Celebrating College Libraries on World Book Day
To celebrate World Book Day Colleges Scotland is highlighting the fantastic work of college library and learning resource facilities. Libraries play a huge part of college life, with digital resources, learning materials, as well as books and a warm welcome on offer to students and staff.
Joy McLean, Senior Librarian at West College Scotland highlighted the importance of college libraries in students learning journey. “The library really is the heart of the college – it’s a physical place for learning and studying but also a safe space to read, think and work with other students or colleagues.
“During the pandemic our online resources came into their own obviously and we created some fantastic study guides for subjects digitally so they were truly a one-stop shop for students, which I think was important while everyone went through having to learn at home. None of that has been lost now our buildings are open again, and it’s really shown the value of what the library service can do.”
In Aberdeen, Jill Leishman is the Information Services Manager at North East Scotland College, which have physical libraries at three locations - Aberdeen City, Altens and Fraserburgh campuses as well as a huge online library estate. She said: “Physically students can access over 21,000 books, but online we have a whole world of resources, learning courses and resources and it’s sometimes a surprise that our library has this world of resources which can be accessed through any device 24/7. We are developing plans for next session to have some wonderful new spaces for health and wellbeing within our library, spaces where people can come and have some space and time to relax – we are even looking into renting out light boxes in the future.”
Providing safe spaces within the college day as well as a physical place to study is also important to Penny Robertson, Libraries Manager at City of Glasgow College: “Our Libraries are important as they are fundamentally democratic in their practice. They turn nobody away; all are welcome, and they house teams that will go above and beyond to help you find what you're looking for or sometimes suggest something that you had no idea you needed.
“Against ever increasing publishing costs, college library teams will strive to procure global resources that can be accessed anywhere at any time. Our FE and HE libraries create opportunities for learning and a safe environment for all to be curious.”
Marking World Book Day and the contribution of college libraries, Pamela Tulloch, Chief Executive of Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) added: “College Libraries and Learning Resources Centres are at the heart of the campus experience, and thousands of students make use of them every year. They are safe, accessible spaces which provide a hub for students from all courses to come together and collaborate. They can make use of the digital provisions, the knowledge of librarians and the hundreds of educational resources.”
Many colleges libraries will also be taking part in World Book Night in April 2022, which promotes the positive benefits of reading for pleasure. Also taking place later in the year is a new Scotland-wide reading initiative to inspire and encourage people to read every day to boost their mental health and wellbeing - ‘Keep the Heid and Read!’ will take place on Wednesday, 11 May 2022, during Mental Health Week.
Maria Ramirez from Perth College UHI Library said strengthening relationships with students is “all about the joy of learning, reading, and being curious.
“Today our students and staff are being invited to enter a competition, The Book that Inspired You, as a way to celebrate World Book Day. What I love about our library is we build up good relationships with our students and can help them, talk to them, about what they need and what they enjoy.
“Libraries are a safe space which can lead to creativity and inspiration. Books fundamentally make us feel better, increase our knowledge, help us understand the world. It’s a privilege to be part of the student experience.”
For further information, please contact:
Jen Johnston, Head of Communications and Public Affairs
Mobile: 07736 885 497
Joanne Buchan, Communications and Public Affairs Officer
Mobile: 07590 229 707