I’m excited to announce that, in partnership with the Film & Media department, a large majority of the Media Collection DVDs, which have been kept behind the Circulation Desk, will be moving out onto the main floor, and new loan rules will apply to them. These DVDs will be merged with the current Browsing DVDs, located between the New Books and Reference stacks, and will circulate to students and staff for 3 days, and to faculty for 2 weeks. They’ll be housed within new, locked cases, and when you check out the media, instead of having to locate the DVD itself from a shelf behind Circulation, LIS staff will simply unlock the case for you. In other words, yes, now you’ll be able to watch most of the DVDs Middlebury owns outside the library.
Additionally, we expect to have an “oversize” portion of the collection where the original DVD cases (e.g. some box sets, DVDs with irregular-sized booklets) are important for use or study, or can’t be easily transferred to the locking cases. This oversize section will be located behind the Circulation Desk, but the materials will circulate under the new loan rules and can leave the building.
Lastly, a smaller restricted collection of rare and/or expensive DVDs will continue to be kept behind Circulation and the old loan rules (students & staff 4 hours in-house, faculty 3 days) will still apply.
This new arrangement will not affect how Reserves works for faculty or students. When a professor asks to have a DVD put on Reserves for a course, LIS staff will retrieve the media from the open stacks/oversize/restricted, and it will be kept on Reserves, in the usual place behind Circulation and with the usual Reserves loan rules. At the end of the semester, when the media comes off of Reserves, it will be returned to wherever it came. (Note: videotapes, which have already been moved from behind Circ to open stacks on the main floor behind Government Documents, will work the same way.) However, since a more widely circulating media collection will result in more media being used away from the library and off campus, we encourage faculty to plan ahead for your Reserves needs, including film screenings.
This is a huge project for LIS, involving handling all the DVDs, and repackaging and reprocessing most of them. Not only most of the Media Collection DVDs, but also all of the Browsing DVDs will have to be repackaged. All “MCTR” DVDs, no matter where they will eventually be housed, will be reprocessed using the Library of Congress classification system, which we use currently for all books and some DVDs. The finished open stacks collection will be sorted by call number, not the current alphabetical arrangement used for Browsing. We plan to start work on all this in early June, and hope to be finished before Fall semester classes begin.