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Rangitoto College  Case Study

We wanted a 21st century, web-based product that could be integrated with our learning management systems and offer a more contemporary educational experience.

Trish Webster, Library Manager, Rangitoto College
At a Glance
Chosen Solution
Flexible Options
  • SIP2
Key Objective
  • Provide a 21st century educational experience and enriched learning environment
Core Benefits To Users
  • Improved access to resources for students and staff
  • Improved workflows for library staff
Supported Users and Library Staff
  • 3,000 students
  • 4 library staff
  • 1 adult volunteer
  • 65 student volunteers
  • 12 Duke of Edinburgh service students

About Rangitoto College Library

Situated in Mairangi Bay, Auckland, Rangitoto College is a coeducational State Secondary School with students from Years 9 to 13, which offers a broad range of educational opportunities including the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. Founded in 1956, Rangitoto College has grown from 195 students to around 3000 students, making them the largest Secondary School in New Zealand.

The College has outstanding teaching facilities including a modern library and information centre.

The main library includes three formal teaching areas; a recreational reading area, three reading rooms, an ICT room and a Year 13 study room. Resources include approximately 27,000 books, electronic resources and magazines, sixteen workstations, eight library catalogue computers and a colour photocopier.

Rangitoto College Library supports the school’s vision of “every student maximising their potential” through the provision of a dynamic environment, quality services, outstanding collections and relevant programmes that empower student learning and encourage reading for pleasure.

Trish Webster, Library Manager, oversees a staff of three librarians, an adult volunteer, sixty-five student volunteers and twelve Duke of Edinburgh service students.

Moving to Oliver v5

Entry to Rangitoto College library

One of her first priorities when she started at Rangitoto College in 2010 was to upgrade the library system from Alice to Oliver v5.

For Trish, it was very important that they upgraded to a web-based system that the students could easily access from home and that could be linked with their learning management system.

“While Alice had some features that I liked, we wanted a 21st century, web-based product that could be integrated with our learning management systems and offer a more contemporary educational experience," she said.

Trish said the library staff found the transition from Alice to Oliver v5 a smooth one.

“The training provided by Softlink was excellent and we just got in and gave everything a go, everybody loved the increased functionally provided with Oliver v5."

Improving library workflow

With Oliver v5, the library team at Rangitoto College were able to automate previously time consuming processes and greatly improve workflows.
Oliver v5 includes a number of features designed to reduce administration duties. Day-to-day tasks, such as managing overdue items and resource reservations, are simplified by automatic emails to students. Other backend processes, such as reporting, can be set up once and scheduled to automatically run after that.

“My staff were blown away with all the extra features that sped up their workload."

One of the greatest benefits of the streamlined administration processes has been the ability to spend more face-to-face time with students.

Student outcomes

Rangitoto College library circulation desk

Rangitoto College library staff were also impressed with the improvements Oliver v5 made to their student engagement.

“The homepage is just so much better. The search interface is just so much better. And with the updates those things are improving even further, which is fantastic."

Oliver v5 provides educational benefits for the students at Rangitoto College.

The library is making extensive use of the Oliver v5 lists feature to alert students to resources that will assist them in their studies. The lists have been particularly useful for catagorising books that meet the requirements of Reading Achievement Standards determined by the NCEA (National Certificate of Educational Achievement).

With the creation of junior and adult reading lists, students can be assured that they are reading at the required literacy level for University entrance.

By making use of General Message Descriptions (GMD’s) linked to customised icons, Trish has been able to further enhance searches, helping students to identify the collection or list the resource belongs to and exactly where in the library it is located.

To help students locate physical resources in Rangitoto’s extensive collection, the library is making use of the map feature available in Oliver v5.

Oliver’s map feature can be populated with photographs of resource locations or layouts of the library which are then overlaid with a flashing icon to pinpoint the precise location.

“The map is a favourite feature for the students. With close to 27,000 resources, having a reference point to locate their search item has been great."

Rangitoto College library map


The Rangitoto College library staff use Oliver v5 to customise their students’ library experience, which has helped them to achieve their goal of becoming a “first stop shop” for students.

How has Oliver v5 helped other New Zealand school libraries? Visit the resources below to find out more.