New Library Directors Handbook

Statewide Cooperative Projects

The Montana State Library encourages collaboration between libraries and their partners, promotes library automation standards and plays a significant role in statewide training. Here are some of the current statewide projects:

Montana Shared Catalog

Imagine being able to find out what more than 100 libraries across Montana have in their collections. Imagine having other libraries share staff expertise with your library. The shared catalog gives your patrons convenient access to a large collection of materials. There are other shared catalogs in Montana. Both Montana State University and the University of Montana host shared catalogs for member academic libraries and several school districts, including Missoula and Billings, link libraries with a shared circulation system. The State Library continues to add libraries to the Montana Shared Catalog project, so look for demos and discussions in your area.

Statewide OCLC and electronic-content contracts

It's cheaper for libraries to work together to buy the products they need, so MSL negotiates statewide contracts for OCLC services and for magazine article databases. OCLC services include online tools to help libraries catalog materials and borrow/lend books with other libraries. You can find the magazine databases at http://mymontanalibrary.org or you can set up direct access to these resources from your library's website.

My Montana Library

Montana Worldcat

An online gateway for searching library catalogs in Montana. Try it at http://montana.worldcat.org.

Other Projects

MSL continues to expand what Montana libraries can provide to users. State library goals include making it easier for users to discover and request materials from Montana and around the world; exploring ways to expedite delivery of materials from library to library such as courier services; promoting collaborative collection development; simplifying access to electronic content for patrons; and creating online access to Montana-related digital materials held by both libraries and individuals. Please see http://libraries.msl.mt.gov/statewide_projects for a listing of current projects.