31 August 2010

From Dante to Dylan - Cambridge Collections Online

The Library subscribes to Cambridge Collections Online, the complete searchable collection of over 360 full-text volumes in the Cambridge Companions book series.

Cambridge Companions are lively critical introductions to major writers, artists, philosophers, topics and periods, specially commissioned and designed to appeal to student readers. 

Over 3,500 essays, from Cambridge Companions to Literature and Classics (221 vols) and Cambridge Companions to Philosophy, Religion and Culture (144 vols), cover topics and figures as diverse as Emily Dickinson, Malcolm X, Plato, Zola, Arabic Philosophy, Gothic Fiction, Liberation Theology, Medieval French Literature, Scottish Enlightenment, etc. All titles are listed in SAULCAT.
Personalisation features allows you to save and re-run searches, bookmark chapters, add notes, and create workgroups for sharing information with others.

30 August 2010

Credo Reference - it takes the average person 364.8 years to know as much

Watch how the eye
Credo Reference is a smart choice - it offers over 622 major reference books - dictionaries, encyclopaedias, thesauri, biographies, books of quotations, atlases and quick reference works on every subject, from art to medicine, psychology to history, technology to literature. It can even help you with crosswords!

It contains over three million entries; 60,000 images in art, science and medicine; 90,000 interactive maps, 200,000 audio pronunciation files, and a visual Concept Map for easy searching, so it's hardly surprising that it's "99% certain to beat you at Trivial Pursuits". Try it and see.

27 August 2010

New e-Resource - State Papers Online II and III

Mary Queen of Scots
© National Trust of Scotland
Licensor: www.scran.ac.uk

We're delighted to announce the purchase of Parts II and III of State Papers Online:
      to accompany the earlier purchase of Part I: The Tudors: Henry VIII to Elizabeth I, 1509-1603: State Papers Domestic.
      State Papers Online 1509-1714 is a searchable archive of 16th and 17th Century State Papers (Domestic, Foreign, Scotland, Ireland) and Registers of the Privy Council, relevant to research in politics; government; social, economic and religious history.  Over 450,000 facsimile images (775,000 pages) of original manuscripts preserved by the National Archives, are linked to their searchable Calendar entries.

      The correspondence of ruling monarchs, reports, memoranda, treaties and parliamentary drafts from ambassadors, civil servants and provincial administrators, presents a full picture of Tudor and Stuart government and society. A wide range of government concerns are covered, from high level international politics and diplomacy, to charges against a steward for poisoning others.

      Part IV: The Stuarts: James to Anne, 1603-1714: State Papers, Foreign, Ireland and Registers of the Privy Council is scheduled for 2011.

      25 August 2010

      New e-Books feed

      Keep up-to-date with details of new e-Books being bought by the Library - subscribe to the regularly-updated New e-Books feed, on the Library Home page.

      Other useful RSS feeds include Latest Acquisitions, Latest DVDs, and New Theses.

      23 August 2010

      Local use of BoB (Box of Broadcasts) National

      Some of the online TV requests made locally in BoB (Box of Broadcasts) National
      Since April 2010, local use has shown:
      •      2,371 programmes requested for recording 
      •    19,619 views of pre-recorded programmes online
      •    56 TV channels watched
      If you have any comments about BoB, or would like to share how you're using it, we'd be very interested to hear from you

        19 August 2010

        A different kind of tweet - British Library Archival Sound Recordings

        The Archival Sound Recordings database contains over 44,500 recordings from the National Sound Archive, available free to University staff and students.

        Collections include: Regional Accents and Dialects; Arts, Literature and Performance; Classical Music; Environment and Nature; Jazz and Popular Music; Oral History testimonies from survivors of the Holocaust; Sound Recording History; and ethnographic wax cylinder recordings of World and Traditional Music.

        Login with your University account details, for full access.
          Eight hours a day, for four years - that's how long it would take to listen to all the recordings.

          16 August 2010

          Library Twitter account

          The Library now has an active Twitter presence, and plans to use this for communicating short informative 'tweets', in real time, to University staff, students and the wider community:


          12 August 2010

          Mobile access to '@ the library' blog

          QR code for blog
          To access this blog using a smartphone or camera phone, just download QR-Code Reader software from your phone's App store, then scan the QR Code (Quick Response mobile barcode) image to open it in the phone's browser.  The icon can then be saved as a screen shortcut, for quick later access.

          You can also track this blog by subscribing to one of the feed services listed at the foot of the right-hand column.

          Future posts will cover mobile access to e-resources.

          11 August 2010

          E-books and national e-textbook projects

          Click to enlarge
          The Library is constantly evaluating new technologies and resources which will benefit users and meet the evolving teaching and research needs of staff and students. One result of this has been a significant and growing investment in e-books, which offer obvious benefits such as unrestricted 24/7 access.

          Over 12,000 permanent access e-books in many subject areas are now held, ranging from individual titles, and series such as Cambridge Collections Online, to reference works eg. in Oxford Reference Online. (This total would exceed 292,000, if the titles in Early English Books Online (EEBO) and Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO) were included).

          Where possible, the Library purchases e-versions of current Multiple Copies and Short Loan items to ensure easier access for users, though many textbooks are not available as e-books yet, due to publishers’ concerns about the impact on print sales.

          Local interest in e-books is high, as evidenced by St Andrews providing the second highest number of responses, from Scottish Universities, to the recent JISC National Observatory E-book Project exit survey.  The Library was involved in this 2007-2009 project which examined the many issues surrounding the future provision of textbooks in e-book format. The final report is now available and makes interesting reading.

          Phase 2 of the follow-up Study on the Economic Impact of e-Textbook Business Models Trial involved eight leading textbook publishers, three e-book providers and ten University libraries working together to test a range of sustainable business models for e-textbooks. This phase monitored the impact on print sales of the e-book titles made available free, to UK Universities, as part of the initial project.  St Andrews was the only Scottish University Library to be involved in Phase 2.

          So far, the data suggests that availability of e-versions has little impact on print sales and that e-textbooks act as a backup to print, at present, and will co-exist. JISC Collections is encouraging publishers to think of e-textbooks as a new and different market, and these findings are likely to inform any future developments.  The report of Phase 2 will be available shortly, and will be publicised here.

          9 August 2010

          Need copies of TV programmes for teaching and research?

          TRILT, the Television and Radio Index for Learning and Teaching, lists programmes back to 1995, and supplements BoB (Box of Broadcasts) National, the TV and radio online streaming service which covers programmes back to 2006.

          Login to TRILT with your University account details, identify programmes from BBC1-4, ITV1, C4 or C5, and request a DVD copy, if available.  Once received, these are held in the Library's extensive DVD collection on Level 3, and details added to SAULCAT.  They can be borrowed for teaching.

          6 August 2010

          Wiley Interscience becomes Wiley Online Library - unavailable 7-8 August

          Wiley Interscience is being replaced by a new, enhanced platform - Wiley Online Library - this weekend.

          To ease the transition, there will be a period of unavailability between 09.00 am on Saturday, 7 August -17.00 pm on Sunday, 8 August.  Wiley apologises for the inconvenience caused by this necessary period of downtime. For information about the new platfom, see: Wiley Online Library

          NB: any references to 'Wiley InterScience' or 'Blackwell Synergy' in existing teaching materials should be replaced by 'Wiley Online Library'

          4 August 2010

          Mass Observation Online database

          Blackpool's crowded sands
          Described as 'one of the great treasure troves of twentieth-century British history', Mass Observation Online covers the cultural and social history of Britain between 1937-1972. University staff and students have permanent access to this important resource.
          Over 3,000 File Reports provide the findings of nearly every Mass Observation study between 1937-1955, and a wide range of topics are covered through interviews, conversations, surveys, diary entries, etc., - consumerism, branding and fashion, women in work, the birth of the welfare state, anti-Semitism and anti-communism, the growth of secularism and popular culture (radio, television and cinema), sex, marriage, and the family, as well as attitudes to war, politics and America, Russia and Europe.

          3 August 2010

          New e-Resource - Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome

          Permanent, unlimited access to the Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome is now available. This important reference work provides a comprehensive overview of the major cultures of the classical Mediterranean world - Greek, Hellenistic, and Roman - from the Bronze Age to 5th Century CE.

          NB: alternative access through Oxford Reference Online allows cross-searching with other reference titles eg. Oxford Dictionary of the Classical World, Oxford Companion to Classical Civilization, etc.

          All titles are listed individually, in SAULCAT