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University Libraries - News, Events & Exhibits

Business Library is going digital

Jun 11, 2013 7:19 AM

As planning evolved for the library in the new Moore School of Business, it became clear that physical space for books would be limited. As librarians Emily Doyle (seen here working with a student) and Kathy Snediker began talking about the parameters for the new library, the use of the term “paperless” raised more than a few eyebrows. Quiet carrels, group study spaces, live chats to help patrons – these terms got enthusiastic nods. But a paperless library?

“Access is the only thing that is changing,” said Doyle, who has an MLIS degree, business degrees and years of real-world corporate experience. “There will be no stacks, no computer workstations, and few reference books. But with the online technology and access to resources available today, the library exists anywhere and everywhere for people.”

Using online research databases is a good model for what students will experience in the corporate world, Doyle believes. Plus, students already use electronic resources and are ready to make the shift to an all-digital library.

“And it will allow librarians to do what they do best: help patrons find information and learn to evaluate resources,” Snediker said. “We won’t have to spend time with administrative duties like collection upkeep and reshelving books. We will be more available to help faculty and students. We’ll be available to help via email, live chat, or in person in the Moore School.”

The librarians are searching for, subscribing to and creating more online resources. They are currently building a knowledge-bank of frequently asked questions and answers.

“We often get the same questions from students, such as ‘How do I find SEC filings?’ Students will be able to go online and type that question, and the answer can direct them to our LibGuide (an online research guide we’ve created on the subject) or to another online resource,” Doyle said. “For their own research, faculty often ask, ‘Where can I find data on this topic, and how can I extract that data?’ Librarians will have time to work with them on these more complex questions.”

The print books and journals that won’t be in the new library will still be easily accessible by request or electronic delivery from the Annex.

Visit the business library’s homepage at http://library.sc.edu/business.