The Medical Library Association (MLA) is a nonprofit, educational organization with more than 4,000 health sciences information professional members and partners worldwide. MLA provides lifelong educational opportunities, supports a knowledgebase of health information research, and works with a global network of partners to promote the importance of quality information for improved health to the health care community and the public.
106th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association Phoenix, AZ May 19-24, 2006
"Transformational Skills in a Perpetually Changing Information Landscape" (presentation)
Brian Bunnett, Jon Crossno and Regina Lee
Question/Situation: Librarians, at some point in their careers, are certain to take on responsibilities that are of an altogether different character from any of their previous work experiences. This paper will report on the need for information professionals to utilize transformational skills in a perpetually changing information landscape.
Setting/Participants/Resources: Each of the authors has experienced change within an individual library setting, between types of libraries, and in geographical locations. By examining their personal experiences when they changed job titles, task requirements, and/or career paths, they determined skills and competencies not acquired in graduate school or subsequent professional development were often needed to effectively manage the change.
Methods: Several library associations have produced “core competencies” that are transferable from position to position, but many of these are transactional (i.e., task-oriented) in nature and are typically learned in library school or on the job. However, transformational skills (i.e., change-oriented) are also needed and should be emphasized, especially in a library environment that is evolving so rapidly. Examples of transformational skills include lifelong learning, adaptability, flexibility, openness, creativity, and initiative, which often are either learned haphazardly or ignored altogether.
Main Results: Future discussions of core competencies should address both transactional and transformational skills, especially those not learned in library school. To identify a starting list of such skills, a brief survey was distributed to targeted groups of local librarians, and the results will be reported.
Conclusion: The authors hypothesize that core competencies for medical librarianship, including both transactional and transformational skills, should be developed. More detailed research is warranted to generate a complete list of skills. This could also have implications for broader areas of librarianship.
Question: Faced with collection decisions that impacted genetic counselors, how can the library continue to best serve their needs?
Setting: Large urban academic medical center and its library.
Method: Recent electronic resource cancellations impacted some genetic counselors. The library’s outreach unit took the lead in finding alternative resources for these clients. This was an excellent opportunity to investigate the information needs of these clients and use those data to develop classes tailored to their needs. Some counselors had already contacted the library, and others were targeted using human resources contacts, campus directories, and word of mouth.
Main Results: Eight clients were identified. Five participated in tailored educational activities offered by the library. Genetic counselors in this environment do not comprise a uniform profile. They have different titles in different departments, work in different locations, and have variable amounts of time to counsel patients and research conditions. They require resources beyond MEDLINE, including smaller databases developed in other countries, of which many libraries may not be aware. These counselors were also eager to investigate automated alert services. Additionally, they offered valuable feedback on the collection.
Conclusion: With increasing national emphasis on the hereditary basis of disease, libraries should be aware of the needs of genetic counselors and strive to support them. Engaging these professionals and documenting their feedback positions the library to serve them better.
Objective: To revitalize an organization too focused on supporting print resources and to align it with a primarily digital environment; to have the right employees doing the right jobs, increasing the library’s efficiency and effectiveness.
Methods: Case study: Setting: an academic health sciences library with 22 professionals and 30 paraprofessionals serving a core clientele of nearly 20,000. The library had a flattened organizational structure. Departments were primarily responsible for the print collection, while interdisciplinary teams maintained and enhanced the digital collection and services. A more flexible organization with a clearer focus on the digital library, doing the right things (effectiveness) in the right way (efficiency) was needed. A task force of professionals and paraprofessionals developed a methodology and timeline to address the need. The task force used several methods, including group idea generation, individual job and team analyses, managers’ departmental analyses, statistics, an environmental scan, and a literature review to refine the library’s mission statement and create a new organization more clearly focused on the digital environment. The process was data-driven, flexible, and inclusive.
Results: A new organizational structure was implemented in September 2003. Minimal modifications have been made since its inception. New assignments were well-received; however, some initial confusion with unit charges needed clarification. All but three teams were retired as their responsibilities migrated to departments. A feature of the new organization is the Organizational Efficacy Council (OEC), which continuously evaluates the library’s effectiveness and efficiency. The council’s oversight is expected to ensure a library better aligned to meet the needs of the digital environment. The OEC experienced growth pains while defining its mission but offers an opportunity to mentor new members, and gives them broader perspective on library-wide issues. It is developing an evaluation methodology using a new strategic plan with goals directed to maximizing digital resources.
Conclusion: Preparation, research, and communication efforts resulted in a more efficient and effective organization better aligned with the library’s mission, positioning it to better accomplish the shift to a digital environment.
"Internet Web-based Materials in Family Medicine Education: A National Survey." (presentation) Helen Mayo, Cassie L. Murphey-Cullen, Alice K. Marcee, Gregory W. Schneider, Richard V. King, and Robert D. Frey
Objective: To determine family residents’ actual experience with and desired exposure to computers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), the Internet, and Web-based information for clinical and educational activities. Methods: Programs listed in the American Academy of Family Physicians 2002 directory of Family Practice Residency Programs were divided into five categories based on affiliation and structure of the residency program. The 456 programs were community based (CB), community based and medical school affiliated (CBMSAF), community based and medical school administered (CBMSAD), medical school based (MS), and military. Random samples of programs within each of the first four categories were selected to participate in the study. Military programs were excluded. A total of 312 programs were selected: CB (24), CBMSAF (159), CBMSAD (73), and MS (56). A survey packet containing a 14-item questionnaire for each resident and a letter of explanation regarding the study was mailed to 312 randomly selected programs. Residents reported on their own access to computers and PDAs at home and in the office, their use of the Internet for personal use and clinical information, and their preferences for accessing information currently provided at teaching conferences, for national board exam preparation, and at clinical point-of-care.
Results: The CBMSAF returned 600 surveys (49.3%); CD returned 60 surveys (4.8%); CBMSAD returned 300 surveys (25.5%); MS returned 240 surveys (20.4%). For statistical analysis, the CBMSAF and CB were combined into “community centric,” and the CBMSAD and MS were combined into “medical school centric” program types. Most residents have access to the Internet, a home computer, and a PDA. There is a statistically significant difference in self-reported Web search skills between community centric and medical school centric residents, but this difference disappears when residents are asked if they are able to find clinically useful information during their Web searches. Conclusion: Family practice residents’ access to the Internet and computer-based information is very well established. There is a disconnect between the number of residents that report advanced Web search skills and those who report finding clinically useful information. This has implications for teaching residents how to better use Internet-based resources.
103 Annual Meeting Medical Library Association San Diego, CA May 2-7, 2003
"Teaching Public Health Informatics: The Five-Year Experience" (presentation)
Will Olmstadt, Gale G. Hannigan, Joe M. Williams
Purpose: This paper describes a three-credit course in public health informatics developed and taught by staff in an academic health sciences library.
Setting/Participants/Resources: The environment is a medium-sized academic health sciences library serving a large public university. This public health informatics course was developed when the school of public health was established in 1998. Thirty-two students earning the Master of Public Health degree have completed the course since it was first offered in the fall of 1999. From 2000-2003, the authors team-taught the course.
Brief Description: The course has been modified over the past five years, based on the semester during which it was taught and the number of students enrolled. However, all iterations of the course featured: an overview of public health informatics as a discipline; extensive hands-on practice with relevant databases; exercises in critically appraising the quality of information on the Internet; tutorials about copyright, fair use, and the ethics of citing and using published research; practice and critique of presentation skills; and practice responding to media inquiries about public health. Where appropriate, guest lecturers were invited to share their expertise on topics such as effective communication and working with the World Health Organization. In 2002, the course formally introduced evidence-based public health practice and an assignment to critically appraise published research about a public health intervention. From 2001-2003, the course was increasingly delivered via WebCT. The spring 2003 course will be almost exclusively Web-based.
Results/Outcome: Qualitative and quantitative evaluations of the course have been favorable. Teaching a for-credit course in the school underscores the important role of the library in the public health curriculum.
Evaluation Method: Students evaluated course activities at the middle and end of the course. Midcourse evaluations were prepared and reviewed by the instructors. Final evaluations are standard university course evaluation forms, consisting of Likert and open-ended questions. Results of the final evaluations are reported to the school and the instructors.
"Going Mobile: Laptop Lending in an Academic Medical Library (poster) Jon Crossno, Sharon Giles, and Nathan Hooper
Program Objective: As part of a Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund grant, the Information Desk, the library's unified public service point, developed and implemented a laptop lending program to provide more options and flexibility to our clients' information-gathering efforts.
Setting: Academic medical library serving more than 19,000 primary clients in an urban location.
Participants: Faculty, staff, and students of the medical center and its affiliated institutions.
Program: A total of twelve laptops were initially made available as part of the lending program. Eight laptops were available at the main library, and four were at the smaller, research-support library. Each laptop came equipped with a battery pack (providing up to three hours of work time when fully charged) and a CD-ROM drive. The following accessories were also provided to clients at checkout: laptop case, power cord, 3.5" floppy drive, a connector cable for the floppy drive, and an instruction sheet. The program was initially promoted through articles in email and print newsletters, posters, and PowerPoint slides shown on the library's new marketing kiosk using an Iomega Fotoshow device.
Main Results: Checkout statistics will be used as the primary indicator of the program's success. Preliminary results indicate that use of the laptops is increasing. More laptops have been purchased to meet increasing demand. An evaluation survey will also be administered to laptop users to determine what is most used.
Conclusion: The initial setup of the laptops involved defining a list of basic programs to offer and developing a method to easily "clone" the basic setup to each laptop. Ongoing issues include developing a schedule for laptop maintenance (e.g., virus scanning software and updates, operating system integrity, recloning the basic setup periodically, etc.) and providing access to the campus wireless network.
"Collaborative Development: Building a Web-Based Family Practice Subject Guide" (poster) Helen Mayo, Karen Harker, Robert D. Frey, MD, and Cassie L. Murphy-Cullen, PhD
"The Role of the Librarian in the Creation of Low Literacy Patient Education Handouts" (poster) Helen Mayo and Shirin F. Pestonjee, MS, RN
"Gathering Customer Input Prior to Home Page Redesign: An Ontological Study" (poster)
Katherine Alexander, Karen Harker, Mori Lou Higa, Shelley McGibbon, Helen Mayo, and Laura Wilder
In the summer of 2001, the Library's Content Team, which addresses the selection of content in the Library's Web site, studied how clients organize and describe information. Specifically, we wanted to identify which library resources and services were considered to be most important by our clients, how clients would organize the library's electronic resources and services, and the terminology clients would use to describe their groupings. The results will be used in the redesign of the library's home page.
This poster presents our library's experience in planning and conducting this study, which involved a multi-level card sort. We will report on the process we developed to guide us through this study, from setting our initial goals to analyzing the data. We will present our card sort methodology as well as the participant-selection process, which involved the use of our client contact database and other unique approaches to encouraging participation by self-selected volunteers. We will share our detailed working procedures, such as the development of a shared calendar to manage scheduling and a participant database to track responses. Finally, we will present our analysis methods for the gathered data and identify the resources necessary to complete this type of study successfully.
The UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas Library occupies a building completed in 1974. By the mid-1990's, many aspects of the building were obsolete. The Library was renovated between 1998 and 2001, with the goal of accommodating changes in medical education and information technology well into the 21st century. The renovation goals are listed and illustrated with post-renovation photos and plans of the Main Floor.
Relocate Information Desk adjacent to new entrance/exit and Computer Commons.
Make services and collections visible from the entrance.
Improve traffic flow at entrance.
Create spacious, quiet group study rooms for collaborative learning among students. Seventeen group studies were built.
Make power and network connections widely available. Every study carrel and many study tables now have pop-up power and network boxes.
Create an Informatics Classroom suitable for a variety of teaching situations.
For maximum flexibility in staff areas, remove permanent walls to create open offices. Use freestanding furniture-not wall or panels-to enclose staff workstations, to further flexibility.
Create "Privacy Rooms" that staff can use for informal meetings or to make phone calls in private.
101st Annual Meeting Medical Library Association Orlando, FL May 25-30, 2001
"What To Do Before the Webmaster Leaves: Documentation and Planning of Web Development Projects" (presentation)
Mitch Walters, Karen Harker, Judith Hill, and Brenda Berkins
Purpose: As librarians' technical Web skills grow, they are incorporating more local databases, search tools, feedback mechanisms, and interactive forms into our Web sites. In our particular case, the realization that the departure of one key technical person could severly cripple our Web site sent us searching for the best way to document the custom software that she had helped us to develop. This paper will describe the software development and documentation process that resulted from our search. The process has become a part of all Web development projects in our library.
Setting/Participants/Resources: This large, academic medical center library has a Web site receiving approximately two million hits per year. Most of the important functions of the site are generated dynamically using Cold Fusion to serve Access and SQL databases. A library unit of four FTE is responsible for maintenance of the site, but software development is distributed throughout the library by means of cross-functional project teams.
Description: In the course of studying how professional software engineers manage projects and write documentation, we gleaned good ideas from several sources and combined them into a development process that uses careful project planning both to guide the process and to write the software documentation at the same time. We have called this the Process Improvement Initiative (PII). It leads a project team through the steps of defining the modules of their product, fully designing the modules on paper, and then building the modules. The successive leavels of ever-more-detailed designs are recorded on templates, which then become the written documentation of the finished product.
Results/Outcome: To date, PII has been successfully implemented in a half-dozen software development projects including a faculty publications database, a Web-based user survey, and a library newsletter that is dynamically generated and archived.
Evaluation Method: PII allows a project team to monitor its progress through well-defined schedules and work plans. It includes frequent self-evaluation exercises by the team and a wrap-up evaluation of PII itself at the end of the project.
"Enhancing the Online Catalog with Electronic Journal Information" (poster)
Mitch Walters, Diane Hudson, Timothy Judkins, Helen Mayo, Herldine Radley, and Dawn Reneau
Purpose: Electronic journals present a number of problems for our traditional understanding both of library ownership and of access through the catalog. Our decision on whether to add electronic journal information to the catalog and how much to add should, however, be guided by the needs of our clients. This study attempts to measure the usefulness to the library's clients of information on electronic journals that was added to the online catalog.
Methodology: A three-tiered schedule of possible electronic journal enhancements was formulated. Implementation of each successive tier will depend on measurable increases in journal searching in the catalog.
Level one enhancements include hypertext links in the catalog to journals accessible in both paper and online formats.
Level two would add linked catalog records for titles accessible only in online format.
Level three would add individualized holdings statements to all the electronic journal records.
A random sample of catalog searches will be analyzed both to determine whether the amount of journal searching justifies the first tier of enhancements and to give a baseline from which to measure any increase in journal searches. If the first tier of enhancements is implemented, searching will again be measured. Other factors being equal, a sizable increase in journal searching should indicate that the enahncements were useful to clients and would justify implementing the next tier.
Results: When we measured the amount of journal searching before any enhancements, it exceeded our expectations enough to justify the implementation of the first level of enhancements. We will measure journal searching again approximately three weeks and then six weeks after the implementation of enhancements to see if journal searching has increased. Further results will be reported at the time of the presentation.
Conclusions: The study should provide evidence on whether or not the library catalog can serve as a useful tool for clients accessing an electronic journal collection. Because the study makes the implementation of each tier of the catalog enhancements dependent on measurable increases in usage, it also offers a good example of evidence-based librarianship.
100th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
May 5-11, 2000
"Comparing Credentialing Processes Across Professional Associations: A Benchmarking Study"
Best New Researcher (paper)
Shelley A. McGibbon and Martha C. Adamson
Purpose: Compare MLA's credentialing process to those of other professional associations with credentialing programs.
Areas of comparison include:
Existence of a defined knowledge domain such as the Platform for Change
Existence of a qualifying examination
Cost of qualifying exam
Requirement to submit a portfolio for initial credentialing
Requirement to submit a portfolio for credentialing renewal
Requirement to submit supporting documentation with portfolio
Requirement for continuing education for renewal
Cycle for renewal
Cost per year for credentialing
Peer or administrative review
Setting/subjects: Professional associations, especially those requiring a masters degree for credentialing.
Methodology: Analysis of association Web sites, followed by interviews with association staff who administer credentialing programs.
Results: Almost all associations surveyed have a defined knowledge domain associated with their credentialing program and require a credentialing examination. Slightly over half require a portfolio as part of the credentialing process. Supporting documentation is also required by slightly more than half. A majority of associations surveyed require continuing education for renewal. No associations surveyed require participation in professional association activities for credentialing. The average cost per year for initial credentialing is $130. The average cost per year for credentialing renewal is $55. The majority of associations surveyed conduct an administrative review, rather than a peer review, of applicants.
Discussion/conclusions : The results of this study were reported to the MLA Credentialing Committee in May 2000 to assist in the ongoing review of the Academy program.
"Providing Consumer Health Information in a Rural Area: A Decentralized Approach" Brian Bunnett
Providing consumer health information to a predominately rural area presents special challenges. In a densely populated urban environment, many patrons can easily access a single, centrally located consumer health library. In a sparsely populated rural area, a decentralized approach is required. This paper describes an effective method of providing consumer health information resources and services that makes use of the existing infrastructure of public, school, church, and prison libraries. In smaller communities, these libraries are already well established and in many cases are seen as the town or village social center. The funding, administration, and organization of such a project is discussed, with special attention given to the problems of sharing resources and coordinating activities among widely dispersed libraries of different types. The constituent programs and services of the project are also examined; these include the use of presentation modules that can be used by children's librarians to impart good health practices to younger patrons.
"Evolution of a Client-Contact Database: Implementing Client-Centered Evidence-Based Librarianship" Helen Mayo, Jeff Perkins, Mitch Walters, and Laura Wilder
Our creation of a networked client contact database is the culmination of the library's efforts to gather as much information as we can about our clients. The primary use of the database is to document client interactions - requests, questions, suggestions, and complaints. These client histories are subsequently accessible to all Library staff. In this way, we are able to recognize the needs and interests of primary clients and give them more personal attention. We have also queried the database to discover trends in frequently requested services or products, such as electronic journals. Having this evidentiary knowledge of our clients is essential when we consider adding or changing services and resources. It also enables us to target announcements of new library services to those clients who are most likely to use the services.
99th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
May 14-19, 1999
"Designing a Customer Service Survey Instrument for Use in Academic Medical Libraries"
Mitch Walters, Brenda Berkins, Jon Crossno, Nancy Gotcher, and Judith Hill
Purpose: While libraries have traditionally been evaluated using such indicators as size and quality of their collections, the quality of customer service is a relatively unfamiliar measure of quality. Our goal in this project was to design a flexible survey instrument that could be used to measure quality of customer service in a variety of academic medical library settings.
Methodology: Clients of the document delivery services at three academic medical libraries in the region were randomly divided into two groups. One group was sent the SERVQUAL instrument, while the other group received a similar but redesigned survey. We compared the responses on the two survey instruments from the three institutions.
Results: One objective of our research was to determine whether the SERVQUAL instrument and the redesigned survey gave comparable results within each of the three academic medical libraries. We found that the measurements of the quality of customer service were very similar between the two instruments. We also found that the redesigned instrument, a simplified and shortened alternative to SERVQUAL, produced a significantly higher return rate in all three institutions.
Conclusions: This project contributes to the overall customer service efforts taking place in the medical library community by scientifically testing the usefulness of both an established instrument and an alternative scale for improving customer service. The results help determine the viability of this type of tool for measuring customer satisfaction and improving customer service.
98th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
May 22-27, 1998
"Measuring the Quality of Service in Document Delivery" Kathryn Connell, Mitch Walters, Nancy Gotcher, Lucy Vasquez and Eric Zeidler
Purpose: In a series of internal focus groups, library staff had expressed concern about the quality of customer service in the document delivery unit. We conducted a systematic study which would allow us to identify and correct specific problems with the customer service being delivered by the unit.
Setting/subjects: The document delivery service department of a large urban academic center. Primary clients (518) who had placed borrowing requests during the previous year.
Methodology: We used the SERVQUAL survey instrument which was developed by Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1988) for measuring customer quality in a wide variety of service settings. SERVQUAL asks the respondent to indicate agreement or disagreement on a 7-point Likert scale with 22 statements about the respondent's expectations of any service of the type being studied. Then, using the same 22 statements, the respondent indicates his or her perceptions of the particular service being studied. SERVQUAL statements cover the 5 dimensions of customer service as identified by Parasuraman, et al.: Reliability, Assurance, Tangibles, Empathy, and Responsiveness. The survey was sent to 518 primary clients who had used the document delivery service during the past year. Responses were compiled and analyzed for descriptive statistics.
Results: Of the 518 surveys sent, 234 were returned for a return rate of approximately 45%. The customer service gap between expectations and perceptions for each of the 5 dimensions varied from .44 to 1.07 for an average gap of .71 on a seven point scale.
Discussion/conclusion: The way the SERVQUAL instrument was structured allowed us to measure customer service in several areas and to concentrate improvement efforts in those areas showing the widest service gap. The survey process put us in much closer touch with a large number of our clients. The relatively narrow gap in all dimensions of customer service effectively answered the staff concerns about serious customer service problems in the unit.
97th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
May 24-28, 1997
"Using Qualitative Research Methods to Elicit Client Feedback"
Research Paper Honorable Mention
Laura Wilder and Mitch Walters
This project studied the use and evaluation of the library's electronic resources by our faculty, as well as projecting future needs for such resources. Using a qualitative research model, semi-structured interviews were conducted with forty-eight randomly selected faculty members. The interview notes, combined with debriefing comments from the interviewers, were analyzed to determine the respondents' major areas of concern or interest and, where possible, to identify future trends. In general, the faculty found current electronic resources to be of high quality but varying in importance to their work. The Internet and its resources were being explored by a sizable group of respondents. Very high interest was expressed in a variety of electronic full-text publications and in a number of online databases. The information gathered by the study provided important guidance for resource planning. In addition to opinions about specific resources, the interview format afforded us valuable insights into the information needs of this group.
"Developing New Indicators of Organizational Health" Mori Lou Higa, Brenda Berkins, and Laura Wilder
Libraries traditionally collect a wealth of data about their operations, from which they compile statistics that are used for decision making or for comparative purposes. However, a rich source of knowledge remains hidden in library files. Using the technique of "data mining" as described by Pollock and Roth, we analyzed existing library files such as database searching statistics, collection circulation statistics, journal usage surveys, web statistics, and document delivery statistics, in order to fully realize the implicit knowledge value of this underutilized repository of data. Using the technique of "knowledge discovery," we searched for significant relationships, patterns, and trends among these statistics and identified leading diagnostic indicators that reflect the health of our library.
"How Accurate are 'Common Sense' Notions About the Use of an Audio Visual Collection"
Marilyn McKay and Janis Darden
This study tested a group of "common sense" statements about the use of items in an audiovisual collection against actual usage data to determine how accurately the statements could predict the use of individual items. In a second phase of the study, analysis of the relevant characteristics (age, format, and subject) of the collection was used as the basis for modification of the "common sense" statements following the model of a medical diagnostic test. We found that the original "common sense" statements were poor predictors of the use of the collection. Analysis of age, format, and subject distributions in the collection, however, yielded insights which allowed us to modify the statements and to greatly increase their predictive power. Being able to predict whether a particular item will be used is important in both collection development and weeding decisions. The principal value of this study, however, may be as a demonstration of the diagnostic test model as applied to practical library research.
"Strategic Planning Using an Intranet to Facilitate Participation and Communication" Richard Wayne
This electronic demonstration visually describes how a library's Web-based Intranet was used to involve library staff in its strategic planning process. The UT Southwestern Medical Center Library is a large academic medical library with an extensive investment in networked technologies for staff and customer use. The Library's Intranet was used for presentation, documentation, and discussion in all phases of the strategic planning process. The organic growth of the strategic planning Intranet resource is demonstrated by displaying how Web pages were used as building blocks. The related Web pages served as shared reference points for staff members from different parts of the library and different work shifts. Using the Intranet, staff members could be as involved as they wished to be with the development of the strategic plan. During a three month process, the staff contributed numerous documents and frequently accessed strategic planning Intranet resources. This demonstration highlights the fundamental components, functionality, and content that are necessary in an effective strategic planning Intranet resource.
96th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
Kansas City, Missouri
June 1-5, 1996
"Identifying and Assessing Client Needs" Mori Lou Higa and Mitch Walters
The first of six planned research towers opened in early 1993 at the north campus of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. The north campus library, which opened alongside departments of neuroscience, developmental biology, pathology, cancer immunobiology, and human growth and development, would support these and future research communities at the new site. Because a new user population had been drawn together at the north campus, the library staff decided to conduct a formal needs assessment to clearly identify the clientele's needs, concerns, and expectations of the new library. Between November 1994 and March 1995, staff conducted a series of one-on-one and group interviews and mailed surveys to all north campus clients. This paper will explore the process used, the results of the feedback, and the library's response.
"The Cost of Monographic Cataloguing: Two Methods of Calculation" Bill Maina and Mitch Walters
As part of a project to test the cost-effectiveness of outsourcing the library's cataloging, we wanted to determine the cost of in-house monographic cataloging. In one method, individual titles were tracked through the cataloging process, with staff entering the time spent at each stage of the process. Then the time spent was totaled and multiplied by the hourly salaries of the staff performing the work. Cost factors for fringe benefits, equipment, and environmental overhead were also included in the total. In the second method, the total yearly cataloging output of the unit was divided by the total yearly salaries, benefits, equipment and overhead costs of the cataloging unit. The two methods produced very different results. The in-house cataloging cost per item for each method is also compared with the prices quoted by a commercial cataloging service. This poster demonstrates the two methods of calculation using simple formulas and examples. Proportions of staff time spent at various tasks and the breakdown of salary, benefits and overhead costs are displayed using pie charts.
Document Delivery Services at the UT Southwestern Library identified a problem with low lending fill rate. Using scientific research methodology, the Fill Rate Team, which was composed of cross-departmental staff, investigated factors affecting fill rate. With audience participation, the Fill Rate Team communicates its findings through the video spoof, LIBRARY'S MOST WANTED.
95th Annual Meeting Medical Library Association
May 7-12, 1995
"Outsourcing Your Cataloguing: Expanding Your Services as the Library Vision Changes"
To meet the challenge of an ever expanding universe of materials, the UT Southwestern Library chose to outsource its current cataloging for print materials. The rationale for this change, its relationship to the Library Vision and Strategic Plan, and the formation of strategic alliances between the Library and the campus Information Resources Department will be discussed. The reorganization and role of the Database Development and Control Department, a new empowered version of the old Technical Services Division, are explained. The effects of the Internet, the Library as a participant in the NN/LM as a Resource Library, and outsourcing are shown. With the outsourcing, the additional capability of the department to deal with the wide variety of resources available through the Internet via gophers, World Wide Web and other tools is discussed. Working with the Internet Specialist, who holds a joint position created by the Library and the UT Southwestern Medical Center Information Resources Department, the Library is developing a secure public service for the Internet.