STUDENTS who wish to use certain photocopy sources in the library will now have to pay to either photocopy or print the material within the library rather than borrowing the original.
The materials in question, which are located in the short-loan section of the library, can no longer be withdrawn from the library as the resources have been made available online instead.
Head of Reader Services, Aoife O’Brien, stated that the reason for the new policy was due to the introduction of new technology into the library as well as the fact that the material is available online.
“It wasn’t possible to do RSID on the photocopy collections,” explained Ms O’Brien. “We had the option of making the short loan collection more accessible for students for the longer hours that the library is open, which we took… [however] the photocopy collection, which is a very, very low use collection and in fact is almost never used, we were unable to issue those.”
Ms O’Brien stated that if students did want to take the material outside the library, they could either photocopy them or print it online. Alternately, they can take the photocopy out of the short loan section to use in the library during their time there.
Students’ Union (SU) Education Officer, Paul Lynam, felt that the changes were necessary due to the university’s financial situation.
“[The issue here is] duplication where the material is available online and is available in the library so what the library did is get rid of what’s available in the library,” said Mr Lynam. He stated that although students can no longer withdraw the photocopied material, it is not the worst of the cutbacks being made, referring to the twelve per cent cutbacks which the library is facing.
Mr Lynam acknowledged that although there would be some students that would prefer to have a physical copy, he did not feel that it caused any major inconvenience for students.
“There will be some people that would prefer the old way,” said Mr Lynam. “If you can get it online… you can basically print it off yourself at your own expense and it saves some money for the library. It’s not a drastic cutback.”
Mr Lynam stressed that due to the university’s financial situation, there is a limited budget for the library and that certain aspects of the service will be prioritised.
“We’re realistic about the financial situation that we’re in but we’re making sure that we can be prudent in cutbacks,” declared Mr Lynam.