Free resources abound at post facility
Soldiers and civilians enjoy free access to the computers offered at the Center Library located on Fifth Avenue Jan. 24.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. (Feb. 2, 2012) -- From e-books to music downloads to language learning software, the Center Library features a treasure trove of free resources to the community.

The Fort Rucker Center Library, located in Bldg. 212 on Fifth Avenue, has new features offered to members of the community that have access to its resources, said Ruth Villaverde, reference librarian for the Center Library.

"Something we're really excited about is what's now available on the Web that wasn't there a year ago," she said. "People now have Web access to the library where they can look on the Web and see what we have available within our collection.

"People can even check to see whether or not a book has been checked out before they take the time to come in," she said. "They can even put a book on hold if it has already been checked out."

Along with the Web access, the library offers free e-books that are available for download to e-readers or other portable listening devices, said the librarian.

"The e-book access is new for Army libraries and we want people to know that we have that feature available," she said. "Some of the selections may require an Army Knowledge Online, or AKO, account in order to access, but once they have that set up, they can download directly to their [e-readers]."

If people don't have their AKO accounts set up, Villaverde said she and other library staff members would me more than happy to help set one up.

The e-books and more are offered through: Army Digital Media Library, which has e-books, e-audiobooks, videos and music; Ebsco Audio books, which offers fiction and non-fiction titles; History Reference Online, which provides access to over 6,000 encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks and guides, said the librarian.

People that use the library's resources also have access to Transparent Language Online, which is the Army's current contract for language learning.

"It's completely free," said the librarian. "The TLO is available once you make an account for it. You'll have access to it anytime you sit down at a computer that has Internet access."

The language-learning program can also be downloaded to smartphones or other handheld portable computing devices, according to Villaverde. The program offers basic language courses in over 48 foreign languages and includes activities for developing pronunciation, grammar, writing, vocabulary and culture skills.

"I highly recommend people check it out if they are at all interested in learning a new language," she added.

The Center Library also offers free music downloads for library patrons that register for access to Freegal, the program that offers access to music from the Sony Music Catalog and sever independent music producers, according to Villaverde.

"People [that are registered to Freegal] can download up to three songs a week and it's theirs to keep," she said.

Along with the new features the library provides, it's a vast resource for people to take advantage of, according to the librarian.

"People have research resources available to them here [at the library]," said Villaverde. "We have staff that can show them how to use everything if they need help."

"We have a lot of e-resources available that most people don't even realize we have," she said. "People can access many of our books and articles from our online catalog, and it even gives you the citation. It's like it does the work for you."

For access to the e-resources, Villaverde said that people must be a registered library patron and have a unique email address with the library in order to register for an online account.

"My main job is to help people find what they need at the library," she said. "They can come in as a walk-in or make an appointment and I'd be happy to sit down with them and show them what we can offer and how everything works -- it's what I do here."

The Center Library is open Mondays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesdays -- Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays, noon to 5 p.m.

For more information, call 255-3885.

Page last updated Thu February 2nd, 2012 at 10:33