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Friday, June 29, 2012

Evidence of Impact

I was signing up for an ELI webinar when I noticed this on the EDUCAUSE site--

"Seeking Evidence of Impact (SEI) is a program lead by the ELI community to find current effective practices that would enable the collection of evidence to help faculty and administration make decisions about best practices to adopt, invest their time, effort and fiscal resources in....We hope to bring all types of higher education institutions and professional associations into a conversation on this theme. We envision an inclusive discussion that includes faculty members, instructional support professionals, librarians, students, and research experts in a collaborative exchange of insights and ideas."


Have any libraries been part of this so far?

As I was reading this over I like the mention of "making decisions." Sometimes I feel our need to collect data makes us lose sight of the reasons and next steps. For my concrete brain...the data collection and analysis should hopefully should be driven by decision making. I also think this organization (EDUCAUSE/ELI) is doing some great work on behalf of Libraries. I think many users lump the Libraries into the broad category of "technology" even if that isn't necessarily how we see ourselves.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Good for you?

walden.jpgI tripped across this reference to some of our work on the blog for the Walden University Library...love the title Is Using The Library Good For You? Yes!

I have been thinking of ways to share our results with new students during our efforts at Orientation and this might hit the right note.

Read at: http://www.waldenlibrarynews.com/blog/2012/6/13/is-using-the-library-good-for-you-yes.html

Friday, June 8, 2012

Gathering Reference Statistics a Balance of Privacy

As mentioned earlier, reference is one of the high touch, possibly high impact services. Reference is an area of great privacy concern. How do you gather reference statistics? We started with the low hanging fruit, which also was the least intrusive, chat reference.

Like many institutions, the University of Minnesota uses QuestionPoint for chat and e-mail reference. When a patron poses a question via chat, the inclusion of their e-mail address is not required, and using their designated University of Minnesota e-mail is not specified. However, at least we have some data to use. Many other institutions use services such as Meebo, which use anonymous chat patron handles, making gathering data much more difficult. QuestionPoint transactions are accessible for only 90 days, which means we need to go in and retrieve the data at numerous points during the semester.

How do we gather in-person reference transaction statistics without impeding privacy and maintaining a welcoming atmosphere? Please post suggestions in the comments below.

Friday, June 1, 2012

High touch services

We are working on gathering data for spring and I am struck again on how challenging it presentation.jpgis to gather meaningful statistics on some of our core services--reference/consultation and instruction.

These are high-touch and potentially some of the highest impact services we provide but our data collections techniques are almost non-existant for these face to face interactions.

What we did in Fall....
For Reference we gathered email and chat transations from Questionpoint--the software we use to facilitate these services.
-email addresses aren't required
-U of M email address aren't required
-no data on desk transactions in any location
-no data on consultations or small group sessions with librarians

For Instruction we gathered our workshop *registrations* and we gathered *class lists* of courses who had a one-short/guest lecture sort of session.
-not matched up with actual attendance or any last minute drop-ins
-missing entire classes due to confusion over section, professor, etc.
-missing non-course session (e.g. dept. orientation sessions, clinical groups, etc.)
-challenging to make multiple sessions obvious in reports

Bottom line: We are missing tens of thousands of interactions and uses of our libraries.

So...I have been asking myself....

  • Can we ask students to swipe with each session or consultation or question at the desk?
  • How do we adequately reflect this high touch, nuanced interactions?
  • How do demonstrate the range of activities in these categries (from 5 minute interaction to multiple session class time or hour long consultation)?

Do you have any ideas?

An addendum to NSSE

We hope to learn more about this effort and determine how other existing assessments can be overlaid (is that the right word?) with our own efforts...

At ALA in Anaheim in June....

Title: Feasible, Scalable, and Measurable: Information Literacy Assessment & the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)
Date: Monday, June 25, 2012, Time: 8-10:00 a.m., Location: ACC-203A

Description: While academic libraries struggle with assessing efforts to improve students' information skills, few assessment opportunities offer longitudinal and comparative data regarding information literacy. NSSE, a leading postsecondary assessment survey, has collaborated with librarians to create the Information Literacy Module, an addendum to the survey. The module is designed to facilitate efforts to assess undergraduates' information literacy and compare their results to other institutions. NSSE researchers and librarians will provide an overview of NSSE and the module, suggest methods to incorporate NSSE data into assessment efforts, and invite participant feedback to improve the information literacy module.

Participants will be introduced to the draft survey questions for the NSSE information literacy module
Participants will learn how to incorporate NSSE data into their assessment efforts
Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback regarding the module's content

Polly Boruff-Jones (Drury University)
Carrie Donovan (Indiana University Libraries)
Kevin Fosnacht (NSSE)