IFLA Survey of National Libraries of Education
The IFLA Survey of National Libraries of Education is an initiative taken by the IFLA's Section on Social Science Libraries. It was first discussed at the 64th IFLA General Conference in Amsterdam, 1998.
Basically, the problem of 'a national library of education' has been solved in four different ways around the world:
* one library has been named (or thinks of it-self as!) the national library
* the function of a national library is part of larger (national) library covering all or at least more subjects than education
* the function of a national library has been delegated to a number of libraries, each covering either only education or several subjects, and cooperating to cover the needs of the public or at least parts of it
* a combination of the above - more or less clearly thought out, and regulated - is in force
We want to create a list covering as many of the countries participating in IFLA as possible and presenting the facts of the national supply of educational literature (in the broadest sense) in as uniform a way as at all possible.
The usefulness of the survey for students, teachers (of all kinds), and other libraries all over the world has been foremost in our minds. That's why the contact information has been stressed.
We have established a central Web-page where the basic information or a link to the basic information on each country's NLE or NLE-system will be found.
A survey based on the WWW will slant the possibilities of using the survey heavily towards the rich countries, but the dynamic nature of the net will make the survey so much more useful that it will be hard to argue that universal accessibility is more important than ease of keeping the survey up-to-date. Moreover, since the Web-pages are structured thoughtfully they will lend themselves to occasional or periodic print-outs with a minimum of further editing.
We have developed a questionnaire possible to use for all the NLE-categories mentioned above. The questionnaire will be found on the homepage as an HTML-template, and as downloadable Word- and rtf-files.
We will try to locate as many national libraries of education and national library systems of education as possible and ask them to fill out the questionnaire.
All information will be put on the server.
How to proceed as a national library of education or a member of a national system of libraries of education
Choose the way in which you want to answer:
a. Downloading the template, filling it out, mounting it on your own server and sending the URL to Jakob Andersen
b. Downloading the template, filling it out, and sending the file to Jakob Andersen
c. Downloading one of the word-processing files, filling it out on your own computer and sending the finished file to Jakob Andersen
d. Downloading one of the word-processing files, filling it out on typewriter or by hand and sending the finished file to Jakob Andersen
e. Ordering a paper copy of one of the word-processing files, filling it out on typewriter or by hand and sending the finished copy to Jakob Andersen
Tips for filling out the questionnaire
For everybody: Fill out as many parts of the questionnaire as are relevant for your library - leave blank any that aren't. If there are fields that would require a great amount of work for you to fill them out, leave them blank. If you have additional information, please use the Other activities and remarks field as you see fit. Look at the filled out questionnaires on the web-page if in doubt - or contact Stephen Hunt.
For libraries covering more subjects than education and allied fields: Try to confine your remarks to education and the like where relevant. This goes especially for the fields Size of collections, Descriptions of special collections, Languages of the literature in the collections, and, of course, Other collections in education in your country.
For libraries part of a national library system: Describe your own library and please spread the word among the other libraries in the system. Leave blank the field Other collections in education in your country. Later on we shall try to collect the common characteristics of systems of cooperating libraries in a file for each country using such systems, with links to descriptions of the individual libraries.