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May I use my local public library to do research? Can the staff of the public library help me with my research?
Public libraries offer reference books, Internet access, and often a quiet area to study.   The librarians there may be able to offer valuable advice.   However, as you progress in your education your instructors will require that you use academic materials that are not available at a public library, but which are available from OCLS.
Why can't I just use Google (or Bing or Yahoo...).
Everyone uses these search engines to find general information.   However, it is the responsibility of the reader to evaluate search engine results to determine what is credible and what is biased, out-of-date, or written for a young audience.   Research articles and other credible academic writing is distributed by OCLS. While many of these sources are available for a fee from their publishers, OCLS provides free access to these academic materials to current students and faculty.   This has the potential to save individuals thousands of dollars during their course of study.
It is to your advantage to use the OCLS article databases if you need articles for a term paper.   Databases offer many tools for students to gather and document their research.
How much does it cost to have OCLS send a book to me?
OCLS currently does not charge postage for books mailed to current students and faculty.   Students and faculty are responsible for returning library materials to OCLS, and postal return is often cheaper than driving the book or video to Marion, Indiana.   Some IWU Education Centers will accept books from Jackson Library and return them to OCLS -- call 800-521-1848 for more information.
Does OCLS distribute textbooks? Does the library sell Microsoft Office or APA templates?
Textbooks change so fast that the library does not even stock sample textbooks. If you are an adult student enrolled in the College of Adult and Professional Studies, the textbook distribution number is 765-677-2854.
OCLS does not sell Microsoft Office. Currently enrolled students may download a free version of the Office suite from http://www.office.com/getOffice365 Note: To obtain academic disounts for hardware or software, you generally must use your IWU email during the purchase process.
OCLS does provide a free sample APA paper that may be used as a template.   Demonstrating how to use this template is a common training session which OCLS librarians provide to students and faculty who struggle with APA.
I need assistance with using my computer....
Your librarians are not computer geeks, but a phone call or a face-to-face appointment with an OCLS librarian can get you started with basic technology used in research and writing. &nbps; The University Online Support team, 765-677-2209, often can suggest potential causes of computer error messages over the phone, though an accurate diagnosis requires examination by your local computer technician.
What is the chat option I see on the OCLS page? Do I need a camera to use it?
Currently our chat service is text based.   Therefore, no camera is needed.   Because typing is a slow means of communication, responses requiring more than a few minutes are provided to your IWU e-mail account.   This allows the staff to conduct research to provide you with a quality response.   Chat is normally offered from 9am-5pm Monday through Friday.