Thursday, March 18, 2010

Checking out Print Journals

I've been following a conversation on the PAMnet list serve about policies for checking out bound journals from an annex. I feel out of sync with the general sentiment which is to limit circulation anywhere from no circulation at all to just a few days. Last semester under my direction (pressure?) we standardized our circulation policy for bound journals; we now circulate all bound journals for two weeks. This is a huge change for us. Our circulation policies differed from library to library and even from journal to journal. The loan period ranged from two hours up to two weeks. Obviously the policy was confusing to users. But the more compelling argument was looking at the circulation statistics and noting that they were very low. With a commitment from our fantastic Inter Library Loan department to get, without question, articles from any volumes that may be checked out, we took the leap and all our bound journals now have a two week circulation period. To *my* knowledge, there hasn't been a single problem or complaint. (I hope I'm not cursing myself with that statement.) I predict than in a year or two, we'll have the same circulation period for journals that we do for books.