 through the early 1850s, contained much of northern Mexico and parts of New Mexico, Texas, Arizona and southern Colorado. These unique records have attracted researchers to the RGHC from across the United States, Mexico and Europe. Also in 1991, the Rittenhouse Photographic Survey of New Mexico was introduced as a project to enlist volunteers to photograph the settled localities of New Mexico. The original idea was the plan of prominent Western American bookman Jack D. Rittenhouse, whose vision was to make available photographs of the significant sites and structures which were disappearing each year. In November, 1993, RGHC launched a traveling exhibition of Jack Rittenhouse's photographs documenting the changing appearance of buildings and towns in New Mexico. In addition to the Rittenhouse images, many of the RGHC's 500,000 photographs can be seen in local exhibitions, scholarly and popular publications, and even in documentaries such as Ken Burn's Baseball. Exhibitions created by the RGHC have traveled to twenty-four sites throughout the state for public display. During the 1994 session, the NM State Legislature appropriated funds which made possible the purchase of darkroom equipment and a digital reformatting lab. This allowed reproduction of historic photographic images for research use, exhibition, and publication. The funds also provided for the purchase of document preservation equipment used in the preservation laboratory, constructed in 1996, which was built with a generous gift from the Stockman family of Albuquerque. Since 1995 the RGHC offices and Search Room have been located on the fourth floor of Branson Hall. Currently, the RGHC holds over 5,000 cubic feet of materials which place primary emphasis on topics of special interest to a land-grant university. These subjects include early settlement, ranching, irrigated and dry-land farming, the management and use of natural resources including water, literature and cultural affairs, social affairs and conditions, and other topics deemed important to the education, research, and public service programs of NMSU. Formats of these documentary materials include diaries, correspondence, financial records, literary manuscripts, printed materials such as newsletters, and photographic materials such as negatives, prints, and movie film. The collections continue to grow, supporting increased usage and a wider audience. If you have or know of others who have documentary materials suitable for inclusion in the Collections, please contact the Rio Grande Historical Collections, Box 30006, Las Cruces, N.M. 88003, telephone (505)646-4727.

Pegasus Service Available For Doctoral Candidates

By Cindy Watkins, Research Support Services cwatkins@lib.nmsu.edu Pegasus, the University library's document delivery program, has once again expanded its scope. This new phase continues to support the University's research needs. In addition to serving the faculty, professional staff, and students and staff with disabilities, the Pegasus service will begin service to Ph.D. Candidates. All items are first searched for in the NMSU Library's own collection. If the material is located in the library we will copy the articles or check out the books and deliver them to your office. If the items are now owned byour library, Pegasus staff will access an outside document supplier, which enables us to fill most requests. Books, journal articles, government documents, conference proceedings -- all delivered to your office! You will received most items within 2-3 days. Photocopies of journal articles and our own library books are delivered to you by Pegasus student employees. You may retain the photocopies, assuring the copyright "fair use" restrictions are observed as to its use and dissemination. Please read the statement on U.S. copyright law which appears during your online session as you complete your electronic request. To return books to the library simply contact our office and we will be by your departmental office to pick them up. Document delivery has become popular on many campuses because it provides primary information essential to research, articles needed for classroom use, or outside readings to be placed in the library's reserve collection, freeing faculty to fulfill other obligations. To make a request notify the Research Support Services office of the University Library by any one of the following methods: e-mail: pegasus@lib.nmsu.edu web page: http://lib.nmsu.edu/circulation phone: Cindy Watkins at (505) 646-7676 or Dora Morales at (505) 646-1854 fax: (505) 646-2288 Please include the following information: Your name, building, department and room number A. For an article: periodical title volume, issue number, date, page numbers article title and author of the article. B. For a book: title author date for more information about Pegasus, contact: pegasus@lib.nmsu.edu Cindy Watkins at 646-7676 or Dora Morales at 646-1854

Library Initiates Fees for Printing

Susan E. Beck, Instruction Co-ordinator susabeck@lib.nmsu.edu This fall, the NMSU Library will begin charging 8 per page to print from its electronic databases. This was by no means an easy decision. The Library is committed to offering the highest quality services at the lowest cost. However, the high prices for paper and laser printer toner are eating a very large hole in the Library's budget. Each month close to 50,000 pages are printed off the Library's electronic database network. Sadly enough, many of these printed pages end up in the scrap paper bin. Our alternatives were either to quit offering printing altogether or to start charging a modest fee for each page printed. Patrons will pay only for printouts from the Library's electronic networked databases, including all of our web-based databases. If the computer is a stand-alone workstation with its own printer, patrons will not be charged. One benefit in our switch to charging for printouts is higher quality print. Up to this point, print quality has been light and difficult to read because the all laser printers were set on "draft" mode to save money. The three laser printers are located in Branson Hall Reference and Government Documents and in New Library Reference. New, computer-driven charging stations will be attached to each of the three laser printers. In order to keep things simple, the charging stations will only accept copycards as the method of payment. These are the same copycards used by the Library's photocopiers. Copycards can be purchased at the circulation desks in both Branson Hall and New Library. For those that would rather not spend their money on printouts, there is an alternative: downloading. You can download your search results to a floppy disk for free. Downloading is a fast, easy and environmentally friendly method of transporting information. Almost all of the electronic databases allow you to download your search to a 3 inch diskette. What's more, all the First Search databases let you e-mail your search results to yourself. If you do decide to download your search results to a diskette, it's easy to view, edit and print the data because downloaded files are generally plain text files. You can import plain text files to most word processing programs. Finding a diskette for downloading shouldn't be a problem either. You can buy them at the NMSU Bookstore and at the Copy Center in the New Library.

Federal Funding Opportunities for the NMSU Campus

Jeanette Smith, Head, Government Documents jcsmith@lib.nmsu.edu In these days of tight budgets it is more important than ever to be aggressive in seeking federal grant funding for campus programs and activities. The NMSU Library can provide crucial information to help you in this effort. Campus grant writers can apply for available federal dollars through many opportunities announced in the "Bible" of grant writing, the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance. The catalog is a government-wide compendium of federal programs, projects, services, and activities which provide benefits to the American public. It contains listings of approximately 1,300 financial and nonfinancial assistance programs administered by over 50 U.S. agencies, as well as complete information needed for application. Usually published each June and updated in December, the catalog is located in the Documents collection on the second floor of Branson Library under the call number Doc Ref PrEx 2.20. A copy is also available at the New Library reference desk. For those who prefer the convenience of a computer keyword search, the catalog may be accessed through the Documents home page on the library's web site (http://lib.nmsu.edu). Click on "The NMSU Library," then "Services," then "U.S. Government Documents," then "U.S. Government Information Online." You can also call up the catalog directly on the World Wide Web at http://www.gsa.gov/fdac/ As current as the catalog is, there is a way to find even more up-to-date federal grant opportunities through the Federal Register, the "daily newspaper" of the U.S. government. In this publication, grant availability notices are published on a daily basis. It is located in the Documents collection under the call number AE 2.106. The Federal Register may also be found online on GPO Access through the Documents home page, or may be called up directly on the World Wide Web through GPO Access at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/

The Library as a Utility for Delivering Scholarly Information

Charles Townley, Library Dean ctownley@lib.nmsu.edu Scholarly information is the lifeblood of any university. Scholarly information and the knowledge it transmits guides teaching and learning, informs research, and assures effective service at New Mexico State University. Without a constant supply of scholarly information, teaching and learning lose their creativity, research becomes repetitive, and service becomes derivative. The NMSU Library's job is to make sure that appropriate scholarly information is organized and made available in a user friendly manner, to guide users to scholarly information and knowledge, and to teach people how to identify, access, and evaluate scholarly information. We do this in an environment where growing demand and evolving technology are changing the way we look at delivering scholarly information. It is no longer enough that the library acquire and organize a collection of physical, usually printed, objects. We must organize and provide access to the most needed information, regardless of its location or format. To provide access to scholarly information in today's world, the NMSU Library needs to change from a philosophy of collecting and holding scholarly information for possible use in the future to a philosophy of organizing and accessing information that is actually used regardless of its location or format. By making this change we will be better able to prove library effectiveness and be in a stronger position to attract support and funding. Experience this year indicates our current collect and hold philosophy is broken and will not work. The University administration and state government operate in a poor state. Some decision-makers see the Library as a bottomless pit rather than the primary source of knowledge. The NMSU Library has never had equitable funding compared with our peer institutions. With publishing costs currently inflating at ten percent annually, we are losing purchasing power and we keep falling further behind in our already inadequate holdings. Recently, some have begun to think that libraries are unnecessary because everything is findable (and free) on the Internet. This is as fallacious as the argument that educational television will replace classrooms. Instead, the data indicate that different media supplement rather than replace each other. Personally, I believe electronic information is a great new resource which represents a significant commitment of University resources and needs to be organized through libraries just as books and journals are. To succeed at this, the Library must change its funding model to assure that the University community has access to this growing electronic collection of scholarly information. To focus this discussion at NMSU, I wish to propose a utility model for evaluating NMSU's access and information organization activities. Simply put, I argue that we should treat scholarly information and the knowledge it contains as a common good, needed throughout the University, just like water or electricity. Under this model, the NMSU Library's job is to make sure that our users can access and retrieve a ready supply of appropriate, authenticated, and organized scholarly information. The Library then becomes a utility for delivering scholarly information and knowledge. I hope this model will change our thinking on several fronts: -Rather than basing the strength of scholarly information available at NMSU solely on the size of the collection and the supporting services we provide, we base strength on the Library's ability to organize and deliver useful information to our users, regardless of its location or format. -By taking a user focused approach, the Library can do a much better job in justifying our budget with the University and the state. We can assure that the NMSU community has access to appropriate information for teaching and learning, research, and service. We can effectively argue for access, through purchase, lease or any other method, appropriate to the information that is being used. -As the information utility, we owe it to our rate payers (the users) to provide scholarly information in the most cost effective manner possible consistent with delivery. This makes it necessary to change our service paradigm to take advantage of opportunities in the structure of scholarly information and in technology. For example, an electronic reserve room may offer some real advantages for both distance and local instruction. We must also be prepared to quickly address changing user information needs. For example, many of the CD-ROM databases that looked so promising for reference only three years ago now seem terribly limited. My crystal ball sees three areas of focus in organizing and delivering information: frequent use; less frequent use; and capital development. In terms of heavily used information, I think we need to focus, as the new Library strategic plan dictates, on providing a core collection in many formats, located both in the Library and elsewhere, to meet current instructional and research needs. The goal of the core collection should be to meet the majority of people's information needs through a comparatively small, tightly defined core collection. This means that we collect or contract for information resources that have a proven pattern of use. For example, a recent study of periodicals indicates that only about 2,000 of our 7,000 current subscriptions are used on a frequent basis, usually for instruction. What if we accessed these frequently used titles through electronic indexes, often at home or in the office, and delivered them, regardless of the format, directly to the user? That would constitute a radical improvement in terms of how most of us use the Library most of the time. The UMI, Academic Press, and J-STOR projects offer opportunities in this area. While they cost more on a per title basis, their centrality to our University mission and the heavy usage they generate will put more high quality information in the hands of more students and faculty more quickly and at a lower unit price. At the other end of the spectrum, I believe we will increasingly obtain less frequently used material at the time it is needed. The Library and the University simply do not have the financial ability to support the exhaustive research collections that most disciplines need to access. We should recognize this reality and begin to organize our access tools to facilitate delivery of lesser used research materials on a demand basis. We will need to structure our collection management and cataloging areas to organize these materials and make them easily accessible. With careful planning on our part and no further erosion of copyright law, many will be available from other libraries. Others will be available electronically by subscription. We will go to the commercial sector to purchase some on demand. In all cases, our goal should be to describe potential information sources well (what libraries call catalog data and computer centers call metadata) and deliver it with little or no delay. Finally, in order to assure access to esoteric information, the University Library should focus its capital resources on five to seven disciplines or sub-disciplines where we try to develop exhaustive regional and international collections. These areas should be carefully chosen based on user needs and the strategic directions of this University. If we were to select (the border, rhetoric, or astronomy, to cite three of the many possibilities), we would invest capital funds to develop regional or national collections in all formats. These collections would then serve as our bargaining chips in negotiations with other libraries and commercial vendors to assure on demand access to all the research information needed by students and faculty at NMSU. In terms of our ability to justify and attract funding, we would develop state support for the core collection on the basis of its frequent use and economic savings to the University as a whole. We would use arguments such as, "Every dollar spent on the core collection generates $10 worth of use." It also makes it easier to argue for increases in the materials budget to keep pace with inflation when there is no fat in the design. Further, items in this category are heavily used and would cost more to repeatedly buy on demand. Less frequently used items would consist of a definable expense that could be fine-tuned on an ongoing basis. Information that becomes frequently used is purchased for the core collection and vice versa. To develop this program, we will have to develop a much improved effort to gather statistics on demand for information in specific subject areas. Exhaustive collection efforts would be funded, just like other capital development in New Mexico, through one-time bonds and continuing general funds. In addition, we will work closely with our colleagues in the colleges to include the Library in research funding efforts. This will put our information in areas where user demand will permit us to be flexible. From a collection point of view, we will likely have a slower growth in our core collection of physical objects, a few areas of real strength in research, and many more items purchased at the time of need. Library users would seek information and browse differently, relying less on visits to the periodicals collection and the stacks and more on vastly improved electronic indexing and abstracting that permits virtual scanning in the classroom, office, or at home. All of this will take more money, user training, and Library personnel. It certainly will change what we do and how we do it. But it will also generate additional support, expand access, and improve delivery. Our goal , as a user focused organization, will be to lead and support users better and better. This summarizes my initial thoughts on a utility model for collection development at NMSU. As you can tell, much of this proposal is tentative and needs further elaboration and testing. I ask your help in discussing the strengths and weaknesses of this and other models. In the end, students, faculty, library personnel, University administration, and state powers must be convinced that the utility model is an efficient and effective user-based approach to providing scholarly information needed for teaching and learning, research and service.

NMSU Library News Briefs

In February, the library launched its first large full text database. 800 journals are available in text-only form. In the first five months more than 27,000 articles have been downloaded. See the indexes at http://lib.nmsu.edu/article.html In 1996/97, the library had over 850,000 hits on its web pages (http://lib.nmsu.edu). One of the most heavily used pages was Border and Latin American Information, with 67,860 hits. Other popular sections were the Shortcuts library tutorial, Searching the Internet, and the Internet Gateway. This fall, the Office of University Advancement will conduct a fundraising phone-a-thon of graduates from each college. Most of the colleges offer their graduates the opportunity to contribute to the library. Last year, more than $3,500 was raised. Several of the colleges use these funds to provide new faculty with money for library materials supporting research and instruction. We encourage all Aggie graduates to consider making a contribution in this important area. Your gift to the library supports not only your college but also the entire university. The updated version of the Shortcuts library tutorial is now available on the library web site, at http://lib.nmsu.edu/projects/tutorial/ This tutorial gives the user a virtual tour of the NMSU Library and its research facilities, including tips on using the online catalog. The Library has installed a new phone routing system. To reach the library, you should now dial (505) 646-5800. This number will lead you to hours information, reference assistance, reserves, and all other library functions.
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