Doing research from off campus? Try our library access bookmarklet.

NEW! Library Access Bookmarklet: Do you ever search for journal articles from off campus? If so, we have something that might make life better.

Drag the following link to your Links or Bookmarks toolbar (or right-click it and Add to Favorites/Bookmarks).

Library Access Bookmarklet

When you come to a journal article that you’d like to read but find that you’re blocked from doing so (or asked to pay money), try clicking on the Library Access Bookmarklet link you just bookmarked. You’ll be prompted to log in with your Marlboro username and password (the same one you use for email, Courses, etc.). Then, if the library does offer online access to the resource, you should be able to view it. (If we don’t, then you won’t be able to view it. But, we can almost always get it for you via Interlibrary Loan at no cost to you.)

This is a brand new service and we’re interested in your feedback — let us know if you experience any problems, or if we’ve made your day.

(The fine print, for the morbidly curious: The library subscribes to over 20,000 online periodicals to which Marlboro people have full access. The problem is, the publishers of these journals need to be able to identify you as a Marlboro person before you can view their articles. If you’re on campus, they can tell by your IP address that you are coming from Marlboro. If you’re off campus and accessing journals/articles through the library website, we have set up our URLs so that you’ll be asked to log in before viewing our subscriptions. But if you’re off campus and not going through the library website, up to now there’s been no way to log in except to back up and try to get back to the article by going through the library website. This should eliminate that step and speed up your access to articles.)

Q & A with Aidan Sammis

After four years as a staff member in the Rice Aron Library Aidan Sammis will be departing Marlboro College this summer. His many tasks have included ordering books, cataloging books, repairing books, getting books ready to be shelved and supervising the many student workers. Before he shelves his last book here in June, I have asked him to share some of his wisdom with us.

Q. What will you miss most about the Rice-Aron Library?

A. Our spiffy new catalog! I can’t believe I’ll be leaving only weeks after it’s finally up and running. Also the graffiti on the old tables in my workroom, the spiral staircase, and anonymous chess. And the lower window in the American poetry corner of the 800s. And the avocado tree, and the bamboo plant I nursed back to life. Rapid Reviews. The sleeping bags. The typewriter. Basically everything…

Q. Can you tell a favorite story about working with a student in the library?

A. This isn’t much of a story, but there was one day I was asked all kinds of questions ranging from “How do you spell broccoli?” to “What’s that play by Shakespeare?” to “Do you know anyone who can make me Roman centurion armor?” I was pleased to be able to point everyone in the right direction.

Q. How many items do you think you have cataloged? Which book was the most challenging to catalog?

A. 7,035 and counting. The trickiest item that springs to mind was a Plan examining four completely unrelated subcultures, strung together on the common thread of “social problems.”

Q. What book in our collection should every Marlboro College community member take a look at?

A. How about Tom Ragle’s Marlboro College: A Memoir? (378.049743 R14)

Q. What is something everyone should know about the Dewey Decimal system?

A. Works on the subject of “Libraries-Destruction and Pillage” may be classed in either 025.82 or 364.162.

Q. Is there anything about Vermont or Marlboro College or the library that you will be glad to be leaving behind?

A. The white noise from the ventilation thingy in my office.

Q. What are your plans after leaving Marlboro?

A. The very first thing I expect to do, at the end of my last day, is to run the Ho Chi Minh trail loop a couple of times. Over the summer I’ll be attending various workshops, drawing a lot, and visiting friends. Starting in the fall my partner and I plan to wend our way across Europe, interspersing backpacking excursions with volunteer work on organic farms in different countries (check out!). Presently topping the list are places in Norway, the Netherlands, Georgia, and Greece. After that, who knows? I’ve always wanted to learn how to sail…


A sad database story with a happy ending

As members of a scholarly community, we all rely on information that is acquired, organized and made available electronically constantly.  Scholars, researchers and librarians all rely on a wide variety of databases to discover and read journal articles, book chapters, book reviews, conference proceedings and more.  As one becomes more wedded to an academic discipline, we in turn often become more wedded to our database(s) of choice.  It’s like comfort food; it’s like your favorite pillow; it’s like the amazing Mountain Mint tea in the Dining Hall (seriously, isn’t it great?).  You learn all the tricks; you learn all the special subject headings/descriptors; you become a master.

But what happens if you suddenly learn that, alas, your favorite, perfect, always-there-for-you database has deserted you and left you hanging out to dry?

This is how art history scholars around the world felt in March, when they learned that Getty Research Institute’s ended their over two year search for partners to continue the production and distribution of the Bibliography of the History of Art (BHA), renamed the International Bibliography of Art (IBA) in 2008.  Librarians around the world trembled as they picked up their phones or walked to deliver the horrific news to their art faculty colleagues.  Let me tell you, that is not fun news to deliver.  March 31, 2010, was the last day libraries and scholars around the world would have access.  Then it was over.  The end.

Ah, but this story has a happy ending.  The Getty has “decided to act on its commitment to the scholarly community by providing access to BHA directly from its own Web site.”

Free!? Oh yes, my friends, free.  Free for now, at least.  It’s unclear whether indexing work will continue during this time, but for now articles and book citations are available from 1990 through part of the 2009.  Starting May 1, the Getty will add coverage from 1975-1989.

You’ll find a link to BHA both on the Find Articles & More page and the Art & Art History library guide.  Enjoy!

Amber Johnson
Reference & Technology Librarian

Van trip to UMass Libraries: Sunday, April 18

The library is sponsoring one last van trip to the UMass Amherst Libraries this academic year on Sunday, April 18. The rough schedule:

  • Leave dining hall 11:30 am
  • Arrive UMass Amherst 12:45 pm
  • Leave UMass Amherst 4:15 pm
  • Arrive dining hall 5:30 pm

While you can’t borrow books directly from UMass, you *can* get access to their 300+ research databases, 50,000 or so online journals (bring a thumb drive or email articles to yourself), and take advantage of their free scanners to scan book chapters that interest you. You can also note any books you find useful and request them via Interlibrary Loan from Marlboro. (The deadline for requesting books via Interlibrary Loan this semester is Monday, April 19.)

Not sure where to start your research? The UMass Libraries have a nice set of Subject Research Guides that highlight the best sources they have on various topics.

Space is limited! We can accommodate six researchers on this trip. Sign up on the sheet at the service desk in the library.

If you have any questions or would like to talk about your research before heading down to 413, please contact Emily Alling, library director (and former UMass librarian).

Library Database Trials – More articles, more citations!

The library currently has several database trials from EBSCOhost, a database vendor, through the end of the semester.  Links and descriptions for all the trial databases can be found on the Database Trials page of the library homepage.

Here is a quick summary of the purpose of each database:

Academic Search Premier: General, all-purpose, all-topic academic database.  Possible replacement for Proquest Central.

Business Source Premier: Business-focused database, contains both articles and company profiles.  Possible replacement for ABI/INFORM.

Humanities International Complete: Citations for over 2,100 humanities journals, full text for 890 humanities journals.  Possible replacement/improvement for MLA International Bibliography.

PsycInfo: American Psychological Association’s (APA) resource for abstracts of scholarly journal articles, book chapters, books, and dissertations, is devoted to peer-reviewed literature in behavioral science and mental health.

Art & Architecture Complete: Contains abstracts and some full text for academic journals, magazines and books on art and architecture topics.

Give these databases a try and send feedback to Amber at (Note: you must be a current Marlboro faculty, staff or students to access the databases and will be required to login when accessing them from off-campus).