Posted: 12/22/21

TAMIU Killam Library Offers New Resources; More Planned


Ben Rawlins
Ben Rawlins, Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library director  

Texas A&M International University’s (TAMIU) Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library is focused on efforts aimed at improving online, user-based library experiences now and in the future.

This Spring 2022, in line with the focus of open educational resources (OER) at TAMIU, the Killam Library will launch an OER publishing platform called Pressbooks.

The goal of the platform is to give University faculty the ability to publish OER and to make it shareable to scholars throughout the world, affirmed Killam Library director Ben Rawlins.

“Pressbooks is an OER publishing platform that faculty can utilize to create new OER or adapt existing OER. We are still working on configuring Pressbooks and plan to host a workshop during Open Education Week in March,” said Rawlins.

In 2021, the Killam Library saw the launch of both RIO, an Open Access Repository, and a dedicated OER-based website. Both efforts included increasing access and awareness of OER and promoting Open Access.

Through RIO, University theses and dissertations, faculty publications, white papers, datasets, teaching and learning resources, audio and visual recordings, selected materials from the University’s Special Collections & Archives, an OER was made available. 

Individuals can access the repository by visiting https://rio.tamiu.edu/.

The digitized repository underscores the Killam Library’s mission to bring valuable resources to its community through open access. 

“Since RIO was launched, we have been highlighting the theses and dissertations from the University’s Graduate School. Our goal next semester is to work with faculty to highlight their scholarship in RIO and make it publicly accessible, as allowed by copyright. We are planning to host some workshops to talk about RIO and show faculty how they upload their publications. There is also a feature within RIO that will allow departments to embed a map of their departmental websites to highlight the scholarship of their faculty. We plan to highlight that in the Spring,” said Rawlins. 

OER is freely available teaching and learning materials in the public domain or carries an open license. Students and faculty can explore the Killam Library’s OER webpage for additional information. 

The Killam Library is also planning to implement an AI chatbot within the landing page of the Killam Library’s website to help facilitate and navigate users who may have additional questions regarding the University’s library.

On the horizon, a new library system named Alma and Primo is set to launch in Summer 2022 and will feature a newly redesigned user interface to improve user experience, explained Rawlins.

“The new system has some features that will make it easier for faculty, staff, and students to find relevant library resources and request materials through interlibrary loan. It is also a much more efficient back-end system that will improve workflows within the Killam Library,” said Rawlins. 

To learn more about the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, visit https://www.tamiu.edu/library/