We may not have anticipated having a section on COVID-19 response for a second year, yet here we are. Responding.
Throughout FY21 Becker’s workforce continued to work largely from home. Except for a hiatus from librarians rounding on hospital floors, most work remained unchanged. On-site staffing was uninterrupted and student space was continuously accessible.
Like many, we had to get creative in order to keep our full staff employed as on-site hours were restricted early in the pandemic. So, building off of the successful release of a new archives database in 2019, we made a concerted effort beginning in the summer of 2020 to add more digital surrogates of archival documents (PDFs) to the database, devising a large-scale project to link thousands of description records in the archives database to their appropriate digital surrogate.
The continued pivot to virtual events in FY21 was both an ongoing challenge and an opportunity. While virtual events hold the potential to reach new audiences particularly in the areas of archives and rare books, Zoom fatigue is real and in some ways drawing those audiences virtually remained elusive.
Library training sessions across all topics continued in a virtual format, with recordings captured to provide an on-demand resource for researchers.
Staff continued to update and expand a COVID-19 subject guide created at the end of FY20 to help researchers stay abreast of the latest research on COVID-19. The guide has 2,647 views to date.
Staff also continued to support the School of Medicine COVID-19 researcher pool in Research Profiles to make it easier to identify faculty on campus studying COVID-19 and to promote collaboration.
Preprints have garnered much attention during the COVID-19 pandemic as a means of disseminating groundbreaking research prior to publishing in a peer-reviewed scholarly journal. Becker Library developed a subject guide containing information on preprint publishing guidelines and the landscape of preprint servers.
This year, researchers have also had great need for electronic consent, or e-consent, due to the ongoing pandemic. Becker Library joined others at the School of Medicine in helping researchers understand e-consent processes and implementing e-consent when possible.