Patron Driven Acquisitions: E-Book Purchases on Demand


indexIn the Fall of 2015, the College of Staten Island Library (CSI) launched a Patron Driven Acquisition (PDA) project utilizing EBSCO’s e-book collections. This project, similar to CUNY’s in 2014, allows patrons of the library to make purchasing decisions with e-books based on their need. How does this work? First, a patron discovers an e-book title when searching the library catalog, CUNY’s OneSearch, or EBSCOhost’s e-book database. You will next be directed to the e-book, where you will be able to search, browse, print or download material. If the patron views the book for a certain length of time or shows another long-term need for continued access, the e-book is triggered for purchase. The purchasing happens behind the scenes without any interruption to the viewer. In other words, the patron will not see any change when the ‘preview’ e-book essentially becomes an e-book ‘owned’ by the library. It is a seamless and inconspicuous process for the patron who is now assisting in acquiring resources for the library!

Libraries have been using patron driven acquisitions since its launch a decade ago, but it has recently become a main-stream tool libraries are using to provide e-books based on the immediate needs of patrons. It is also a cost-effective tool for libraries because if the e-book is not triggered for purchase, money will not be spent. Likewise, if it is purchased, the e-book has a higher chance of being used since the original purchase was based on demand. Libraries are using patron driven acquisitions in different ways to build their collections. Most libraries are using it to build their collections alongside other means, i.e., librarian purchases or faculty requests. CSI Library’s PDA program will be best used on collection building for new academic programs on campus where the library’s collections may be limited. Above is an example of one e-book in the PDA project, added to help build the library’s East Asian studies collections. (It is important to note that e-book titles are vetted by CSI librarians before they are added to the PDA project.)

-Kerry Falloon

Do You Feel Me: September’s Updates in the OED

OEDThe Oxford English Dictionary is undergoing its third major revision in over 100 years (the first volumes were published between 1884 and 1928) to include modern usage of older terms and new additions to reflect the English language today. Additions appear every three months. In the online edition of this classic authority on the English language (which we have access to through the CSI Library Databases) you can see the updates as they happen, and click through earlier versions of the term.

So many of these updates are refreshing; for instance, the term “gender,” which first appears in usage in 1390 and first appeared in the OED in 1889, now includes scores of sub-terms, including gender role, genderqueer, and gender-bending, among others. Taking the next logical step forward, the OED has added “cisgender” in September of 2015. Other newly added terms include: concelebrated, telly, and the modern (but timeless) phrase, “do you feel me?”

I couldn’t help but notice how many of the September updates included militaristic or battle terms. For instance: waterboard; anti-unionism; student uprising; hostage; Chinese water torture; concealed carry; dozens of union terms; and phrases like, “united we stand, together we fall.” Perhaps this is the ordinary number of struggle-oriented additions, but it seems to me a sign of the times.  (Students: you can write papers about the usage of terms as they evolve over time–but even if that doesn’t appeal, it’s a blast to while away a Saturday night digging into new iterations of traditional terms. Am I right?)

In different, but related news, Oxford Dictionaries (which catalogs new words, while the OED collects historical terms) added some extremely timely words, like “Grexit,” “manspreading,” and “hangry.” Could the Oxford Dictionaries have been influenced by the MTA subway public service announcements? ManSpreadPerhaps. How many of these new words will stand the test of time and make the OED? Only time will tell, but rest assured that “sexting” has already made the cut.

-Anne Hays

Meet Our Newest Librarians: Maureen Garvey and Christine McEvilly


Christine McEvilly

Christine McEvilly is an archivist, librarian, and historian. She received her BS in History from MIT and her History MA from Yale. She went on to study library and information science, with concentrations in archives and rare books, at the Palmer School of Long Island University. She has spent the last 4 years working as a digital archivist and librarian at the American Jewish Historical Society where she was project coordinator on a digital aggregator website. Christine plans to pursue research in metadata theory and management, identity formation in archives, and cross-organizational collaboration.


Maureen Garvey

Maureen joins CSI after three years as Reference and Instruction Librarian at Bank Street College of Education. Prior to that she worked at the Library Council of Ireland, the Royal Irish Academy, Hudson County Community College, and John Jay College where her CUNY experience began. She holds Master’s degrees in political philosophy and library science. A strong advocate for libraries, she is dedicated to working with faculty colleagues on student information literacy with an eye to student retention and success. Maureen plans to investigate the impact of increased marketization on the provision of public services such as libraries and higher education, and the influence of such changes on instruction and information literacy practices.

Greetings from the Chief Librarian

wilma_jonesGreetings and Happy Spring!  I am pleased to bring you much news about the Library and hope my introduction will lead many of you to dig deeper and explore facets of the resources mentioned, either via our web site or by making a visit the Library to take advantage of the programs or resources mentioned.  This issue includes articles about the database eMarketer, our Freedom Riders exhibit and panel discussion, our Greener Library Discussion “Infrastructure and Ecology at Freshkills Park”, our recent bequest of the late Professor Kathryn Talarico, and an update on our new one-credit elective course LIB 501: Beyond Google: Research for College Success.

But first, I must thank all those who contributed to the Library Appeal we sent out in February and early March to match $12,163.00 from CUNY for library materials for CSI graduate programs.  Due to your timely donations, we met our goal!  Thank YOU!

At the beginning of spring, we opened a newly configured facility called the Technology Support Center.  Located in room 109A, adjacent to the Reference Reading Room, the Center offers access to available laptops and graphing calculators for loan, which were previously held in the Circulation/Reserves unit.   We are especially proud that our staff in the Center are trained to respond to malfunctioning equipment, which can return back into circulation immediately (or within 48hrs).

To date, we have seen an increase in laptop and calculator circulation, proving that our on-site service is thriving.  The Center also provides access to a scanner and a fax machine.  Plans to expand services with additional staff and high-end printers are in the works.


Photo of Technology Support Center

Last spring, I mentioned the development of our one-credit elective course LIB 501: Beyond Google: Research for College Success, which had been approved by the College Curriculum Committee as a Topics Course.  I am pleased to report that we taught four sections in the fall of 2014, and another four sections this spring.

Formal and informal assessment have revealed positive outcomes, including the fact that enrolment numbers are 30% more this spring than last fall, and students expressing that the course should be extended to 15 weeks and for 3-credits. Members of the Library Curriculum Committee plan to present the case for regularizing this course to the College’s Curriculum Committee in the fall of 2015.  But first, on behalf of the Department of the Library, I would like to express my sincere thanks and gratitude to the Office of Advisement.  Half of the responses to our poll indicated that students learnt about the course when counseled by an advisor.

I also have some very good news about additional e-Resources in our holdings.  Wiley Online Library is back! Last academic year, we had to make some tough decisions to cancel a few databases due to low usage given the high cost of the database.  Wiley was one of the few that was sorely missed.  Several faculty wrote in protest asking for this database to be re-instated.  To those who spoke up, your voices were heard and Wiley is back through a new consortial five-year package that the CUNY University Dean of Libraries has negotiated for all CUNY libraries. Included in this negotiated package was also an upgrade of the current IEEE database subscription.  We now have access to IEEE Xplore Digital Library.

As always, numerous events and programs occur in the Library, coordinated by librarians or in collaboration with other departments or divisions/schools. We offered several CLUE workshops in late April, several of which are back by popular demand.  These include “Locating NYC Census Data for Your Research,” “Researching LGBTQ History and Theory,” “Discover OneSearch,” “Using Interlibrary Loan to your advantage,” and “Using eMarketer for Marketing Research Data.” Please note that our “Introduction to the Library’s Resources and Services” workshop is still being held on Tuesdays and Thursdays through May 7th, 2015. Other events held this semester included a Literary Brunch sponsored by the Friends of the College. This event featured Associate Professor Ava Chin who shared excerpts from her book Eating Wildly: Foraging for Life, Love, and the Perfect Meal.  This is a fundraiser by the Friends for scholarships and library materials. “Freedom Riders Roundtable Discussion” featured four CSI faculty members on February 24; “Author Talks” that featured four CSI faculty members discussing their new books on April 16; and “Our School,” a film screening of the documentary about Roma (Gypsy) children and their struggle to integrate in the Romanian public school system on April 21.  In addition, during National Library Week (April 12-18), CUNY Libraries collaborated with NY Public Libraries by hosting each other to inform the community about library resources available to them.  The CSI Library collaborated with Richmondtown Public Library, whose library representatives visited on April 13, 2015. Bringing up the rear of events this year is an event by the Greener Library Committee.  They plan to make a trip to Freshkills Park to see the ten year transformation of what was formerly known as the Freshkills Landfill Dump. For more information about events/programs at the Library, see

This semester we also hosted general exhibits in the Volpe Rotunda. One recent exhibit on display in the gallery was entitled “Abraham Lincoln: the Civil War President,” which was on display until April 30th, 2015. This exhibition was created to celebrate the sesquicentennial year since the Civil  War.  Past exhibits this spring included the traveling exhibit of the “Freedom Riders” (February) in collaboration with Hillel: the Jewish Foundation for Campus Life, and the “Bagram Prisoner Campaign Exhibition” (March) in collaboration with Women’s Studies Quarterly.

While it has been quite an exciting and packed spring semester so far, it started out on a somber note.  I will close by informing you of the passing of a library staff member, Ms. Angelina Raffaele. For 15 years, Angelina Raffaele served at the Circulation/Reserves counter during the morning shift on weekdays.  She was diagnosed with cancer last fall and passed on in January 2015.  Always a delightful colleague to work with, we will certainly miss her infectious laughter and gregarious disposition.

I hope that you are having a great semester so far and that you will visit us soon.  Do take advantage of our Chat Reference and Interlibrary Loan services, which are available 24/7 to fulfill your research needs.  And also, try OneSearch!  Here’s wishing you the best for a successful semester and a wonderful summer ahead.


Wilma L. Jones, Ph.D., Associate Dean & Chief Librarian