E-LIBRARY UNIT: -
The term ‘electronic library’ is being used here in broad terms to mean a collection of networked digital information resources and associated technical and managerial infrastructure. The electronic library is assumed to include data and metadata in various formats which are created or assembled in order to provide a service to end users. The terms ‘electronic library’, ‘e-library’, and ‘digital library’ are used as synonyms.
An electronic library (colloquially referred to as a digital library) is a focused collection of digital objects that can include text, visual material, audio material, video material, stored as electronic media formats (as opposed to print, microform, or other media), along with means for organizing, storing, and retrieving the files and media contained in the library collection.
The Umaru Musa Yar’adua University Electronic Library is the busiest e-resources section, that maintains resources and services throughout its four (4) scattered e-resources units. In an effort to improve productivity and increase efficiency of information control and dissemination, relevant ICT facilities such as computers, internet connectivity etc. were adequately provided.
University education has been transformed by electronic infrastructure and connectivity in order to enhance the quality of higher institutions. Consequently, the Umaru Musa Yar’adua, University library has embarked on a library automation project.
The Library chose KOHA software because of its enhanced features with Library standards and protocols that ensure migration to any other Library system in future.
Koha ILS also known as Koha LMS is an integrated set of applications designed to perform the business and other technical functions of library, such as acquisition, cataloguing, and the provision of access to public catalog.
Having been implemented in 2010 with an earlier version of Koha on windows 2.2.9(WAMP system), the library automation project was revived by upgrading the windows version to the latest Linux version 3.6.0. (LAMP system) in 2012.
Essentially, Koha is an open source integrated Library System (ILS) for automating any library system which supports MARC2 and UNIMARC bibliographic records. Koha is a web-based ILS, with SQL database (MySql preferred) backend, cataloguing data stored in MARC and accessible via Zebra search engine and Z39.50
Koha Software is free. It has the following features of integrated Library system (ILS).
- Patron Management.
- Branch management.
Functions of e-library Units
The e-library serves as the main e-resources section of the Library by providing the following:-
- Control function.
- Support function.
The Control function performed by the e-library ranges from
(a) Formulation of e-library rules and regulations.
(b) Specification of e-services to be rendered as to how and when.
While the support functions provided by the e-library are divided into two
(a) Technical Support which is the aspect of e-services rendered in the e-library that involve the provision of hardware and software as well as their configuration as are required to meet the informational, research, recreational and educational needs of users. Secondly, the technical support service is rendered, to users either directly or indirectly in the form of repair, maintenance, upgrading, updating and troubleshooting the available hardware and softwares.
(b) User support services are those services rendered directly to users as outlined below.
The e-services rendered for the educational, research, informational, and recreational needs of users ranges from:-
(i) OPAC services
(ii) Web access services
(iii) Access to online periodicals.
(iv) Access to online bibliographic databases e.g. :
- 50 gateway
- World Catalog
(v) Internet access services
(vi) User orientation
(vii) Access to online IRs e.g. :
(viii) Access to online databases e.g. DOAJ, Jstor, EBSCOhost etc.
Apart from locating documents or information via the e-library, most users come to the library in need of a documents (book or journal) that may be located by using the manual catalogue or the electronic catalog (OPAC) using:
- Author- using the name of the author (corporate in some cases)
- Subject- searching via the known subject or discipline of document
- Title- all books and periodicals are published under known titles.
- Class mark- all books accessioned and processed on the shelf are assigned classmark.
Lending service as observed is perhaps the most important service provided by UMYU library. It is essentially a social service in which users of the library have the privilege of borrowing library materials either for reading or consultation at their convenience. Apart from books, other resources in UMYU library that can be loaned out include such materials as audiocassettes, videotapes and projectors. To promote equal and fair access to library holdings, lending out library materials is considered to be very fundamental.
In UMYU library, all bonafide users are expected to register with the main Library where they are issued with their borrowers’ tickets. This enables the user to borrow books for a stipulated period of time, renewable for the same initial loan period twice. Senior staff members are allowed six tickets and the period of loan is one month renewable twice for other two subsequent months if demanded. This regulation is subject to periodic review. Students can no longer use their tickets at the end of their course or when they are withdrawn or expelled from the University.
Other Duties of Circulation Librarian
- Monitoring materials for damage and taking them to the appropriate staff to repair or replace
- Guiding the users on how to use the library Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) at Circulation Section.
- Collecting statistics of books in the circulation section.
- Library registration for staff and students.
The circulation section is the backbone of the library it can also be said that this section has the unique role for providing information to the users. It consists of books from various disciplines such as education, psychology, library and information science, political science, sociology, Hausa, Economics, Accounting, and Geography. Users have been provided with the OPAC terminals at the entrance of the library where they can search for their required materials in any language. Moreover, the UMYU library is about to turned its circulation transactions online with the use of OPAC in which the computer will be used to check in and out information resources.