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Award Report: Going Mobile–University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey

The University Libraries (UL) of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) were awarded a Technology Improvement Award by the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) Middle Atlantic Region in 2010-2011.  UMDNJ is made up of four campuses throughout the state of New Jersey.

The funding was used to purchase mobile devices, accessories, apps and ebooks so that staff could learn how they work and better support the University community.  UL staff purchased three iPod Touch devices (the Stratford site already had one), four iPads, and four Archos 7 Internet Tablets which use the Android operating system.  These devices supported UL staff education in mobile technology.  The devices were useful as well in the creation of mobile optimized web pages by allowing staff to test new products.  A mobile subcommittee, made up of UL staff, created a plan to better integrate mobile devices and resources into library services.

After reviewing open source software and vendor-created mobile applications the UL staff decided to purchase LibraryAnywhere from LibraryThing for Libraries for the next year.  This will allow UL staff to provide immediate access to the library’s catalog for mobile devices, allowed each campus to set up library information, such as hours, and will give users the ability to contact a librarian from a mobile device.  UL staff also discovered there was very little written on how to choose a mobile app.  Because of this UL staff created an evaluation form for apps that could be used across campuses.

Promoting mobile device resources at UMDNJ using LibraryAnywhere

Moving forward, UL staff will use what they have learned with the devices to better educate the University community.  We hope to show University faculty and Administration that the UL can provide leadership and support in the use of mobile resources for health care education and patient care.

Jenny Pierce, MS
Public Services Librarian
UMDNJ – Health Science Library

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