Culture of Assessment
An important goal of our assessment program is to create a culture of assessment throughout the Libraries. The program provides opportunities for all staff to learn what assessment is and how to do it, and provides them with tools and support to do their own assessment projects, large or small, to improve their own efforts and those of their department.
Training webinars, presentations on projects undertaken by Libraries staff and faculty, and discussions of assessment methods have been hosted by the program and will continue to be offered as opportunities arise. The Assessment Planning Group intends to open one of its meetings each semester to facilitate awareness and participation in assessment efforts across the Libraries.
Management Data & Statistics
To support fact-based decisions, it is important to have accessible and accurate management data. The Libraries are required to report statistics to University administrators and various external organizations. Data gathering and reporting is a continual process.
Supplying the Dean and others in the library with needed data for decision-making and planning is also a part of this process and an important activity of the assessment program. As part of the department of Assessment Programs and Collections Strategy, the Assessment Programs Librarian supports the data management and reporting needs of the Collections Strategy team.
The Libraries contribute data to surveys conducted by:
- The Association of Research Libraries
- The Association of College and Research Libraries
- The National Center for Education Statistics
- The Southern Universities Group
- Various college guides as requested by the University Office of Institutional Research and Assessment
Collecting and reporting statistics requires coordinating efforts among numerous Libraries staff, as well as four partner libraries. Many of these statistics are available through the Library Statistics page.
Assessment Programs and Collection Strategy provides library resource reports for departments undergoing Academic Program Reviews.
Assessment Programs is also supporting library administration’s efforts to improve traffic counting systems for Hodges Library.
Campus-Wide User Surveys
To support strategic planning, administrative needs, and accreditation requirements, the Libraries periodically surveys users from across the campus community as to:
- Their use of library spaces, resources, and services
- Their satisfaction with those spaces, resources, and services
- Their perceived need for library services or the importance they attach to those services
Although the use of centrally designed and administered instruments reduces the work needed to survey the campus community, Assessment Programs has remained at the center of these survey efforts. Customizing instruments, communicating with the survey organizations and respondents, analyzing results, and communicating the findings of these surveys makes up a significant proportion of the Assessment Programs workload.
Broad surveys cannot capture all information the Libraries would prefer to have about user needs or satisfaction. Maintaining a consistent program of surveys provides a background for focused, small-scale assessments of individual programs or user groups while providing widely accepted measures of success at the institutional scale.
For more details on the results of these surveys, see Campus-Wide User Surveys
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