I. Executive Summary
II. The library staff completed an updated assessment plan and has identified the following four goals.
1. Students will develop skills in how to research based on the standards of information literacy.
2. Patrons will experience improved services.
3. Patrons will find current and relevant educational and information resources.
4. Patrons will experience an improved physical facility which provides increased access to support services and comfortable study areas for collaborative and individual research.
We continue to work on improving our instruction. With our new member of the library staff, the Coordinator of Public Services and Outreach, whose primary focus is on instruction, we are able to proceed in our goal of improving instruction. We now have a one credit, semester long information literacy course which is offered once a week. The syllabus is available as Appendix I at the end of this report. We also apply the standards of information literacy rigorously to our bibliographic instruction and use pre and post questionnaires to assess the students’ learning outcomes. It is a challenge when we do not have more than 50 minutes to cover all the information needed. This explains our need for the information literacy course and the creation of the 20/30 minute workshop option. Each workshop covers one topic only and are determined by the interest and requests of our student body and faculty. We are presently looking at how to request input from faculty as to the effectiveness of the different means of instruction
Reference is another area that has improved. In addition to holding regular reference hours, our new service, AskUs 24/7, which provides professional virtual reference assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, is used regularly by our students. We continue to track and gather usage statistics.
We continue working on improving the training of student workers and the cross training of staff. The training of student workers is a challenge. Our student supervisor program, however, is somewhat successful in that the supervisors have requested additional responsibility. In response, they receive additional training in providing basic reference assistance using the information literacy standards. The program provides a dual benefit. The student supervisors become knowledgeable about the standards and the students benefit from peer to peer assistance. Our e-reserves program has moved out of the pilot stage and is very successful and is growing in popularity. These new programs are some of the results of our self assessment. We are using observation, statistics, pre/post evaluation and some open source software, GoogleAnalytics to measure the outcomes of our programs and services.
III. Summary of the annual Assessment Review and Planning meetings.
A. The Library staff meets at least twice a year, January and July, for its formal Assessment Review and Planning. The meetings can go from one to two hours. The staff also discusses its progress in an on-going basis, i.e. periodically, during regular staff meetings the staff reviews and discusses our progress. We continue using the “parking lot” concept/tool whereby after we identify the needs and determine short term and long term goals, we list them in the parking lot. We then prioritize and select two to four of these goals and remove them from the parking lot for immediate and continuous attention. This method of selecting and prioritizing works well for the staff. The parking lot keeps the needs in view; however, it is large and can be overwhelming. We, therefore, prioritized and select certain goals and address them in a more manageable way based on time, cost, and importance. The entire library staff attends these meetings.
B. The topics for this next year include the four goals mentioned above plus how we to deal with budgetary constraints. The merger with the IT Department has not materialized.
We have a draft of our Collection Development Policy for both the general collection and the Archives. We will continue refining it.
C. The library staff will continue focusing on the four goals as a means of maintaining better service. We continue to evaluate the workflow behind the Main Desk to utilize student workers more efficiently and effectively. It has been increasingly difficult with the cut in student worker numbers and the student hours.
IV. Plan of focus for the upcoming year.
We have identified the following needs for the upcoming year:
We have succeeded in implementing a library information literacy program and now we must find a way to promote it successfully. The Coordinator of Public Services and Outreach and the Library Director co-teach the course and the goal is to increase the numbers of students in the class.
We continue to work toward a full deselecting and selecting program of our collection, which will include input from faculty. It began in the fall 2008 but has moved forward very slowly. The entire library staff is involved.
We intend to have a strategic plan for the library, especially in regard to technology by the end of this year.
We will be evaluating and updating our research guides.
An inventory of our Archives is completed and we now have a number of interns who are helping with organizing special collections and in some cases creating finding aids. In addition to our collection development policy, which includes the Archives, we will be developing workflow policies and procedures.
We have decided on a digital project and have taken the steps to move forward on it. For the present, an intern from Syracuse University will be working on developing preliminary steps needed to be done before the actual digitizing process begins.
We completed a grant application for an NEH grant to hire a specialist to assess the rare book collection. We should be hearing whether or not we are successful in getting the grant sometime in January. Depending on this outcome, we plan to apply for a more comprehensive grant to continue the work needed on the rare book collection. This second grant will be primarily for preservation and conservation of the collection.
V. Updated Assessment Plan with the Accomplishments at the end.
WELLS COLLEGE LIBRARY ASSESSMENT PLAN OCTOBER 2010
The mission of
Jefferson Long Library supports the mission and the institutional goals of
A. Members of the library staff will assist the student in defining the type of information needed for their topic and will use the syllabus for added guidance.
B. The staff will instruct the student in the many different search strategies and will assist the student in selecting the most appropriate information retrieval systems for accessing the needed information.
C. The library staff will instruct the student in the many resources, print and electronic, to further assist in limiting and broadening the search strategies.
D. The library staff will provide instruction regarding the Copyright Law, plagiarism and Fair Use.
GOAL I: Student will determine the nature and extent of the information needed.
Objective 1: Students will be able to articulate and define the need for the information.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to:
a) Identify and discuss a topic with the appropriate instructor or peers
b) Develop a thesis statement and formulate questions based on that statement
c) Research sources in order to expand knowledge of the topic
d) Use the results of the research to modify the focus of the topic
e) Identify key terms that describe the topic
f) Assimilate the new information into original thought and produce new results
Objective 2: Students will be able to identify a variety of potential sources for information.
Learning Outcomes: Student will understand:
a) How scholars, researchers, and professionals create and use data
b) How to evaluate data; that is, within the context of how it developed and why.
c) How to identify different reasons for research; for instance, testing an hypothesis
d) The purpose of different research methods; for instance, experimental research
e) How data is shared; for instance, difference between primary and secondary sources and a peer-reviewed article
GOAL II: Students will be able to construct and implement an effective and efficient search strategy.
Objective 1: Student will select the appropriate database or method of information retrieval for accessing the needed information.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to
a) Develop a research plan that fits into the chosen research method
b) Identify and select the appropriate search terms and controlled vocabulary that is specific to the discipline or the information source
c) Construct a search strategy using the proper Boolean operators, limits, truncation, indexes, etc.
d) Implement the search strategy using different search engines, different database with different interfaces and parameters
Objective 2: Students will be able to assess and refine the search strategy if necessary.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to
a) Assess the quantity, quality and relevance of the search results and determine if another search strategy is needed
b) Identify is more information is needed. That is, are the results incomplete? Is there a gap?
c) Repeat the search using a revised strategy, if necessary
GOAL III: Students will be able to evaluate the information and its sources critically and be able to incorporate the selected information into his/her project or paper.
Objective 1: Students will be able to summarize the main ideas and extract them from the gathered information.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to
a) Select the main ideas
b) Articulate the ideas in his/her own words and identify material for appropriate quotation
Objective 2: Students will be able to apply criteria for evaluating both sources and information.
Learning Outcome: Student will be able to
a) Examine, compare and analyze the information looking at reliability, accuracy, authority, bias, etc.
Objective 3: Students will be able to examine new information and determine its value in constructing new ideas and how these ideas fit into the research.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to
a) Determine whether the information satisfies the research needs
b) Draw conclusions based on the probable accuracy of the gathered information
c) Integrate the new information with the previous information
d) Provide evidence that the selected information supports the topic’s position
e) Show differing viewpoints supporting or rejecting the topic
Objective 4: Students will determine whether the initial topic needs to be revised.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be able to
a) Determine if additional information is needed
b) Review the search strategy to broaden results if necessary
c) Review the databases selection to see if other retrieval sources can be used
GOAL IV: Students will be able to communicate the significance of the results of their research.
Objective 1: Students will communicate clearly and in a style that is appropriate and supports the purpose of the project or paper.
Learning Outcomes: Student will be
a) Successful in the process of revising his/her work
b) Successful in writing a substantial academic research paper
GOAL V: Students will understand the ethical, legal and economic issues surrounding the use and access of information.
Objective 1: Students will demonstrate an understanding of the importance of the Copyright Law and the practice of acknowledging your sources.
Learning Outcomes: Student will
a) Demonstrate an understanding of the issues related to privacy and security in regard to print and electronic sources
b) Demonstrate an understanding of what constitutes plagiarism
c) Demonstrate an understanding of intellectual property, copyright and fair use
d) Acknowledge the use of information sources by using citation practices and bibliographies
Means of Assessment (criteria for success)
Workshops will be given on particular subjects and instruction sessions will be
given in research strategies and questionnaires will be used before the workshops
and before the instruction sessions to determine the level of student knowledge.
2) Evaluation forms will be filled out by students after the workshops and instruction
sessions to determine what the students learned.
3) Staff will use the reference interview prior to answering reference questions in an
attempt to determine what the student requires and already knows.
4) Faculty will be requested to provide input regarding the library’s impact on a
5) Periodic surveys of students’ experience with library instruction will be undertaken.
Small focus groups and individual interviews/appointments will be used to
progress of the instruction and workshops.
7) Library staff will provide follow-up support when requested.
8) Assessment in the Information Literacy Course consists of assignments that are discussed and assessed in class with the student; rubrics that evaluate the students’ work; a finished project in the form of an annotated bibliography and a presentation at the end of the semester.
Use of Assessment Data:
1. Refine the questionnaires and evaluation forms.
2. Promote the reference interview and its benefits.
3. Give evidence to faculty of the importance of their input.
4. Obtain ideas from students as to what topics interest them.
5. Confirm need for follow-up support.
6. Share methods and ideas with peer institutions.
Refining the assessment component of the different means of instruction, i.e., class, bibliographic sessions and workshops. Instruction and assessment are the two main priorities for the coming academic year (2010-2011).
GOAL I: Patrons will experience improved services.
Objective 1: Patrons will benefit from updated and maintained technology in the library.
1) Library staff will make every effort to collaborate with the technology department will to ensure that the technology needs of the library patrons are met.
Patrons will have access to software which is
3) Patrons will benefit from improved indexing in the online catalog due to an upgrade
of Authority Control.
4) Patrons will benefit from collaboration between the technology department and the
library on open source initiatives for instruction.
5) Patrons will benefit from the library’s future disaster and preservation plans.
6) Patrons will be provided with digitized materials.
7) Patrons will be able to use special software such as GIS and Atrix.
8) Patrons will benefit from more machines in the computer lab, particularly for
bibliographic instruction purposes. .
9) Patrons will experience streamlined ways of searching after our library online
10) Patrons are experiencing improved wireless access while in the library.
11) Patrons will find updated machines in the stacks with which to search the library
12) The number and use of machines housing special software will increase.
1) Observational method and
statistics gathering will provide numbers for resource
2) Database statistics usage will confirm increase in usage.
3) Inquiries into our digitized collections will provide statistics.
4) Statistical records will continue to be maintained for Archival usage.
5) With our new open source, GoogleAnalytics, we can trace and get useful information regarding our library web pages.
Reviewing database usage statistics, e-reserves statistics and web pages statistics.
Objective 2: Patrons will benefit from student worker training and staff professional development.
Patrons will benefit from the new collaboration between the Director of
the library staff in developing fire and safety policies and procedures
2) Patrons will continue to receive better service due to the improved training program
for library student workers
3) Patrons will receive better service due to our student supervisor program
4) Patrons will continue to benefit from the cross-training of the library staff
5) Patrons will benefit from the professional development of the library staff
6) We are in the process of developing new methods for scheduling student and staff hours that will decrease or eliminate paper and move the process to online calendars
7) New methods for communicating with student workers will be explored (we hope to
eliminate the paper on a clipboard method and/or the student listserv)
8) Cross training of students and staff is continuous
Services will improve and patron satisfaction will go up.
2) Students workers will learn to be responsible and gain work experience.
3) Students will develop the skill of supervising peers.
4) Patrons will be more comfortable and secure in using the library.
5) New ideas and implementation plans will be developed and examined by the library staff.
6) Information will be conveyed internally more effectively and efficiently. The resolution for reoccurring issues will be streamlined.
Surveys and questionnaires will be used to measure satisfaction with services
2) Staff will be more flexible in providing continued services
3) Evaluations forms will be used to evaluate student workers
4) Library staff will be compared to library staff of peer institutions in regard to
5) Student supervisor meetings to discuss student work and ways to improve
6) Adherence to the new staff evaluation forms and the three goals concept
Continue the training of student workers, and cross-training of and professional development for library staff.
· Objective 3: Patrons will experience an atmosphere of community outreach in the library.
1) Patrons will find an opportunity to share resources with the local high and middle schools. The college and high school librarians are collaborating to exchange library services.
2) Patrons will have digital access to some selected archival materials due to a regional digitization program.
3) Patrons will benefit from an increased promotion of library services.
4) Discussions focusing on collaboration and strategic planning will take place.
5) Patrons will receive increase support due to the presence of the Associate Dean of Academic Advising, the Coordinator of Learning Support Services, and the Director of Experiential Learning and Career Services whose offices are located in the library.
1) There will be more
collaboration between local schools and the College library.
2) Communication about strategies and planning will be shared.
3) Increase use of the learning support services.
1) Surveys and questionnaires will be used to evaluate the share resources program between schools and the library.
2) Reports and evaluations of collaborations, communication and strategic plans.
Collaboration with Learning Support Services and Experiential Learning and Career Services. The library staff is collaborating with the Director of Experiential Learning and Career Services in providing resources for students, faculty and staff. It is our hope to offer new programs and services by collaboration and outreach.
Use of Assessment Data
1. The usage statistics will indicate which software is in most demand.
2. Database statistics will inform us as to what databases are required.
3. Inquiries into our collection will inform us as to what collections should be digitized and preserved first.
4. We will use the surveys, focus groups and questionnaires to determine any needed changes in or additions to our services.
5. Comparison to peer institutions will help to indicate where we may want to focus.
6. Evaluation of workflow efficiency due to added flexibility will be made.
GOAL II. Patrons will find improved/relevant educational and information resources.
Objective 1: Patrons will benefit from a maintained and developed collection (electronic, audiovisual and print) that supports the current curriculum.
Implementation of a rigorous evaluation and inventory of our current collection
2) Implementation of the library’s new deselecting and collections development
3) Continued research into an increase in subscriptions to electronic journals from print journals, done only when deemed appropriate.
4) Implementation of a new
revised procedure for ordering and responding to requests
5) Review of our circulation policy will be done.
1) Patrons will find an updated and diverse reference collection
2) Patrons will benefit from our new inventory process.
inventory will provide statistics with which to evaluate our collection
4) There will be better access to our “subscribed to” journals with means to track usage.
5) An increase in subscriptions to electronic journals will provide better tracking of
6) There will be policy and procedures in place to support acquisition decisions for
materials in all formats.
7) Patrons will see maintained stacks and realize that we have relevant materials.
1) The criteria for deselecting and selecting will be used to justify purchases from the budget (in any format) and increases to the budget.
2) Regular inventory will provide statistics to evaluate loss in our collection
3) Subscriptions to electronic journals will provide more accurate tracking of journal usage.
4) Data received from policy and procedures will be used to evaluate acquisitions decisions.
5) The library has offered the use of its integrated library system to facilitate the circulation of resources for Career Services which will provide statistics for assessment purposes.
Improve our collection by deselecting (based on certain criteria and input from the faculty) and a vigorous and well thought out program of selection grounded in our curriculum and the needs of faculty.
Objective 2: Patrons can look forward to improved resources and services which are being planned for the future.
1) Writing a strategic plan for the library.
We will have a new collection development policy for the Archives. Faculty,
students and the campus community will also benefit from a reorganization of the
3) We are discussing different options to increase our budget so patrons will benefit from
added books, electronic journals, print journals and databases.
Patrons will benefit from a proposed subject liaison library program.
5) Students will be able to participate in a proposed library mentoring program for
students interested in pursuing graduate study in library science.
6) Students will be able to take a proposed for-credit library course which will cover
information literacy for the first year student.
7) We intend to write a proposal requesting an intern from Syracuse University to help with organizing the Archives.
1) All materials in the Archives will be evaluated for their relevancy, cataloged and the method of statistics gathering will be streamlined.
2) Input regarding library collection and services will be received from all areas of the academic community.
3) Evaluation and comparison of our budget to other institutions of comparable size will inform our decision making process when purchasing materials.
4) Library staff will alert faculty of new purchases and resources of use to them and their students.
5) Students interested in library school will have an opportunity to spend time with librarians and experience the total library environment.
1) Inventory, content management and statistics for usage will show the value of the Archives.
2) Comparison of different library budgets allows for a more comprehensive view of what can be done and how.
3) An individualized subject liaison program will be measured by surveys, evaluation or questionnaire(s) on satisfaction and results.
4) Participation in the mentoring program can be measured by evaluations and questionnaires and in the long term, by increased participation. It may have an impact on retention as well.
Reorganization and evaluation of the Archives and the creation of an Archives collection development policy. This will be addressed when we get our new Coordinator of Public Services and Outreach in October 2009.
B. Use of Assessment Data:
1. The criteria for deselecting and selecting will be used to justify and support purchases with attention to the budget restrictions.
2. The purchased hand held scanner for inventory will provide statistics to evaluate loss in our collection.
3. An increase in subscriptions to electronic journals will provide better tracking of journal usage.
4) The statistics acquired from our GoogleAnalytics will also provide needed information regarding web pages and resource usage.
Objective 1: Patrons will experience an improved and ADA-compliant facility and a warmer, friendlier environment more conducive to learning.
All community members will benefit from improved signage.
2) There will be
3) Remote storage will be investigated.
4) The ventilation system is due for a cleaning.
5) Patrons and collections will benefit from a climate controlled facility (for the library
in general, but particularly for the Archives and Rare Book Room.
6) Improved lighting throughout the facility is needed.
7) We will provide access to drinking water other than in the restrooms.
8) Work stations, hardware and software will be needed eventually for the Learning
9) Patrons will have a facility that is comfortable and conducive to learning
10) Better signage will be used throughout the building
1) Patrons will be able to navigate throughout the library building without getting lost or
needing to ask for assistance.
2) Library materials will not deteriorate prematurely because of direct light, humidity
and fluctuations in temperature.
3) Additional lighting on the third floor will allow for increased use of the collection and
study spaces and an increased sense of security.
4) The number of items being stored (and in the way) in the mechanical room will
5) Circulation vents throughout the library will not be clogged with particle pollution
leading to less potential for mold growth.
6) The Learning Commons will develop into a space housing technology and learning software.
1) Questionnaires, surveys and focus
groups will be used to evaluation the facility and will be used to determine
2) Observation of usage by patrons will show “model” areas in the library.
3) Data logger information downloaded to software will help to track fluctuations
temperature, relative humidity, and light over time and in different areas of the building.
Find a way to have better signage and storage. Better lighting and more comfortable seating are needed.
Objective 2. The library will have more security for patrons and materials.
1) Patrons will benefit from our
improved fire safety and exit plans proposed by the
library staff and the Director of Safety.
2) The Wells community will benefit from improved outside security lights and blue
3) Security alarms on exit doors will provide security for patrons and library materials.
4) There will be less loss for materials being taken from the building if we implemented
a security system.
1) There will be fewer materials
taken out of the building without being charged out.
(Statistics from our library system should be able to address the “missing” status for
2) Patrons and student workers will have better instructions on how, when and why to
leave the building in an emergency.
1) Fire drills will be evaluated
by others and verbal feedback provided.
2) Statistics from the library system will help to show loss due to lack of a security
3) Security lights and door alarms will show an improvement in security.
Have regular fire drills. The Director of Security is planning regular practiced and timed fire drills which include the library.
Use of Assessment Data
1. Statistics, evaluations, observations and surveys will all be used to improve the facility.
NB: The assessment of the library facility can be fully done only insofar as it pertains to the services provided, the access to, preservation of, and maintenance of the collections, the safety of the patrons and the staff, and the notification of problems that need to be addressed by other departments, such as Chief Officer of Operations or Buildings and Grounds. The library does not have a facilities’ budget to deal with facility maintenance.
1. We have successfully implemented an information literacy course and are in our second semester of teaching research tools and skills.
2. The library’s intern program is very popular. It is being used in the Archives and in the library in general. This fall we have four interns and three interested students for next semester. They are working on special collections in the Archives and are learning how to handle archival materials and they are creating finding guides.
3. The library has implemented the GoogleAnalytics, open source, which enables the staff to see how many times, from where, and what is being access on our library pages. This is good for statistical purposes and for updating our pages.
4. The student supervisor program has been very successful and the supervisors have asked for more responsibility. We therefore are training them in the information literacy standards and encouraging them to do beginning reference work with their peer students. We feel that this will encourage students to look for assistance in research.
5. Patrons are benefiting from the new reserve policies and procedures.
6. Presence at the Help Desk continued while continuing to accept appointments, drop-ins, emails, or phone calls.
7. The AskUs 24/7 professional virtual reference service has been very successful.
8. The student theses are being submitted electronically.
9. We have a studio room where students with special reading needs can work using the Kurztweiler software.
10. The Learning Commons now accommodates two offices for the Director of Experiential Learning and Career Services. These are in addition to Support Services.
11. The Learning Commons is also being used for a class on Friday mornings.
12. The Writing Center has been moved to the Printer Room to allow more privacy and the printers have been relocated to the computer lab to curb traffic.
13. There have been several exhibits in the library last year and we have scheduled two for the fall of 2010 and one scheduled for the spring of 2011.
14. Students continue to benefit from the purchased required readings for courses.
15. The Rare Book Room is being used by art history classes.
16. The Archives has been used extensively by classes and by outside researchers.
17. All electronic database information was compiled in one document thus improving access to administrative information (such as statistics).
18. We have applied for an NEH grant to evaluate and assess our rare book collection. We will be notified in January if we received the grant. It will be used to hire an expert to do the assessing and evaluating as preparation for preservation and conservation. A copy of the proposal can be found in Appendix II at the end of this report.
19. The library is developing and updating workshops that address different areas in which students may need assistance.
20. The library has completed Research Guides that have proven to be successful.
21. The library has updated its web pages and continues to do so.
22. The Electronic reserves program is very successful. Faculty is using both traditional and electronic reserves. We have at 54 courses with e-reserves this fall and the faculty continues to add. The program is no longer a pilot.
23. We now host the Experiential Learning and Career Services collection.
24. We also are contributing to the development of a Phi Beta Kappa collection which is part of our general collection and will be identified with a bookplate in honor of PBK recipients.
Some Means of Assessing Outcomes
Louis Jefferson Long Library is a member of the American Library Association
We intend to look into applying for a grant for the LibQual Survey.
“LibQUAL+(TM) is a suite of services that libraries use to solicit, track, understand, and act upon users’ opinions of service quality. These services are offered to the library community by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). The program’s centerpiece is a rigorously tested Web-based survey bundled with training that helps libraries assess and improve library services, change organizational culture, and market the library. The goals of LibQUAL+(TM) are to:
. • Foster a culture of excellence in providing library service
. • Help libraries better understand user perceptions of library service quality
. • Collect and interpret library user feedback systematically over time
. • Provide libraries with comparable assessment information from peer institutions
. • Identify best practices in library service
. • Enhance library staff members' analytical skills for interpreting and acting on data”.
Taken from http://www.libqual.org/.
“The MISO Bryn Mawr Survey is a Web-based quantitative survey designed to measure the use and effectiveness for students, faculty, and staff of the services and resources of merged library and computing units.”
Taken from http://connect.educause.edu/Library/Abstract/MeasuringtheSoupTheMISOBr/42272
Additional assessment tools are the standard tools such as questionnaires, satisfaction surveys, observation, usability studies, focus groups, individual reference interviews, and narrative inquiry with analysis of faculty-librarian collaboration. The librarians do not grade per se. The following is an example of how we are using some of the above tools.
1. After bibliographic instruction we observed that some students who attended the sessions still had many questions. We are addressing this by offering follow-up workshops, short in duration, focusing on specific topics and on individual databases. These workshops will be refined and repeated. Immediately prior to instruction or workshops, we will have patrons fill out a questionnaire which will determine the patron’s level of knowledge about the subject and also have the patron fill out an evaluation after the instruction or workshop.
2. We will have our student
workers participate in taking an actual count of patrons using the
1. We intend to use SurveyMonkey for brief surveys regarding services and changes in policies, services, resources, etc.
Summary of the data use by the library staff
This past year we did not use surveys. We did most of our assessment by observation, request by patrons, statistics, comparisons with peer institutions and reference interviews.
The library staff will do continuous assessment. January and July will allow for biannual assessment meetings. At that time we will evaluate our outcomes by applying the data collected from the tools of assessment. The results of the analyses will help us in management decision making, designing and managing projects, applying information literacy standards and reference interviewing, collection development and in-house development review.
VI. Summary of the data use by the library staff
This past year we did not use surveys. We did most of our assessment by observation, request by patrons, statistics, comparisons with peer institutions and reference interviews. We will have the statistics from our virtual reference service to help us in the future and the statistics from the open source, GoogleAnalytics. We continue to use the report from Barbara Berger Eden to direct our work in the archives and Rare Book Room. Barbara Berger Eden, Director, Preservation and Collection Maintenance at Cornell University spent the day with us and evaluated the condition of our Archives and Rare Book Room. Following is her report.
Submitted: Muriel Godbout Library Director October, 2010
Fall 2010- Syllabus
Instructors: Molly Brown and Muriel Godbout
Offices: Room 201 and Room 205 in the Library
Office hours: M-F, and by appointment
Class is in the
This course is designed to teach and strengthen lifelong research and information literacy skills by introducing students to the nature of information and research, and the role of the library in the research process. Students will learn to develop and refine a research topic and will learn the core concepts of information retrieval and essential techniques for finding, analyzing, organizing, and sharing informational results. The method of instruction will be problem-based and require active and collaborative participation.
Five objectives will direct us in the process of understanding information, using it and sharing it.
· Determine and articulate the nature and extent of needed information and the importance of revision based on the results of the ongoing research process.
· Accessing relevant information efficiently and effectively.
· Evaluate the information and its sources critically and prioritize the selected information to be integrated in an existing knowledge base.
· Work individually and collaboratively to use the information effectively to create new ideas and accomplish specific purposes.
· Understand the many ethical, legal and social issues surrounding the use of information.
- articles on what is information literacy
-articles on copyright and the proper use of information technology
-Do a journal title search for The Journal of Academic Librarianship 28, no. 3 (202):114. “How Do We Bridge the Gap Between What We Teach and What They Do?”
-George, Mary W. The Elements of
Library Research: What Every Student Needs to Know.
-website on Critical Thinking
-website on evaluating information from the American Library Association
-website for critically analyzing
information sources from
-website on propaganda studies
Articles from the web:
- Shapiro, Jeremy, Hughes, Shelley. “Information Literacy as a Liberal Art.” Educom Review. Educause. March/April 1996. (accessed 2009); available from
-Aluri, Rao, Reichel, Mary. “Why is Information Literacy so Important?” Association of College and Research Libraries, American Library Association.
-Hughes, Shelley. “How To Detect Bias In News Media.” Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR). 1996 (accessed 2009); available from
PART 1: Getting Started
Activity: Introduction to information literacy. Will go over the rules and syllabus, including the maintenance of a continuous journal/research log. You will need a notebook for your research log. Will get an overview of the library and its resources while integrating the concept of information literacy.
Objective 1. Determine and articulate the nature of information.
-know how information is categorized in the library.
-know how and where to find the resources in the library.
Activity: 1.1 (assignment to be returned at the following class)
Activity: 1.2 (will be done in class)
Weeks 2 & 3:
Activity: Will be given a research question. With your teammate, you will brainstorm and practice clustering terms. Once this is done, we will discuss the results and will learn how to do preliminary research using search terms and reference materials (LCSH, dictionaries, encyclopedias and thesauri).
Objective 2. Determine the extent of the needed information and will revise based on the results of the ongoing research process.
-identify a workable topic
- understand the variety of types and formats of potential sources for information.
- recognize the need for advance planning.
- narrow or broaden the topic as needed.
-use the journalistic questions method to refine topic.
-create a focused thesis or research question.
Activity: 2.1(in class)
Activities: 3.1, (in class); 3.2(as an assignment)
PART 2: Searching for Information
Activity: The introduction to the library resources will continue. An introduction to keyword and subject searching; Boolean operators, and practice with the general databases using the developed topic.
Objective 2. Will access relevant information efficiently and effectively.
- understand the different information retrieval systems and be able to utilize the many features and tools.
- select the most appropriate search systems.
- construct and implement a search strategy.
-engage in an iterative search process.
- retrieve information and its sources and be able to manage them.
Activity: 4 with 3 exercises (two as assignments and one in class)
Activity: Choosing and locating information using the database standards. (We will take as much time as needed to obtain at least 10 articles for the annotated bibliography)
Activities: 5 and 6 (in class)
PART 3: Evaluating Sources
Activity: Will review what is meant by scholarly, popular or special interest/trade journals.
Activities: 7 and 8
Activity: Will use the rubric for critical analysis of the information sources to begin the process of evaluation. Will evaluate and discuss the results of the searches. The results can be articles, books, web findings, newspapers, primary sources.
Objective 3. Will evaluate the information and its sources critically and prioritize the selected information to be integrated into your knowledge base. You will begin work on your annotated bibliography.
- summarize and prioritize the main ideas from the information gathered.
- articulate and apply the initial criteria for evaluating both the information and the sources.
- integrate the main ideas to construct new concepts.
- compare and contrast new knowledge with prior knowledge to determine the value added, contradictions, or other unique characteristics of the information.
- determine whether the new information has an impact on the your knowledge base and attempt to reconcile the differences.
- validate understanding and interpretation of the information through discussion with peers, experts, and others.
- decide whether there should be revision of the initial query.
Activity: 9 (in class)
PART 4: Working with Information Sources
Activity: Will discuss web resources and the need for critical thinking. Will learn the best way to integrate citations and will review the different citation styles.
Activities: 10, (as an assignment); 11(in class)
Week 9 &10:
Activity: Will continue to work on citation styles. Will cover the importance of avoiding plagiarism.
Objective 4. Individually or collaboratively, you will use the information effectively to discover new ideas and to prepare your annotated bibliography.
- apply new and prior information to plan and create the particular product and presentation.
- revise the process if necessary.
- communicate effectively, (orally or in writing) to others, the final product and presentation.
Activity: 12 (in class)
Activity: Introduction to copyright law and fair use.
Objective 5. Will understand the many economic, legal, political, and social issues that surround the use of information and will use it ethically and legally.
- understand the many issues surrounding the use of information.
- use the information ethically and legally.
- acknowledge the use of information sources in communicating or presenting the final product or presentation.
PART 5: Exploring
Activity: Will visit different web sites looking at ways to find primary sources and economic data.
Activities: Review 14, 15, 15.1, 15.2; do exercises 16, 17 and 17.1
Activity: Will complete and hand in your annotated bibliography and research log. Will give oral presentations based on your research, allowing time for questions and answers.
Activity: Will review your annotated bibliography and your research log. We will reflect on your progress.
E. Means of assessment and evaluation
The class will consist of student demonstrations of search strategies, group discussions based on the difficulties or successes of search results, discussion on the assigned readings, in-class activities such as giving an oral presentation of results or demonstrating the ethical and legal method of using information, journal keeping as a method of managing and recording the process and for self-assessment. The final project in the form of an annotated bibliography will be assessed under the ethical and legal use of information. Assessment will be continuous and the attached rubric will be used to assess the learning done in each objective.
F. Attendance policy
Students are expected to attend all sessions since the course is designed as a building of skill sets. Cell phones will be off during class time. No texting is allowed during class time. If you cannot make class, it is expected that you will communicate with the instructors.
G. Grading policy
Grading will be S/U. Grading will be based on participation and the criteria for assessment. The scoring rubrics for the assessment criteria is as follows:
1 Novice (does not meet expectations) =0-59, F
2 Developing (close to expectations) =60-75, D-C
3 Proficient (meets expectations) =76-95, B-A
4 Accomplished (exceeds expectations) =95-100, A+
S is the equivalent of A+ through D; U is equivalent to an F.
Last updated 8-12-2010
National Endowment of the Humanities
1. A. What activity (or activities) would the grant support?
Wells College in Aurora, New York is seeking a $3,000 grant for a book conservator to assess the Louis Jefferson Long Library’s rare book collection and circulating materials, and prepare a report recommending measures to be taken to preserve the collection long-term. Part 1 of the survey will examine books within the circulating collection and Part II will survey the rare books collection. The assessment will identify high priority items in the circulating and rare books collections in need of conservation treatment as well as other issues meriting attention.
The survey and report will assess the library’s physical characteristics, including but not limited to the physical environment, books’ conditions, storage facilities, security, fire suppression systems, and disaster plans. The report will provide advice on the best practices to conserve the collection.
The grant will support the library’s goal to preserve the collection for generations to come. Once the report is completed, the library intends to take steps to implement the recommendations.
1.B. What are the content and size of the humanities collections that are the focus of the project?
Housed in a restricted room with controlled lighting, the Rare Book room is located within the Louis Jefferson Long Library designed by the award-winning architect Walter Netsch on the Wells College campus. The collection holds approximately 1,570 books ranging from the 13th-21st centuries. Several older and valuable books within the collection include Papal Bull (1258), a parchment manuscript from the 13th century, Bull of Benedict (1304), Book of Hours (circa 1490) and Hymnarius dating back to the 12th, 15th and 17th centuries.
The library’s rare book collections contains a wide variety of books in the humanities, including philosophy (19), social sciences with humanistic content (129), music (101), American and European literature (579), American and world history (339), art history and theory (68), and language arts (19). They are written in several languages, including English, Italian, Spanish, German, French, Latin and Greek.
From the 16th century, the collection holds 15 books, including S. Dionysii Areopagitae martyris inclyti, Athenarum episcopi, et Galliarum apostoli Opera
by Johanes Sleida, Tractatvs de immortalitate animae / Petri Pomponatii Mantvanii by Pomponazzi, Pietro, 1462-1524 nuractatvs de immortalitate animae/Petri Pomponatii Mantavanii by Pomponazzi Pietro, 1462-1524 and Discorso di Vincentzio by Vincenzio Buonanni.
There are 119 works from the 17th century. Some of the more important works include:
Regola delli cinqve ordini d'architettvra, di M. Iacomo Barozzio da Vignola. Libro primo et originale by Vignola, 1507-1573. 1607-10.
Plates of Italian architecture.
Claudij Ptolemaei Magnæ constructionis liber primus : cum Theonis Alexandrini commentariis / Io: Baptista Porta Neap. Interprete by Ptolemy, 2nd cent. 1605.
XCVI Sermons by the Right Honourable, and Reverend Father in God, Lancelot Andrewes, late lord bishop of Winchester ... Whereunto is added an alphabetical table of the principall contents by Andrewes, Lancelot, 1555-1626. 1635.
Leviathan; or, The Matter, Forme, and Power of a Common-wealth, Ecclesiasticall and Civill. By Thomas Hobbes ... byHobbes, Thomas, 1588-1679. 1651.
Historie of the world, in Five Bookes. Intreating of the beginning and first ages of the same, from the creation unto Abraham. 2 Of the times from the birth of Abraham to the destruction of the Temple of Salomon. 3 From the destruction of Jerusalem, to the time of Philip of Macedon.... by Raleigh, Walter, Sir, 1552?-1618. 1652.
Systema cosmicvm, autore Galilaeo Galilaei...in quo quatuor dialogis, de duobus maximis mundi systematibus, Ptolemaico & Copernicano, utriusque rationibus philosophicis ac naturalibus indefinitè propositis, disseritur. Ex italica lingua latine conversum… byGalilei, Galileo, 1564-1642. 1663.
Oevvres diverses dv sievr de Balzac. Augmentées en cette édition, de plusieurs pièces nouuelles by Balzac, Jean-Louis Guez, seigneur de, 1597-1654. 1664.
Diverse works by Mr. Balzac. This edition is augmented by several new works.
The collection contains 20 titles from the 19th Century, 220 from the 20th century, and 1 from the 21st century. From the 19th century, the library is privileged to have Romeyn Beck Hough’s American woods : exhibited by actual specimens, pt. 1-14; sections 1-350. Set of 14 volumes containing actual radial, tangential, and cross-sections specimens of wafer-thin wood of species of trees in North America. Wells also was gifted a collection of Dante’s books from the 16th – 19th century from Professor T. F. Crane.
The collection features American and European literature by such authors as Jean-Louis Balzac, William Blake, Robert Browning, Albert Camus, Geoffrey Chaucer, Stephen Crane, Emily Dickinson, John Dryden, T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, Thomas Hobbes, Victor Hugo, Washington Irving, Sinclair Lewis, John Locke, Henry Longfellow, Niccolo Machiavelli, Thomas Mann, John Milton, Edgar Allan Poe, William Shakespeare, Mary Shelley, Wallace Stevens, Mark Twain, Thornton Wilder, and Virginia Woolf. Among the more famous titles are Frankenstein, Bridge of San Luis Rey, Sacco-Vanzetti Case, Rip Van Winkle, and the Common Reader. There are historical works by Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Max Ernst, Benjamin Harrison, and books on philosophy by Plato.
The collection contains poetry, such as “The Waste Land” by T.S. Eliot and Robert Frost’s first book of poetry, A Boy’s Will. Aside from literature, the language arts collection has dictionaries and thesauruses.
1.C. How are these humanities collections used?
Professors and students frequently use the collection for instructional purposes in many disciplines, including art, art history, literature, history, music and foreign language. Classes visit the Rare Book Room to experience hands-on study and learn preservation and collection procedures for these historical and valuable works. The Wells College Book Arts Center and the Art History Department use the Rare Book room and the Archives extensively, at least several times per semester. None of the rare books leave the library premises but the collection is open for research and study purposes to the Wells community and the general public once visitors are trained in appropriate handling methods.
The Library exhibits its rare book collection, particularly for special occasions.
1.D. What is the nature and mission of your institution?
Founded in 1868, Wells College is a small, private, liberal arts college located in the village of Aurora, in the Finger Lakes region of Central New York. Historically a women’s college, Wells became co-educational in 2005 and is accredited by Middle States Association of Higher Education. The mission of Wells College is to educate students to think critically, reason wisely, and act humanely as they cultivate meaningful lives.
The Louis Jefferson Long Library on the 300-acre Wells College campus maintains 220,120 volumes and is open 335 days per year to students, faculty and the general public. The total library budget for fiscal year 2009 is $276, 900. The library staff is comprised of four full-time professional staff as well as 26 part-time paid student workers.
As of winter semester 2010, Wells has 524 full-time students, consisting of 372 women and 152 men. The college receives public funds and is a not-for-profit tax-exempt organization.
Wells College has an approximately $30 million endowment.
1. E. Has your institution ever had a preservation or conservation assessment or consultation?
In April 2008, Wells contracted with a consultant to assess its archives but a comprehensive assessment of the Rare Book Room has not been done.
1. F. What is the importance of this project to the institution?
Wells takes a unique approach to higher education that puts experiential learning at the center of all we do. Wells professors regularly bring students into the rare books room and provide instruction in the art of book making. The collection also gives students opportunities to cultivate a special appreciation of art history and literature through the study of the rare book collection.
This grant, if awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, would enable the college to preserve its collection for future students by supporting a book conservator’s assessment of the collection. Wells intends to pursue the conservator’s recommendations to conserve the collection long term, such as the purchase of climate control equipment and the repair of specific books in the collection, if recommended.
In the future, Wells would like to hire a curator to examine certain books within the general library to determine whether they belong in the rare books collection as well. Additionally, the library would like to have the rare books collection appraised.
Eventually, Wells College’s Long Library’s staff would like to open its rare book collection to the entire world by digitizing the collection and posting information on line for academic study. To make this dream a reality, the Long library staff will need appropriate training and equipment. The NEH grant would take the library down the first path leading towards long term preservation and digitization of the collection.
1. G. What are the names and qualifications of the consultants and staff involved in this project?
Muriel K. Godbout is the Wells College Library Director of Library and Information Services. She manages the library’s day-to-day operations and will oversee the assessment project. Appointed to her position in 2008, she has held a number of library positions since she first came to Wells in 1990. She received her Masters degree in library science from SUNY Albany.
Wells College would like to hire Michele Brown to conduct the assessment and report. Ms. Brown works as a book conservator within the Department of Preservation and Collection Maintenance at Cornell University’s Olin Library in Ithaca, New York. She holds a Certificate in Hand Bookbinding and Restoration from the Camberwell School of Art in London. She is scheduled to complete her degree as Master of Library and Information Science at the University of Alabama in August 2010.
Molly Brown is the coordinator of public service and outreach at the Wells College Long Library. Appointed to this position last fall, she previously was the interlibrary loan lending specialist at Amherst College. She holds a Masters in library and information science from Simmons College.
Julie Kabelac is the coordinator of Technical Services and Systems Management. She came to Wells in 2003 from Cornell University where she was acting assistant music librarian in the Sidney Cox Library of Music and Dance. She holds a MS from the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at Simmons College in Boston.
1. H. What is the plan of work for the project?
Wells College plans to hire in early 2011 a book conservator to survey and assess its rare book collection, including the general physical environment in the library, adequacy of storage facilities, policies and procedures that may affect the preservation of the collection, and the physical qualities of the collection. The survey and assessment of the circulating and rare materials is expected to take two full days.
The grant will also fund the conservator’s charges to prepare a report prescribing steps to be taken to improve the library’s physical environment, cost estimates to repair books and conduct conservation treatments, and equipment to be purchased to preserve the collection long term. The conservator also will assess the adequacy of disaster plans, collection management and security policies and the fire and water detection and suppression systems. This report will be completed within one week of the survey.