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Connect and Communicate PresentsMicrofilm Enters the Digital Age: A Big Evolution for a Microformat

April 29, 2022

Presented by Ashoo Kumar, Sandy Morgart, Eric Novotny, and Dan Peters

May 11, 2022 at 11:30 am EST

Registration Link

The pandemic disrupted many aspects of librarianship and provided an opportunity to rethink and revitalize library services. At Penn State it added new urgency to a long-standing desire to offer more convenient access to Microforms, breathing new life into a format often seen as outdated and inaccessible. In this session, speakers from Penn State’s Microforms and Government Information and Information Technology Units will share how we’ve improved access to microforms and increased impact. With WebLabs softwarepatrons no longer need to visit the library to use the treasures on microfilm. They can browse, view, and scan microfilm from home, the office, the beach, or even from the ski slopes! Dynamic links added to the library catalog allow patrons to seamlessly initiate a scan request at the point of discovery. The impact has been dramatic with individuals across the curriculum requesting materials. The new services promote equity of access and remove barriers, making the collections equally accessible to novices and seasoned researchers alike. We will share data and offer practical advice for those considering similar arrangements at their institutions. We hope to have a robust discussion on innovative ways to promote the use of legacy formats such as microfilm. 

Ashoo Kumar is Library Manager, Microform and Government Information at Penn State University Libraries.  

Sandy Morgart is the Services and Microforms Collections Assistant at Penn State University Libraries. 

Eric Novotny is History Librarian at Penn State University Libraries, and co-heads the Microforms and Government Information Unit.   

Dan Peters is the Systems Design Specialist for Penn State University Libraries Strategic Technologies. 

As a reminder, the Zoom link will be sent approximately 48 hours before the session. We will mute participants on entry into the Zoom room. Session will be recorded and available on YouTube after the session. We will enable Zoom’s Live Transcription feature during the session.

If you would like to present with C&CS, please contact the C&CS team.

This project is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services as administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, Governor.

Support is also provided by the College and Research Division of the Pennsylvania Library Association.

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