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Oxford Library Services
The Oxford Library Reserve exists to assist faculty, staff, and students in fulfilling the Institution's Academic Mission by providing access to developmental and collateral reading material that support the curriculum and the Course of Study. For this reason, the purpose of the library is to acquire and store materials and provide library services, which relate directly to a Course Bibliography Reserve for the Course of Study and the general collection needs in the Oxford/ACRSS field of study. Priorities in the acquisition, classification, and shelving of volumes are determined by the Faculty Library Oversight Committee based on the specific needs of the degree program.
Since dissertation research is restricted to general subjects related to the program's field of study, the Oxford Library Reserve provides students with the data necessary to do a comprehensive literature review for a quantitative research proposal. Primary data is to be gathered through field research using social research instrumentation. Normally, Candidates for the Doctor of Philosophy at Oxford Graduate School will do quantitative social scientific research which requires the gathering of primary data through instrumentation and hypothesis testing through statistical analysis. The comprehensive nature of the literature review would include the normal electronic searches on Internet data bases and a current awareness search of journals and existing dissertation research.
The Library does not make an effort to provide exhaustive resources for qualitative research. In cases of atypical research subjects related to qualitative research which requires an exhaustive literature review, students who demonstrate a subject matter mastery of foundational literature on their subject are guided to the Library of Congress, The Bodleian (University of Oxford), The British Library (London) or Inter-Library Loan to complete an exhaustive review for a special privilege research direction.
Oxford/ACRSS has institutional status with the Bodleian Library, the graduate library of the University of Oxford. With this status, Oxford/ACRSS is able to recommend students for Reader status at this library. Reader status allows students who attend the Oxford Reading and Research Seminars offered at the University, to do research in the Bodleian Library and relevant dependent libraries. Reader status is granted by the Bodleian Library on the recommendation of the Faculty Senate.
In addition to the cooperative library network available in Tennessee, Oxford Graduate School students have access to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. and the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford with some five million volumes. Relevant dependent libraries at the University are available on a needs basis. In addition to the research facilities in Oxford, England, students with special needs have access to the 18 million volumes of the British Library, London.
The Oxford Library Reserve is a key-access facility with seven day a week, twenty-four (24) hour availability to matriculated students, Oxford Alumni Fellowship members, and Oxford Society of Scholars members. Qualified individuals may receive access information from the Director of Library Services or the Supervisor of Graduate Research.
Whenever feasible, the Oxford Reserve Library seeks to establish cooperative relationships with other libraries and agencies. This cooperation with other existing libraries or agencies, however, is not meant to be a substitute for adequate library facilities at Oxford/ACRSS. It is only an acknowledgment that, normally, one library can not serve the total needs of faculty research and the student's dissertation process. Library staffs are in process of converting the database to a comprehensive computerized catalog for the collection of more than 60,000 volumes. The Oxford Library Reserve houses a Course Bibliography Reserve with stacks arranged by general course support areas in the humanities and social sciences as well as a general collection to support the field of study. These are shelved in the various reading rooms of the Study Centre for user friendly access. The concept of the library is not staff-intensive. By utilizing current technology for online services, a Central Computer Catalog System, and a course specific shelving process, the library staff can devote more time to processing new material and the shelving process. The 24-hour key access requires the library be organized in a manner that is user friendly. The nature of the Library and the policy of "goodness of fit" with the curriculum, together with the no lending/reading room model for a specialized curriculum, makes the Oxford Reserve Library user friendly. The course specific shelving concept has been difficult for some to grasp. For this reason a five member faculty committee has coordinated the collection with the assistance of a technical staff for processing acquisitions for the Central Computer Catalog System.
The library is under the supervision of a faculty Library Oversight Committee appointed by the Chancellor and the professional library staff. All teaching faculty and academic staff of the Graduate School have functions within the library: computer accessions, computer assisted research, classifications, reading room supervision, and research assistance. Accession and Cataloging services are performed under direct supervision of the professional library staff.