[Minutes approved December 17, 2003]
R. Marker called the meeting to order at 9:32 am.
1. The Agenda was adopted.
2. Minutes of the October 20 Coordinating Committee Meeting were emended as follows: Section 4b., paragraph 2 to read "J. Cassel reported from the New Brunswick Faculty Council that the University Administration is planning a retreat...." The minutes were approved as emended.
3. Faculty Coordinator: No report.
4. Old Business: None.
5. New Business
a. Follow-up to November 14 Library Faculty Meeting. R. Womack reported that the Rules of Procedures Committee has started discussing the language of the revision of the bylaws and the development of a timeline in relation to the election of campus representatives to the Coordinating Committee.
b. M. Gaunt introduced discussion of the Academic Excellence Quality Indicators study currently being undertaken by RUL. This study is a result of the general move in the university towards greater accountability in public higher education. Professor Brent Ruben of SCILS is leading the process based on the Malcolm Baldridge awards given to companies, which he is adapting to the university setting. The Association of Research Libraries is currently using LibQUAL for measuring excellence in libraries, but these indicators just measure service. Dr. Ruben is incorporating other factors, such as whether staff likes working at the institution. The Cabinet is currently looking at the key factors, and the Assessment Committee will take the process forward.
Collections: M. Gaunt went over the Academic Excellence Quality Indicators document which Cabinet has developed. The first category is how do we determine if our collections are adequate? M Gaunt explained that we will assemble usage data, do surveys, and develop benchmarks, which will suggest where and if we need improvement, and help us in requesting budgets. Discussion followed over the role of the selectors in this process. There are certain research areas where selectors may not be in contact with faculty members. It was decided to add liaison interviews to the methods section. In answer to a question over the need to find expertise in developing surveys, M. Gaunt drew attention to the SAILS (Information Literacy) and LibQUAL national surveys. Professor D. O'Connor, SCILS, will also help.
There was some discussion over eliciting student perceptions. M. Gaunt explained that the questions on the document are general, not meant to assess particular services. At the moment, we are trying to measure excellence generally, but we may have more specific questions later. We will probably do this overall type of survey every five years.
Infrastructure: This category covers networked resources, computing equipment, purchasing/cataloging, security/safety, collections preservation, and budget/finances. It was suggested that classroom space and access for people with disabilities should be added to this category. The LibQUAL indicators may address disabilities. It was suggested that the availability of data ports and wireless access should be considered as well.
Internal Work Environment: Discussion ensued over the difficulty of measuring work satisfaction, and the possible need for outside consultation. A team will develop survey questions for work environment measures.
Recognition and Impact: This category includes perceptions at the national and state levels and within the university. Suggestions were made to add collaborations on grants to the national section, and media measures to the state section.
M. Gaunt will revise the document based on the above suggestions, and will next be meeting with the Assessment Committee. There will be discussion sections on the three campuses, and it will be decided who will do what, and what the priorities are. R. Marker noted that the Academic Excellence Quality Indicators are not confidential, and urged everyone to share the discussion with individual committees, and other faculty and staff members. M. Gaunt thanked the Coordinating Committee members for their input.
6. Report of the University Librarian: M. Gaunt reported that RUL held its first donor recognition event on Friday, November 14 at the SCC, which was a great success. President McCormick spoke, about 75 people attended, and 5 longtime donors were recognized with plaques. Part of the purpose of this event, which will probably be held on an annual basis, was to develop a sense of community among external supporters. The importance of holding this event in a library building was noted.
Restructuring: The Governor has given the University an ultimatum of January 1 to make a decision on restructuring. The governance issue may be resolved by January 1, but the funding guarantees will probably not be in place by then. There may be a compromise. M. Gaunt noted the importance of the bond issue, which is needed to support capacity-building in higher education. Discussion ensued.
Follow-up to Dean's Council Meeting: A huge shortfall is being predicted in the state budget for next year. The University probably will have budget reductions next year similar to this year. Dr. Furmanski advised that we must consider cuts. We will probably know more in February. The President and Board of Governors are doing a marketing study to try to determine perceptions of the university.
In response to a question about the next stage in Digital Library planning, M. Gaunt said that liaisons will be meeting with departments to try to evaluate how new changes in technology are affecting them, what they would like to be digital, and what they would like to have in print. There will also be focus group discussions with students and faculty. The next step will be considering what the Libraries would like to do, such as publishing electronic journals, or developing an institutional repository. Following that, a committee will be formed that will develop the DLI. The role of selectors in this process was discussed: the Collection Development Council will probably come up with five key questions that selectors will discuss with faculty.
7. Other business: None.
8. The meeting was adjourned at 11:40 a.m.