Library aims to update offerings

February 11, 2009 — by Apeksha Sharma and Shannon Galvin

With a recent $5,000 grant from the School Site Council, librarian Kevin Heyman is determined to bring the school into the 21st century. The library is introducing two new online databases called OPAC and a bibliography generator as part of its mission to improve its resources.

The new databases have been used by many other high schools for about 10 years. Students can also use these systems to familiarize themselves with other databases in preparation for research at the college level.

“When you find yourself in college, in the next two or three years,” said Heyman, “you find that there are dozens—if not hundreds—of databases that you are going to have to know how to use from the university libraries, and so this is the time to learn how to start using them.”

Not only do these databases give access to huge amounts of scholarly information, they also have research not otherwise available on the Internet for free.

“It’s more scholarly and more appropriate for doing the types of assignments that we do here,” said Heyman, saying it’s far better than just “Googling” a subject.

Students will have easier access to these databases than that they do at the public library because they do not need to have a library card to use it, just a student ID card. Teachers can use the databases in their classes or students can come and do research in the library.

In addition to the new databases, the school has also added a new program to help students create works cited pages for projects. The program, called NoodleBib, allows students to easily enter in the information of their sources into the generator instead of using thick style guidebooks to format bibliographies.

“My plan is to create a library that has all of the resources students need in order to complete their assignments,” said Heyman.

“Everything that is necessary should be available in books or through online databases.”

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