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Higher Ed in the News

College libraries encourage students to text queries

January 8, 2010

As students raised on text-messaging begin to populate the halls of academe, a number of libraries have begun making their reference librarians reachable not just via e-mail and live chat, but text messages sent from students' mobile devices.

Companies now offer what they call a “gateway” service, which reroutes texts from students to a library’s instant-message queue or to designated e-mail inboxes. When a librarian responds, the message gets sent to the student’s mobile device.

Some college libraries have skipped the middleman and simply bought a cell phone dedicated to text queries from students.

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