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  September 3, 2002

Direct Access Now Offered
to Digitized Course Materials
By Suzanne Zack

Curriculum materials placed on reserve in the library are easier than ever for students to access, due to a new online initiative that takes effect this semester. Starting the first day of classes, the University Libraries' Electronic Course Reserve is now available exclusively via WebCT.

The new service, a combined effort of the University Libraries, University Information Technology Services, and the Instructional Resource Center, will provide students at Storrs and the regional campuses with direct access to digitized library materials requested by faculty for specific courses.

"In the past, if students were off-campus and needed to access Electronic Course Reserve, they first needed to obtain a proxy account," says Steve Bustamante, digital reserves coordinator. "Then, once they were in the Electronic Course Reserve website, they had to manually locate their department and scroll through all the class listings before they would locate the library materials for their specific course.

"Now, whether they're on or off campus, students need only log in to WebCT and they will automatically see only materials for the classes in which they are enrolled."

The change also benefits faculty members. To post class materials to Electronic Course Reserve via WebCT, faculty members will simply contact Babbidge Library's Reserve Services staff, who will scan the materials and post them to a basic WebCT course website that contains only materials placed on reserve. Access to the website is protected by password.

As in the past, faculty interested in creating a more comprehensive site using the additional features that WebCT provides can obtain assistance from the Instructional Resource Center.

"We believe this streamlining of the delivery of course materials will further enhance teaching and learning," says Kim Chambers, director of the Instructional Resource Center.

Online help is available at to guide faculty through the process of making an Electronic Course Reserve request, choosing the appropriate type of WebCT page, and adding the roster of students.

Information regarding the recent upgrades to WebCT is available at

"We hope that newly secured, direct access to Electronic Course Reserve via WebCT, which provides a single gateway to most course-related materials online, will enhance the educational experience of UConn students and serve as an extension of the Libraries' instructional support for University faculty," says Nancy Orth, director of library access services.

For questions regarding Electronic Course Reserve, contact Steve Bustamante at 860.486.1158 or

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