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LibGuideLines 2022

Your home for all LibGuide processes, policies, best practices, and support

Why LibGuides?

Springshare's LibGuides system is an effective tool for creating and maintaining online guides to help users find and use library sources.  It is essentially a content management system, helping library faculty and staff create beautiful, organized, and useful web content without having to know HTML.  This UK Libraries "LibGuidelines" guide is our policy and "how to" guide.  It includes helpful technical tips for guide creators and policy guidelines and requirements intended to ensure that our collection of guides is a cohesive and useful collection of resources.  The LibGuidelines guide is created and maintained by the UKL Springshare committee.

We use LibGuides for specific kinds of library content:

  • Subject guides provide information and links to resources in a particular academic subject area.  Most guides include links to recommended databases, searching tips, and contact information for more help.
  • Course guides are like subject guides but tailored for a specific course.  Course guides typically include help and resources developed for a specific course assignment, like a final research paper.
  • "How to" guides provide help and information by type of resource or for different patron types.  Examples include the E-book guide, "Research 101" for undergrads, and the EndNote guide.
  • "Topic Guides" provide information on current topics or other information not directly connected to an academic department or program.  These guides may be on topics of very focused interest or current events issues, and may be "sunsetted" after a shorter period of time.

Not all online content delivered by UK Libraries belongs in LibGuides!  Departmental information, library policy information, etc. should probably be included in the library website and not in a guide.

LibGuide Groups

screen shot showing guide typesIn most cases, guides are defined as providing different types of content by assigning a guide to a specific group.  Most guides don't belong to a group.  But we have several useful groups (Course Guides, How to Use guides, guides by location - e.g., MCL - or purpose) that should be used for certain types of guides.  The various "Guide Types" in Springshare are generally not used for organizing guides.  Most guides can use the default "General Purpose" type.

Assigning Guides to Groups

New guides are initially set to the default "General Purpose/None" group.  But we also have several additional defined group in the system.  Groups can define look-and-feel of a group of guides and provide access to the group of guides as a set through a single URL.  Examples of Groups include our How to Use guides and the Med Center Library guides.  If your guide should be in a group, you can assign that by using the Group field also at the top of the guide editor page.  If you would like us to create a new group, please contact a Springshare Administrator.

LibGuides Subjects

Guides for main subject areas should be tagged with an appropriate Subject, in order to show up on the main LibGuides page which displays guides by subject. 

A Subject is assigned using the "Subjects" field at the top of the guide editing page.  Subjects are defined and managed by the Springshare committee and apply to both guides and databases.  You can't add a unique subject name but rather you will select from this predefined list.

Screen shot of adding subjects to guide

Topic Guides, Course Guides, and "How to" Guides should not be tagged with any subject. In general, only Subject Guides should be tagged with a subject.

All published guides - even those without a Subject - will show up on the "All Guides" list, accessible by the button with that name at the top of the main LibGuides page.  All published guides are also findable by using the search box.

LibWeb Content

The LibWebContent list is used to announce new databases and significant LibGuides edits.  Everyone who maintains one or more guides (or manages other library web content) should be subscribed.  To view the list archives visit: