A vital lifeline: UK Libraries Plus 1999-2006.

Edwards, J. Adam (2007) A vital lifeline: UK Libraries Plus 1999-2006. SCONUL Focus, 40 . pp. 89-93. ISSN 1745-5790

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Official URL: http://www.sconul.ac.uk/publications/newsletter/40...

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Abstract

It seems perhaps incredible now that only eight years ago there was no national scheme for student access and borrowing at higher education libraries. Yet the need was clear. With ever-increasing numbers of part-time students, often studying at a distance from the university or college they had signed up to, libraries were constantly dealing with the complaint that students could not get easy access to the reading materials they were expected to use for the course. Placement students, often spending many weeks away from their home institution yet expected to do course-work, were also experiencing the same problems. In some regions, schemes such as London Plus (which had started in 1988) went some way to meeting this need, but you only needed to cross a regional boundary and customers had nothing. Worse, many libraries, even those with extensive provision for part-timers of their own, made sure the barriers were in place to prevent much-feared swamping by those oiks from the university next door. As the then Site Librarian at South Bank University I remember having to maintain a long list of who we let in and who we didn’t, depending on the access agreement with each particular institution. What a waste of time and energy it now seems! What was needed was someone to cut the Gordian knot and just do something. In 1999 our doughty champion was found in Philip Payne, then at Leeds Metropolitan University and now, very appropriately, Librarian at Birkbeck, University of London.

Item Type:Article
Research Areas:Library and Student Support
ID Code:4362
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Deposited On:05 Mar 2010 12:15
Last Modified:15 Oct 2013 06:37

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