Re: Request for Information

laroi.lawton (
Fri, 5 Oct 2001 09:21:47 -0700 (PDT)

Closed vs Open Stacks:
At our media center which is part of the main library here at Bronx
Community College, we have a closed stack area that is for staff, and
faculty only. With respect to students, we have a large program board in our
open area which lists specific courses that are taught here at our college.
Each course as a media list that follows the course syllabus and text. These
titles are incorporated into the course so that students are given the code
numbers and titles for each video. We are also in the process of including
this entire list (175 courses with media listings) on our website.
While this is a time-consuming process, we have found that working with
faculty on previewing titles for purchase, then if approved, buying and
adding it to the list-has paid off because the title gets used each
semester. because of the limitations posed by budgets etc. we only have one
copy of any title, depending upon specialty.
faculty are allowed to check out overnight, but we veer away from a
blockbuster type environment where we allow more than two to browse our
collection. If, for example a history instructor wants to know what we have
American History, we give them a copy of our History 10 mediagraphy ( a
course that is taught here at our college) and they take a look at the
titles. If they find something of interest for a presentation, they can
preview in our area and check out overnight. This happens across the
curriculum and with many departments. The advantage of this for libraries
with small budgets and single titles is longevity of the item. Tracking is
made simpler since all titles are checked out electronically. All faculty,
staff and students are in our online circulation system. Unless you have
adequate security in place, you may experience an increase in losses.
Trained personnel is another plus that must be constantly looked upon for
loopholes and potential problems. While open stacks can be more inviting and
appealing to the eye, I prefer closed stacks
because you have better control over your collection. With media centers
that have
a large number of staff members this may not be a problem. For smaller
centers this
can be a nightmare.

LaRoi Lawton, Director/Asst. Prof.
Gerald S. Lieblich Learning Resource Center
Bronx Community College
Bronx, NY 10453
----- Original Message -----
From: "Hornbeck, Patty" <>
To: "Multiple recipients of list" <>
Sent: Friday, October 05, 2001 11:02 AM
Subject: Request for Information

> Dear Videolibbers,
> This is an urgent request for information/opinions on open stack v. closed
> stack storage of videos in an academic library. If you have pros and cons
> that you can share with me, I would really appreciate it.
> Patty
> _________________________________
> Patricia Hornbeck
> Middlebury College
> Sunderland Language Center
> Middlebury, VT 05753
> (802)443-2268 phone
> (802)443-2075 fax
> Email: