Information Update - Spring 2005

Are You Being Served? Virtually Reference

The Weinberg Memorial Library officially inaugurated its Distance Learning Library Services during the Fall 2004 Semester thereby achieving its operational goal to provide alternative delivery modes for remote users of Library resources and services.

Over 50 requests were made by a total of 15 distance students. All of the students are graduate students enrolled in either the Transition Doctor of Physical Therapy Program or the Health Administration Program. One of these students, Suzanne Skibinski, recently sent an e-mail to Evening Public Services Librarian Bonnie Oldham praising the Document Delivery service that the Library provides for distance learners and the helpfulness of the librarians. Suzanne is taking Evidence-Based Practice, a Physical Therapy course that is offered in a Web-based format. She wrote, "I was very surprised at the ease of use of all the online features for the Doctoral level Physical Therapy course I am enrolled in this semester. In my experience, regardless of the time of day or the nature of the question, all of the librarians have directed me without hesitation to the appropriate information to solve my problem."

Distance Learning Library Services are available to students enrolled in University of Scranton credit courses offered as online distance courses and who are living off-campus; or enrolled in University of Scranton credit courses that are offered at off-campus locations; or who are completing their University of Scranton coursework either via the Internet or through guided independent study or internship and who are living off-campus. Distance learning faculty are also eligible for special services if they are teaching all of their University of Scranton credit courses at off-campus locations and do not have office hours on campus.

The purpose of these services is to support distance library users in their University of Scranton courses. The Weinberg Memorial Library does NOT provide distance learning services for faculty or students who are enrolled in programs at other institutions or for those who reside in campus housing.

In order to be eligible for distance learning services, students and faculty must register by completing an online Registration Form. Twenty-two distance students are currently registered. As yet, no faculty members have registered.

Library services provided to registered students include home delivery of books and articles. All of the requests received to date have been for either journal articles from periodicals to which the Library has only a print subscription or for journal articles from other libraries that were requested through Interlibrary Loan.

Last semester articles were faxed or mailed to students. The Library charges a $1.50 fee per article for this service, and the charge is billed directly to the student's library account. Bonnie Strohl, Associate Director of the Weinberg Memorial Library, and the Library's Systems staff are working with the University's Information Resources Department to begin some form of electronic delivery of articles sometime during the Spring 2005 semester.

For questions on document delivery and all distance learning library services, contact the Distance Learning Library Services Coordinator, Evening Public Services Librarian Bonnie Oldham, at 570-941-4000 or oldhamb3@scranton.edu.
 
 
Bonnie Oldham
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