Why are the Libraries doing this?
Academic publishing in general is moving toward online publishing and many publishers have already made moves away from paper publishing of their journals. The K-State Libraries are making an effort to shift our collections toward online serials to remain a competitive research environment and to prepare ourselves for the future.
One of our goals as a Library is to provide users the resources they need now in a format that will be as compatible as possible with future technology and media. This format also provides us with more flexibility in information delivery. Faculty and students are able to access online journals from outside the library, from off-campus, and indeed from anywhere they choose to log in. Access is also broadened by the online format, creating opportunities for multiple users to access a single journal at the same time and allowing distance learners to access previously inaccessible information.
As well, most of our user population already anticipates that library information is available online. A shift away from paper journals is a shift toward the expectations of our user base.
How can I tell which titles are affected?
Beginning in January 2007, approximately 520 titles from 4 publishers (Wiley, BioOne, Blackwell, and Springer/Kluwer) will move to e-only access. We anticipate targeting other publishers in 2007 for conversion in January 2008.
The titles we are moving to e-only access will have been judged against criteria which have been established to ensure that the online version of the title is appropriate for research at Kansas State University.
What issues did the Libraries consider in making this move?
K-State Libraries have established criteria for evaluating the decision to retain paper copies of journals. The main issues that we considered in the criteria are the comparability of the content in print and online versions, archiving plans and commitment of the publisher, the quality of access, and the terms of the licenses. This move is intended to be user-centered, creating better services and supplying better resources to our faculty and students.
How do I access these titles online and what are the risks?
Right now the best way to access e-journals is through the K-State Libraries home page. Clicking on the “E-Journals” link will bring up a list of all of the e-journals to which the Libraries subscribe. In the near future we anticipate that access to e-journals will be greatly enhanced. With your EID and password, access is available from any computer – on or off campus.
On-campus access to online journals through the library web page does not involve any transfer of sensitive personal information. Access from off campus requires login with your EID and password which does have built-in security for information transfer.
How are the Libraries ensuring long term access to online
issues of journals?
The Libraries would not have considered relying on only online access without first ensuring that a publisher has a strong archiving program in place. All of the publishers already converted or being converted to e-only access
Each publisher's archiving arrangements are detailed in the licenses governing campus access to the journal titles.
How do the online editions compare to the print editions of
The Libraries have reviewed each publisher's approach to online publishing in comparison with their paper publications. In most cases both PDFs and HTML versions of articles are published online. At a minimum PDFs are provided. In many cases, publishers converted to e-only publish online issues in advance of print and in many cases articles are available online well in advance of the compilation of the full issue. Thus the online article is available long before the receipt of print publications. All of the content of the paper edition with the exception of advertising (when that occurs) is available online. Many publishers also offer a free table of contents notification service. When a new issue is published, you can be notified immediately via email and review the issue from your desktop.
Print titles which fundamentally differ from the online versions or have online version is inadequate for research purposes have been maintained in print.
How much money will we save by converting from paper to online
The K-State Libraries did not consider cost savings as a motivating factor for the transition from paper to online journals. Publishers have not offered significant savings for online versions of journals over paper versions. We anticipate significant costs in workflow changes and technological infrastructure to support this shift. We expect that the savings and the costs from this initiative will offset.
Whom do I contact regarding this initiative?
Any questions you have regarding the initiative or concerns regarding specific titles should be directed to your subject librarian.
General questions can be directed through the K-State Libraries comment form.