Paul Rudd Information Professional

expertise gained through experience

University of Bath Library Visit

Reasons for the visit

  • To gain an understanding of the type and range of eResources being purchased by the university and gain an understanding of how they are managed
  • To gain further information on University of Bath’s research repository
  • Visit in more detail

Managing electronic resources

The University of Bath subscribes to many electronic journals and has purchased many ebooks from a variety of providers. This is an overview of some of the salient points related to their electronic resources.

The management of the University of Bath’s electronic journal subscriptions and eBooks performed by separate staff and this appears to be a practice used by other universities that subscribe to or purchase significant numbers of electronic resources.

How information is conveyed to staff regarding electronic journal subscriptions

Information regarding eResources is placed on wiki that staff can access. This lists up-to-date information about individual eResources and information on their use, such as statistical information and information updates on individual eResources. Although staff can use the wiki in practice staff often call the specific electronic resources staff directly for information.


Off-site access to resources at the University of Bath is gained by the use of a proxy server (EZ proxy). Other common ways to access resources are via Athens and more recently via the UK Federated Access Management system using Shibboleth technology.


The main statistics are gathered half yearly – for example for Jan – July. Journal usage statistics are downloaded using the Journal Usage statistics Portal (JUSP). JUSP was developed in partnership with JISC Collections, Mimas, Evidence Base (at Birmingham City University) and Cranfield University. Using JUSP makes it easier to view usage statistics as you can view usage statistics from one location instead of going to every publisher to get individual statistics.


Renewal of contract for subscription resources is normally for the calendar year in around August or September. This makes the process a lot easier as subscriptions are easier to manage as they general will expire at around the same time) Although this may be commonly known by staff used to managing subscription journal resources it will be useful for staff that have never had any involvement in managing eresources.


On occasion departments or individual departmental staff will request prices on specific types of electronic resources and depending on how much information is provided it can take lots of time to gather prices and information on these resources.


The University of Bath have purchased eBooks from a range of providers from many providers such as MyiLibrary and also direct from many publishers such as Springer and Elsevier. Some issues related to managing eBooks to be noted are the differences in the types of ways providers and publishers allow you to access works. For example, some providers may allow you to purchase a type of licence that allows two or more simultaneous users to access an eBook at the same time whereas with others you may have to purchase multiple copies of an eBook to allow this to be possible. Furthermore, access options may differ with providers as some may allow you to view the book online and others may also allow you to download the item to your computer or device for a set period of time.

Further information

Staff at the University of Bath involved in managing eBooks have written the following article that provides useful information on their eBooks collections: Turning E in the 21st Century E-book Management at the University of Bath

OPUS repository

The University of Bath has an Institutional repository, which is named OPUS. OPUS is run on Eprints software and is maintained by Eprints Services at the University of Southampton. The OPUS repository is specifically a research repository and the University of Bath also has a mandate for their researchers to deposit full-text copies of their peer reviewed journal articles and conference papers into the repository.

Details of the University of Bath’s mandate can be found at the link below: