Auckland College of Education

Schnell, Hayley. “Bending Over Backwards: A Flexible Library Service.” In Open, Flexible and Distance Learning: Challenges of the New Millennium: Collected Papers from the 14th Biennial Forum of the Open and Distance Learning Association of Australia. Geelong Victoria: Deakin University, 1999, 445-448.
The librarian at Auckland College of Education (ACE) provides a description of the College’s efforts at delivering flexible learning library services to its off-campus students. At the time of the article’s writing, a few problems with the with the program’s library services were indicated. For example, at times, there were some difficulties and delays in the provision of recommended course materials. In addition, the library did not yet offer the catalog and databases via Internet. The lack of self-directed tutorials meant student dependence upon the library staff to execute searches, locate needed information and make decisions about information, which impinged upon the library staff’s workload and conflicted with library ideals of fostering information literacy and independent learning. Additional problems arose when modules of the program were extended to additional local towns. Focus Groups were established to help implement some helpful changes. Professional librarians offered students valuable on-campus user education sessions. The library extended its Saturday hours and added additional staff for user education on Saturdays. M. Thomas.

Open Polytechnic of New Zealand

Mann, Sandra. “The Library of the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.” In [Proceedings of the] ICDE Librarians’ Roundtable, 11-12 October, 1999, The Open University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong: Open University of Hong Kong, 1999, 43-45. ERIC ED 438 832. Also online. Available: (in pdf format)
As part of the ICDE Librarians’ Roundtable, the author provides a recent history of the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand’s Library. The Open Polytechnic is the only post-secondary institution in New Zealand to solely provide distance education courses. The Library has evolved alongside the institution since 1991, when the Open Polytechnic began to provide degree-level programs. Prior to this point, the Library was a very small unit providing support only to the teaching staff. As the Open Polytechnic’s programs have developed, the Library has increased in size, staffing, and service roles. It now provides students with document delivery, information literacy, and course support services. The paper ends with a look forward and includes some ways they are hoping to make the Library a valuable part of the Open Polytechnic’s services in the future. B. Reiten.

University of Waikato

Perrone, Vye Gower. “The Changing Role of Librarians and the Online Learning Environment.” Paper presented at “Distance Education: An Open Question?” an international conference sponsored by the University of South Australia in conjunction with the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) held at the University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia, 11-13 September 2000. Online. Available:
In order to promote information literacy and provide library service, librarians at the University of Waikato in New Zealand served as Information Coaches for several different online classes. Information coaches reviewed research outlines, provided personal feedback to students, and monitored course discussions. With access to course readings, lectures, and discussion, librarians expanded their roles within a course and enhanced their ability to address information literacy skills. Factors that contributed to the success of the information coaches include specific research assignments for the students, participation in class discussions, including course instructors in communications, and developing a relationship with the course instructors. J. Brandt.