Frequently-Asked Questions

We hope the following questions/answers will help you understand the Lynx database program | service. Questions not addressed in this document may be directed to Jim Duncan, CLiC, and/or Kira Zimmerman, CLiC,

  1. General
  2. EBSCO
  3. Pricing
  4. Library Size
  5. Training
  6. Marketing

General questions

1. What is Lynx? What happened to AIRS?
During spring 2012, the AIRS (Acquisition of Information Resources Statewide) statewide database program/committee disbanded itself. Meanwhile, CLiC and the Colorado State Library both committed enormous staff time and resources to establish something new — a full-featured statewide SERVICE called Lynx. Operating since July 1, 2012, Lynx makes content-rich databases from EBSCO accessible and affordable for libraries across the state. While the State Library and CLiC are responsible for operations, an advisory committee will be established to advise these organizations and provide feedback from the field.

2. My library subscribed to the previous program (AIRS) but never switched over to Lynx. What do I need to do to subscribe this year and receive support from Lynx?
All new interested libraries and schools can contact us to receive a price quote. Then, a library or school must submit an order through our new online order | renewal system. As part of the ordering process you’ll have an opportunity to select which EBSCO databases will appear on your site. Instructions for the online order | renewal system can be found here.

3. My library has not been a previous subscriber, can I still join?
Yes. Contact us, and we’ll let you know your price once we’ve determined where your library fits within the tiered pricing structure. See questions concerning how your Library Size is determined below. Once you’ve learned your library’s price, you must submit an order. As part of the ordering process you’ll have an opportunity to select which databases will appear on your site.

4. Why can’t Lynx offer a cafeteria plan where each library can select only the databases they want from all kinds of vendors?
Ala-carte packages of this nature are too costly to negotiate with multiple vendors and to administer. The current purchasing structure is the most affordable and provides the best content for all libraries. The current vendor partner for Lynx is EBSCO, though we maintain good relationships with other vendors and are consistently talking with their reps about future licensing opportunities.

5. Can special libraries participate in Lynx?
Unfortunately, special libraries may not participate in the EBSCO package due to restrictions imposed by the vendor’s contractual relationships with selected publishers.

6. Why doesn’t the package include databases from other vendors that were part of the open trials in January & February of 2012 (GALE, ProQuest, Britannica, Scholastic)?
The former Committee (known as AIRS) did evaluate all manner of vendor products, held open trials, conducted surveys and focus groups. We did negotiate with vendors other than EBSCO, but unfortunately could not arrive at any other agreements that would be affordable for our state. However, CLiC and the State Library are evaluating ways to work with vendors on other database cooperative purchases in the future.

7. Is there a rolling deadline for sign-up, or must all libraries that are interested be signed up by a certain date?
Yes and no! New libraries that sign up for the EBSCO package between May and June 15 can be assured their library access will be turned on (July 1) to the new EBSCO databases. Current subscribing libraries will be asked to renew by June 15 through our online order | renewal system. Contact us with any questions you have about timing or issues with meeting this deadline.

EBSCO questions

1. How long is the EBSCO contract?
The State Library and CLiC negotiated a 5-year contract with EBSCO, starting 2012-2013. CLiC is the registered agent for the contract.

2. What databases are included in the EBSCO Package?
A majority of libraries are pleased with the diverse package, which includes 21 databases and several interfaces. The list of databases and interfaces is found by clicking here to see the list of databases and interfaces, along with detailed descriptions of each.

3. My patrons aren’t interested in some of these databases. Can I choose which databases will display for my library?
Libraries may choose any or all of the databases listed. [Click here to see the list of databases]. Simply indicate through our order | renewal system which databases you’d like turned on for your library. Note: you may modify your selection at any time either by updating the list in the Administration module of your EBSCO account or by contacting us for assistance.

4. What if I want to license an additional database from EBSCO or upgrade a database?
Because of the contract negotiated with EBSCO, libraries that wish to license additional products or upgrade specific databases can do so at a discounted rate–but this is an arrangement directly between your library and EBSCO. Discuss this directly with your EBSCO representative.

 Pricing Questions

1. How is pricing for the EBSCO databases established?
Much thought goes into how pricing is set by library type and size. When we negotiate with a vendor for a statewide deal, it is at a specific dollar amount for all libraries, not individual prices for a library of a certain type or size. We set pricing that reflects savings for all library types and sizes, and use publicly-available demographic information so that pricing and is fair and equitable to all.

2. How much money is my library saving by participating in Lynx?
Your library’s savings are significant. If you were to negotiate directly with EBSCO yourself, your library could expect to pay anywhere from 50% to 90% more. The power of cooperative purchasing becomes evident very quickly.

3. Will the subscription be a license/contract, or just an invoice?
The order | renewal for a Lynx subscription entitles a library/school to receive an invoice from CLiC. Ordering | renewing triggers access to the EBSCO databases and interfaces for that library/school. By subscribing, libraries and schools abide by EBSCO’s usage license. That license allows libraries enormous flexibility, to provide access for patrons physically visiting their brick-n-mortar buildings, as well as remote access for registered cardholders/patrons. Contact us with any questions you have.

4. When will licenses/invoices be sent out?
Invoices will be sent out within a timely manner electronically, following submission of your order | renewal. Invoice terms allow for 60 days. Consequences of nonpayment include shut-off of access to EBSCO databases and other potential penalties.

5. I want to purchase the package for my entire school district; can I get a district bundle discount?
Unfortunately, our pricing model cannot accommodate such district discounts, because per-building pricing is already established at deeply-discounted levels. Individual schools already see significant savings. If you were to negotiate directly with EBSCO for your school or district, you could expect to pay anywhere from 50% to 90% more. However, we do offer special pricing for the smallest schools (under 100 total enrollment).

6. My library doesn’t wish to subscribe to all the databases offered in the Lynx package. Can I get just a few of the databases and pay a lower fee?
The best discounts for databases are available when a diverse package of databases is selected, allowing access to all libraries that purchase the content. However, this doesn’t mean that a library must give its patrons/students access to all the databases available. You have choice! For a library subscribing to the package, it selects its databases during the online order | renewal process. Think of this like a salad bar. You pay one low price, and you get to select as many items from the salad bar as you like. If you only want lettuce and dressing you still pay the same price as the person who selects lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, carrots, tuna, and so on.

7. Can I change which databases my library subscribes to?
You bet. Maybe you’re worried about selecting the “right ones?” at the outset when you’re placing your order or renewing. You can always add or remove databases later, even mid year! Choice and control remain in the hands of the library. Through EBSCO’s administrative module, at any time during the subscription period, a library can select which databases to display or contact us for assistance in activating or shutting off certain databases.

8. How do those pricing tiers work? What are those codes?
We have adopted a standard convention for describing tiers within each type of library chart. A guide to those codes is available. [Click here to see the Pricing Tiers]

Library Size Questions

In the past, libraries often self-reported their library population, FTE, headcount, or student population. In some cases, libraries were reporting apples and oranges, not understanding which of several statistics they should report. In order to normalize the data and make sure that each library is treated the same, we utilize public sources for demographic data representing each library type. These sources are detailed below, by type of institution. Within these data sources, we make every effort to use the latest year data reported by these publicly-accessible sites. For the 2013 – 2014 subscription year, we are using 2011 data when available.

1. School Libraries
School student population data is retrieved for the latest year published in the Colorado Department of Education – SchoolView Data Center. Click on “SchoolView Data Center” -> select your school district -> select your building -> select the “Students” tab. Some schools are either not listed (private) or could not be retrieved using this source. In this case, other public documents available through CDE were utilized to look up the information [For CDE link, Click here for Education Statistics page, Pupil Membership].

2. Public Libraries
Public libraries annually report their Library Service Area (LSA) data to Library Research Service (LRS). In order to be fair, the same year is used for public library data as for schools and academic libraries. Reference:

3. 2-year Academic (Community College) Libraries
2-year academic data is derived from the most recent data available on IPEDS (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System) – Data Center.

4. 4-year Academic Libraries
4-year academic data is derived from the most recent data available on IPEDS (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System) – Data Center. In the rare case that a private institution does not report to IPEDS, alternative public sources are identified.

Training Questions

1. With all of these EBSCO products, will training be offered?
Yes, we have and will continue to provide in-person as well as online training opportunities, using a dedicated trainer from EBSCO as well as local trainers from the Colorado State Library and CLiC. If your library staff has specific training needs, Contact us.

2. What types of training?
We offer both in-person and web-based training. We also provide information about other training that EBSCO offers on a regular basis.

3. Is there a cost for training?
Training is FREE, as part of your subscription to the Lynx program | service.

4. When will training be available?
Training is offered year round. Watch for announcements on various listservs such as, Libnet and CLiC-L, this website, CLiC’s Facebook page and other communication channels. For web-based training, we make every effort to record those sessions for individuals to review who were unable to attend a scheduled training session.

5. Who can attend training?
Training will be for any library staff member or volunteer who teaches patrons how to use databases. This training is not recommended for the average patron.

Marketing Questions

1. Will marketing materials be available?
A selection of free marketing tools and resources for libraries to use including, “success stories” is available from the EBSCO Customer Success Center. CLiC and the State Library continue to work with EBSCO on marketing strategies.