Rethinking How Patrons Discover Information: Implementing a Discovery Tool
Ketterman, Elizabeth; Besaw, Megan E.; Tucker, Michael
Objective: The ECU libraries, like most academic libraries, use various tools for searching our collections: the online public access catalog (OPAC), the institutional repository, locally developed databases, and subject-specific article indices. Each of these collections requires their own search interfaces and strategies. To better serve our patrons, the libraries wanted a way to perform a comprehensive search of these collections from one place. Methods: The libraries formed a task force in January 2010 to explore two questions: (1) Were we ready to implement a discovery tool? (2) If so, which tool currently on the market best met our patrons’ needs? The task force demonstrated three tools to the libraries: Ex Libris’ Primo Central, the EBSCO Discovery Service, and Serials Solutions’ Summon. By May, a decision was made to move forward with Summon. The implementation process and usage statistics of the Summon tool at the university are examined in this case study. Results: Upon review of usage statistics from the launch date, we have seen steady usage. Statistics show a trend in increased OpenURL linking since implementation of Summon. We have found the addition of a discovery tool beneficial in the exposure of our library's collections.