What is Special Collections?

What is Special Collections? (And why is it locked up?)

by Jason Stuart, Reference Librarian

In 2013, Special Collections hosted the Living Word exhibition of ancient Biblical manuscripts.

In 2013, Special Collections hosted the Living Word exhibition of ancient Biblical manuscripts.

The University Library’s Special Collections & Archives are a treasure trove of unique primary source materials and artifacts. Researchers have travelled from all over the United States and Great Britain to unlock the secrets of our vault.

Although the Library’s Special Collections is becoming an important destination for 20th Century Christian history research, the 2014 Customer Satisfaction Survey suggests that most students are unaware of Special Collections. Here are two of the comments we received:

  • “I have not used this service.”
  • “What is Special Collections? Isn’t that the area that’s always closed off and unavailable?”
The Greek amphora in Special Collections has been dated approximately to the time of Christ.

The Greek amphora in Special Collections has been dated approximately to the time of Christ.

So what exactly is in there? Just a few of the highlights include the John Wimber Collection, the Rev. Dennis J. Bennett Papers, and the William Standish Reed, M.D., Collection. All three of these men were important leaders in the Charismatic / Renewal Movements of the mid-to-late 20th Century. The archives contain memorabilia and documents chronicling the history of CBN and Regent University. Some of the other notable artifacts include a collection of early English printed Bibles and a 2,000-year-old Greek amphora.

Items from Special Collections & Archives show up in search results from the Library’s catalog and One Search. Since these materials are rare, unique, and often priceless, they are locked away to protect them from thieves (sticky-fingered scholars included), as well as the damaging effects of light, humidity, and other environmental hazards.

If you would like to conduct research in Special Collections or simply want to view some of the treasures housed there, contact a member of the Special Collections staff. For more information about this service, including an introductory video, policies, and contact information, see our Special Collections webpages.

Book Art Contest at the Library

ALA_NLW2015_375x474National Library Week is April 12-18, and this year the theme is Unlimited Possibilities @ Your Library ®. As part of our celebration of this joyous observance, the Library is coordinating a Book Art Contest for the most creative use of discarded books from the Library collection.

A Contest for Destroying Books?!
Libraries regularly weed books because they have been replaced by newer editions, have been damaged beyond repair, or because they no longer support the research or enrichment needs of the community. We are currently discarding a large number of bound periodicals that our experience indicates we will be unable to sell or donate to another organization. Rather than recycle them, we are inviting the Regent and CBN communities to give them new life as works of art.

Rules & Eligibility
Basically, the only rules are that your creation must include old Library books be received by 3:00 pm on April 8, 2015. Members of the Regent and CBN communities may participate individually or as a group. For a complete list of rules, fine print, as well as an entry form, see our official contest rules page.

The possibilities are endless, and it’s not as hard as you think. There are a number of excellent tutorials on YouTube, such as this one:

Winner info!
All entries will be judged by a blind jury, and the winners will be announced on April 13th at 3:00 pm in the Library Gallery at our National Library Week kickoff.
Prizes for the winners will be: 1st place: $150, 2nd place: $100, and 3rd place: $50. During National Library Week, visitors to the exhibition will be able to vote for a “People’s Choice Award,” the winner of which will receive a $50 Amazon gift card.

For more information, please see our book art contest webpages or contact Stephanie Lowell at steplow@regent.edu.

New Film Database: Ambrose Digital Video Collection

Watch acclaimed BBC documentaries, such as A History of Christianity.

Watch acclaimed BBC documentaries, such as A History of Christianity.

The Library has a subscription to a truly remarkable streaming video database. Ambrose Digital Video Collection contains nearly 600 educational videos in all subjects. Included in this collection are established classics, such as the BBC Complete Shakespeare Plays and David Attenborough’s Living Planet, as well as some of the best contemporary documentaries, such as Great African American Authors and Fracking: America’s Energy Revolution. The Collection continues to grow, with new videos being added each month.

In addition to outstanding content, Ambrose Digital includes a number of value-adding features, including:

  • Advanced streaming technology to ensure the highest possible image quality.
  • Synchronized, searchable closed captioning.
  • Choice of 8 citation styles for each film.
  • Compatibility on all devices.

The Library is confident that the entire Regent community will find Ambrose Digital Video a welcome new resource for research, course development, and enrichment. To begin using the database, click here.

The Library doesn’t have what I need!

by Melody Detar, Divinity Librarian

But I need that article!

But I need that article!

Nearly all students have experienced the frustration of learning about a book or article that is perfectly suited for their research – only to discover the Library does not own it. On the 2014 Customer Satisfaction Survey, we received several comments from students who have experienced this situation, such as these:

  • “As I can only access the e-version, there are many resources which I need that are not available online.”
  • “The Library has a great selection of resources; however it doesn’t always have the journal publications or books that I’ve needed for my research.”
  • “The databases don’t always pull up the articles needed for research.”

So when you are conducting research and discover a book that would be perfect for your project or an article with a citation but no full text, what should you do? Here are some tips:

When you can’t find the full-text for an article:
Sometimes, you may come across information about a journal article in one database, but find that it does not have the full text. The Full Text Journal Finder is a tool for determining whether the Regent University Library has the full-text of a particular periodical (journal, magazine, or newspaper) in any of our 170+ databases. Simply type the name of the journal (not the article) in the search bar to see if and where the periodical is available in our online databases or in print.

When you need a book or article not in the Regent Library:
If you need a book that is not in our catalog, or an article from a periodical that does not show up in the Full Text Journal Finder, request it through InterLibrary Loan (ILL). In most cases, our ILL team can procure the articles you need and deliver them to you in PDF in 1-2 business days. Most book requests take under a week to fulfill. Distance students can also use ILL to have books shipped from the Regent Library to their home at no charge. The only cost to you is to ship them back if you will not be visiting the Regent campus before the due date. (Keep in mind, we allow up to five renewals as long as they are not needed by another patron.) Distance students may now request that up to two books per term be shipped to them from libraries other than Regent.

The librarians are committed to supporting the research and studies of the Regent community, so if there is a book or journal that supports your long-term research projects or teaching, let us know! We understand that borrowing items via ILL is sufficient for many course projects, but major research projects or new courses necessitate that we have the book on hand. We are happy to take requests for book and journal purchases here.

Image Credit: Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest, “Frustrated Irish girl looking at computer,” accessed 11 Mar 2015, http://quest.eb.com/search/154_2893513/1/154_2893513/cite

Book Discussion with Dr. Michael Palmer

Marilynne Robinson is one of the great living American novelists. She is also a Christian who takes theology seriously. Lila, published last October, is her third novel set in the fictional prairie town of Gilead, Iowa. The narrative focuses on the courtship and marriage of the town’s pastor, Rev. John Ames with Lila, a drifter and itinerant worker who shows up in his church one day because it’s the only available shelter from the rain. The couple is brought together by their appreciation of the beauty of nature and the possibility of grace. The novel ends with the birth of their son.

On Thursday, March 26 at 12:00, Dr. Michael Palmer, Professor of Philosophy in the School of Divinity, will lead a discussion of Lila in the Library Conference Room. Distance students and faculty are invited to join in via Google Hangouts: https://plus.google.com/hangouts/_/event/c0lnc83s5ok7tecuqdcnjg0mcno?authuser=0&eid=100028809078157626561&hl=en.

For more information about this or other literature events at the Library, see the Library Book Club webpage, or contact Harold Henkel at harohen@regent.edu.