Search is on — library offers free trials of databases

The library is currently offering several new full-text online databases on the library Web site, with free trials available until Dec. 8.

According to Mike VanHouten, associate director and reference librarian, the library typically runs database trials once a semester.

“We typically only run a trial if the database seems likely to be of use to Albion students and faculty,” VanHouten said. “If we get a positive response to a trial, we’ll look very carefully at where that database fits in with our existing resources and whether or not there is overlap with other databases.”

Several of the databases being trialed include GREENR (Global Reference on the Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources), which includes articles on sustainability and the environment, and GLOBAL ISSUES IN CONTEXT, which provides insight on international topics from different geographic locations.

According to VanHouten, if a trialed database fills a need or is better than an existing database, the library can add it to their budget request for the following year. Less important databases are sometimes replaced with the newer database.

“The GREENR database we’re trialing right now looks like a potentially valuable resource and fits in with next year’s emphasis on sustainability, so I’ll be especially interested in student reactions to that database,” VanHouten said.

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