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Library Survey Response: Answers To Your Questions

LibQual Survey FAQs

The library doesn’t have all of the resources I need to support my research in a particular subject area. What are my options?

We would like to know what resources you need.

  • For a consultation to discuss your needs contact the librarian for your subject area.  The subject areas are listed on the Subject Librarians page.
  • The library can obtain copies of article or borrow books from other libraries at no cost to you. To submit a request go to the Interlibrary Loan page.

I can find almost everything I need by searching Google, why should I use the library?

Google is useful, but it doesn’t provide the same full-text access to millions of scholarly journals, magazines, ebooks and other resources that the library does.  The library subscribes to individual journals and databases that have content that is not available on the free web. Because the library’s databases and journal collections are targeted to UAA and APU disciplines you will find the materials you need for your research more quickly and easily.

What library resources/services are available to students?

The library houses over a million books and subscribes to thousands of journals and newspapers.  It provides access to hundreds of online databases containing full-text articles, which you can access from campus or home.

There are copiers and scanners, desks and tables at which to study, and study rooms that can be reserved for group use. The library has wireless access, over 40 research computers for walk-up use, and even laptops and iPads that can be borrowed for in-library use. These are just a few of the resources and services available to UAA/APU-affiliated users.

Library staff provides in-person and online instruction in the use of library resources and services. There is also a Reference Desk located in the great room on the first floor of the library that is staffed with librarians who can help patrons find the materials they need for their research, study or pleasure reading. A good way to learn more about the library is to take the library Virtual Tour or self-guided Audio Tour. The audio tour is also available on mp3 at the library Circulation Desk. Please visit the Library Website to find out more about these resources and services.

Why am I sometimes asked to pay for articles?

The library does not ask patrons to pay for the articles we offer through our databases or through Interlibrary Loan. Should you ever be asked for payment of an article: STOP

  • Check the library’s Journal Title Finder to see if the library has access to the article you are looking for.
  • If the library does not own it please contact Interlibrary Loan. They will order the article for you and deliver it to you electronically.
  • If you would like someone to walk you through the process, or if you have questions please Ask Us.

Sometimes I can’t access the most recent journal articles in the library’s databases. Why?

Publishers sometimes block online access via databases to the most recent journal issues.  Please place a request through our Interlibrary Loan service and we will find and deliver full-text articles to you electronically. UAA and APU students, faculty and staff are offered this service at no cost to them.

I was unable to access a journal that the library says it has. What should I do?

You may report problems or request immediate assistance using our Ask Us service. It will put you in contact with a librarian at the Reference Desk, who is trained and eager to help you with questions such as this!  They can help you work through the problem and get the item you need.

Why does the library have so many older books?

The library must meet the needs of many different patrons.  Faculty and researchers require in depth coverage of a topic, including what has been written in the past.  Many titles may be classic resources that don’t change with time.  However, it may look like we have a lot of older books when you browse the library book collection because we are making a concerted effort to buy electronic books that can be found through the Library's QuickSearch and (of course) will not show up on the library shelves.  If you prefer to only search the electronic book collection, that is easy to do on our eBooks page.

As always we look for ways to update and focus our collections within the constraints of our limited budget.  Ongoing inflationary increases to our budget the past few years and one-time money allocated to address library survey response concerns have recently allowed us to allocate additional funds toward current book and media purchases.  Plans are also being developed to analyze and strategically weed the book collection in the near future.

I’m looking for a particular book title and the library doesn’t own it. What can I do to obtain the book?

If the Consortium Library doesn’t have an item you need, whether it be a book chapter, entire book, journal article, etc., we will get it for you from another library through Interlibrary Loan.  All UAA and APU students, staff, and faculty have free access to this service. You can also recommend a purchase via our Purchase Request Form.

Can I get textbooks from the library?

The Consortium Library does not purchase textbooks.  We could not afford to purchase every text required for courses at UAA and APU. We would also have a problem making them available to students in a fair and equitable manner.  However, instructors will occasionally place resources on reserve for student use, which may include a copy of the course textbook.

You can find instructions for locating these types of items on our Course Reserves page. Further information about textbooks along with resources for locating the best prices can be found in our Textbooks Guide.