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Library Content in BOLT

About this guide

Library content is easily included in BOLT courses, allowing faculty to augment their instruction with materials already paid for by the library and to help their students find high quality print and electronic journals, books, streaming video, and databases for their assignments and projects.

Content is added to courses in one of two ways: (1) the Automatic tool (aka the 'simple method') and (2) the Manual Tool (aka the 'some assembly required method').

  • The Automatic tool adds pre-selected library content automatically to all BOLT courses, under the Resources drop-down menu. Instructors may also place this library content in their course Content area using the Automatic tool, as explained on this page.

  • Instructors may use the Manual tool to completely customize library content added to their courses based on their learning goals. The Manual tool is explained on the next page of this guide.

The Automatic Tool

Library content is already available in most BOLT courses by means of the Automatic tool (see how simple that was!). As the course instructor, you may want to review what is currently available in your BOLT course(s), under Resources > Library course content.

The Automatic tool uses a protocol called Learning Tool Interoperability (LTI) to find matches between BOLT course metadata and library resource metadata. The LTI always searches for the most specific match for a BOLT course, a library course guide, and if there is none, then searches for the next most specific match, a discipline guide. If neither is found, then the tool searches for matches to subject-specific library databases and contact information for the subject librarian(s). It also adds some standard information (the Library's hours, a link to the research consultation scheduler, and a chat box), all of which displays like this in BOLT --


How can students view this page?

Students view this page in their BOLT courses by going to Resources > Library course content:

As the course instructor, I don't see a link to a course guide or a discipline guide in my BOLT course. How can I have one added?

You may want to first review the available Discipline Guides and Course Guides on the Research Guides page to see if there's an existing guide that will work for your course. You may also request that a new guide be developed for your course. In either case, consult your librarian liaison, the librarian who works with your department, to discuss what can and should be included.

So that the guide displays in your BOLT course, the librarian will ask you for the course name and number, which is used in matching metadata. Following are some examples of existing course guides with their metadata highlighted:

  • BUSED 333: Business Communication and Report Writing
  • CRIMJUST 255: Criminal Justice Research
  • NURSING 306: Intro to Research and EBP in Nursing

It is also possible to associate a guide with a specific section of a course. This may be useful when there are multiple sections of a course that use the same course number but are very different. For example, INTSTUDY 100 43: University Seminar, is the section offered by the Communication Studies Department, and a guide was developed specifically for that section.

If no course guide matches a BOLT course, then a match may be found with a discipline guide. Discipline guides are associated with specific course codes. For example, the Psychology Discipline Guide appears in all courses with the PSYCH course code. In some cases a single discipline at BU may use multiple course codes, for example, Education uses EDFOUND, EDL, ELEMED, PROFSTUD, READING, and SECED course codes. In this example, metadata for those codes has been added to the Education Discipline Guide so that the guide appears in the BOLT courses with those course codes.

The point is that there are multiple options, so contact your librarian liaison to discuss.

I'm happy with the information that displays for my course, but rather than having students use the link under Resources, can the information be added to my course content area?

Yes, as instructor you can make the information display in the course content area, too. In your BOLT course, go to the Content area where you want to link to appear, and click on Existing Activities > External Learning Tools > Library Guides Automatic Tool. The same page appearing under Resources > Library course content will also appear in the selected course content area. Since the link will be labeled as Library Guides Automatic Tool, you'll probably want to rename it to something more descriptive, such as Library Course Content.

Again, if you have questions, contact your librarian liaison.

This is all good, but what if I want to add a specific [book, tutorial, video, or part of a guide or page, etc.] to my BOLT course?


The Manual tool (explained on the next page of this guide) allows you to pick specific resources to add to your BOLT courses.

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