August 27, 2012 - 1:46pm
AUSTIN, Texas — While most of the student population has been enjoying their annual summer reprieve, the University of Texas Libraries are wrapping a productive break with the launch of a new comprehensive resources search tool.
The web discovery tool scoUT (Search Content Online at The University of Texas) employs a unified interface to search the combined resources provided by the Libraries.
Visitors to the Libraries home page will now be able to use scoUT to find books, articles, music, videos and images and to search the institutional repository utilizing an index compiled from over 7,000 publishers and content providers, covering almost 90% of the university’s electronic journal subscriptions.
scoUT — powered by Summon from Serials Solutions
— is the new comprehensive starting point for research, primarily intended for students who need to find information about a topic, but who don’t need to do a comprehensive literature search, or those users not already familiar with discipline-specific databases and journals.
The new home page search box will continue to offer easy access to the library catalog, specialized database and lists of journals, but now search returns will be augmented with content drawn from external online sources. Users of scoUT broadly search resources for general information, or use the tool’s advance search functions to delimit for more focused results.
The Libraries had some help from university staff in developing the name scoUT. A naming contest launched in May resulted in a winning entry from Vicki Keller, a staffer in the Division of Statistics and Scientific Computation at the College of Natural Sciences.
The launch of scoUT serves as an exclamation point on an industrious summer for University of Texas Libraries staff. Branches across campus have been working at feverish pace to enhance and improve facilities and services in time for the return of students to campus — from technology upgrades to space improvements to added service options. Improvements include:
- PC upgrades, larger monitors in all libraries
- Faster scanner computers at the Perry-Castañeda Library (PCL)
- The addition of a presentation/practice, group study room at the Physics/Math/Astronomy (PMA) Library
- Electrical upgrades and new seating in stacks at the Life Science Library (LSL)
- Walk-up scanners in PCL, LSL, PMA, the Walter Geology Library and the Fine Arts Library
- Additional tables, chairs and electrical outlets on the 4th and 6th floors of PCL
- New presentation/practice rooms in PCL, including one with a projector
- Added seating, electricity, tables in PCL 2.200 (Reference Room)
- Refurbishment of furniture in the Student Learning Commons at PCL
- Thousands of books and other materials moved to create new space and to improve access to library resources
The Libraries will introduce additional user services and complete further rolling facilities improvements over the course of the fall semester.