In an age of “information at your fingertips,” search engines, and AI, going to the library might feel downright quaint. However, there’s no more powerful resource than the university library — and the media specialists who work there.
We asked Grace Veach, professor of English and library science at Southeastern University in Lakeland, to help you harness the power of your campus library. She writes:
Librarians are trained to help with all kinds of information needs. Maybe you have something you’re interested in, but you don’t know exactly what your research question should be. Librarians are great at helping “tease out” what you really need.
We’re also good at searching out tough-to-find information. Many students will do one google search and say, “The library doesn’t have anything on this.” But we know “secret” places to look. Probably 90% of the resources used in academic writing won’t come up in an internet search — or are behind a paywall. I love finding that one, elusive resource that no one else could come up with.
We can also help with citation, which can be really confusing (and can get you in trouble if you don’t do it right).
The only reason [librarians] are here is to help you be successful in your education, and the university spends thousands of dollars each year to provide the best resources they can afford. Take advantage of it!