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The Internet not likely to make libraries obsolete

CMC Corner
Mindy White
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

It’s maybe just a little too tempting these days to rely upon the Internet for everything you want to know about anything. People are now going to Google, whether they need a statistic, some background information on a particular topic or timely research needed to give weight to an argument. Why would anyone want to go to the library anymore, when the answer is right at their fingertips? Or is it?

As a librarian, I’m probably a little biased, but I certainly don’t think the Internet is going to put me out of a job anytime soon. When someone comes to me here at Colorado Mountain College’s Quigley Library at Spring Valley, that person is going to get a lot more help than Google alone could ever provide.

There are some good reasons and big advantages to visiting us here at the Quigley Library, which is open not only to CMC students, but to the entire community. Let’s say you are doing some research on avalanches in the state. An Internet search on the subject will yield many results ” some that are useful, and some that are not. And some are reliable, and some are questionable. At our library, however, my staff and I will offer you personal help that always begins with asking you more specific questions about what you’re looking for: Do you need to know how many avalanches occurred this year? Are you interested in the evolution of rescue techniques?



Those questions will help us direct you to the appropriate and trustworthy resources, many of which still are the good, old-fashioned books and journal articles that have examined topics in thorough, objective ways and have been subject to peer review and analysis. As we approach the crunch time for many students completing research papers, it’s critical to include these kinds of sources that lend themselves to scholarly consideration. If the Quigley Library doesn’t have the book or article you need, we can borrow it from a nationwide network of libraries and get it to you usually very quickly.

And yes, we will point you to Internet resources, too. There’s a wealth of information online that I tap into daily, and we’ll help you sort through what’s meaningful and reliable. Since anyone can publish a Web page, it’s extremely important to know who authored the page and what their qualifications are, how current the information is, and whether or not the page itself might be sponsored by a corporation and its agenda. We can help you evaluate these considerations and help you conduct searches better geared to your needs, so that your results will turn up valid statistics on “avalanches in Colorado” ” and not something like hockey scores.



Mindy White is the librarian at Colorado Mountain College’s Quigley Library, located at Spring Valley, 3000 County Road 114 in Glenwood Springs. Hours through May 2 are: Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 8 p.m. Please call 947-8271 for more information.


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