New Mexico Consortium of Academic Libraries


                                    NMCAL Accomplishments 1988-1996

Funding Formula Revision

The NMCAL membership unanimously endorsed the concept of a change in the higher education funding formula to provide library acquisitions funds based on the indexed cost of new materials. Formulas based on this concept were developed by the Commission on Higher Education with assistance from the Consortium and accepted by the legislature. The adjusted formula has resulted in purchase of many additional library titles by most academic libraries.

Library Automation

The Consortium has participated and taken an active role in all statewide plans for the automation of libraries as they have been developed by the New Mexico Library Association and the New Mexico State Library.

Many member libraries of the Consortium have joined together to contract with the Online Computer Library Center in providing FirstSearch Bibliographic services to the libraries at greatly reduced fees. FirstSearch provides over 50 electronic online indexes to magazines and scholarly journals as well as the full text of articles from many of the magazines and journals.

FirstSearch enables students enrolled in distance learning classes access to the magazine and journal indexes and articles from their home or remote site. Workshops to train the staffs of member libraries in the use of FirstSearch have been provided by the Consortium.

Collection Assessment and Development

The Consortium has focused on developing a common vocabulary of collection assessment and development and educating the Consortium members about collection assessment as a foundation for cooperative collection development. A workshop and informational materials were provided to the Consortium members.

Resource Sharing

Reciprocal borrowing agreements have been made between academic libraries in the state. These agreements (Passports) enable any faculty/staff member or student at any institution to borrow directly from any other academic institution in the state.

Additional library and educational members have joined the Consortium since its inception. Membership has increased from the original seventeen to twenty-nine members in 1996.

Rapid delivery of library resources as a result of interlibrary loan requests has increased among Consortium members. Overnight Pony Express delivery service, facsimile equipment, and ariel internet delivery are all in use by academic libraries within the state.

The Consortium has discussed ways in which students enrolled in distance learning classes can have access to library resources. These discussions and subsequent planning of solutions are presently underway between Consortium members.

Plans and operating procedures have been developed for a central storage facility to be used by all Consortium members for less frequently used library materials. Use of such a facility would enable present library buildings to be better utilized.

Improved Communication

As a result of Consortium encouragement and efforts, most member libraries now have access to electronic mail and resources on the Internet. A listserv and World Wide Web page are in use by members of the Consortium, enabling improved communication between member libraries.
The listserv address is

The World Wide Web URL is
[changed to in 2004].

Statewide Library Resources

Many of the member libraries work closely with public and school libraries in providing library resources to their local community. The Consortium has been actively involved with promoting libraries and reading through such information campaigns as the Bonds for Books in the 1994 bond elections.

Statewide Information about Academic Libraries

The Consortium serves as the central clearing agency for the state for the gathering of the biannual IPEDS library statistic surveys. This information is used by the Consortium for planning for future academic library development within New Mexico.

Statistics relating to interlibrary loans between member libraries and Passport (reciprocal borrowing) usage are gathered annually.

The Future

Future activities of the consortium will be devoted to the following areas:
# Developing a long-range plan for Consortium activities.
# Providing library resources for distance learning students.
# Updating and revision of the formula funding academic libraries.
# Increased opportunities for Consortium members to join together to reduce costs of using expensive electronic and Internet services.
# Seeking additional ways in which library resources can be shared among Consortium members.

Last revised August 4, 2004

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