Edge Hill University

Enabling Round-the-Clock Content Access for All Students

Enabled students with round-the-clock digital content access

Justified and optimized content budgets with BibliU’s analytics dashboard

Ensured a seamless student experience via VLE integration

Edge Hill University is located in Lancashire, close to Liverpool and Manchester. The institution, which serves over 13,000 students, has been providing higher education since 1885, with a mission to create opportunity and a continued commitment to delivering an exceptional student experience.

Challenges

Historically, Edge Hill University (EHU) has had a “print-forward” textbook model, procuring multiple print copies of frequently used textbooks to support student learning. While the library would purchase single title eTextbooks on request, they had not experimented with digital content on a broad scale. 

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, classes went fully online, rendering the library’s physical copies unusable overnight, even for students who stayed on-campus. According to Ruth Smalley, eResources Team Leader, the pandemic was devastating to the library, which she describes as the beating heart of the university. 

Ruth, Anna Franca, Collections Manager, and the rest of the library team needed a digital textbook solution that provided content access to all students. For the library, universal access to content for all students was a top priority and was deemed by university leadership as critical to student success. 

The library identified core texts to invest in, by analyzing print usage over the previous 12 months. Popular titles with the most holds or reservations were prioritized for digital first; however, some titles were not available in the quantities the library needed due to licensing restrictions. The library needed a more extensive eTextbook solution.

“Ensuring students have the resources they need is a top priority for the library.” - Anna Franca

Solution

With students’ learning needs at the forefront of their digital initiative, the EHU library implemented BibliU’s On-Demand Learning solution to provide digital access to resources that are difficult to obtain via traditional methods, whilst only paying for the content students actually use. Students can search for and access the digital content when and as often as they need it, without worrying about being turned away.

BibliU’s range of available resources, along with the ease-of-use and backend functionalities, like analytics and reporting, ensure that students get access to the content they need when they need it, whilst providing valuable usage insights to academics and the library. 

For the library, universal access to content for all students is a significant priority. To encourage adoption and usage of BibliU, the library encourages academics to prioritize digital titles when building reading lists via Talis. According to Rachel Bury, Head of Academic Engagement and Resources, the university is diligent in ensuring that academics are trained adequately on Talis, building reading lists, and discovering which titles are already available digitally. For those academics requesting new titles, the library will procure them or work with academics to select alternate titles if they cannot digitally procure what was initially requested.

Results

With BibliU, EHU provides access to digital content to all students. The library can support students remotely, whilst feeling confident that students have round-the-clock content access from wherever they are. 

Because BibliU seamlessly integrates with EHU’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), students can access digital textbooks in BibliU via the VLE without creating an account or using an additional application, streamlining the content access process and providing a better student experience.

Using the analytics dashboard, the library can monitor usage statistics, identify high-usage titles, remove low-usage titles, and determine which texts are core to their digital library. According to Anna, analytics play a key role in deciding how and where to use the library’s budget.

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