Category Archives: Services

Information about services provided by the USMA Library

All Library Online Services Restored

Update: All online services should be restored as of 1000 on 19 February.

Due to an air conditioning failure in our datacenter on post, our library catalog server is not available. Once the repairs have been completed, we will bring the server back online and resume all suspended services.

Until repairs are complete, the following services are unavailable:

  • The main library catalog although Scout will continue to function. Some links between Scout and our catalog server will not function properly.
  • We are unable to authenticate off-site users to licensed resources
  • Online renewals
  • Circulation of items will continue, though using a manual process

Spring 2014 Library Service Announcements

Print Management System Deploys in the Library

In an effort to encourage and promote good printing practices, the Library
will be deploying a new system called PaperCut effective Monday, 13 January
2014. Systems like PaperCut are installed on nearly all other college and
university campuses as a tool to help manage printing. Here are some of the
specifics that users who print to library printers will need to know as we
move to the new system:

  • Public printers in the library will be attached to the new system and
    anyone printing to those printers will need to map the printers through the
    proper print server. Effective Friday, 10 January 2014, the old print queues
    will be deleted. At that time, all users will be required to map the new
    printers. More information on how to do this is available at the reference
    or circulation desks in the Library.
  • Cadets will be initially assigned individual print allowances of 300 pages
    per semester. When jobs are printed, the total number of pages printed are
    decremented from the total. In the case that a user meets or exceeds their
    total, they can request additional allowance be given. Faculty and staff
    will not have specific quotas assigned.
  • There will be no charge to cadets for printing allowances, however
    printing in the library is a service provided to support academic work. Jobs
    printed in the library should be academic in nature.
  • Individual print jobs should be fifty pages or less and should be printed
    on letter size only. In the case that exceptions are required to these
    parameters, users may speak with a library staff person.
  • After submitting a print job to be printed, users will need to release the
    job using their CAC at the new workstation located next to our printers.
    This will help eliminate unclaimed print jobs. Jobs that are not claimed
    within one hour will be cleaned out of the queue automatically.

Our goal is to improve awareness of printing and help encourage thought
about what needs to be printed and what does not. We will continue to
provide free printing in support of cadet academic work and this system is
not a step toward changing that policy. We do want to expand awareness that
printing is an expensive service to provide that has the capability of
generating significant waste. In times of restricted resources, managing
services like printing efficiently is a priority for the entire community.

As always, cadets should allow plenty of time to print jobs in the library.
Questions regarding this new system may be directed to the reference or
circulation desks.

RefWorks No Longer Available

Due to technical issues that impair reliable and full use of the citation
management tool RefWorks on the USMA network, USMA Library has not renewed
our contract to provide RefWorks as an online bibliographic and citation
management tool. This change was effective 1 January 2014. Based on service
usage data, we know this has impacted only a small subset of users. We are
continuing to review alternative products that provide this service and USMA
Library maintains a guide on citation management
(http://usma.libguides.com/content.php?pid=180086&sid=1514951) that
contains information about different citation formats and tools. Specific
tools that can replace RefWorks include EasyBib and Zotero. Users who wish
to continue to use the RefWorks service can continue their account as a
personal subscription, or export their data for use in other products.
Please contact your library liaison for additional questions regarding
citation management tools and services.

Security and Access Changes for Jefferson Hall

With the revised access policies implemented in November, access to
Jefferson Hall is now restricted to cadets, faculty, and staff. All other
visitors (including graduates, parents, and other cadet guests) must be
escorted by appropriately credentialed and authorized personnel. The east
entrance door is no longer a public entrance or exit. All building guests
should enter and exit via the west or south doors.

Bags, laptops, or other personal effects should never be left unattended in
Jefferson Hall. All unattended bags will be reported to the MPs and screened
appropriately.

Guidance on Library Assistance for Cadets

One of the best ways for cadets to get an extra leg up on their academic
work is to partner with a librarian to better take advantage of the services
and materials available through the USMA Library. Personal appointments with
librarians are available for consultation and guidance. When possible,
setting appointments between 0745-1630 will ensure the availability of the
best subject specialist, though evening appointments can also be arranged.
To arrange a time to meet, stop by or email the Reference Desk staff with
your name and topic of research.

Stay Connected to the Library

We’d love to keep you up-to-date throughout the year on library news and
programs. You can follow our blog: http://blog.usmalibrary.org/, like us on
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/USMALibrary, or follow us on Twitter:
http://www.twitter.com/USMALibrary.

New Print Management System Deploys 13 January 2014

In an effort to encourage and promote good printing practices, the Library will be deploying a new system called PaperCut to help us oversee printing next month. Systems like PaperCut are installed on nearly all other college and university campuses as a tool to help manage printing and encourage good printing practices. Here are some of the specifics that users who print to library printers will need to know as we move to the new system:

  • Public printers in the library will be attached to the new system and anyone printing to those printers will need to map the printers through the proper print server.
  • Users will be initially assigned individual print allowances of 300 pages per semester. When jobs are printed, the total number of pages printed are decremented from the total. In the case that a user meets or exceeds their total, they can request additional allowance be given.
  • There will be no charge to cadets for printing allowances, however printing in the library is a service provided to support academic work. Jobs printed in the library should be academic in nature.
  • Individual print jobs should be fifty pages or less and should be printed on letter size only. In the case that exceptions are required to these parameters, users may speak with a library staff person.
  • After submitting a print job to be printed, users will need to release the job using their CAC at the new workstation located next to our printers. This will help eliminate unclaimed print jobs. Jobs that are not claimed within one hour will be cleaned out of the queue automatically.

Our goal is to improve awareness of printing and help encourage thought about what needs to be printed and what does not. We are not seeking to make money or even seeking cost recovery in providing the service. We do want to expand awareness that printing is an expensive service to provide that has the capability of generating significant waste. In times of restricted resources, managing services like printing efficiently is a priority for the entire community.

Library Adjusts Hours for Exams and Winter Leave

Hours of service for the USMA Library and Jefferson Hall will be adjusted to support term end exams and winter leave. Notable changes or exceptions are listed below. A full list of all operating hours is available on our website.

Notable changes include:

  • Fri 13 DEC – We open early at 0600 to support the modified class day.
  • Sat 14 DEC – We are closed for Army/Navy.
  • Sun-Thur 15-19 DEC – Regular Hours
  • Fri 20 DEC – We are open late to 2315 in support of TEEs.
  • Sat 21 DEC – We have modified hours 0700-1500.

Between Sunday 22 DEC and Saturday 4 JAN, we will operate Winter Leave hours:

  • CLOSED – Sundays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays
  • Open 0700-1630 on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.

We will open for spring term hours on Sunday 5 JAN at 1300.

Regular  Special Collections Reading Room hours will be suspended from 17 December through 3 January.  USMA patrons may contact Suzanne Christoff at x3259 regarding accommodation.

Library Discontinuing RefWorks Due to Technical Issues

As previously announced on 22 November, due to technical issues that impair reliable and full use of RefWorks on the USMA network, USMA Library will not be renewing our contract to provide this service as an online bibliographic and citation management tool. This change will be effective 1 January 2014. Based on service usage data, we anticipate this will only impact a small subset of users. We are continuing to review alternative products to provide this service and USMA Library maintains a guide on citation management that contains information about different citation formats and tools. Specific tools that can replace RefWorks include EasyBib and Zotero. Users who wish to continue to use the RefWorks service can continue their account as a personal subscription, or export their data for use in other products. Please contact your library liaison for additional questions regarding citation management tools and services.

Library Offers Evening Research Clinics for Cadets

The library is offering several additional evening clinics this fall for cadets focusing on particular major academic assignments, and our new discovery service Scout. See the full list of dates and locations below. Sessions begin at 2000.

  • Wed 23 Oct – Mil Art Research Tips – Mr. Dacey (JH 401)
  • Thu 7 Nov – Scout Research Tips – Mr. Hankins (JH 514)
  • Wed 20 Nov – SS307 Policy Paper Gov Docs Research Tips – Ms. McConnell (JH 514)

Need some individual research assistance? Just stop by our reference desk anytime in the evening to get your own customized research clinic.

Library Poker Runs: Active (and fun!) Learning in the Library

By Laura Mosher, Reference & Liaison Librarian

Earlier this semester, patrons may have noticed groups of plebes moving quickly through the Library, stopping at various places and engaging in conversations with Library staff members, before zooming off to another location within the building. If you were one of those patrons, you encountered plebes taking either RS 100 or RS 101, the Reading and Study Skills course offered by the Center for Enhanced Performance. As that name implies, these classes help plebes adapt to the fast-paced, highly demanding academic world of West Point with instruction in time management, note-taking, reading comprehension exercises, and tips on coping with stress. One very important aspect of these courses is a Library-oriented lesson, which introduces many of the services and resources the Library offers, and gives the plebes a chance to meet our staff members who are eager and able to help with their research needs throughout their cadet career.

Modeled on motorcycle Poker Runs that are a popular fund-raising activity, the Library Poker Runs call for cadets to team up and visit five checkpoints within the Library, and perform a task at each one. The checkpoints are places where important Library activities take place, such as the Circulation and Reference Desks, or places that highlight collections or functions that all cadets should know about, such as our Special Collections and Archives Reading Room and the Reserve Room. Additionally, one checkpoint provides each cadet team with a Librarian focused on introducing them to the Library’s web page and new single search tool Scout.  After completing their assigned task, each team draws a playing card, and moves on to the next checkpoint, assembling (they hope!) a winning poker hand, and walking away with a prize, courtesy of their Instructor.

Over approximately two weeks’ time this August, September, and October, nineteen sections of RS 100 & 101 were taught in the Library, to a total of 312 cadets! With the dedicated help of almost two dozen staff members from four Library Divisions”, the five checkpoints became places where plebes learned: how to use the self-check machines to borrow books; what to do if they need an item that’s not in our collection; how to use search limiters and subject terms to find materials on their chosen topics; what kinds of primary source materials our Special Collections and Archives Division has to make their history papers more engaging; and how to find the materials that specific Instructors place on Reserve in the Library for the use of all the cadets in their classes.

Instructors and cadets alike have told us that the Poker Runs provide a competitive and highly interactive method of introducing plebes to essential library resources and services, and they enjoy both the learning and the competition –and the prizes!  So the next time you stop in the Library early in the semester, and notice groups of plebes busily moving from place to place with playing cards in their hands you can rest assured that they are not gambling, but learning how the Library can help them with their studies.

 

 

Updates on Microform Reader-Printers and New Scanner

After some maintenance work performed last month on one of our Minolta microform reader-printers, we now have three functioning machines set up on the second floor of the Library’s Periodical Room. Two of the readers have printing capabilities and the third is the spill-over unit of last recourse, which doesn’t print (and sometimes buzzes loudly when powered on) but is usable as a reader.

The two units that print can handle both microfiche and microfilm reels, and the middle unit with a lens change to 87X can also read our old Library of American Civilization cards, although many of the articles have been digitized, and that, of course, is the preferred format.  Thanks to that friendly Masked Man from Moore Wing days, who knew exactly where the burnt out bulb was to be found in the unit that conked out!

 By the way, we now also have a new ScanSnap scanner set up by the west window in the Reference Collection (soon-to-be Display area) on the second floor.  It’s very user friendly – just follow the posted directions in the folder.  One very helpful feature is the capability to scan an original directly to Word so it becomes a writable document.  Check it out when you get a chance.

Michael Arden

 

Some Interlibrary Loan Services Paused

While we have been able to recall staff back to work prior to passage of FY14 appropriations, we are not yet able to incur financial obligations to support services such as interlibrary loan. As a result, requests that involve physical shipment of materials, or copyright clearance fees are currently on hold until appropriations have been passed by Congress and signed by the President.

Interlibrary loan requests that can be filled electronically without cost will continue to be processed.

Borrowing through ConnectNY is once again available and materials requested through that system will be delivered for use as requested.