Professional Development

Surveys in Libraries: ACRL-ULS Webinar

Tuesday, December 3, 2013 11:24 am

Yesterday a group of us (Lauren C., Lauren S., Thomas, Roz, Mary Beth and Susan) participated in the Surveys in Libraries webinar presented by the ACRL-ULS Evidence Based Practices Discussion Group. One of the goals for this year’s Assessment Committee is to take advantage of any educational opportunities that might help guide our assessment efforts to be more effective.

This webinar focused on using surveys to learn about patron perceptions about whether their needs are being met by services. Well-designed surveys can be useful to gather this type of information. Poorly designed surveys are a waste of everyone’s time.

Here are a few helpful insights I gained from the session:

  • Actionable surveys are those that ask the right questions, are focused and are designed to gather data that can lead to action to improve processes.
  • An Action Gap Survey might be a useful tool for us. In this type of survey you might select 10 services that we offer. Then you ask the participants to choose the 3 services they think we do well, the 3 that they think need to be improved and finally, ask which 3 are the most important. This can show if what we do well is important to them, and whether our efforts need to be directed at improvement if the service in question isn’t important.
  • Surveys should be simple and focused. There was no *real* ideal number of questions, but the speakers agreed that less is better.
  • Longer surveys tend to have a higher drop rate (think the long version of LibQual+). People get frustrated and/or bored when there are too many questions.
  • There was agreement that when using the Likert scale (is that pronounced Like-ert or Lik-ert?, look it up in OED), the ideal number of values is 5 (strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, strongly disagree).

One speaker addressed the use of commercial survey products (Counting Opinions and LibQual), another talked about adding library questions into campus-wide surveys (which we have had a little success with to date). My take away on commercial versus home grown surveys is that they both have a place in our assessment efforts. The commercial ones allow us to compare our services against other academic library peers/aspirationals, while locally developed surveys can help us dig down to the actionable level.

If you are interested in viewing the webinar, it is available here.

SerialsSolutions Summon and HathiTrust full-text indexing

Monday, April 25, 2011 1:08 pm

“Just as GoogleBook search brought book search to the open web, this advancement brings full text book search and integrated content discovery to serious researchers. . .”

Today Mary Beth, Susan, Derrik, Lauren C, Tim, Audra, Craig, Cristina, Steve, Leslie, Lynn, Kaeley, Erik, Barry and Giz attended a webinar about the recent launch of the full text indexing of HathiTrust records in the SerialsSolutions Sumon service. David Lankes started the session with his view of how services like the HathiTrust compare with other cooperative projects and what motivates information seekers when they approach systems with an information need. David focused on a few themes, notably the concept that collaborative collections create opportunities for new communities to form around.

John wilkin gave an overview of the state of the hathitrust. Some interesting numbers included a current ~31% overlap with ARL libraries and near 50% overlap with Oberlin group libraries. The HathiTrust currenlty has around 8.2 Million titles with approximately 26% of them (2.1M) in the public domain. Wilkin indicated that with current contribution levels they are seeing about a 1% growth in overlap for every 200K submitted titles.

John Law finished up the webinar indicating that the Summon service would offer the full text index of HathiTrust records as an include-able option with other resources. The key idea appeared to be that full text indexing would be included in Summon with various options for content delivery (e.g. direct link for public domain resources, catalog link for owned resources, ILLfulfillmentlink for others). Interstingly, John Law indicated that these links will not always be based on OpenURL but will be ‘pre-calculated.’ SerialsSolutions is planning on offering some advanced content inclusion options (e.g. public domain only or fully indexed collection) using specific fulfillment options for each type of resource/licensing restriction.

As expected the questions from the audience focused on timeline (mid year), technical details (to be determined in the client center), and requests for a demo (forthcoming). A few questions centered around matching and merging of titles/records to provide a streamlined record discovery and presentation service for patrons. In response John Law said that SerialsSolutions is planning on finding ways to merge catalog records from the subscribing library with full text indexing from HathiTrust to provide both single-point access and enhanced bibliographic/full text access. There was a question about what the user experience would look like for items not in the public domain. It appears that Summon will attempt to make a ‘best-guess’ about resources but will provide multiple links (ILL, content link when possible). There was some interest about how resrouces outside of the puGiven the attendance from ZSR this is clearly an interesting area and I expect there will be more questions in the months to come!

ARL Webinar on Digital Curation for Preservation

Thursday, April 7, 2011 4:17 pm

Lauren C, Lauren P, Craig, Rebecca, Molly, Barry, Sarah, Tim, and Audra attended the ARL session to discuss the report “New Roles for New Times: Digital Curation for Preservation.”

The webinar is the first in a set in response to the Association of Research Libraries’ report series entitled “New Roles for New Times,” which includes five reports relating to digital curation, student services, library liaisons, repository services, and print collections.

Authors Katherine Skinner (Educopia) and Tyler Walters (Virginia Tech) reviewed the report, including its background and context. The executive summary of the 76-page document gives an excellent review of the report, which emphasizes new roles for librarians and libraries with regard to the life cycle of the digital object, particularly getting more attention paid to the digital objects being created. Katherine and Tyler repeated that collaboration, both intra- and inter-institutional and working more with technologists, domain scholars, and scientists, is key to the future of the research library. Tyler suggested that libraries must become more embedded, in domains such as production, dissemination, description, organization, promoting, designing, and accessing digital resources that are co-produced.

A panel of experts responded to the report, including Jeremy York from the University of Michigan, Martha Anderson from NDIIPP, Oya Rieger from Cornell, and Patricia Cruse from the California Digital Library. Jeremy talked about his perspective working with HathiTrust, a large-scale digital library. He mentioned the importance of large-scale collaboration, including a centralized infrastructure to share digital content, such as HathiTrust. Martha explored her view from NDIIPP, particularly that the collaborative project was iterative, requiring shared learning and trust-building. Oya supported the report’s discussion of embedded librarianship, noting that subject specialists understand the daily needs of scholars in a holistic way and they can help faculty understand services available through the library (including digital collections). Patricia talked about the CDL’s collaboration with the National Science Foundation as a result of the NSF’s new requirement that all grant applications must have a data sharing plan. She explained the wide range of stakeholders in their digital curation efforts, including offices of research, IP offices, grants, and contract offices, each of which looked to the research library for help with curation of research data.

Q&A allowed Katherine and Tyler as well as the panel to respond to participant questions. Tyler described a trio of priorities for digital curation: infrastructure, content, and services. The takeaway message for me was a quote from Tyler: “Content is coming at us faster than ever. If we don’t manage it, someone else will.”

The archived audio is now available. Thank you to Tim and Kaeley for setting up the webinar session, and to Lynn for emailing the report!

Kaeley rocks the Webinar

Friday, February 26, 2010 5:05 pm

I know that this is somewhat tangential but I thought that it was interesting. Today I hosted my first webinar as part of the on-line Indexing & abstracting class and it was my pleasure to have (our own) Kaeley McMahan and Mark Schumacher as my two guest speakers.

We used Elluminate but there are lots of other options out there. If anyone is looking for ideas about how to host a webinar or what the experience is like feel free to get in touch!

ALA Techsource Emerging Trends Webinar

Thursday, February 11, 2010 5:56 pm

Today Erik, Mary S., Barry, Sarah, Ellen D., Lauren P., Kaeley, Molly K., Leslie, JP, and Erik attended the ALA techsource webinar. Although the high point of the session was a ‘shout-out’ to our very own Lauren P’ there were alot of intersting trends discussed. Lots of folks focused on mobile/social apps, augmented reality apps and there was a fascinating discussion about foursquare. I think we should start rewarding students who spend lots of time in the library with extra free-prints (or perhaps just a broom to sweep up or something).

Among the many examples of iphone apps (one person used the phrase “all iphone all the time” – which sounds about right :) ) there was a demonstration of the integration of the RedLaser app with OCLC. Discussion of Ebooks was somewhat scarce but there was a presentation about a platform called blio

Sun Webinar – DuraCloud pilot project report

Wednesday, December 16, 2009 2:48 pm

Today Wanda, Barry, Molly (K), Leslie, JP, Tim, and Erik attended a webinar offered through Sun Microsystems on the DuraCloud system. The presentation included Michele Kimpton, Martin Kalfatovic, Barbara Taranto, and Peter Pinch who talked about their beta projects and included a short discussion on how libraries can participate in the DuraCloud pilot program.

The session began with an overview of the experience of the first stage pilot partners. The overview included a discussion of several providers including Amazon, Atmos, Rackspace. While the initial project is focusing on the nuts and bolts of building a cloud-based repository it is also including some interesting open source services include Djakota, Taxon-finder, and Kaltura. For example, Martin talked about the Biodiversity Heritage Library and their experience with the DuraCloud pilot. They were interested in the Taxon-finder service in particular with a focus on making taxonomic literature available. Barbara talked about how their perspective on the pilot included developing a cost comparison model, examine data transfer, management, and transfer. Barbara reported on the migration from the jpeg standard to djakota JPEG 2000 image files. Peter talked about the efforts of WGBH (which completely rocks in general) to digitize archives during the pilot project. The are experimenting with Kaltura player for streaming and are looking at preservation services.

In the late spring the DuraCloud project will be opened up for other libraries to participate. At the moment they are looking to launch a production service in Q3 2010. Initial pilot partnerships will focus on those running dspace/fedora right now. Many thanks to Barry for setting the webinar up in the screening room!

ZSR library attends ASERL ITDIIG Lunch-n-Learn

Thursday, September 24, 2009 1:26 pm

Lynn, Mary Beth, Wanda, Patty, Jean-Paul, Kaeley, Barry, Chris B. Lauren C., Lauren P, Kevin, Tim and Erik attended the session which was a presentation on how Georgia Tech (Tyler Walters) and Clemson(Emily Gore) approach digitization and digital priorities.

Emily covered what Clemson is doing and presented on her work building a digital initiatives program including MetaArchive, Open LOCKSS, the development of a written preservation plan and a goal to participate in the development community. She briefly covered their beginning use of Archivist Toolkit. She talked about their use of grants and regional grant/collaborations to digitize resources, work with partners to preserve digital resources, and run a ‘regional scan center.’ She mentioned their work to plan a fedora repository and discussed a project called <a href=”http://www.intelligentriver.org/”>Intelligent River</a>, a site that focuses on archiving real-time hydrologic data and data sets in south carolina.

Tyler Walters talked about the Galileo knowledge repository (http:/GKR.library.gatech.edu) which will focus on providing IR hosting via Dspace, workshops, IR services and a collaborative metadata repository. He also talked about Virtual Research Environments which are based on drupal/fedora sites called islandora (http://vre.upei.ca/dev/islandora) that has been developed by the University of Prince Edward Island. Georgia Tech is going to try out a similar approach. He also discussed e-publishing services offered by the library (Epage @ Tech, The Tower).

Tyler also talked about search & discovery approaches including Vufind, metalib (Xerces Xserver), and Tsquared (Univeristy Sakai system) – a project to integrate metalib into Sakai. As he discussed their architecture he mentioned a sun infinite archive solution, sun storagetek 2540 disk array (16 TB), SL 500 Tape library (529 TB), Managed by Sun’s SAM server and ZFS software.

Next ASERL Lunch-n-Learn on November 12th with Mary Molinaro (U-Kentucky) and Toby Graham (U-Georgia)!

Webinars focus on Cloud computing, Insitutional Repositories, and Open Access

Tuesday, September 22, 2009 4:57 am

In September and October there will be three Sun Webinars that look at cloud computing and its role in institutional repositories. If you enjoyed reading about the Berkman Webinar then these are for you!

All sessions will be held in the Bridge Screening Room.

ONIX for Serials Webinar

Friday, October 17, 2008 5:09 pm

On September 25, I took part in an hour-long webinar that detailed the new ONIX for Serials standard (ONIX is an abbreviation for ONline Information eXchange). It is a joint project developed by EDItEUR from the UK and the NISO from the United States, and is the latest in a series of standards to create a uniform method of information exchange. Earlier standards, such as ONIX for Books, have been well received by participants across the industry.

ONIX for Serials is a new metadata standard that was designed for communications regarding serials subscriptions between all or some of the following: libraries, publishers, subscription agents, hosting servers, consortia, aggregators, content providers (Serials Solutions, for example), and link resolvers. Based on the ONIX for Books standard, it relates information dealing with subscription data and all of its sources and formats and presents it in an XML message that would be readable across these control systems.

Three primary formats have been developed for the ONIX for Serials standard.

  1. SPS (Serials Products and Subscriptions). These are standard messages to help distribute information to evaluate packages, titles a library is currently receiving in its catalog, and product lists from publishers and agents.
  2. SOH (Serials Online Holdings). This standard pushes information about available issues directly into library systems without using link resolvers, populates A-Z lists, and generates online holdings for consortia arrangements.
  3. SRN (Serials Release Notification). This format can become a method to know when issues are published for e-journals in the catalog and link resolvers; to remove doubt about delays in print issue delivery; and to announce the publication of an article before their respective journals are completely published.

In addition, there is an ONIX Serials Coverage Statement that displays complete enumeration and chronology data for all serial formats, regardless of format or type. Because of its nature, this is a complex data set.

As each format of ONIX for Serials has become available, they have been incorporated into the regular processes of various companies. Early adopters of the SOH format have been TDNet, Serials Solutions, EBSCO, Innovative and OCLC. The SPS and SRN formats are currently in the pilot stage, and compatibility with companies like SirsiDynix and Ex Libris are still on the proverbial drawing board. Further, compatibility with open source catalogs has not yet been addressed, but the nature of open source could change this in the near future.

ONIX for Serials could have tremendous implications across the library community. The key to expanding its growth, mentioned by the webinar’s presenters, was to encourage more companies to sign on as partners.

Please visit www.editeur.org for more information.


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