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Mobile Library

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Alden Library offers mobile information site and text-a-librarian service

Alden Library is going mobile, thanks to its new mobile information site and text-a-librarian service.

The services are designed to allow the increasing number of students and faculty with mobile devices or smart phones easy access to library information and research assistance, according to Assistant Dean for Research and Education Services Kelly Broughton.

The Beta version of Alden Library’s mobile information site, which currently supports iPhones, most Blackberrys, Palm and Android devices, was launched in September.

Mobile visitors to the library’s homepage will now automatically be redirected to the mobile information site, which offers quick links to library hours, contact information, recent news, Café BiblioTech drink specials and more.

A second service developed to increase library accessibility is the Text-a-Librarian service.

Using Text-a-Librarian, students can get quick answers to all library related questions, such as hours, call numbers or movie availability. Questions may be texted to 352-354-2733.

Three weeks into fall quarter, the Text-a-Librarian service was receiving about half as many inquiries as Alden Library’s Email-a-Librarian service, but Alden staff expects texting to grow as students become aware of the service, said Broughton.

“We know that many students prefer text to email, but also, it of course depends on the nature of their information need,” she explained. “It’s hard to ask and answer complicated questions via text.  But text can be a great way to get started or get referred to the right expert.”

The Text-a-Librarian service is available 24 hours a day, five days a week (from noon on Sunday through midnight on Friday), as well as Saturdays from 10 a.m. to midnight.

In addition to Alden’s new texting service, students may also reach library services by phone, instant message, Skype, e-mail, online chat, and the library’s social media sites, including Facebook and Twitter. For details, visit http://www.library.ohiou.edu/ask/index.html.