In preparation for this year’s survey of our users’ satisfaction with the Library, we have been taking a final look at the 2018 Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS).
One thing we noticed that particularly gave us pause is the frustration that sometimes occurs when an article is not available from our databases in full-text. Here are two representative comments:
- “Some resources are not available so I have to go and purchase materials.”
- “Many times I will search for an article and many of the links that come up require a purchase to view it.”
The Library recommends that students and faculty never purchase articles or dissertations from database vendors. The reason is that there is almost always a quick way of obtaining the item without paying for it.
Whenever you get a citation or abstract without the full-text, the first step should be to check the Full-Text Journal Finder to find out whether the journal in question is available in full-text from a different database.
If none of the Library’s databases has the article you need, you can request it though our InterLibrary Loan service. This automated, easy-to-use service is very fast. Most journal articles are delivered to the requester in 2-3 days.
The librarians strive to use our resources budget to provide the most online content possible, with InterLibrary Loan providing expeditious access to what we don’t have. If you are ever in doubt about the quickest way to get full-text access to an article, contact the reference librarians.
One of the most common causes of accessibility problems with Library online resources is web browser incompatibility. The librarians and staff regularly receive calls from students unable to view or download full-text articles or view online video. Often a simple change of web browser solves the problem.
Readers interested in full reviews of the current crop of web browsers can read this July 18, 2018 article from Digital Trends, but here are three basic tips based on recent experience at the Library:
- Both Microsoft’s old Internet Explorer and new Edge browsers are problematic and are not recommended for searching and retrieving Library resources.
- All Library users should have both Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome installed on their computers. Unfortunately, at this time, it is not possible to recommend one browser for all research needs. Some article, ebook, and video databases work better with Firefox and some better with Chrome.
- In November 2017, Mozilla released its “Quantum” version of Firefox. The old version seems increasingly susceptible to problems, so if you haven’t already, be sure to install Quantum; like all Mozilla programs, it’s completely free.
A note to Safari users: Apple’s Safari browser appears to work well with Library databases, but we still recommend keeping both Firefox and Chrome on your computers.
by Melody Detar, Divinity Librarian
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.comsearch154_28935131154_2893513cite