Major Changes to Library Electronic Resources

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The Stewart Library is a member of the Utah Academic Library Consortium, which includes all of the USHE degree granting institutions and Westminster University and BYU. We purchase some library electronic resources collectively because of the cost savings. The state institutions receive a legislative allocation to pay for these shared purchases and the funding has been flat since 2018. Some of these resources have been part of a statewide contract that also includes public and school libraries. That contract was 10-years old and needed to go to an RFP this year. The RFP selected a bid from Proquest that was substantially lower than the current provider, EBSCO. The EBSCO bid would have required canceling other resources that UALC purchases outside of the state contract. On July 1, the library will switch access to the Proquest subscriptions. The contract is for 5 years.

What does this mean for content coverage?

  • Academic Search Ultimate (ASU) will be replaced by Proquest Central. This is a large full-text database that aggregates content from different publishers. There is around a 30% overlap in titles but each database has strengths in coverage from different publishers. Proquest Central, for example, has stronger coverage of Springer/Nature journals, as well as dissertations. For the 53 high-use titles in ASU (defined as more than 100 downloads per year), 17 titles have only citations/abstracts in Proquest central and would be available via interlibrary loan. Only 3 are not indexed in Proquest Central at all.
  • Indexing and Abstracting Databases: The state contract also includes discipline-specific databases that provide either citations and abstracts only or citations/abstracts with some limited full text. These will change on July 1. There is overlap in the titles indexed and comparable coverage in Proquest. EBSCO and Proquest, as in the full text database above, have different strengths.
  • Duplicate coverage: Proquest Central provides access to resources that Stewart Library already subscribes to. During our renewal cycle, we will cancel some of these subscriptions and use the savings to fill in gaps.
  • UALC subscriptions to EBSCO databases outside of the state contract: UALC will continue to subscribe to resources outside of the state contract. These include high-use and core resources like CINAHL, the MLA Bibliography, and PsycInfo. UALC might also subscribe to some additional resources to fill in gaps created by switching from EBSCO to Proquest, using cost savings from the lower cost of the new statewide contract. These options are currently being developed as we receive quotes from multiple vendors.

What does this mean for teaching and the user experience?

  • The search interfaces will change for a significant number of library resources. This will happen on July 1. The library can provide access to training materials, and your subject librarian can work with you and your students to learn the new interfaces. All of the new resources will have comparable features for saving, exporting, citation tools, and links to interlibrary loan services.
  • We are currently expecting advance access to the Proquest resources some time in May, so that faculty and librarians can begin to prepare for teaching in the fall. We will update you as soon as we get a firm date.
  • If you have permalinks in Canvas or other learning materials to content in the affected EBSCO databases, you will need to change these links to the same content that is available in Proquest or another library subscription or make a request with our Course Reserves service to locate a copy of that content that we can provide through our electronic reserve system. Your subject librarian can also help you find new content.

Title / Coverage Lists

Potential gaps and areas of concern

  • Business Source Premier was part of the EBSCO statewide package. There is some overlap with ABI Inform, but some core resources, such as Harvard Business Review, are not included in ABI.
  • PDF coverage in journal and magazine titles:
    • Academic Search Ultimate: 96% PDF coverage.
    • Proquest Central: 88% PDF coverage.
    • No overlap analysis of these titles has been done to see if some of the titles lacking PDF coverage in Proquest Central are the same in ASU. Further analysis can be done to see if high use titles available in Proquest Central lack PDF coverage.

The library Collection Management Team is currently analyzing all of our subscriptions in order to identify how to address duplication and gaps resulting from the switch to Proquest. While some access to some journals and databases will change, the library will provide comparable coverage as we renew subscriptions during the 2024 fiscal year. We will ensure that robust discovery platforms and document delivery through interlibrary loan and other mechanisms are in place to ease the transition and speedily deliver what you need for teaching and research. Please contact your subject librarian if you have specific questions and concerns.