Friday, February 09, 2007

Ball State University’s Bracken Library Reorganizes First Floor Newspaper Area to Promote Quiet Study

The reorganization of Bracken Library’s First Floor area of current newspapers is just in time for the opening of the Bookmark Café @ Bracken Library.

For many students, faculty, and others, hot beverages such as tea or coffee go hand in hand with reading the newspaper and/or studying. Over the past few years, many print newspaper subscriptions have been migrated to online electronic format and are available now to students and faculty through Access World News, a searchable and browseable full text database that provides on/off-campus access 24/7 to over 1,730 national and international titles. For example, the resource features Muncie’s The Star Press, Marion’s Chronicle-Tribune, and Indianapolis’ The Indianapolis Star and nine other Indiana newspapers.

Over time, the University Libraries have reduced the number of paper subscriptions since they are available through Access World News. In an effort to optimize the square footage of the Current Newspapers area, the Periodical/Reserve/Microforms staff recently modernized the space to include updated newspaper racks and reconfigured the area to include several more comfortable chairs and tables.

“We wanted to provide a comfortable and quiet place for students and faculty to catch up on news of interest to them,” says Jan Vance, Periodical/Reserve/Microforms Supervisor. The Current Newspapers area is located just north of the Current Periodicals shelves and provides a less-trafficked space for quiet reading, study, and/or contemplation.

Ball State University’s carpenters built the wooden newspaper racks. These attractive racks hold 35 daily print newspapers that are provided on wooden sticks to keep loose sections together and are arranged alphabetically with informative signage.

The Current Newspapers print titles include a number of international newspapers for those interested in maintaining current awareness abroad, particularly international students. For example, in addition to titles of local interest such as The Indianapolis Star, The Indianapolis Recorder, and The Ball State Daily News, there are newspapers from China, Germany, Korea, and France, among others. Older issues of the current newspapers back to three months are displayed on the metal shelves directly behind the University Libraries New Books and Bestsellers. All are within a few paces of the comfortable chairs and tables.

For more information, contact Christy A. Groves, University Libraries’ Head of Access Services,, (765) 285-3330.


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