New Brunswick Libraries Faculty Meeting Minutes
December 14, 2007
Present: J. Mardikian, K. Mulcahy, J. Cassel, C. Caviness, S. Bartz, R.
Gardner, P. Piermatti, K. Denda, K. Hartman, T. Yang, T. Izbicki, T.
Shepard, V. Dent, J. Niessen, T. Glynn, R. Womack (chair), J. Sloan, M.
Wilson, D. Schulman, E. Calhoun, L. Mullen, J. Gardner (recorder), N.
1. Adoption of agenda.
# 4, Middle States Draft, was canceled. Sara will lead an email
discussion about items relating to libraries and submit feedback from
NBLF. The agenda was adopted as amended.
2. Approval of November minutes.
The November meeting minutes were approved without further changes and will be posted to rul_everyone.
3. Chat Reference - Natalie Borisovets
The Chat Reference Task Force has recommended a pilot service using a
meebo widget, a web messenger that allows anonymous IM from anywhere.
WAC has reviewed placement on the Libraries’ website and an
“ASK A LIBRARIAN LIVE” option will appear as a horizontal
box in the middle of the main web page whenever the service is
available. Off the main page, users will link to it through an AAL LIVE
option in the top black bar and a box on the AAL FAQ page.
The trial service will begin spring semester at 15 hours/week,
Sun.-Thurs. 7-10 pm, requiring approximately 20 participants to staff
one 3-hour shift/month. The TF will evaluate demand, workload, user
feedback, other issues, and may expand the trial to 35 hours/week after
Natalie demonstrated a prototype and responded to questions. There is
an audible alert when a question comes in, depending on local PC
configuration. The user will not receive a busy message when the
service is in use; text may be added around the question box to explain
Widgets can be created anywhere, on a subject web page for example.
Voice over will not be part of the initial service. Questions can be
answered from home, anywhere. There will be a webpage available with
canned replies and a filler message that can be quickly copied &
Archiving options are under investigation; 1 month of transcripts may
be available but participants may need to do manual counts. Natalie
will ask for librarian sign-ups before the semester begins.
4. Position Vacancy update, Latin American/Africana – Ryan Womack and Valeda Dent
NBLF has been asked by the University librarian to plan for one
position with joint responsibilities, not two separate positions. The
position description will be crafted in detail by a smaller group of
Alexander selectors. Suggestions include: look at existing strengths
within the library system, area studies could be addressed by
multi-disciplinary teams of librarians across campuses, the incumbent
must be well-rounded in BI and reference skills and not just a
collections or language specialist, liaison role to department(s) is
important, consider changes in departments at Rutgers, for example the
proposed Department of African, Middle Eastern, and South Asian
Languages and Literatures, and look at models at other research
5. Travel Report – Marty Kesselman and Jane Sloan
Proposed allocations for NBLF travel requests have been completed and a
draft was circulated. Tenured librarians will be funded up to $1,000
and non tenured librarians up to $1,300. “Travel Request
Forms” with specifics go to Charlene Houser. Collections-related
trips and activities can be submitted to Bob Sewell. Outstanding
questions about funding for administrative travel will be discussed by
6. NBLF Chair report – Ryan Womack
Ryan canceled the January 11th NBLF meeting, Friday of ALA Midwinter.
NBLF meets again February 8, 2008, and Lila Fredenberg is on the agenda
to discuss diversity issues. Work on librarian vacancies is ongoing.
7. NBCG Report – Kevin Mulcahy
Kevin reported that nonstate funds, comprised of gifts and unrestricted
endowments, have been distributed. A new allotment was made for
electronic reference resources. Approval plan funding was reduced by
approximately 50% but some adjustment is anticipated later in the year.
NBCG has started discussions with Acquisitions, Cataloging, and CDC
about how to improve the ordering and processing of foreign
acquisitions. Circulation is down and we are spending less on books.
Impact of GoogleBooks, relocating lesser used titles, what’s
being ordered for reserves, use of digitized resources, circulation
data, and citation analysis were mentioned as factors to consider when
funding and selecting monographs. NBCG’s Dec. 21st meeting has
8. Access Services
Access services staff have just completed extended and 24-hours exam
periods. There are six staff vacancies in New Brunswick, at various
stages of recruitment. LSM will remain open Sun.-Thurs. until 2 am
beginning spring semester. A major stacks shift is underway at LSM.
Mini-shifts in the stacks at Alexander are addressing space issues.
9. RIS Organization Overview – Valeda Dent
Valeda distributed a handout with AUL/RIS job description and sphere of
responsibility, NB organization chart, multi-campus responsibilities,
and basic questions to ask for research and instructional areas. She
indicated there will ongoing discussions about RIS and its identity.
System-wide aspects of RIS are conceptualized differently on each
campus, and she is working on a system-wide functional organizational
chart for RIS. Valeda’s top multi-campus responsibility and
priority this year will be Instruction.
10. ISSG Topic – Instruction Program Goals and Values (Tom)
Tom lead an open discussion about our values and philosophy of library instruction and posed two questions.
-What shared values should serve as the foundation of our instruction program?
Initial discussion centered on specific core competencies and what we
expect students to learn (librarians are approachable, there are myriad
resources available that are not Google, the libraries website is the
best gateway to scholarly resources, keyword searching, etc.,),
environments where instruction takes place (classroom and website), and
techniques (scripted studies, experiential, etc.). Since opinions about
what students should know, what’s the best way to teach, and
personal styles differ, Tom asked what values we share in a holistic,
philosophical sense and that are common to different approaches:
• Respect for students, individuals
• Diversity and respect for different learning styles
• Clarity, of our purpose and what we offer
• Effectiveness, results for users
• Content and Accessibility, acquired and accessible library
resources are essential for meaningful instruction to take place
• Balance, between concepts and practical skills
• Transferability, concepts and skills which are useful now and in future endeavors, life skills
-What do we think students and faculty value in library instruction?
Ideas expressed included: library instruction that is user-driven;
librarians as a resource, people best able to help; resources and
instruction that are integrated into courseware; social networking;
simplicity, ease, and convenience when possible and assistance with
complexities of research when they are not; library instruction that is
consistent with faculty instructional goals and curriculum
developments; special, discipline-specific instruction; instruction
grounded in matching users with resources they need; opportunities for
Jeris reviewed the number of pending requests for library instruction
in New Brunswick spring semester. There are 45 sections from the
writing program, a mix of themes and disciplines; 10 sections of honors
students (with a general session scheduled for all 300 students
together); 35 sessions for students-in-transition from Univ. College.
Jeris is interviewing for instruction adjuncts to assist.
The meeting was adjourned. Next meeting: Friday, Feburary 8, 2008