Library

The Vision Australia Library opens up a world of information to people who are blind, have low vision, or a print disability.

Library update and FAQs

Library update: what's happening?

The upgraded Vision Australia Library service will be available from 4th November.

There is a new Website, updated App and Kiosk that provide members with new features, many new improvements and greater control in how the library service is utilised. This will result in a better user experience.

We are continuing to increase our range of available content so members can access the titles they want in accessible formats.

We are providing extensive supports to help all members to access the upgraded library service.

How do library members benefit from these changes?

Features and upgrades:

  • Website: updated library website. Simple up to date interface with new features.
  • i-access Downloader: new Kiosk is replacing i-Access Downloader. Newer software which will mean less technical issues and better support.
  • Kiosk: flexibility to determine what content is downloaded and returned. Access to subscriptions for newspapers, magazines and podcasts.
  • Updated VA Connect App: all content in one bookshelf and many new improvements.
  • Other Devices- no change.

Do you have the VA Connect App on your phone or tablet?

An update to the VA Connect App which has many new improvements, will be released on 12th October and available in the stores shortly after that. App users will receive a prompt to update their App. This needs to be done prior to 4th November when the current version will cease to work.

Please note that Podcasts will not be available on the App until 4th November.

How do I update the App?

For Android:

  1. From the Play Store Home screen, tap the Menu icon (upper-left).
  2. Tap My apps & games.
  3. Tap individual installed apps to update or tap Update All to download all available updates.
  4. If presented, review App Permissions then tap Accept to proceed with the app update.

For iPhone or iPad:

  1. Open the App Store, then tap Today at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap your profile icon at the top of the screen.
  3. Scroll down to see pending updates and release notes. Tap Update next to an app to update only that app, or tap Update All.

I am using the VA Connect 2 App. What does this mean for me?

Please continue to use the VA Connect 2 App there are no changes at this time.

Library update frequently asked questions

 

What do existing library members have to do?

Watch this space! We will be updating you every step of the way when it’s time for you to take action.

An update to the VA Connect App on phones and tablets will be released on 12th October and shortly after that, App users will receive a prompt to update their App. This needs to be done prior to 4th November as the current version will cease to work after that date. Please note that podcasts will not be available on the App until 4th November.

All DAISY players will automatically receive a software update so the user won’t need to do anything.

Kiosk and Downloader users will need to update their software and instructions to do this will be sent when this needs to be done.

It is important to note that when moving your books to the new system we are unable to transfer your bookmarks. We suggest that you take note of where you are up to in the book you are currently reading or finish the book before 4th November.

There will be additional support provided by our Library team on 1300 654 656 and via email library@visionaustralia.org 

Can borrowers keep their current login details once we move across to the new service?

When the upgraded service is available, you will be able to use your current username and password to login. If you use the VA Connect App on your phone or tablet, you will have to login to the updated version when you first use it.

What if I can’t recall my username or password?

If you have forgotten your login details – username and/or password please contact the library team on 1300 654 656 or email library@visionaustralia.org.

Will the daily download limit of books change?

Yes it will. You will have an increased daily download maximum limit of 20 which is also the maximum number of books you can have on your bookshelf.

What happens when you have more than 20 titles on your bookshelf when you access the new Library service for the first time?

If you have more than 20 titles on loan when you access the new service the extra books are added to your Request List.

When you return the books from your Bookshelf the books on your Request List will be automatically allocated to your Bookshelf.

This doesn’t include periodicals, there are no limits to subscriptions.

What’s happening with newspapers and magazines?

Newspapers and magazines will be known as periodicals in the Vision Australia Library service. Current subscriptions will remain in place. This includes sporting fixtures and the Braille new titles list.

Library members can only download periodicals available in the Vision Australia Library collection, Bookshare library periodicals will not be available to Vision Australia Library members.

I used to read my newspapers from the i-access website, will this still be possible on the new library website?

No, you will need to download the newspapers to your computer and use DAISY software to read them or copy the newspaper file to a DAISY player to read them. If you wish to do this you can use the i-access Kiosk software and select “Download to PC” options. The files will download to a folder on your desktop called “i-access Content”. The updated software is not available yet but we will provide the link here as well as user guides when it is available at the end of October.

I had items in ‘My Wishlist’ and/or in “My Requests”. Will they be kept through the move and where can I find these items on the new library website?

Any items that were in your ‘My Wishlist’ or ‘My Request List’ can be found on the ‘Request List’ page in the My Library section of the new website.

What is the Bookshare Library?

As part of the upgrades, Vision Australia Library members also have the opportunity to become a Bookshare library subscriber. The Bookshare library has a large catalogue of educational and technical books, as well as a growing list of books for leisure reading. The titles are in synthetic voice, DAISY Text and electronic Braille formats and will be available only if you wish to become a paid Bookshare member.

How much will the Bookshare Library membership cost?

If you choose to also join the Bookshare library, Vision Australia will pay for your Bookshare membership fee for the first 12 months. If you decide to renew your membership after the first 12 months, you will have to pay the ongoing fee.

This is a special membership rate of US$30.00 (AU$45.00 approx.) per year. If you are an NDIS participant, this cost may be claimed under your consumables budget, however, you should ask your package account manager to confirm.

To join the Bookshare library, you must provide a written document stating proof of disability, signed by one of the following certifying professionals: Doctor, ophthalmologist, optometrist, neurologist, learning disability specialist, psychologist with a background in disabilities, social worker, and education Disability Student Services staff. This document must be posted or emailed to the Library and will be stored in the member's client record.

Will library members who do not wish to join the Bookshare Library still be able to access the Vision Australia Library?

Yes! Regardless of whether you choose to add a paid subscription to the Bookshare library, you can continue to access the fee-free Vision Australia Library.

What is DAISY Text?

DAISY Text books have no audio recording, but provide the text of the book itself. These books are read with either text-to-speech systems or Braille displays. They will not play as audio books on a DAISY player.

What if I have a question?

For questions relating to the upgraded Library service or any general library info, contact Vision Australia Library on 1300 654 656 or email library@visionaustralia.org.

Join the library

Membership is free and available to people who are blind, have low vision or a print disability. If you are not a Vision Australia client, to join the library, you will need a referrer who can certify you are a person with a print disability. Find out more and join the library.  

Books and resources

Library members can access thousands of audio books, magazines, newspapers and podcasts. As well as thousands of Braille and eBraille titles and music Braille pieces. And much more. Find out more about books and resources.

If a library member has printed material they can’t read, how can the Vision Australia Library help?

As a Vision Australia library member, you can request up to 360 print pages of personal information, to be converted to your preferred accessible format such as Braille, audio, large print, tactual graphics or e-text, per financial year. For more information on accessible format conversions, email printaccess@visionaustralia.org or call 1300 84 74 66.

How to access the library

Members can access the library via the free Vision Australia Connect app on their smart phone, iPad or tablet. Or via your computer, a DAISY player or other compatible device. Find out more about how to access the Library.

Feelix Children’s Library 

The Vision Australia Feelix Library helps children learn and develop in a unique way to support literacy. Children from 0-7 years old who are blind or have low vision can become a member and enjoy stories with their parents and siblings, and learn about braille. Find out more about Feelix.

Youth library 

The Vision Australia library has a range of books, resources and services for young people who are blind, have low vision or a print disability. This includes audio books, a copy and reproduction service for academic materials, online databases and more. Find out more about the youth library.

Partner with us

We work in partnership with an extensive range of libraries, aged care facilities, publishers and affiliated organisations to help you access a greater range of books and resources. 

Contact the library

For more information on Vision Australia's Library services call 1300 654 656 or contact the Library for more options.

Library YouTube

Follow Vision Australia's YouTube channel and enjoy our Library playlist with book reviews, webinars and more.