University Library goes hi-tech

2016 December 12

Score another first for the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila!

The University Library recently finalized its subscription to ProQuest, a US-based information content and technology company that provides access to a global collection of e-books and e-journals, thus, making the Pamantasan the first local state university to give its students and faculty this high-tech service free of charge.

Headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, ProQuest has a growing content collection that now encompasses 90,000 authoritative sources, six billion digital pages and spans six centuries. It includes the world's largest collection of dissertations and theses; 20 million pages and three centuries of global, national, regional and specialty newspapers; more than 450,000 e-books; rich aggregated collections of the world's most important scholarly journals and periodicals; and unique vaults of digitized historical collections from great libraries and museums, as well as organizations as varied as the US Library of Congress, the Royal Archives and the Associated Press.

The subscription was announced in simple rites held last Dec. 6 at the Library Reading Room where University officials, led by President Ma. Leonora V. de Jesus, participated in the ceremonial launch of this newest library service.

"The University Library has witnessed a great metamorphosis in recent years, both in the library collection, development, and service structures," Grace Mauricio, chief librarian, said in her opening remarks.

Thanking President De Jesus for her support, Ms. Mauricio noted that it was hard to believe that the PLM library opened with only 768 volumes of books, most of which were donated by private individuals, societies, and foundations, such as the Asia Foundation and US Information Services. At present, she said, the library's book collection totals 500,000 volumes of foreign and local print materials, but, thanks to the ProQuest subscription, this can now be multiplied several times over.

The ceremonial launch is considered a giant leap for the University as it will provide PLMyers with access to the best books, journals, and learning materials through an increasingly familiar and popular medium – digital technology. It will also enable the University Library to achieve one of its key goals, which is "…to explore potentials of technology in order to deliver a wide spectrum of excellent library services."

The ProQuest subscription comes bundled with another prominent service, Turnitin, an anti-plagiarism software that is very popular among researchers. This software enables users to enhance and perfect their technical and academic writing skills by detecting copied parts of a written output. Many universities are now using this tool to assist undergraduate and graduate students in improving their research skills.

With these newly acquired library services, PLM is well on its way to becoming a real techie university.


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