There is nothing wrong with positioning the library as the heart of the college. This is due to the strategic position of the library itself as a vehicle for information and knowledge providers. A library is an exciting place where we browse and find various collections whether journals, books, or other printed works. In addition, a diverse collection of learning videos and audio is there. Even some libraries have a collection of ancient manuscripts that are priceless and still well stored.
The role, function, and position of the library are very strategic academically. Therefore, this organization is regulated by Law in all countries in the world. According to the Law, the library is defined as the institution of managing the collection of written works, printed works, and/or professional record works with a standard system to meet the educational, research, preservation, information, and recreation needs of the library.
Can you imagine a college without a library facility? As the heart of academics, it is a must that every college is owned library. Interestingly, the library is currently treated as a discipline. Some colleges open the Library Science course at under and postgraduate levels.
So what exactly is the function of the library? Summarizing from various references, at least the library on campus has the following 4 functions;
First, is the function of education. The library supports the lecturing process. Not all teaching materials are delivered by lecturers during lecture activities. Always remind students that the material delivered by lecturers is not more than 10%. Students are required to master the remaining 90% by increasing knowledge independently. This is where the library serves as a place for students to increase knowledge or relearn the lecture material that has been delivered by lecturers. The collection of available libraries can be utilized as much as possible by students.
The second is the information function. In fact, the library serves as a source of information related to the fulfillment of curiosity for both lecturers and students. Library resources can be used by campus residents and even the general public. Therefore, it is natural that the library greatly contributes to improving the literacy and writing of the academic community of the campus and other communities.
Third, is the recreational function. Don’t imagine the library only contains stacks of books arranged on the shelves. Modern libraries are designed in such a way that it becomes pleasant place for visitors. Visiting the library for lecturers and book-loving students is a recreational activity interrupted by other academic activities.
Fourth, is the research function. Research activities conducted by lecturers and students will be hampered without the presence of the library. Literature review which is a mandatory component in research must certainly be supported by the adequacy and suitability of supporting references. The library provides a variety of scientific references.
So strategic is the position of the library, its existence becomes an indicator in the assessment of accreditation of institutions and study programs. Accreditation assessors will dig further into the resources available in the library, both the number and qualifications of librarians, the number and variety of library collections, the average graph of visits, to the library information system owned.
A good library certainly has good collection management as well. Starting from procurement, processing, development, and maintenance/preservation of collections. All of them are intended to support the effectiveness of library functions. Neglect of the collection management process is the same as closing the library slowly. Collection of printed materials owned will quickly be damaged, for example when the collection maintenance/preservation process is not a serious concern.
The printed library collection, for example, if it is not a priority then easily the collection is damaged and weathered. Damage to printed materials can be due to air humidity, temperature/ temperature, chemicals, rats, termites, and other pests. Therefore, to be connected to the collection of printed materials is maintained, fumigation as one of the treatment methods should be done periodically. Fumigation aims to prevent, treat and sterilize library materials from insect, rat, fungal, and termite disorders. In addition, fumigation is effective to reduce the collection weathering process so that library materials are maintained for a long time.
Fumigation can be done independently or involve other parties depending on the availability of library resources. If the library has competent human resources, doing self-fumigation is certainly cheaper although not necessarily effective.