Case Study - Avondale School
I’m not a real lover of change… There were teething problems in the early days, but our IT team worked with the Accessit team to sort things out… And now we’re swimming!
Avondale is an independent composite school located in New South Whales. The school has been using Accessit Library as its library management system since the early 2000s. The library itself is overseen by Jenny Litster who, prior to starting her current role as Head of Library in 2017, joined the school as the primary teacher librarian in 2000.
As a result of her long history with the school Jenny has seen Accessit’s introduction to the school as well as its development and growth over the years to better serve her and the students of Avondale.
Jenny recalls that the previous system used by the library was simple, an acceptable tool for checking books in and out but it provided little else beyond this utility. The decision to change systems came from the school’s IT department as they were shopping for a Mac compatible system and Accessit fit the bill. Jenny admits that she was hesitant about the change.
“I’m not a real lover of change… There were teething problems in the early days, but our IT team worked with the Accessit team to sort things out… And now we’re swimming.”
Despite her initial hesitation, Jenny’s use of accessit has been a huge benefit to both librarians and students alike. Jenny noted that one specific new feature that makes her life easier is the ability to see cover images in the circulation tab. Previously, Jenny had experienced issues with students forgetting books or being unable to recall what they look like, now she simply shows them the cover image on screen.
“If they say they don’t know what it looks like, well, I can easily show them”.
Jenny has also found the cataloguing system to be a big step up from what she had used previously, an important feature for her.
Jenny joked “I like cataloguing. I’m one of those strange people”.
While there are behind the scenes improvements that accessit has brought about, Jenny is also interested in how Accessit has helped to increase student interaction with the library space.
Through Accessit’s web app students can write reviews for books, as well as see reviews other students have written. Jenny has turned review writing into a twice-yearly assignment for her year four students but has found that many of them continue to write reviews even after they move onto year 5, and beyond.
Jenny has also encouraged younger students to engage with her web app by creating a weekly competition. Each week she will showcase several books that are related through a theme.
“The students look through the books and just try and work out what the theme is, and I give the first person who tells me a prize”.
Jenny has found than this little weekly competition not only increases engagement with her web app but also helps the students to develop their searching and digital navigation skills.
Overall, Accessit has had a beneficial impact on Avondale. Despite her initial hesitancy, Jenny has been able to use Accessit to strengthen library engagement through the helpful features and efficient cataloguing that Accessit provides, with the help of our support staff and her own willingness to learn.