Many of you have heard of the LibCal application from Springshare, LLC, but did you know that it does more than one thing? LibCal is actually made up of five modules – Hours, Spaces/Seats, Appointments, and Events/Calendars. Each of these modules have benefit for libraries, librarians, students, faculty, and staff.
RUL has been using the Hours module for several years to display the hours that each library, library unit and desk is open. The website homepage displays building hours for the current day, as well as links to the Camden, NBL, Newark and RBHS libraries. At the moment, all library buildings are marked as Closed.
We’ve used the Spaces module to accept and track reservations of different types of spaces in our libraries. If you’re familiar with Group Study Rooms online reservations for nine of our libraries, you have seen Spaces. We can define different categories of Spaces. Alexander Library’s One Button Studio is a specialized type of Space that has its own category. We created a third category for the Click and Collect service. After patrons use QuickSearch to find and charge out materials, they receive a link to reserve a time to pick-up their materials. Reserving that time is done in the LibCal Spaces module. A recent enhancement to the Spaces module is the Seats add-on. This feature allows specific seats to be reserved in libraries but is currently not used at Rutgers because our buildings are not open for library services.
Some library employees have begun using the Appointments module, which enables staff to publicize time when they are available to meet with patrons. Currently, these meetings are for online appointments only. Rutgers faculty, librarians, staff, students, or non-Rutgers researchers can request an appointment. When our libraries are again open, the Appointments module can facilitate scheduling on-site appointments at any of the campus libraries. RUL staff can publicize their available hours on individual calendars, or be grouped by location or function, such as RBHS Librarians. You can see some current appointment calendars at https://libcal.rutgers.edu/appointments.
We are just beginning to make use of the Events module. This feature allows us to set up calendars for any type of event at the Libraries. Some examples are RUL workshops, student instruction, RUL-wide events, and even lectures that are open to the public. As with appointments, this module operates with calendars and reservations. Events are displayed on calendars, and reservations can be accepted for events that require them. An example of NBL’s workshop calendar is at https://libcal.rutgers.edu/calendar/nblworkshops.
For more information about LibCal and how it can help you provide library services to the students and faculty at Rutgers, contact the LibCal Admin, Marty Barnett.