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Pause to Services During Library System Migration


Computers in use on level 1 of Neilson Library

Published May 13, 2022

This summer, the Smith College Libraries, along with the other libraries in the Five Colleges, will implement the FOLIO library services platform. FOLIO (The Future Of Libraries Is Open) is a collaboration of libraries, developers and vendors building an open-source library services platform. Five Colleges will be the first library consortium to fully implement FOLIO, and we are excited about the opportunities this will provide.

At the end of June we will migrate back-end system operations from the current Five Colleges library system (Aleph) to FOLIO. We will also retire the separate Five Colleges Libraries Catalog search interface, and consolidate the discovery and access of library materials in Discover and Discover Advanced Search. Discover and Discover Advanced Search are reliable interfaces that have been in use at Smith for many years, and will continue to include all of the records from the retiring Five Colleges Libraries Catalog as well as from most of our subject-specific databases. Additional tools that enable users to request items and manage their accounts within Discover will also be implemented at the time of migration, streamlining the request process and allowing for increased functionality (you’ll be able to see where you are in the request queue for an item!).

As the spring semester ends, final preparations for migration will begin. While we aim to complete this work with minimal system downtime for the community, some user services and staff work will pause in the lead up to migration as our new systems are connected and come online at the end of June.

Library Databases, Publication Finder, Interlibrary Loan, streaming video and ebooks will remain available throughout the migration. We anticipate that Discover and Discover Advanced Search will also continue to be available, but there may be brief periods of downtime. Most links to items in the former Five College Catalog will automatically redirect to the item record in Discover. 

Additional details about the migration will be added to this post in the coming weeks.

Important Dates

May 25: Purchases of new items for the library collection will pause. The Libraries will resume processing requests submitted via the Faculty Book & Media Order Form on July 18.

June 21: Last day to request physical items from any of the Five College Libraries for pickup at Smith before requesting is paused across the consortium. Requests will resume on July 5 for Smith materials.

June 26: Last day to check out physical items (such as books and DVDs) at Neilson, Hillyer, and Josten libraries as well as the Five College Library Annex before circulation activity is paused. Self-checkout kiosks and the Smith Libraries Self Checkout app will be unavailable during this period as well. Checkouts will resume on July 5.

June 30: Migration from Aleph to FOLIO is complete.

July 5: Circulation of physical materials resumes at Smith and throughout the Five Colleges.

July 18: The Libraries begin processing new purchase orders again.


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