UCU online library grows

By Arthur Oyako, :: 30-07-2009

UCU's list of online affiliate libraries is growing and officials in the library hope this will be for the better.
One of the hopes is that the need to purchase books which are deemed expensive will be eliminated.  
UCU has had links with online library services since 2001 although not many students know of the availability of the service let alone the means to access the facilities. 
University Librarian, Frederick Mukungu, last week said that UCU libraries first got connected to online resources through the alliance that brings together all university libraries in Uganda. 
"The first online resources we had here were provided by Perry foundation and INASP links; we were receiving them under the Collaboration of Uganda University Libraries (CUUL) to who we are subscribers."  
INASP is the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications.
Through the university libraries’ collaboration, affiliates  are able to access information that is owned by other universities that are also members of the coalition. 
The latest additions to UCU's list of online library resources are, Oxford Scholarship, Aluka, Oxford Journal Online, Emerald, JSTOR, Wiley Interscience, AGORA, HINARI and EBSCO.
While Oxford Scholarship, ALUKA, Oxford Journal online, JSTOR and Wiley Interscience are accessible only at UCU and do not require one to have a password and username, Emerald, AGORA HINARI and EBSCO have specific usernames and passwords that are provided by library staff. 
"I find it odd that not many students know about the existence of online resources and yet it is one of the things that we speak of during students orientations of the library" Mukungu said. 
He also added that the library is doing all it could to sensitise students and staff of the need to use online resources instead of queuing to borrow scarce books. 
"We have in the recent past conducted numerous workshops for library staff in particular and UCU staff in general, last year we hosted the Perry coordinator from Makerere" Mukungu added.
UCU libraries have suffered from under funding, unavailability of certain books on the local market and scrupulous students who tear out pages and those that shift books from shelf to shelf among others.
Mukungu thinks online resources could not have increased at a better time. 
"More and more students are picking up the use of online resources and as the university grows, we don't need to get additional space for books that we don't yet have" Mukungu said.
The university has introduced time limits on computers inside libraries
Print:: Email:: more...

The News