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Supporting learners in mobile discovery of library resources

Presentation by Keren Mills at the CALRG conference 2012.

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Rebecca Ferguson
19 June 2012

The Macon project (Mobilising Academic Content Online) aims to address the challenges involved in delivering quality academic content to mobile phones and small tablets in a seamless and user-friendly manner.  The project is working with EBSCO, a major content and systems provider, to prototype a mobile optimised resource discovery interface which can be used to discover and expose quality academic content from both third party & local collections.  Local collections included the Open University’s Open Research Online (ORO) repository and audiovisual content from  The project uses a combination of the API from EBSCO Discovery Solution (EDS) and open source software (Mobile Web from MIT and the Open University’s Open Media Player).

The development of the interface has been heavily influenced by user requirements and by external recommendations for good practice in mobile usability.  The prototype systems are being evaluated to ascertain the usability and quality of the user experience.

The project will also produce a ‘good practice’ toolkit for content providers which documents the rewards, risks and barriers involved in making academic content accessible to mobile devices.   This presentation will discuss the methods used by the library for gathering user requirements and ensuring that our support offerings meet learner needs. It will also share the lessons learnt in the process.

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