Here at LJMU we operate our search room on a by appointment basis and we are starting to wonder if it would be worth limiting the number of items that people can request for each visit – to save valuable staff time from spending ages getting a lot of material out for people that they will never get through.
Obviously this is a tricky subject as when researchers come for a couple of days from a distance they can get through a lot of material / want to maximise their time and we don’t have the staff to get more material out for them once they are here, but we have had a few occasions lately where we have spent a lot of time retrieving material that the researcher just hasn’t had time to get through.
I would therefore love to hear from anyone in a similar situation who has considered this option or does have a set limit. What I would like to know is:
- Have you set a limit on the number of items that researchers can order for each visit?
- What is that limit? How did you reach that figure?
- What is the reaction from researchers?
- Have you considered it and decided against it? Why?
- Have you tried it, found it didn’t work and have reverted back to not having a limit? Why was it unsuccessful?
If this is something other people would also be interested in I will happily collate any responses for the list (anonymised of course).
Thank you in advance for any help!
Research & Learner Support Officer
Special Collections & Archives / Art & Design
(Thursday and Friday)
Library and Student Support
Liverpool John Moores Univeristy
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