February 25, 2013 - Pioneer Times Staff Writer

ChengChat: By Nancy Weiner

All are welcome. Even you.

Are you a senior or even a super senior who has never been inside Cheng Library or used any of its resources? Are you a first year student fearful of the shushing librarian? Do you rely on the free internet since it is easier than learning how to use library resources?   Guess what? You are not alone!

As one of the 2012 Top Ten Trends reported by the Association of College & Research Libraries, students identified convenience in accessing resources and information as a top priority. Translation: students often bypass their college libraries in favor of searching the web because it is more convenient and it also provides them with immediate responses. But being faster, free and familiar doesn’t always make something better.

We know using an Internet search engine, such as Google, provides easy access to information.  Keep in mind, not everything that has been published or produced will be located on the Internet.  Most Google results only skim the surface of the massive amount of information available on a topic. Have you ever found a “perfect” source using Google that required you to pay for access to the full text of the source? Guess what?  You do have free access to this information through Cheng Library’s databases and services.

Even better, you can search with Google Scholar – we link to it on our list of library databases. The advantage is that your search results will display a link indicating Full Text @ Cheng Library.  Just click to access resources that are made available to you as a William Paterson University student. In addition, students in First Year Seminar classes this past year were directed to a web page titled “Get More Out of Google”(http://goo.gl/4oPbt).

Like many academic libraries across the country, the staff at Cheng Library is doing everything we can to streamline access to our resources.  We want to make it more convenient for you to find what you need. During the past year, we launched the Cheng Mobile App and Cheng Find, a simplified, but enhanced version of the library catalog.  Now it’s much easier to locate books, DVDs, streaming videos, as well as the nearly 80,000 ebooks that we added to the collection.  Guess what?  Those ebooks, are not going to be freely available to the public – only to the WPU community.

We know that many of you do not want to ask for assistance.  The Cheng librarians have heard from too many students who have spent hours Googling for information unsuccessfully.  In many cases, what they are searching for may only be included in a source such as a library database.

The bottom line is:  ask us – we’re here to help!  Please don’t be reluctant, self-conscious, or nervous about seeking research assistance.  We won’t scold, judge, or reprimand.

Our job is to help you – your job is to ask for help!


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