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Increasing the usage of e-resources: SubjectsPlus training in Zimbabwe
Following the successful pilot implementation of the SubjectsPlus guided searching software at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in Zimbabwe, EIFL FOSS funded a dissemination and training workshop for other institutions within the Zimbabwe EIFL community.
SubjectsPlus addresses one of the main challenges facing library users in the digital environment−how to locate high-quality, relevant e-resources both commercial and open access. This free and open source tool enables librarians to create online guides and manage online content; and provides end users with an easy to use interface to browse or search for resources.
Early data from NUST show a significant increase in the usage of key e-resources following the publication of subject guides via SubjectsPlus.
Eleven institutions attended the training workshop and were welcomed by Mrs Daphne Sibanda, Deputy Librarian of NUST. Participants were introduced to related FOSS resources and topics including a walkthrough of the EIFL FOSS Library Advocacy Resource; a presentation by Yeukai Chimuka, project lead for the EIFL FOSS Disability Tools pilot at the University of Zimbabwe, and a presentation on Subject Librarianship in the Digital Age by Mr Phillip Ndhlovu, NUST Assistant Librarian.
After an overview of the EIFL FOSS SubjectsPlus pilot project at NUST, the remainder of the day focussed on implementation of SubjectsPlus itself: its installation and configuration, the process of building subject guides, customisation and an opportunity for hands on exercises. These sessions were all led by the conference convenor and pilot project lead Mr Amos Kujenga, Systems Analyst in NUST Library.
The training materials from this workshop will soon be available here on the EIFL FOSS web pages along with the Case Study from the pilot project.