The Scientific Library of ASU is of the same age as Astrakhan State University itself. It was founded in 1932 and has shared the whole fate of our University: a small library with a tiny reading hall has become one of Astrakhan’s largest libraries, whose everyday activities combine traditional and innovative technologies.
During its first years, the Library got new books as gifts donated by people of Astrakhan and local institutions. When World War 2 began, its premises housed a military hospital, while its book stock was stored in a number of warehouses. When our University resumed its work in 1943, the Library resumed its activities as well. Thanks to its enthusiastic staff, a considerable part of its literature was founded and returned to the Library. Since then, the Library has been storing its valuable collection of rare books, which includes the Gospel published in the 17th century, the History of the Russian State by Nikolay Karamzin published in 1816, a Zoogeographical Atlas published in 1912, etc.
In 1963, the Library moved into new spacious premises at the newly-built University Main Building.
1970s and 1980s were a period of rapid development of our Library. In early 1990s, a new stage of its life began, as it started introducing automated technologies into its everyday work.
In 1998, the Library was granted the official rank of a Scientific Library.
The current development stage of our Scientific Library includes active introduction of new means to exchange information, creation of our own information resources, automation of library processes, and arrangement of users’ access to electronic databases.
The stock of our Scientific Library includes a rich collection of scientific, academic, and artistic literature, as well as periodicals in Russian and in a number of foreign languages, theses, abstracts, electronic resources, and electronic text equivalents of rare books – all in all, about 1, 000, 000 items. Our collection of rare editions includes unique editions of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Our book stock grows by 50, 000 copies every year. We serve about 40, 000 visitors a year; the number of their visits makes up over 800, 000 per year. Every day the Library is visited by 1, 500 to 2, 000 people.
Our Scientific Library is a member of the Russian Library Association; it participates in the corporate project “Interregional Analytical Description of Articles” by the ARBIKON Association of Library Consortiums (Moscow). This project provides access of any user to a full-text united base of articles published in Russian periodicals, which includes over 700, 000 bibliographical descriptions of articles from 1, 238 journals.
The Library plays an active role in the Quality Management System of Astrakhan State University by running its project “Administration of Information Library Service of Students & Staff”.
Cooperation between various charity funds and our Library has become a good tradition. We cooperate with the Clerical Scientific Center “Orthodox Encyclopedia” of the Russian Orthodox Church, with the Oxford Russia Fund of foreign literature, with the International Center of University Libraries, with Duslyk National Center of Tatar Culture, etc. We participate in the project by top Russian publishing houses “Methodical Centers of Business & Academic Literature” that aims to provide university libraries with new book expositions on a free basis. As a result of such cooperation, our Library is constantly obtaining new scientific and academic editions.
To provide our students with quality services, we have signed agreements with libraries of Astrakhan State Technical University, with the Astrakhan Regional Scientific Library, and with a number of Astrakhan’s universities, schools, and municipal libraries.
We have completed a retrospective conversion of our library paper card catalogues. Our staff has converted over 80, 000 paper cards into electronic records. Our electronic catalogue includes 156, 703 records. Introduction of a new version of the MARK-SQL (Version 1.9) Automated Information Library System and the completed retrospective conversion have made it possible to initiate the process of barcode encoding to set up automated processes of book stock keeping followed by a prompt provision of books for our visitors.
The current stage of our development implies changing priorities of our activities. Besides traditional tasks of preserving and increasing our book stock, we also perform functions of an information center with powerful databases, which makes it possible to use global networks and databases. It has become possible thanks to installation of new generations of PCs, telecommunication tools, and modern software systems. MARK-SQL serves as a base for our main technological processes related to book acquisition and processing, as well as to providing services for our visitors.
Our Center of Public Access to International Information Resources provides quality assistance to users who wish to get information from international resources, such databases of our electronic catalogue, the E-library scientific electronic database of journals in foreign languages, various bibliographical and educational web sites. Our staff and students use the database of the Electronic Library of Dissertations of the Russian State Library in Moscow actively. 680 people of ASU have been registered in this database.
Introduction of new working principles and innovative technologies of electronic services is becoming an issue of top significance. By using both our own and distant electronic information systems, we tackle such issues as insufficiency of book acquisition and premises to store the book stock; we also increase the volume of our reference resources; we make it possible to access full-text electronic collections, including foreign ones, as well as access from any workstation, without having to come to our Library.
New forms of providing information for our visitors are available now:
- Active application of e-mail;
- Electronic delivery of documents;
- Teaching our visitors how to search information on the Web.
Introduction of new information technologies makes it possible to tackle the following tasks:
- Formation of a single information space at Astrakhan State University;
- Enhanced quality of providing information for the educational process and research activities performed at our University;
- Provision of students and staff of ASU with both printed and electronic information, as well as arrangement of their access to internal and external electronic resources, including full-text ones;
- Transformation of our Library from a knowledge storage center into an information consultant and promoter.
A new development concept of our Scientific Library has been adopted. It includes the following goals:
- Rational formation of traditional and electronic information resources. Special attention is to be paid to development of our Electronic Library, to preservation and storage of our electronic full-text collection “Editions of ASU” and “Papers Published by Scholars of ASU”, and to its regular application for our educational process.
- Creation of a single research and educational resource of Astrakhan State University as a part of a corporate distributed information library network to provide broad and convenient access to all sorts of internal and information resources.
- Arrangement of modern information library services for all categories of users (students, faculty staff, administrative staff, etc.) with a differentiated approach to their information provision with both traditional printed editions and electronic materials.
- Introduction of corporate technologies into our information library processes, expansion of our information space by integrating into library consortiums and associations.
- We have developed a new organizational structure of our Scientific Library aimed at meeting new goals and tasks. The Information Provision Council has been established at ASU; it includes our top management, Deans, and key researchers.
We are planning to launch a laboratory of electronic editions, which shall make it possible to make participation of University chairs in creation of new educational materials more efficient.
Our long-term goals include:
- Execution of our new Development Concept;
- Introduction of wireless access technologies in our reading halls;
- Stage-by-stage introduction of readers’ electronic cards and automation of providing books;
- Introduction of a distant access to information resources of our Library via the Internet;
- Establishment of our Laboratory of Electronic Editions.
Khakimova, Ekaterina Vasilyevna
Gazizulina, Tatyana Nikolayevna
Address: 20a Tatischev Str., Astrakhan 4145056 Russia.
Web Site: www.library.asu.edu.ru
Последнее редактирование: 01-09-2019, Глинчевский Эдвард Иванович