DHASA 2017

Two staff members of the Library Services, Potchefstroom Campus attended the Inaugural Conference of the Digital Humanities Association of Southern Africa (DHASA) in Stellenbosch from 17 – 20 January 2017.


Ziné Sapula and Anneke Coetzee attended the two-day pre-conference workshops and tutorials (17 & 18 Jan), and two days of peer-reviewed oral and poster presentations (19 & 20 Jan).

The pre-conference workshops included a workshop on how to create a digital edition, with an introduction to markup, XML and TEI guidelines. Another workshop introduced ways to improve the user experience in DH interfaces using Google Analytics. Workshop no. 3 gave an introduction to CATMA (Computer Aided Text Markup and Analysis), a tool developed at the University of Hamburg and currently used by over 60 research projects worldwide.

Topics included in the oral and poster presentations included Language, Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre Studies, Language Technologies, Library Studies, Philosophy, Software / Computation.

Anneke delivered a presentation with the title: Digital special collections in the Ferdinand Postma Library (North-West University).

Firstcoast donates scanning voucher

During the 2016 EduWeek the Library Services (PC) received a voucher for the scanning of historical documents from Firstcoast Technologies, a company specialising in office optimisation and electronic document technologies.

The Library decided to use the opportunity to enhance a current project, namely the digitisation of Die Wapad, a local student newspaper . Due to the large format of the bound volumes digitisation thereof is not an easy task. Die Wapad is one of a number of digitisation projects being done in-house at the library.

Firstcoast has just delivered the digitised copies in pdf format, and the Library is grateful for their contribution to the project.

Marius de Beer (Academic Support Services) and Mark Gamanya (Firstcoast)

LibQUAL 2016 Action Plan


The Library conducted its 4th LibQUAL survey during the second semester of 2016. The full 2016 LibQUAL Survey report is available. A total of 1042 users participated in the survey. Users had the opportunity to make comments on how they experience the Library Services.

These comments provided valuable information about areas where users feel improvements could be made. Of the 991 comments that respondents left, more than 500 were compliments. We are grateful to each and every participant.

The Library decided on the following action plan to address the concerns of our users.

The users have spoken!

Innovative Users Group – SA 2016

Every year institutions that use software from Innovative Interfaces (III) – a vendor specialising in library related software – have the opportunity to participate in user group conferences held all over the world. Staff members from the NWU Library Services attended this year’s South African conference, the IUG-SA, which was hosted by the Vaal University of Technology and held at the Emerald resort and casino in Vanderbijlpark from the 23rd to the 25th of November.


The theme of the conference was “III inside out: share your expertise”, and as such presentations focused on how institutions use their systems to optimally support functions in the library. Carine Basson represented how the NWU Library Services uses the system to determine overlap between subscription packages in order to identify options with the most value.


This conference also gives III and other vendors an opportunity to demonstrate and introduce new products to the library community, and allows members to network with colleagues in an informal setting. The 2017 IUG-SA will be hosted by TUT.

Potch Campus LibQUAL Winners

After the recent LibQUAL survey, the following Potchefstroom Campus users received prizes from the Library as token of appreciation for their participation:


Academic staff:
Prof Marique Aucamp (Pharmacy)

Mabel Mabalane (winner of 1st prize- external hard drive)( PhD Education)
Mariza Breytenbach (Languages)
Funiwe Dlamini (LLM)

Refilwe Ratshefola (BCom HR)
Daleen Botha (Chemical Engineering)
David Moya (Electrical Engineering)
Suné Jonker (Chemical Engineering)

Library staff attended a Marketing Course

Six staff members from the three campus libraries attended a UKS Marketing Course on 31 October and 1 November. The following topics were discussed:

  • what is library marketing?
  • why do you need to market your library?
  • library displays and publications as marketing and promotional tools
  • social media as marketing and promotional tools
  • understanding library customer needs and expectations
  • principles of customer research
  • basic principles of developing a marketing plan
  • know your library
  • mission statement of your library
  • relationship building
  • assessment of promotional activities and tools


Staff members received practical assignments. They had to design or present a poster and also had to be a one person display reflecting a specific service or event in the library.

There were ample discussions – it was a good opportunity to get a broader scope on library marketing matters, especially the intricacy of making it work over three campuses.

Article written by Louise Vos

Open Access Week: 24 – 28 October 2016

The Library Services recently took part in Open Access Week.  For the first time an NWU event was run as part of an international event that gave our students and staff one message over 3 campuses.

The programme has been put together by members from the NWU Library Services, Institutional IT department, eResearch Initiative, Technology Transfer and Innovation Support Office as well as the Research Support Office. International awareness was created that the NWU is engaging in Open Science activities.

Staff members from the Library Services gave on overview of the NWU Institutional Respository – the journey, how the IR contributes to Open Access, a future perspective and trends in self-archiving in Institutions of Higher Learning.  Mathew Buys from ORCID explained the advantages for researchers to have a persistent and unique identifier – ORCID iD and Wimpie de Klerk (IT Services) gave a demonstration of the NWU-ORCID integration.  Staff from the Law Faculty, Potchefstroom Campus shared the success story on their internationally accredited open access journal:  Potchefstroom Electronic Law Journal.  Ina Smith from ASSAf did a presentation on how to increase the visibility, usage and impact of research, and Open access to NRF-funded research outputs, and how to deposit workflows for data and publications was highlighted by Lazarus Matizirofa from the NRF.  Benico van der Westhuizen (Engineer) shared on how to educate, empower and enrich yourself with Open Source software.  Raspberry Pi Hackathons were held over two days, these sessions were quite popular.  Link to the full programme as well as some papers: http://library.nwu.ac.za/open-access-week-2016


The presentations were shared over all three campuses via Adobe Connect.

You just have to browse around Google, listen to conversations within the DST, NRF, European Commission, and the rest of the world to realise Open Science is the only way in which academia is going to persist and continue to get access to local and international funding.

Article written by: Louise Vos and Anelda van der Walt

Libraries in Action: Transformation and Development towards 2030


Martin Nokoane of the Library Services (PC) attended the 17th Annual LIASA Conference which was held at the Durban ICC, from the 10- 14 October 2016.  The theme of the conference was Libraries in Action: Transformation and Development towards 2030.

Not only was Martin attending the conference, he also delivered a paper on the topic:  New role for librarians: empowering the community by responding to the social responsibility plea.  The paper showcased what was done in 2016 by the NWU Library Services on Potchefstroom Campus in relation to community engagement in our area, thereby making the library visible to the community.  Through community engagement the university stop to function as a silo and align itself to the South African slogan: “together we can do more”.

The conference was very informative and LIASA was challenged to also play a role to find solutions to the #fees must fall campaign.