This is the sixth in a series of posts on themes in the Fall 2022 faculty survey.
We received several comments about the availability of specific resources and adding new content to the library’s collections.
First, let’s address the needs of our humanists, who minced no words.
One person commented, “More humanities-centered books! We can’t be a research university without a robust collection.”
The University Library adds thousands of books to its collection every year, both print and eBooks. Faculty requests drive many new book purchases. In addition, the library offers thousands of on-demand books through various platforms like JSTOR and Proquest. We recently added Cambridge Companions Online and Oxford Handbooks in philosophy, history, and literature.
The library’s catalog contains all the print and eBooks available. Please see The Blog Post Things We Already Have and How to Find Them More Easily.
Respondents expressed the need for “Access to databases/services, such as Gartner; Access to databases like LexisNexis.”
As you know, many of these subscription databases are expensive with an ongoing commitment making them difficult to add to the collection without new funds or canceling a resource of equal or greater cost. We regularly monitor database usage and curricular fit to assess whether we should cancel a database to allow us to swap for a better fit.
It is also important to realize that the state provides some of our databases via GALILEO, and when they cancel a database, we do not always have funding to pay for it ourselves. This is how we lost access to LexisNexis several years ago.
We understand that curricular and research needs evolve. We welcome conversations to address changes in programs and how the library can make adjustments to meet your needs. Contact Skye Hardesty if you want to talk about this.
And there was this comment: We need “ACM and IEEE digital libraries.”
We are pleased to report that the University Library offers the entire ACM Digital Library.
In 2020, the library’s IEEE Digital Library subscription was changed from access to all IEEE conference proceedings, journals, and standards to a smaller collection of conference proceedings and the full IEEE journal collection due to budget cuts.
Finally, one researcher reported that “some journal subscriptions are not available in my area.”
The library collections budget is the same amount every year, and all subscriptions increase yearly. Adding new journals or databases, which have average annual cost increases of 4-5%, is difficult. We often have to cancel current subscriptions to balance our budget. This doesn’t mean we can never add a title, but it is very difficult.
We are fortunate to have quick and reliable access to other libraries to provide what we do not have here. GIL Express provides book delivery from other USG libraries. Interlibrary loan provides articles and books from around the country or even overseas. Articles often arrive within hours. GSU-affiliated faculty, staff, and students can use the ARCHE Interlibrary Use program to access private Atlanta-area academic libraries, including Emory and the Atlanta University Center library.
Some final data for thought: This chart shows how research expenditures have increased while library expenditures have remained flat over the last 15 years. As sponsored research continues to grow at GSU, often in new and emerging areas, it can be challenging to provide the necessary library resources to support these growing areas.
Even in this restrained budget environment, we are committed to providing the best possible resources for our research community. Thank you for your feedback – we welcome your additional comments and ideas.