Thursday, November 26, 2009

WNYLRC/RRLC 2009 Leadership Institute

In January 2009, I was accepted as a fellow in the WNYLRC/RRLC Leadership Institute. The fellows met once a month in March, April, May, June, September, and October. Graduation took place on November 18, 2009. Maureen Sullivan, owner of Maureen Sullivan Associates, Professor of Practice in the Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science Ph.D. Program in Managerial Leadership, and recipient of the 2010 Association of College and Research Libraries Academic/Research Librarian of the Year Award, facilitated the Institute. The topics covered included:
  • Leadership in Libraries Today
  • Understanding Your Work and Leadership Styles
  • Building Effective Relationships
  • Introduction to Project Management
  • Effective Interpersonal Communication
  • Risk Taking
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Power and Influence
  • Inspiring Shared Vision
  • Transforming Libraries: Leading Change
  • Transforming Libraries: Creating a Culture of Commitment and High Performance
  • Valuing Differences and Diversity
  • Managing Disagreement and Conflict
  • Enabling Others to Act: Working with Groups and Teams
  • Developing Others
  • Recognition and Appreciation

I was able to put what I learned to work in July 2010 when I facilitated the creation of shared values and a shared vision for the Medaille College Libraries. This has solidified and focused the work the staff is doing to achieve our unit mission and goals which support the mission of the College.

I have also used the techniques discussed at the Institute to improve my work as the Managing Editor of the Journal of Library Innovation. The first issue of the journal was published in March 2010 after almost two years of work by the Editorial Team.

American Library Association 2009 Annual Conference

I attended sessions at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Chicago, July 11-13, 2009. In selecting which sessions to attend, I looked for topics including research methodologies and using data to develop collections and services. When I attended this conference, I was new to my role as Library Director.
I attended the following sessions:

Designing Effective Research Surveys : Regina McBride, Ph.D., Dean of Library and Information Services, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, presents a program designed to assist academic librarians refine research design skills. The program involves: developing research questions, selecting research methodologies, and designing the research study. Topics include: developing useful questionnaires; techniques for conducting telephone interviews and focus groups, and constructing surveys to get the information needed. A PowerPoint presentation, participant discussions, hands-on exercises, and handouts of sample research designs are included. This program is sponsored by the ACRL Research Committee. This was a basic survey presentation stressing the concepts of validity, reliability, and generalizability.

Millennials in Graduate School: How Do We Support Them? : Millennials, those born between 1982 and 1994, are finishing college and entering graduate school. Surveys suggest that these students use libraries heavily and are less than satisfied with the experience. What do these digital multi-taskers want and expect, and how can university libraries support their needs? This program will bring together a panel of speakers to discuss trends in graduate education, the expectations of this cohort and the successful approaches that will engage them. Speakers: Susan Gibbons, Vice Provost and Dean, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester; Joan K. Lippincott, Associate Executive Director, Coalition for Networked Information; Barbara Dewey, Dean of Libraries, University of Tennessee
Powerpoint presentations can be found on the ACRL website. My notes: The presenters discussed how millennial graduate students research and how studies of this group have improved library services for them. The U of R has a publication detailing a study of graduate students: The Next Generation of Academics: A Report on a Study Conducted at the University of Rochester.

Collection Development 2.0: The Changing Administration of Collection Development : Collection development is undergoing revolutionary changes. In the last few years, most libraries have made major changes in the way they manage collection development. This program will help clarify what new approaches some libraries have taken and why, their consequences (both intended and unintended), and what some of those thinking about these issues see on the horizon. Moderator: Steven Harris, University of New Mexico; Presenters: Jonathan Nabe, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale; Martha White, Lexington (KY) Public Library; Rick Anderson, University of Utah. My notes: Current trends include patron-driven acquisition, pay-per-view options, interlibrary loan for titles too expensive to purchase, and true coordinated collection development through consortia. See the ALA Conference wiki for presentations and reading lists.

Listening to the Customer: Using Assessment Results to Make a Difference

From the ALA wiki:

Speaker #1:Catherine Haras, California State University – Los Angeles

Title: Assessing an information literacy initiative

Short description: The JFK Memorial Library at California State University, Los Angeles, has built a healthy information literacy program by continuing to assess student learning as well as faculty perceptions of students’ research habits. Assessment results inform Library curriculum, help to grow program outreach, and have modified campus policy. The Library has developed a sustainable model of information literacy at the first-year and upper-division (capstone) levels, reaching 18,000 students per year through credit-bearing courses and almost 700 course-integrated and stand alone workshops.

Speaker #2: Dr. Richard Moniz, Johnson and Wales University

Title: Using multiple assessments to evaluate library services

Short description: Dr. Richard Moniz will discuss a number of widely varying assessments such as LibQUAL+, annual library surveys, the Standardized Assessment of Information Literacy (SAILS), and Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis and their application at a somewhat unique private university. With a focus on results or changes made as a result of customer/patron input, Moniz will also briefly discuss the pros and cons of each approach. A brief examination of several approaches is intended to show how no single assessment is enough for a complete environmental scan of the library's services.

Speaker #3: Annie Norman, State Library of Delaware

Title: The Measure of Library Excellence

Short description: The Delaware Division of Libraries / State Library have facilitated a quality learning journey for Delaware libraries since 2002. Library staff participates in training to apply various tools that businesses use to achieve performance excellence, including Baldridge Criteria, Balanced Scorecard, and Six Sigma. Most recently, Division of Libraries staff members are listening to the customer through the Delaware Library Learning Journeys program, an action research project to develop tools, tips, and techniques to unleash inner genius and support lifelong learning. Lessons learned to date will help others to make a difference in their libraries.

My notes: What I learned from these presentations is that anecdotal evidence is not valid. The presenters proved that what they thought was true about the students (anecdotal) proved to be very different from the assessment collected through testing (direct assessment) and surveys (indirect assessment). When the assessment from the direct and indirect assessment was analyzed and compared with faculty focus group findings, the librarians created a more effective information literacy program. Librarians need to develop their pedagogical skills. LIBQUAL+ is a useful survey tool.

Nuts & Bolts for Academic Friends
Friends and development officers for academic libraries are invited to attend this highly interactive session where attendees will share best practices for fund raising, creating endowments, increasing membership, and improving the profile of library Friends and Foundations on campus. Hosted by the Friends section. Speakers: Mary Dodge, Sam Huang. My notes: This session was most helpful to me. I learned about academic library friends groups from two experts in the field. ALADN (Academic Library Advancement and Development Group) holds an annual conference. There is no cost to join the group.

Through Their Eyes: Collecting Visual Data For Designing the Learning Environment : My notes: The presenters described methods for collecting visual data to use in planning renovation or construction. Nancy Kress, University of Chicago, did a way finding study with students to improve the library signage. Judi Briden, University of Rochester, talked about the photo diaries students created to document their school life. Kathleen Webb used photographic studies to develop a method for assessing learning spaces (classroom and non-classroom spaces) and to explore the relationship between learning and the characteristics of space. She co-wrote an article about the study, published in Portal, Oct. 2008 (v.8, no. 4, pp. 407-422). Rebecca Bichel, Kirsten Kinsley and Jill Duncan, Florida State University described a partnership with Herman Miller to develop an actionable assessment which used data analysis to create action steps for transformation. Their key points included: Think big, act fast, test small; Failure is a valuable part of testing; Make the data matter; Tight resources are no excuse.

Pay Attention to Your Users! Conducting Qualitative Research to Reinvent Library Services: In developing library services, librarians place the user at the center of planning. In this program, three experienced researchers show how qualitative methods provide effective means to learn what libraries should do to help people meet their information needs. The presentations will include discussions and examples of software used in qualitative research and ways qualitative research can inform practical management decisions. Speakers: Denise Agosto, Drexel University; Sandra Hughes-Hassell, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Lynn Westbrook, University of Texas at Austin. The Powerpoint presentation can be found with this description on the ALA wiki. My notes: Qualitative research contributes to the profession's development when the findings are shared through presentation and publication. Qualitative research uses verbal, not numerical, data. This research is concerned with the process of an activity. Software for data analysis: HyperResearch.

Scholarly Communication 101

The Association of College and Research Libraries Workshop, Scholarly Communication 101, was held at the University at Buffalo on June 4, 2009. The workshop was facilitated by Marianne Buehler, head of Publishing & Scholarship Support Services, Rochester Institute of Technology; Joy Kirchner, Collections, Licensing, Digital Scholarship, University of British Columbia Libraries; and Molly Kleinman, Copyright Specialist, Special Projects Librarian, University of Michigan Libraries. Scholarly communication enhances the sharing of research. Librarians can play a key role in this communication. ACRL has developed a scholarly communication toolkit. From the toolkit homepage:
New technology and innovative business models offer proven opportunities for enhancing the sharing of scholarly information -- research papers, primary data and other evidence, creative activity and other products of research and scholarship -- across institutions and audiences. This scholarly communication – understood as the system through which research and other scholarly writings are created, evaluated for quality, disseminated to the scholarly community, and preserved for future use – promotes a shared system of research and scholarship.
The workshop addressed the topics of economics (journal publication process), copyright and author rights, open access and openness as a principle, and a discussion of new modes and models. I attended this workshop to further develop my knowledge of scholarly publication to support my work as the Managing Editor of the Journal of Library Innovation.

2009 Innovative Users Group Conference

The 2009 Innovative Users Group Annual Conference was held in Anaheim, California, May 18-20, 2009. I attended a number of interesting sessions over three days. We went live with Millennium circulation and cataloging in July 2008 and had been working in acquisitions for about six months at the time of the conference. Liz Evans and I were able to attend sessions relative to our needs at Medaille.

The keynote speaker at the opening session was Dr. Michael B. Johnson, head of the Moving Pictures Group at Pixar Animation Studios. He gave a very entertaining and informative talk.

The sessions I attended:

Smooth Sailing with Floating Collections

Aimee Fifarek, Technologies & Content Manager, Scottsdale Public Library
Kathy Schoepe, Technology Supervisor, Scottsdale Public Library
John Goodyear, ILS Analyst, Multnomah County Library
Jennifer Steward, Circulation Analyst, Multnomah County Library

Session Number: D03

Published Program Description: Multnomah County Library started floating items in their 17 libraries in 2005. Scottsdale Public Library started floating its entire collection among four libraries on July 1, 2008. Come and hear from the expert and newbie project leads how they prepared for their projects and made the whole thing come together successfully, and why floating is still working today in both systems. This program will include tips, tricks, and a discussion of the philosophies underlying the project, making it perfect for anyone trying to decide whether to consider a floating collection for their institution. The most interesting point about this spirited presentation was that the staff at the library systems experienced a shift in thinking--they now thought at the system level, not at the branch level!

EDIFACT Ordering and Invoicing
Debbie Turner, Senior Library Training Consultant, Innovative Interfaces

Session Number: G10

Published Program Description: There are two sides to the EDIFACT process and the library can feel stuck in the middle some times -- between Millennium and the vendors. This session will investigate how to make this process as painless as possible and make sure that you get the most out of the automation. This was a good information session about a process we are thinking about using at Medaille.

RFID -- It's not as scary as you think

Judy Humphreys, Library Services Manager, Mountain View Public Library
Janice Painter, Manager, Access Services, Princeton Public Library
Susan Darkhosh, Manager, Lending Services, Princeton Public Library
Eric Leckbee, Product Manager, Innovative Interfaces

Session Number: H05

Published Program Description: The panel will describe the experiences of two public libraries that are using RFID for checkout, checkin, self-service checkout, and self-service checkin using an automated materials handling system. We will focus on changes in staffing and workflow and provide practical tips for successful use of RFID with Innovative's Item Status API, 3rd party self-checkout, and with an AMH system. This is an introductory level presentation for librarians considering implementing RFID. I attended sessions about RFID to learn more about it and to identify what is needed to implement this security, circulation, and inventory product. RFID enables self-checkout.

Converting our Collection to RFID: Goals Accomplished and Lessons Learned

Carol Gyger, Systems Administrator, Poudre River Public Library District
Carson Block, IT Director, Poudre River Public Library District

Session Number: J04

Published Program Description: The Poudre River Public Library District recently retro-converted its collection to RFID. Come learn why they chose RFID, who helped them, how they organized the real work involved (including funding, project design, weeding, retro-conversion and more), what worked well (and what didn't), and what they think of RFID now. This presentation added to what I learned at the previous session--very helpful.

Encore Implementation: One Academic Library's Experience

Christopher Brown, Reference Technology Integration Librarian, University of Denver, Penrose Library
Elizabeth Meagher, Metadata & Materials Processing Librarian, University of Denver, Penrose Library
Sandra Macke, Catalog Librarian, University of Denver, Penrose Library

Session Number: K05

Published Program Description: Encore leverages complex library collections in exciting ways. One reference librarian and two catalog librarians from the University of Denver present a panel discussion touching on data cleanup before and after implementation, increasing access by amending format icons, leveraging scopings and locations, interfacing with the ERM, providing effective discovery with facets, and more. Hear how an academic library's experiences with Encore has created greater exposure to rich collections. Encore enables data cleanup. This is a very sophisticated product.

Electronic Resource Management Systems: Where is the Value?

Bob McQuillan, Senior Product Manager, Innovative Interfaces
Diane Grover, Electronic Resources Coordinator, University of Washington
Janet Crum, Head, Library Systems & Cataloging, Oregon Health Sciences University
Rae Ann Stahl, Technical Services Manager, San Jose State University

Session Number: L11

Published Program Description: Understanding the value and effectiveness of electronic management systems (ERMS) is becoming more critical as library expenditures increase for electronic resource collections. For many libraries struggling to manage growing electronic resource collections without the benefit of an ERMS, the underlying issue can often focus on how to justify the purchase and implementation of such a system. This is a joint session with representative libraries who share their insights on the value of an ERMS. Topics to include workflow strategies, library staffing, patron experiences, harvesting of usage statistics and how an ERMS fits into the long-term objectives of the library. Managing electronic resources, making them discoverable and accessible, and abiding by licenses is very time consuming. The ERMS has many benefits beyond technical services.

Enhancing your OPAC with Third-Party Applications

Carrie Volk, Coordinator of Interlibrary Loan, Winthrop University
Session Number: L08
Published Program Description: This session will examine how ColdFusion (or any web programming language) and a little JavaScript can be used to embed the Meebo chat program throughout your OPAC. This method of implementation gives librarians control over the Meebo chat widget displaying only during chat services hours and provides an offline contact method. It will also examine a ColdFusion application developed in-house called DacusMaps that gives patrons an interactive interface that assists the user how to locate materials in the stacks all from within the OPAC. Finally, several user-requested customizations to the library's OPAC will be demonstrated. I got so many great ideas from this presentation--how to add a "chat button" in the online catalog, using multiple sign-ons for Meebo, and creating location maps within the catalog.

Collaborative Efforts in Setting Up an Approval Plan for Univ. Press Books

Susan Broome, Associate Director for Technical Services, Mercer University Jack Tarver Library
Linda Chen, Library Systems Coordinator, Mercer University Jack Tarver Library
Theresa Preuit Rhodes, Associate Director for Public Services, Mercer University Jack Tarver Library
Debbie Turner, Senior Library Training Consultant, Innovative Interfaces

Session Number: D01

Published Program Description: A popular country song opines, "I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then! I wish I could start this whole thing over again." NOT! Approval plans are a practical means of acquiring library materials if there are more funds than employees at your library. Working with Innovative, Midwest Library Service, and PromptCat, we now receive cataloged and processed books weekly with catalog records available and a single lump-sum payment to be made on arrival. Do we wish we had known some things earlier? Certainly. Would we want to start over again? Decidedly not! This session was not what I expected it to be. I did learn that creating profiles for approval plans takes time. At this time, we don't need to set up this type of program.

Web 2.0 Made Easy: Our Implementation of LibraryThing for Libraries

Candace Lebel, Innopac Coordinator, Claremont Colleges Libraries
Alexandra Chappell, Reference Librarian, Claremont Colleges Libraries

Session Number: K09

Published Program Description: Looking for a way to improve the catalog and make it more social, the Claremont Colleges partnered with LibraryThing to quickly and easily incorporate a folksonomy and book suggestion feature into their WebPAC. LibraryThing For Libraries matches the ISBNs of books in Claremont's WebPAC with ISBNs for books in LibraryThing and then inserts tags and similar books suggestions into the display of the bibliographic record. For all user levels, this presentation will show you just how easy it is to add Web 2.0 features to your WebPAC with LibraryThing for Libraries. I am always interested in new Web 2.0 applications to serve as discovery tools for patrons. This was an interesting application, but not one I think we will use.

Digitization with Millennium and CONTENTdm

Stuart Hunt, Data Services Manager, University of Warwick Library

Session Number: D05

Published Program Description: This presentation will provide an overview of the digitization of a special collection of rare textual materials. The use of Millennium Media Management will be discussed in contrast to the use of CONTENTdm. Workflows for the digitization process will be discussed, including deriving metadata from Millennium and its use in CONTENTdm. The possible different methods for achieving this will be highlighted, including the use of Create Lists and XML Harvester. Techniques for linking Millennium to CONTENTdm to enhance discovery will be illustrated. Since I have worked with a committee at WNYLRC to develop the regional digital collection using CONTENTdm, I just had to hear this presentation. I found it very interesting--especially the innovative way that the University of Warwick librarians used to choose which collections to digitize first: they worked with undergraduates to make the selections! Millennium and CONTENTdm work well together.

The conference wasn't as well attended as last year's, but the sessions were excellent.

Fostering a Campus Culture of Assessment

On April 27, 2009, I attended a Middle States Commission on Higher Education retreat in New York City with Medaille colleagues Douglas Howard, Barbara Kurasch, Brad Hollingshead and Judith Horowitz. The retreat, Fostering a Campus Culture of Assessment: A Retreat for Campus Leaders was held at Pace University. This retreat gave us the opportunity to brainstorm strategies related to assessment. We participated in exercises which allowed us to reflect on where we are presently as an institution of assessment and what we need to do to improve and encourage a culture of assessment. The one day retreat allowed us to take the time to work together on this very important endeavor and helped to focus the work of the Institutional Assessment Coordinating Team (IACT).