Advances in collection development and resource management

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  • Teresa Malinowski, Column Editor Tools of the Serials Trade


    Teresa Malinowski, Column Editor with contributions from

    Barbara Shaffer and Suellen Cox

    Advances in Collection Development and Resource Management

    Barbara Shaffer

    Advances in Collection Development and Resource Management, v. 2, edited by Thomas W. Leonhardt. Greenwich, CT: JAI Press, Inc., 1996. 251~. $73.25. ISBN o-7623-0097-3.

    New approaches and added creativity in collection development and resource management are presented in the fifteen papers of this second annual edition, pro- viding a broad range of issues to be faced in the day-to- day operations of libraries. This volume contains papers on such diverse topics as conducting surveys to assess computer usage and needs, resource sharing and affinity groups, conspectus methodology, using the World Wide Web as a tool to identify electronic jour- nals, a teamwork approach to handling government documents, TQM, collaborative input for collection development, the growth of and uses for the online Duplicates Exchange Union, selection criteria for Chi- cano and Native American films and videos, and eval- uations of PromptCat.

    In A Prerevolutionary College Enters the Computer Age: Historic Buildings, Fiber Optics, and Faculty

    Malinowski is Serials Coordinator and Chair of the Technical Services Dept., California State University, Fullerton, CA 92834-4150,>.


  • Attitudes Toward Online Library Resources, Caroline Hunt and Katina Strauch report results of surveys at the College of Charleston which indicate little correlation between computer usage and faculty seniority, profes- sional field, or background. Comparing survey results with what they found in current literature on informa- tion technology and higher education, the authors encourage others to assess needs and attitudes of their local faculty before assuming needs and usage based on what is purported to be national norms, i.e. sciences ranking at the top and humanities at the bottom in usage assessment. They determined that the most effective method to foster use of online resources to both gradu- ate and undergraduate students appears to be through academic departments. In large part, global strategies for increasing usage within the library reached those who were already converts. The report from Hunt and Strauchs surveys should alert other librarians attempt- ing to evaluate both hardware and software needs on their campuses to the need for assessment of depart- mental usage and attitudes for the most efficient provi- sion of computer support.

    Two chapters deal with remote access and interli- brary lending and borrowing. In the first, Promises and Perils for Traditional Interlibrary Loan Services, authored by Sue 0. Medina and William C. Highfill. factors affecting traditional interlibrary loan services are examined. Increasing numbers of requests, applica- tions of technology to library functions, widespread availability of information in electronic formats, and the emergence of commercial services marketing infor- mation and document delivery to end users are forcing changes in how libraries deliver information to their users. Formal resource sharing agreements supporting shared goals within library cooperatives, such as the Network of Alabama Academic Libraries and the Ala- bama Public Library Service, are encouraged. This well-organized chapter appeals to both public and aca- demic librarians in their quest to retrieve information not held in their libraries. The concepts of affinity groups to help provide for one anothers needs and of cooperative agreements continue to be means by which libraries can better serve their patrons.

    The second chapter dealing with interlibrary loan and document delivery, Collection Development and Document Delivery: Budgeting for Access, by Millie L. Syring and Milton Wolf, argues that funding for remote access must come off the top of the budget. The authors encourage libraries to create a collection development policy as a starting point to enable devel- opment decisions about not only whether to own infor-

    mation, but also whether it should be leased, licensed, rented, borrowed, or even downloaded. The authors assert that it is past the time to acknowledge that aca- demic libraries cannot physically own all the informa- tion needed to satisfy research needs of the institution and to plan in earnest for accessing what is needed. A list of selected readings on document delivery is included and provides the reader with sources for arti- cles written between 1993 and 1995. The length of time between when this paper was written and when it was published and distributed in book form impairs its impact.

    Collection assessment as an ongoing process is dealt with in three of the chapters. In their paper, Including Access in Conspectus Methodology, Rebecca C. Drummond and Mary H. Munroe discuss traditional uses of the conspectus to describe and assign levels to library collections and argue that access as well as ownership can and should be reflected in the conspec- tus. To insure that access is adequately evaluated and recorded, the authors recommend that a revision of conspectus worksheets and guidelines be performed and that a core for minimum basic standards for each level be established. The authors assert that access may eventually be more heavily weighted than ownership, except for the most basic core collection. The recom- mendations included in this chapter are clearly- explained steps that can be taken to incorporate access points into the conspectus methodology.

    The other two chapters dealing with the use of a con- spectus for assessment are case studies. Using the WLN Conspectus to Assess a Law Library Collection, written by Elizabeth Thweatt, Gonzaga University School of Law Library, Spokane, Washington, describes how a collection assessment was performed there. This informative paper defines the conspectus approach, outlines preliminary decisions necessary prior to performing the assessment, explains the pro- cess, and offers an evaluation of the work accom- plished by the library. It is informative to the reader who is interested in the mechanics of the process. Sarojini Lotlikar, in her paper A Collection Assess- ment Model: A Case Study at the Ganser Library, fea- tures a political science collection project, using traditional list checking in combination with online checking of circulation records of core titles published between 1920 and 1988. The author views the process as a labor-intensive activity that should be ongoing as opposed to occasional. Unique to this assessment were the advantages recognized by using the online catalog and the automated circulation module.


  • Identifying electronic journals for the Texas Tech University Library is the topic of Brian Quinns paper, Using the World Wide Web for Electronic Serials Collection Development. Using Web search engines to identify as many different electronic journals as pos- sible in the areas of psychology and sociology, Quinn found a rich source of electronic journal material which can be acquired easily and inexpensively. He found that no one Web search engine can be relied upon for a comprehensive search and that there is a great deal of overlap of resources. This example of a practical appli- cation of Web searching is of value to the collection development practitioner trying to evaluate and obtain quality electronic resources.

    An international viewpoint is shared by Sally Jo Cunningham of the University of Waikato in New Zealand in her paper entitled Collection Development and Management in the Digital Library. She notes that current subject-specific digital libraries have been con- centrating on building initial collections and solving technical problems for access. As electronic media become increasingly important for providing informa- tion, the nature of documents will continue to change and methods for indexing, storing, and distributing documents to users will continue to be affected. On the technical side, hardware and software must support users needs, searches must be processed efficiently, and fluctuations of the Internet cannot interfere with the integrity of the index. On the institutional side, the focus in each collection must be preserved to support the needs of the librarys user community. New solu- tions are required for development and maintenance problems, and long-term collection maintenance must be required of document providers. The author states, The sustainability of this system architecture over the long-term remains to be seen. She echoes the concerns of many in the library community who discuss archiving responsibilities and where they might lie.

    Eileen Theodore-Shusta and Ray Wang share the Binghamton University Libraries experience in The Team Approach to the Management of a Government Documents Collection. Their paper deals with the assigning of the basic service components of a Federal Depository Collection-public/reference services, access/circulation services, and processing/technical services-to corresponding units in the existing library organization. This case study reports that the concept of teamwork within the various divisions brought the collection into compliance with federal regulations in the areas of bibliographic control and staffing with no additional resources. Librarians able to incorporate a

    teamwork approach such as this are on the right track in dealing with reduction of personnel due to tight bud- gets.

    In Total Quality Management, Culture, Systems, and Customer Service: Applications for Collection Development, Theresa C. Trawick and Rhae M. Swisher, Jr., discuss the elements of TQM as an inte- gral part of managing the academic library at Troy State University and its collections. Library personnel with leadership abilities and a strong collection devel- opment nucleus will define and produce library service quality in the 2 1 st century. This is the longest chapter in the volume, over thirty pages, and it gives detailed applications of TQM in the library setting, for readers who are interested in how such a plan might work.

    Collection Development: a Collaborative Effort, by Cynthia H. Shabb and Judith L. Rieke, suggests some concrete methods for sound collection develop- ment decisions using a network of faculty, colleagues from within and without the library, library staff at all levels, administrators and other campus support, ven- dors, and publishers. The authors view campus connec- tions with those in administrative positions as having a positive effect on budgeting and funding and as assist- ing in giving the library credibility. This paper encour- ages bibliographers to expand consultations beyond faculty sources to further the library in its mission of collection development and information delivery.

    An historical account, Duplicates Exchange Union: From World War II to the World Wide Web, by Rebecca House Stankowski outlines the growth of the DEU to its present status as an online program. Although this metamorphosis is not complete, the ben- efits of the online environment are presented, and any- one who has offered duplicates or searched for missing issues can grasp the value of such a service. The expla- nation of how the DEU is working could convince managers seeking to exchange duplicate materials that this is an option worth trying.

    Ann M. Massmann urges readers to recognize the inherent value of film and video in representing strong oral traditions in her paper, Native American and Chi- cano Video and Film: Toward a New Model for Collec- tion Development in Academic Libraries. She strives to explore reasons for focusing additional attention on collecting video and film in this context and to re- examine the biases against video in academic libraries. The paper deals with resources for identifying quality video and film selections, criteria for selection, recom- mendations for planning strategies for collecting for academic libraries, and access issues to be faced. Fund-


  • ing opportunities for collections like Native American approaches to dealing with current information tech- and Chicano studies have increased in recent years, and the author sees this to be an ideal time for moving a librarys video and film collections in solid new direc- tions. With this chapter, the volume changes direction and focus to one of the more basic issues, that of col- lection selection and management.

    Events that occurred in 1995 studies using Prompt- Cat are presented in the final two chapters of the vol- ume. The experience of the University of New Mexico General Library is shared in the paper PromptCat: An Early Assessment, by Claire-Lise Benaud and Sever Bordeianu. PromptCat is designed to minimize han- dling in processing new materials by local library staff, saving search charges and labor costs by supplying cat- aloging information. The University of New Mexico General Library implemented PromptCat to enable its experienced catalogers to concentrate on original and complex cataloging, rare book cataloging, and retro- spective conversion. PromptCat is viewed as an inno- vative product that connects resources, technology, and data already in place in an academic library.

    The final paper, by Barbara Albee and Robin Rohrkaste Crumrin, is entitled Evaluating Approval Plan Processing: Is PromptCat an Option? It deals with the efforts at Indiana University-Purdue Univer- sity Indianapolis University Library to expand its approval plan and to ensure processing of new materi- als in a timely manner without an increased number of staff. IUPUI found itself in the enviable situation of having significant additional funding to develop and enrich the library collection when it moved into a new library building. Discussions include vendor evalua- tion and selection, as well as comparative information on approval plan vendors and profiling. After careful setup of an approval plan and tracking materials received, IUPUI library staff have determined that the current copy catalogers can meet the goals for rapid handling of books received. They have determined that PrompCat service may be considered again in the future, but for the present there will be no savings in time since records submitted by PromptCat will still need to be reviewed and edited.

    This volume would be a valuable addition to any academic library collection. It is refreshing to read case studies and survey reports from libraries that do not belong to the ARL group of libraries. These stud- ies have merit of their own, with practitioners of library collection development and resource manage- ment in somewhat smaller institutions sharing their

    nology concerns.

    Shaffer is head of the Serials Department at Carlso...


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