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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find the materials I need?
Media Services has a permanent collection of more than 10,000 titles. You can access our online catalog through our myOakton, by selecting My Courses tab and scrolling down to Media Services for students section, at home, in your office, or in the Media Services office at either campus. While MS staff members are not content specialists, we can help you identify potentially useful items within the collection.

We can also help you obtain titles you need from retail sources; just be sure to give us as much lead time as possible (at least three weeks). All permanent acquisitions are handled through the library. Also, you may be able to find materials through other sources (like your public library).

What about getting AV materials on interlibrary loan?
Unfortunately, Media Services does not participate in interlibrary loan.

What is all this equipment in my classroom? Who will operate it for me?
Media Services is happy to do one-on-one consultations, often in the classroom(s) you use, to ensure that you can meet your specific needs. We also have room-specific reference guides available. Check myOakton or ask an MS staff member for a copy. To arrange a consultation, contact our office at either campus.

Why are my deliveries late?
This does happen occasionally, and we apologize for the inconvenience. We're limited by the amount of equipment, number of personnel, size of our buildings, location of storerooms, and elevator access. Other factors that may contribute to a tardy arrival include last minute service requests, patrons who have difficulty operating equipment, classes running past their end times, 10-15 minutes periods between most classes, and crowded hallways. When your deliveries are late, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can make every effort to correct the situation and eliminate future problems.

Virtually all classrooms and labs on both campuses are permanently equipped with video projectors and computers with network DVD playback. You don't have to ask to use the equipment, and you don't have to wait for it to be delivered. Let us know if the equipment in your room is locked in a cabinet or closet and we can arrange to have it open for your classes.

It's only a projector lamp - what's the big deal if I forget to turn it off?
Technology is expensive (so is electricity). Video projectors cost well over $3,500; replacement lamps are $400-$500 each. Leaving the projector on shortens the life of the lamp and overheats the equipment. Because the projector is mounted in the ceiling, it's more difficult and time consuming to service. Forgetting to turn off equipment impacts your classes as well as those of your colleagues. And as a green college, we want to conserve our resources.

Why do I have to reserve equipment and software in advance?
Media Services needs at least 24 business hours lead time for all equipment and 48 hours for software requests. We're moving equipment around two big buildings and sharing materials between campuses and hundreds of faculty members. We need time to plan, work out logistics, and physically move equipment and software.

We welcome service requests up to a full semester before usage. To initiate a service request:

  • Speak with a staff member in person, e-mail, or by phone.
  • Make your request online through myOakton.

I can't keep all the equipment names straight. What difference does it make?
It makes a big difference. Recently, an unidentified patron left this voice mail: "Where can I get the little camera in the conference room?" The nature of the request made it difficult for us to respond. Who was the patron? When was the equipment needed? Where was the conference room? And what was meant by "little camera"? Digital cameras, camcorders, and document cameras are all small. Without more information there was no way for MS or the Help Desk to help this patron. Clearly identifying the camera type, as well as the room location and contact information, would have cleared things up.

The term "overhead projector" also causes confusion. To presentation professionals, the term refers to a transparency projector that sits on a cart on the floor, usually in a corner of a classroom. Your video projector may be mounted in the ceiling (i.e. overhead), but it is properly called a video projector or LCD projector. To add to the confusion, not all video projectors are mounted in the ceiling.  Some are on carts. If you need to report a problem or ask a question, be sure you're using the correct terminology. 

To ensure timely, efficient service when you call, be sure you let us know who you are, where you are, and what type of equipment you're using.

Des Plaines campus
Room 1815
Monday - Friday*
7:45 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.*

Skokie campus
Room A221
Monday - Thursday
7:30 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Friday 7:30 a.m - 5 p.m.*
Saturday 8 a.m. - Noon*

Contact Us | Staff Directory

* The College is closed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the summer (late May through mid-August.)