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Hope Library Guides

Peer Assisted Learning: Hope College Sample Training Exercises: Exercise #4

This is a sample of the training exercises designed for the first year of our new training scheme. The first semester the exercises were housed almost exclusively within the LibGuide. The second semester we began migrating content into our Content Manag

360Link Troubleshooting

As you know, the library databases are a mixture of full-text archives and what we call "indexing" databases, which means they just provide citation information for a publication.  Patrons then have to investigate further to see if they can get the resource at our library or if they will need to order it from someplace else (ex. MeLCat for books or InterLibrary Loan).  In the era of Google, when we are so used to instant access, this process can be confusing for patrons, so this is something that we can all really help to teach our library users.  The majority of our databases have a system in place called "360Link" that helps check to see if the library has access to something.  When you are in databases, look for links that look something like this:



Clicking these links will search our system to see if we have the resource available at Hope.  When it is something that we have electronically and the process is working smoothly then it should be pretty straightforward.  One click should take the patron to the Full-Text or to a page where the full text is available.  For example:

Example #1

Example #2

Example #3

If it is an article we have in print, 360Link should bring up a record in HopeCat that describes the format we have it in (bound print, microfiche, microfilm)

Example #4

If it is an article that we don't have access to, you will be shown a screen that says this:

When this happens, you can offer the patron (if they are Hope affiliated) the option to order the article through interlibrary loan.  There will usually be a link right in the database to fill out an ILL form.  If not, you can use the form on the library website.  There is also an option to search Google Scholar to see if the article might be freely available online, which is always a good thing to check.

With all of that said, there are often times when clicking 360link doesn't give a clear answer.  The link is either broken, the system isn't providing accurate information, or it is unclear.  Here are some tips on how to troubleshoot a problem with 360link:


1. 360link doesn't like print books and book chapters - This is an unfortunate quirk in the 360link system.  If the item in the database is a book or book chapter and we don't have it as an ebook you will get a screen like this when you click:

This doesn't mean that we don't have the book, it just means that we don't have it as an ebook.  To check for print holdings, use the link provided below to search HopeCat.  If it is a book that we don't have in our collection, use the "Find In MeLCat" link to show the patron that we can order the title for them.

2. The citation data provided to 360link isn't matching well with the data in the Full Text archive.  If this is the case there are a couple of ways to work around a broken link.

  1. Look in the right menu to see if we get the article through a different full-text archive.  Sometimes one link will work better than another.                                  
  2. Look for a search box somewhere in the tool that isn't working and try searching a portion of the title again.  This may bring up the full text.
  3. Double check using the Journals List - If you can't get things to work within 360link, try searching the name of the journal, magazine, or newspaper through the Journals List to verify that we have coverage for the citation you need.  You might be able to access it that way.

4.  The database is telling us incorrectly that we have something when, in fact, we don't.  Sometimes the vendors provide us with incorrect information, in which case, 360link acts like we should have the article, when we don't have access.  Consult the "on call" librarian to ascertain for sure whether or not we have the resource.

5.  Important! - These are all tips for basic trouble-shooting of 360link problems.  If you can't find it after trying these features, it may still be there but just buried a bit, so PLEASE  consult the "on call" librarian or send the citation to so that we can verify that we truly don't have it.

Exercise 4 - 360Link Troubleshooting

Click the image of each of the citations below to pull up a broken 360Link (some will go directly to 360link, some you will need to click it again in the database record).  Use this form to report if you were able to find the Full-Text of the item.  Remember, there is never anything wrong with not finding something and getting a librarian, but give it your best shot on all of these.  Important!  Make sure you get to the full text of the entire item, not just the abstract.

DUE October 2nd

BONUS - Any student who can locate and print out the first page of both of these next two items will get a prize (or the HopeCat record, if it's in print).  Give it a shot if you feel up for a challenge, but these are not required (give the printouts to Jessica if you succeed).   However, these two example are here to mostly demonstrate that sometimes, if something doesn't feel right, it's worth having a librarian involved in a 360-link problem to double check.  Both of these are available at Hope but with some digging that none of us would expect from a Research Assistant!