Changes in Library ILL , Reference Areas


Olson Library is working with a vendor to improve the inter-library loan (ILL) module that has been in operation since Sept. 1. Krista Clumpner (AIS, pictured) said a number of faculty have reported that the new online form is inferior to the previous version and in need of a redesign.


“This feedback confirms what those of us in the library thought,” she said. ‘We have compiled a list of improvements that could be made to the system. We continue to make some changes ourselves, but we are also working in a consortial setting with other libraries to share information with the vendor that might make the system more user-friendly. This is still a work in progress and we appreciate a little patience as we work to get the kinks out.”


Clumpner said the previous “homegrown” ILL request form – built to Olson Library specifications by a student – was on its last legs and needed to be replaced. The staff decided the best remedy would be an ILL module that could be integrated with the existing library system.


“Around the same time, the library ended up shifting to a new automated system,” Clumpner added. “Having an ILL module was one of the requirements for this purchase and the vendor said it had one. What we were able to learn about it seemed to indicate it was okay, but since it’s been up and running, we have noticed some drawbacks or heard about them from others. We discovered we were on the leading edge of technology in offering an automated ILL form through the library system and now we are trying to fine-tune the process."

Clumpner said part of the implementation included adding new features that allow patrons to see their personal information when they log in. They use their barcodes on their NMU Wildcat Express cards and enter their last name. Once logged into the system, they can see what they have checked out and when it is due, renew materials, or remove any holds they have asked the library to place.

Other changes at Olson Library that may impact faculty and staff include the responsibilities of reference librarians. Mike Strahan (AIS) has assumed the role of instruction coordinator. Requests for help with course-related instruction designed to meet the specific needs of a class should be directed to him. Mike Burgmeier (AIS), the former instruction coordinator, is now focusing on the library’s Web services to identify new features or enhancements. He is also collaborating with other library staff to implement modifications or changes.


Bruce Sarjeant (AIS) recently joined the library as reference/government documents and maps librarian. His arrival allowed Kevin McDonough (AIS) to take the lead in monitoring, evaluating and integrating electronic resources into the collection.


All four librarians will continue to provide reference services and deliver course-related instruction.



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Updated: October 21, 2004