Thursday, September 08, 2016

We have limes!

Library staff have been undertaking horticultural adventures, and we now have limes:

They might be the right size for a gin& tonic for a Minifig:

Or to inspire some light reading:

 SB355 .E42 2012 

Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Textbooks are expensive!
College students don't have lots of money.

YOUR campus Library is here to help!  Did you know the Library has copies of most course textbooks and other course materials, available for students to use FOR FREE???

The Alexandria campus actively seeks out copies of course textbooks which are held on reserve.

Reserves are course materials, usually textbooks, provided for student use.  Because of the high demand for these items, most course reserves cannot be removed in the Library, and most are on a 2-hour loan to give as many students as possible a chance to use them.  Reserves are also the only Library materials that carry fines -- overdue course reserves accrue fines of $4/ hour.

To use course reserves, you will need a valid NOVAcard.  Although most reserve materials are designated for Library Use Only, students may, for their own use, make photocopies, scans, or take pictures with mobile devices.

Ask if the Library has your textbooks!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Welcome to Fall 2016

To our returning students, Welcome Back!!  To our new students, Welcome to the Alexandria Campus Library!

Your Library staff have been busy over the summer preparing for the start of a new academic year.

Check out our expanded Legal Studies Collection:

When not in use for LGL instruction, this space is available for group study.

More study space is available behind the stacks (bookshelves).  In response to student requests, we've added more seating:

This area is reserved for quiet study.

The Library receives new materials throughout the year and summer is no exception.

Come and see the many exciting new additions to our book and video collections:

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Assistive Technology Across the Campus

On Tuesday 26 July Alexandria LTR in conjunction with the Office of Disability Services hosted a hand-on workshop to introduce the campus community to assistive technologies and best practices for students in need of accommodations.

Paul Chapman (Collection Development Librarian and Disability Services Liaison) hosted the show:

29 campus and college stakeholders attended.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

When online resources were not online

Throwback Thursday:  Data Storage

Before the Cloud, before remote servers, before log-in authentication, the beginning of all digital data storage was the Floppy Disc.  These allowed data to be digitized and stored and retrieved via PC. Many digital library resources initially relied on series of floppy discs, usually run on or loaded on a dedicated computer or sometimes kiosk.

These are 5 1/4 and 3 1/2 discs that supported the Library's Subscription to Westlaw, which supported the College's Legal Studies programs.  These discs would be dispatched to the Library in the mail and made available to eligible students in the Library on a dedicated computer.  Additional discs would be send periodically with updates.

The 5 1/4 inch disc was introduced in 1976 to replace the even larger 8 inch floppy.  The original discs (circular magnetic storage mediums) did not have the plastic sleeve seen here, but dust and dirt impaired performance.

Game-boys of a certain age will remember the first computer games were also delivered in this format (like Zork).

In 1980, the 3 1/2  was introduced to address durability problems with the 5 1/4 disc, including insoluble problems with dirt.  

And the rest of the story?  

"By the early 1990s, the increasing size of software meant that many programs were distributed on sets of floppies. Toward the end of the 1990s, software distribution gradually switched to CD-ROM, and higher-density backup formats were introduced (e.g. the Iomega Zip disk). With the arrival of mass Internet access, cheap Ethernet and USB keys, the floppy was no longer necessary for data transfer either, and the floppy disk was essentially superseded."

The Library's online resources for legal research (and all other research) is now available completely online, accessible from on- or off-campus, 24-7-325.  

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Library in Bloom (or Selfie Sticks in Action)

YOUR Alexandria Campus Library is home to a beautiful collection of plants. One of the star members of YOUR Library garden is a two story tall(!) flowering cactus (cereus peruvianus) that has been in the library longer than any current staff or faculty member. Librarian Anne Anderson and Reference Specialist Melanie Medina set off to capture one of the beautiful blooms that popped up on YOUR giant cereus peruvianus. The task was a tricky one - the cactus is over 35 feet tall; both blooms were above the second floor railing; and, both blooms were wedged between the cactus and the window. YOUR Library staff is here to help you find and use all of the appropriate tools to solve any of your academic problems, and this task was no different. First, we set out in search of a selfie stick.

Just like research, the adventure did not go exactly as planned...

Anne and Melanie figured out the selfie stick!
They don't teach you this in library school.
Even with some support from Melanie,
our cereus peruvianus could not master the selfie.

What we really wanted to show you, was that once per year, YOUR cereus peruvianus sports one or two beautiful blooms that look like this:

Whether you just inherited your first houseplant, you want to understand how plants grow, or you want to see beautiful illustrations of unusual flowers, YOUR library has lots of great titles to help you discover all that plants have to offer.

SB419 .M314 2015
QK711.2 .C425 201
QK98.3 .N48x 2014

Want to learn more about plant life cycles, anatomy, morphology, taxonomy, and evolution? Enroll in Biology 110 General Botany (4 cr.) on the Alexandria Campus in the spring!

Friday, June 03, 2016

National Donut Day

FREE donuts and coffee in the Library today in honor of National Donut Day:

  • The Salvation Army started National Donut Day during the Great Depression as a way to raise funds and bring awareness to The Salvation Army’s social service programs.
  • National Donut Day commemorates the “donut lassies,” female Salvation Army volunteers who provided writing supplies, stamps, clothes-mending and home-cooked meals, and of course, donuts, for soldiers on the front lines.
  • Approximately 250 Salvation Army volunteers provided assistance to American soldiers in France starting in 1917 during WWI.
  • With limited resources, these treats were fried, only seven at a time. The Salvation Army’s Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance cleverly thought of frying donuts in soldiers’ helmets.