Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Welcome! to all New and Returning Students.

We are still in the midst of shifting the collection and removing boxes of journals that are leaving the library - but the computers are all accessible and it is relatively easy to find whatever you need. A shipment of new books has arrived just in time to welcome all new and returning students. Come in and browse when your orientation schedule brings you through the science center!

Among the new books are Stephen Hawking's A Briefer History of Time and a visually remarkable book by David Attenborough, Life in the Undergrowth. It is full of incredible photographs of invertebrates of every description, in the act of preying on other creatures, devouring vegetation, mating, caring for larva, building nests and traps - quite a stunning collection. It complements nicely Naskrecki's The Smaller Majority, also in the science library.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Collection is on Wheels! From Mudd to Science

A professional moving company is in the midst of moving 297 shelves or 891 linear feet of science related materials from the main library in Mudd to the science library. More than half of the material comes from the collection on Mudd's 4th level, and increases the number of volumes we already have in the the Q, S, and T classes of the Library of Congress classification. Items classed in Q include general science, science education and biography, philosophy and history of science, and social aspects of science. It's a fascinating, interdisciplinary collection, from Aristotle's Physics to Sisters in science: conversations with black women scientists about race, gender, and their passion for science.

A significant number of the "Q books" are devoted to systems science, artificial intelligence, cybernetics, and older writings (1980s!) on machine theory; e.g., The Recursive Universe: cosmic complexity and the limits of scientific knowledge.

The S and T volumes represent an equally wide-ranging collection of books and serials. The S class includes agriculture, aquaculture, plant culture, forestry, animal and veterinary science, and, new to the science library, hunting sports.

Only three portions of the T class are coming from main to the science library: TD environmental technology; TN mining and metallurgy; and TP chemical technology. Those classes are already well-represented here and the materials from main will integrate easily into our existing collection.

Completely new to the science library are 136 shelves of government documents classified with SuDoc numbers (Superintendent of Documents classes A, C13.10, C30, C55, EP and I49). These classes are the print documents from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, National Institute of Standards and Technology, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Serivce. Microfiche from these agencies will remain in the main library.

The transfer of materials from Mudd to science is one of the first steps in a major reorganization in the main library, while consolidating more of the science materials in the Science Center. A primary goal is recreating the main level of Mudd as the Academic Commons, which requires moving large portions of the reference and government document collections to other locations.

Making room for the materials from Mudd necessitated removal of long runs of journals and Chemical Abstracts (post-1966) from our compact shelving. We targeted for withdrawal or transfer to remote storage (CONStor) all print volumes that are duplicated online in JSTOR, as well as selected titles that are in the OhioLINK Electronic Journal Center.

Those volumes are now in hundreds of boxes, awaiting shipment either to CONStor or overseas. Volumes being withdrawn because they are already in CONStor (deposited by one of the other libraries of the Five Colleges of Ohio) will be shipped elsewhere. We are working with a firm in Cleveland who will arrange transport of our journals to libraries in Albania. Read more in Reading Girl Speaks.

There are still plenty of places to read and work in the library, despite dozens of book carts in the aisles and boxes stacked along walls and on tables. The library should look completely normal before new student orientation at the end of this month, when you can enjoy browsing all of the expanded, integrated collection.