SPEC Kit 330: Library Contribution to Accreditation · 153
Texas A&M University
SACS Reaffirmation of Accreditation. Comprehensive Standard 3.8.1
Section 3: Comprehensive Standards Standard 3.8.1, Page 5
Other Learning/Information Resources
Collections and Online Services
The TAM HSC has access to extensive collections through the Texas A&M University Library
and the Medical Sciences Library combined, as well as specialized dentistry resources available
through Baylor Health Sciences Library. Specifically, access includes more than 4.6 million
volumes, nearly 950,000 electronic books, over 101,000 electronic journals and over 1,200
databases. All libraries have been aggressive in their commitment to licensed electronic
resources, acquiring both current and full-run backfile journals electronically. Collections and
online resources are more fully discussed in the report on Core Requirement 2.9, Learning
Resources and Services [Core Requirement 2.9, Learning Resources and Services].
To meet the needs of the distributed TAM HSC campuses, the Medical Sciences Library
provides 24/7 access to online resources and access to services beyond the hours physical
facilities are open and staffed. All electronic resources are available to TAM HSC whenever and
wherever the resources are needed by means of a proxy server and authentication service.
Whenever an electronic version of a resource is not available, TAM HSC users can request that
articles or book chapters be scanned and posted to a time-limited website for their retrieval. This
“Get It for Me” service is tremendously popular [Get It for Me brochure]. Requests have risen
steadily since the inception of the service in 2003, and services have been expanded to include
retrieving books from the library stacks for users and sending them to faculty offices. Over the
past four years (2007-2010) the Medical Sciences Library has delivered 45,155 scanned articles
and retrieved 434 books for TAM HSC students and faculty—in addition to borrowing over
8,000 items from other libraries through regular interlibrary loan services. In addition to online
access to the Get It for Me service, TAM HSC users have online access to the library catalog,
course reserves, reference services via chat, subject guides, online tutorials and an Electronic
Resources HelpDesk service.
Results from the 2010 LibQUAL+® survey indicate that 48% of HSC students and 20% of HSC
faculty use resources on library premises at least weekly. In comparison, 30% of students and
60% of faculty prefer to use the libraries’ resources online rather than to visit its facilities.
External Resource Relationships
Over the past decade, the Texas A&M University Libraries has taken a leadership role in
developing digital library services in collaboration with the General Libraries of the University
of Texas in Austin. The Texas Digital Library (TDL) is now a fifteen member state-wide effort
which provides institutional repository services for creating local collections of digital objects
(faculty articles, research reports, electronic thesis and dissertations, etc.), software for creating
and managing online electronic journals, software to manage collaborative research projects and
information sharing through scholarly blogs, research wikis and online conference management.
It also contains the Texas Learning Object Repository, a collaborative resource for sharing
curriculum materials [Texas Digital Library website].
In addition to its role as the anchor library for the eleven member consortium Texas A&M
Health Science Center Alliance of Libraries, the Medical Sciences Library serves as a Resource
Library for the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, South Central Region. The Texas
A&M University Library and the Medical Sciences Library both maintain membership in other