The Library Advantage
There is a tremendous amount of quality information available on the World Wide Web. As long as you are careful and think critically about the quality of information you are finding, information from the web can greatly increase a person's knowledge and empower them in many diverse ways. However, the Web is not the only source where you can find information. Another place to find information is at your public and college libraries. Libraries offer a number of distinct advantages that make them an indispensable source of information both in college and beyond. Listed below are a few of the advantages offered by libraries:
In-Depth Research Resources not Available Elsewhere
While the Web has a great amount of information freely available, it does not have all the information needed for in-depth research. There is a great amount of information available through the library that you will not find freely available online. Many of these resources are proprietary, and the library purchases both materials and subscriptions to services to give students access to the materials they need for class study and independent research. These materials are often the most used and important resources for many disciplines and areas of study.
Curated and Quality Modern Collections
The library collection is developed and maintained by professional librarians who hold Masters Degrees in librarianship. Because librarians take greater care in the items purchased for the library, the library collection tends to be more reliable and of higher quality than those information resources found freely available online. This does not mean that you should rely on only one resource of information or not think critically about the information you find in the library. However, you are much more likely to find information from authoritative sources whose positions are backed by strong evidence.
Organized Tools and Resources
In addition to building vital, high quality collections, librarians work to make these resources easy to find and use. As you go through this tutorial, you will find ways in which you can quickly and easily find materials, cite sources, and uncover similar and related materials to help you along the way.
Assistance and Help
Finally, it is important to note, librarians are most happy when they are helping students find information and partnering with them to make their research more meaningful. Please ask for assistance whenever you need it. Help is available at the library reference desk in the library, through email, the phone, and our 24/7 chat service. Please visit our Ask A Librarian page for details.
Click on the 'next' button to learn more information about the library and reach the next section of this tutorial: "Getting Started with the Library".