Dual Assignments Discussion Group

I was about 15 minutes late arriving at the Dual Assignments Discussion Group. Thirteen people had found McPherson A and B tucked away at the end of the third floor of the Four Points Shearton. Most of the participants were from academic libraries based on the sign-in sheet. 

The publicized topic is what drew me to this discussion group, "Collection Assessment: Analysis and Decision".

Libraries of all kinds are assessing collections using tools such as WorldCat Collection Analysis and their integrated library systems.  The results lead to important decisions about what to add, what to preserve, what to discard, and what to replace. And how do we explain to concerned users why these choices were made?

I'm interested in this topic for two reasons. First, our circulating collection has not been evaluated, assessed, pondered, let alone weeded in a very long time. Second, I'm on OhioLINK's Collection Building Task Force and one of our current projects is a statewide collection assessment.

My impression from the conversation is that everyone in the room was very interested in collection assessment and some had started to do projects with the various tools. It seemed that many were either in the planning phase or in the data analysis phase. Most had not gotten to the decision/action phase.

Lack of space was mentioned a couple of times as a driving factor for collection assessment. Planning to commit to electronic only versions of resources was given as another reason. The conversation ranged from dark storage to electronic reference books to disposition of withdrawn print materials.

I like discussion groups, because I get many good ideas that can be tried at my own library. One of the take-aways for me was hearing other libraries' experiences with Better World Books. My colleague had talked to them at the ACRL conference and recommended that we try it out. It was good to hear positive comments from other participants. One attendee cautioned the group to make sure it is okay locally to dispose of withdrawn items this way. Some state universities have restrictions on how they can dispose of items purchased with tax payer money.

Another lesson I learned from this session is to take better notes. I wrote down…metrics: look at percentage of circulation, percentage of the collection, and percentage of the materials budget.  Sounds good. Now if only I could remember the context.

Towards the end of the discussion Allison Cowgill suggested that this topic be brought up again in a year or two. She hoped that by that time, participants would be able to share more about how they communicating actions taken based on assessment with faculty and students.

I OCRed the bibliography that Jessica and Allison distributed. It's not on the RSS or CODES site yet and I'm not sure it will be.

Dual Assignments Discussion Group
Reference and User Services Association
Reference Services Section and Collection Development and Evaluation Section
June 23, 2007

Collection Assessment: Analysis and Decision 

Agee, Jim. "Collection Evaluation: A Foundation for Collection Development." Collection Building 24, no. 3 (2005): 92-95.

Baird, Brian J. Library Collection Assessment Through Statistical Sampling. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2004. 103 pp.

Ballestro, John, and Philip C. Howze. "When a Gift Is Not a Gift: Assessment Using Cost-Benefit Analysis." Collection Management 30, no. 3 (2005): 49-66.

Brewer, Michael. "Identifing Holdings Unique to Your Library’s Collections Using WorldCat." Slavic & East European Information Resources 7, no. 4 (2007):115-121.

Bushing, Mary, Bums Davis, and Nancy Powell. Using the Conspectus Method: A Collection Assessment Handbook. Lacey, WA: WLN, 1997. 200 pp

Dilevko, Juris, and Lisa Gottlieb. "Weed to Achieve: A Fundamental Part of the Public Library Mission?" Library Collections, Acquisitions & Techical Services 27 (Spring 2003): 73-96.

Hiott, Judith, and Carla Beasley. "Electronic Collection Management: Completing the Cycle – Experiences at Two Libraries." Acquisitions Librarian 17, no. 33/34 (2005): 159-178.

Hoffman, Frank W. Library Collection Development Policies: Academic, Public, And Special Libraries. Lanham, MD: Scarcrow Press, 2005. 329 pp.

Johnson, Peggy. Fundamentals of Collection Development & Management. Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 2004. 342 pp.

Knievel, Jennifer E., Heather Wicht, and Lynn Silipigni Connaway. "Use of Circulation Statistics and Interlibrary Loan Data in Collection Management." College & Research Libraries 67 (January 2006): 35-49.

Lesniaski, David. "Evaluating Collections: A Discussion and Extension of Brief Tests of Collection Strength." College and Undergraduate Libraries 11, no. 1(2004): 11-25.

Lyons, Lucy E. "A Critical Examination of the Assessment Analysis Capabilities of OCLC ACAS." Journal of Academic Librarianship 31 (November 2005): 505-516.

Metz, Paul, and Caryl Gray. "Perspectives on: Public Relations and Library Weeding." Journal of Academic Librarianship 31 (May 2005): 273-279.

Mitchell, Steve. "Machine Assistance in Collection Building: New Tools, Research, Issues, and Reflections." Information Technology & Libraries 25 (December 2006): 190-216.

Mortimore, Jeffrey M. "Access-informed Collection Development and the Academic Library: Using Holdings, Circulation, and ILL Data to Development Prescient Collections." Collection Management 30, no. 3 (2005): 2 1-37.

Nisonger, Thomas E. Evaluation of Library Collections, Access & Electronic Resources:
A Literature Guide & Annotated Bibliography
. Westport, CN: Libraries Unlimited, 2003. 316 pp.

Oberlander, Cyril, and Dan Streeter. "LibStatCAT: A Library Statistical Collection Assessment Toll for Individual Libraries & Cooperative Collection Development." Library Collections, Acquisitions & Technical Services 27 (Winter 2003): 493-506.

Perrault, Anna H., Tina M. Adams, Rhonda Smith, and Jeannie Dixon. "The Florida Community College Statewide Collection Assessment Project: Outcomes and Impact." College and Research Libraries 63 (May 2002): 240-249.

Shouse, Daniel L., and Linda Teel. "Inventory: Catalyst for Collection Development." Collection Building 25, no. 4 (2006): 129-133.

Slote, Stanley J. Weeding Library Collections: Library Weeding Methods. 4th ed Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 1997. 240 pp.

Stoller, Michael. "Building Library Collections: It’s Still About the User." Collection Building 24, no. 1 (2005): 4-8.

Teper, Thomas H., and Stephanie S. Atkins. "Building Preservation: The University Of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Stacks Assessment." College & Research Libraries News 64 (May 2003): 211-227.

Jessica Moyer, RSS
Allison Cowgill, CODES
June 20, 2007 

technorati tag: Annual2007

It’s the most wonderful time of the year

Boxes of new books Our monograph acquisitions work flow is out of wack. I didn't count how many boxes of books came in this week, but I know we're nearing 100 for the past couple of weeks.

There are multiple issues by having the majority of our books arrive in June and July (besides overloading acquisitions and cataloging). The biggest challenge I see is one of perception. Our students and faculty are on campus September to May. They only see a small number of new books coming in during those months. I'm sure that our students never realize how many tangible books come in over the summer, because they are already processed and shelved by the time they are back on campus in the August.

I have some ideas on how to even out our work flow, but I'm always looking for good ideas that work. Feel free to share what works on your campus by writing a comment (it won't show until I approve it).