Friday, June 21, 2024

Discarded Library Books

By Ian Zane T. Esparaga | News Writer

Vol. XCI No. 10

Nov. 22, 2019

As early as November 2019, Silliman University (SU) Library started to discard some of its outdated and unusable books. This action led to some students raising their eyebrows after seeing piles of books scattered outside the library.

A week after, the old books were seen being transported to the SU Buildings and Grounds (SUBG). This led to some speculations from the students implying that the books were to be sold somewhere rather than giving it to the students for free or the less fortunate.

“It’s a shame that someone decided to throw away those books. Although we are in a more modernized world and books aren’t the first source of knowledge, it could still be a great help to those who really need them, especially to those with little to no access to the internet. If lack of storage was the reason for them throwing them away, they could’ve had a better alternative like giving the books to those who are in need or interested in them” said Lorenzo Que, a Psychology major student and a frequent library user.

Unknown to many, the SU Library is in the process of discarding outdated books. “So those books were outdated when we say outdated those books were not anymore applicable for our current curriculum because CHED accreditation standards state that we need to have at least a copyright date within five years to ten years only,” said SU Library Head Dr. Myra Villanueva.

A process in evaluating the books was being observed by the library. “It has a process, step one is evaluating the collection then if it is still needed with regards to standard CHED requirements, and recommendations from accreditations,” Dr. Villanueva added.

Dr. Villanueva strongly remarked that these books are unusable. To further clarify, she confirmed that some of the medical students inquired about the books.

“Once you donate it or give it to the others, what if someone will see it and will say, is this the donation of Silliman, outdated and the pages are already yellow and brittled. Is this how they donate?”.  Villanueva opened up that the university is open to donating the books to the less fortunate. “Usually it is for the far-flung public schools and even private schools nearby that cannot afford to buy books. So all they have to do is to write a letter to the president then they can choose the book that they need”.

Villanueva assured that the books are not meant to be sold “Those books were to be shred, I already talked to Engr. Ygnalaga (SUBG head), they are already starting in shredding it to make fertilizers and the like”, she said. The books cannot be circulated since it already has the stamp of the university.

Base on its database, the library, as of now holds around 87,000 volumes and 74,000 titles. The CHED standard minimum requirements for libraries of higher education institutions states that 20% of the collections must be within five years. Villanueva stated that more books will be discarded in fulfillment of CHED’s standards. She also shared the plan of the library’s modernization program that it is the time to build for e-book collections and students accessing the database of the library to get books and information from their webpage.

“If we want to make sure that we have a quality collection in the library when we acquire new once we must also discard. We need to ensure that you get what you paid for.” Dr, Villanueva said.


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