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April 2009

  • April 2, 2009: Computer Tables (from library suggestion box)

    The tables holding the computers are mostly rather high. I do a lot of typing and the height of the keyboard on the tables is a problem. The kiosks across from the main circulation desk are right for me.

    The Library has quite a number of public work stations scattered on various floors, with different seating configurations. If you search out other locations you might find some more computers that are at a more comfortable height.

    Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • Apr 3, 2009: Expand movie and music selection (from library suggestion box)

    Expand movie and music selection

    We are working to expand our holdings in both music and film. However, it's important to note that our top goal is to support the research and instructional missions of the university, so that even with greatly expanded funding we will never be a substitute for Blockbusters or FYE.

    For movies, we have generous ongoing support from a film-loving alumnus in Roanoke which we continue to use to build the collection of a film as an art form. Academy award, foreign, Sundance, and documentary prize winners, films much admired by the best reviewers (Ebert, Turnan, Travers in particular) account for most of our buying.

    For music, we continue to give as much money as we can to the Performing Arts and Foreign Languages Librarian for her very informed purchase of what will always focus principally on classical music performance, with a respectful nod toward jazz, blue grass, and rock.

    Thanks for writing.
    Paul Metz, Director of Collection Management

  • April 6, 2009: Update of Library Website (from online comment box)

    Library website should be reconstructed. It's not easy to search.

    The library website will be undergoing a major change sometime this summer as we move to the university's new look and navigation. However, there are a number of search features currently present.

    Often when patrons refer to searching the library's website, they really mean the library's catalog. An Addison search box is present at the top of every library webpage. We also have a link to search the actual library website at the top of every page as well, with results carefully weighted based on past searches.

    There are many search engines located throughout the library's website, reflecting the wide variety of content the library provides. Easy access to the major search functions are located on the library's homepage, with quick links to search our large list of ejournal titles, online theses and dissertations, our list of databases, and subject guides if you are not sure where else to start.

    Finally, we link to our Ask a Librarian service at the top of every web page as well, so if anyone has trouble locating anything, they should not hesitate to ask.

    Robert Sebek, University Libraries Webmaster

  • Apr 7, 2009: Offer of 1910-era Textbooks Used at Tech (from online comment box)

    My grandfather, [name redacted], attended your school over 100 years ago. I have several of the textbooks he left and would be willing to give them to you, if you are interested. Reply to this email and tell me how would be the best way to send them to you.

    Your generous offer has been forwarded to me and I would like to get a better idea of which textbooks you have in your possession. We do not normally collect textbooks, but because of the age and family connections we might in fact be interested. If you could send me a brief list of titles and dates and let me know if there are any notations in the text then that will help me answer your question. Thank you so much for thinking of the University Libraries at Virginia Tech.

    Aaron D. Purcell, Ph.D., Director of Special Collections

  • April 9, 2009: Add More Disney Movies (from library suggestion box)

    Would it be possible to have more Disney movies?

    We are working to expand our holdings in both music and film. However, it's important to note that our top goal is to support the research and instructional missions of the university, so that even with greatly expanded funding we will never be a substitute for Blockbusters or FYE.

    For movies, we have generous ongoing support from a film-loving alumnus in Roanoke which we continue to use to build the collection of a film as an art form. Academy award, foreign, Sundance, and documentary prize winners, films much admired by the best reviewers (Ebert, Turnan, Travers in particular) account for most of our buying.

    Disney movies will occasionally meet our criteria and we are happy to buy them when they do. We also buy some other items of interest to children -- recently I ordered a few episodes of Sesame Street and we also own the truly wonderful Shelly Duvall set, Faerie tale theatre (Television program)

    Thanks for writing.
    Paul Metz, Director of Collection Management

  • April 9, 2009: Possible to Change Closing Bell Sound? (from online comment box)

    Is there any way to change bell sound announcing 30 - 15 - 10 minutes before library closing? This bell sound is very similiar to emergency warning / fire-alarm sound as well as very loud enough to disturb many patrons. Whenever it rings, most patrons siting @ second floor look at each other to figure out what's going on/whether it's some kinds of emergency situations. Thank you!

    The bells tones are preset to the existing ring and can not be changed. Ringing the bell at 30 minutes and 15 minutes before closing and at closing is meant to be loud enough to get patrons attention. During the time that the bells are sounding, a Campus Security Guard is walking the floor letting patrons know that the building is closing. Our emergency fire alarm bell is quite loud and can not be mistaken. Any time a patron has a question about the bells they may ask at one of the 5 desks that are open until closing.

    Brenda Pratt, Head of Circulation

  • April 9, 2009: Eliminate Fines (from library suggestion box)

    Eliminate late fees.

    Late fees are used as a preventative measure so patrons will return materials on time. Without this measure patrons would have no incentive to return materials in a timely fashion thus taking materials out of other borrowers hands. The library makes renewing materials simple as patrons can renew in person, on-line or by phone. Returning or renewing items on time does eliminate late fees.

    Brenda Pratt, Head of Circulation

  • April 9, 2009: Bike Racks and Longer Hours (from library suggestion box

    1. The front entrance needs more than one bike rack. 2. Later hours would be appreciated.

    We work with University Grounds and Landscaping to install bike racks. Currently there is no space allotted at the entrances for more racks. Please be aware that we have more racks located on the mall side of the library. When we complete the cafe/study in the former entrance on the mall side, we will plan to move those rack to a more convenient location near the entrances.

    We are open 102 hours a week with extended hours during exams. Many of our resources are available online 24/7. Given our finite budget we must balance expenditures for services, collections, and physical facilities. Our hours are comparable to many other research libraries our size.

    Don Kenney, Associate Dean for the University Libraries

  • April 13, 2009: Leaky Faucets (from library suggestion box)

    Every time I go into the men's room (on the second floor) all three faucets are leaking a lot. That's a huge waste of water. This leaking is due to the handles on the faucets. They need to be fixed or replaced.

    Thanks for bringing this issue to our attention. I have notified our maintenance group of the problem, and hope that it is fixed soon.

    Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • April 13, 2009: Better Privacy Needed on Public Computers (from online comment box)

    I'd strongly suggest configuring browsers on public computers to wipe private data on exit or to never record it, e.g. do not remember passwords. For example, the Privacy screen of the Firefox settings area (Tools -> Options -> Privacy) is pretty much the worst possible set of defaults for a public computer.

    Hi, the public computer browsers will be defaulted to not save this information in the current session or otherwise.
    Curtis Carr , Head of Library Systems

  • April 13, 2009: Praise for Library (from library suggestion box)

    This place is awesome. The Library staff is very helpful.

    Thank you for your kind words. It is always appreciated when we receive praise from our patrons. Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • April 14, 2009: More Floor Maps Please (from library suggestion box)

    Please put more maps (with you are here) on the upper floors, particularly next to each stairwell door. It is very frustrating to wander around trying to find a stacks area, when a map would have saved time.

    Thank you for the suggestion. I will reevaluate the signs and make recommendations for additional floor plan signs for the fourth and fifth floors first and then expand to the rest of the building.
    Bruce Obenhaus, Government Information Specialist

  • April 15, 2009: "Lorax" Purchase Request (from library suggestion box)

    Please obtain "The Lorax", by Dr. Seuss.

    Thank you for your suggestion and I will put this on the list to acquire as soon as funds become available. I have expended the funds for children's literature for the FY08 but will soon be getting expenditures for the FY09.

    Don Kenney, Associate Dean for the University Libraries

  • April 22, 2009: Loud Restroom Doors on 3rd Floor (from library suggestion box)

    The doors of the men's restroom 3rd floor (especially the inner door) slam rather loudly. I don't sit in that area, but it surely must be a problem for the people who do sit there.

    We will have our building preventive maintenance person check on the this troublesome door.
    Don Kenney, Associate Dean for the University Libraries

  • April 23, 2009: Need More Outlets (from library suggestion box)

    Not enough outlets for laptops.

    We have attempted to address the problem of more outlets for laptops. This past summer we wired the 2nd floor commons area to accommodate more students and laptops knowing that groups of students would be using the area to work in groups. We also retrofitted a large number of the student study tables to accommodate 4 laptops at one time. These tables are located on the 2nd and 4th floors. It is difficult and expensive to retrofit an older building to meet growing demands for more and more outlets and modern technology. As our budget will allow we plan to increase the number of tables to accommodate more laptops on the other floors.

    Don Kenney, Associate Dean for the University Libraries

  • April 24, 2009: Does the Library Even Listen to Feedback? (from library suggestion box)

    What the [explicitive] would make a diff what I said?

    I'm sorry you feel that the library does not listen to comments/suggestions submitted to us in paper or online. We do try our best to meet the needs of our patrons and take your comments/suggestions seriously to provide our community with better services and resources. While we do occassionally receive suggestions that are not possible for us to provide or offer, as you can see from our archive, we do listen to comments and suggestions submitted to us. We appreciate feedback and welcome ideas on how to make the libraries even better for our users.
    Kyrille Goldbeck, College Librarian for Natural Resources

  • April 28, 2009: Glass Doors are Great (from library suggestion box)

    The glass doors at the entrance look great! I think they allow light in, which the wooden doors obstructed. Keep up the good work! Thanks.

    Thank you for your complement. It is good to know that our new entry way is appreciated.
    Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • April 28, 2009: Praise for Librarian (from library suggestion box)

    Mr. Dave Beagle is an asset to the Library staff and Virginia Tech University. He recently went above and beyond to help my group recover lost data and effectively "saved the day." Thank you so much.

    Thank you so much for your words of praise for Mr. Beagle. I am glad he was able to help you with your research needs.
    Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • April 28, 2009: Praise for Newman Library (from library suggestion box)

    Thank you for making everything so accessible and easy to find! Newman is a wonderful resource.

    Thank you for your comments. It is always nice to hear that our services are valued by our patrons.

    Buddy Litchfield, Reference Librarian

  • April 28, 2009: The Library Needs "History of the World, Part I" (from library suggestion box)

    The Library needs a copy of "The History of the World, Part 1, by Mel Brooks.

    We are working to expand our holdings in both music and film. However, it's important to note that our top goal is to support the research and instructional missions of the university, so that even with greatly expanded funding we will never be a substitute for Blockbusters or FYE.

    For movies, we have generous ongoing support from a film-loving alumnus in Roanoke which we continue to use to build the collection of a film as an art form. Academy award, foreign, Sundance, and documentary prize winners, films much admired by the best reviewers (Ebert, Turnan, Travers in particular) account for most of our buying.

    This request will be considered once the donor makes another contribution.

    Paul Metz, Director of Collection Management

  • April 30, 2009: Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum (from library suggestion box)

    Please, get volume XVII (Milestones) of Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum - actually, update the CIL please!

    At this time, we are not able to purchase the CIL collections. You might want to try seeing how much you need is already available online at the CIL site under the "resources" link. If you need to access more of the materials, you can request the needed volume(s) through Interlibrary Loan, or travel to a library that has the full collection.

    Please note, each volume costs approximately $500, and with limited funds to cover all book purchases for a variety of departments, we cannot afford to put all money into one resource. I will talk to some of the Classics faculty to make an approximation as to how critical this resource is or will be to the studies taking place in that department.

    Please also note, you can use the "suggest a purchase" request, as this is a much more effective way to get materials added to the collection than through an anonymous comment.

    Bruce Pencek, College Librarian for Liberal Arts & Human Sciences



User feedback

Let us know how we're doing. This is your library, how can we serve you better? We'd like your input to help make the library a better resource by shaping the collections, resources, services, and any other areas of the library to better fit your needs. Here are ways you can let us know what you think:

Comment box

Use this to send your suggestions and comments about our services, collections, etc so we can find more and better ways to support your research and information needs. See our archive of previously posted comments.

We subscribe to many databases, but are always looking for new resources that will better serve your research needs. Take a look at the latest trial databases and let us know if you think this would be a good resource to have permanently by filling out an online survey.

Library workshops

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Please take a moment to fill out an evaluation of the session(s) you attended.

Suggestions of topics to offer

Is there a database, library service, or other information resource you want to know more about? Suggest a topic for our Library workshop courses. These are free sessions to help you learn more about library and information resources available to you.

Recommend material(s) for purchase

Is there a book, DVD, video or any other resource you found that you'd like the library to own? Use our online request a purchase form. We'll do our best to add the item to our collection.

Surveys

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