Keeping Print Collections in the Mind of the Researcher

Ms Jennifer Murphy1

1Victoria University, Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

Introduction

In 2020 library buildings are closed in Melbourne due to ongoing restrictions and print collections are not accessible. Victoria University Melbourne has a relatively small Special Collections (https://www.vu.edu.au/library/about-the-library/special-collections-archives) area within the library but is it rich in content. There are strong threads of radical literature through the Collections, with women and urban planning also featured. There are also Collections that give you a picture of the people who donated them and others, such as the PNG and Pacific Collection focus on Australia’s neighbours.

Methods

The library team at Victoria University looked for a way to promote the collections so possibilities of future use remained in the mind of researchers, and to highlight that, although not accessible at the moment, the collections provide valuable research material. Using the Springshare Libguide platform with the carousel functionality lists were made of individual collections and book cover images were sourced from many online locations.

Results

On an existing VU Special Collections – How to access and use (https://libraryguides.vu.edu.au/VUSpecialCollections/Exhibition) Library Guide book covers are displayed in themes with additional links users can explore to gain further understanding of the book itself, the author, or the time period in which the book was written. A different individual collection will be highlighted each month until the end of 2020. Options for reusing the carousels are also being explored.

Conclusion

Promotion of the exhibition through the library website, social media, and internal messaging is keeping the print Victoria University Library Special Collections in the mind of researchers.


Biography:

Jennifer Murphy is the Educational Services Librarian at Victoria University, Melbourne, where she provides leadership, innovation and expertise in the development of library and information services to support the University’s learning and teaching activities.  She has worked in the academic library sector for 10 years. She is interested in the connections between teaching and research, and how collaborations within institutions lead to a positive environment for students.

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