Minutes of March 8, 2000 Meeting

Ka-Neng Au, Jeanne Boyle, Rebecca Gardner, Harry Glazer, Brian Hancock, Theo Haynes, Ron Jantz, Marty Kesselman, Sam McDonald, Steve Perkins, Pat Piermatti
  1. Progress Report: Design Group (Sam)
    • Sam distributed old and new versions of the "Medicine" section of Indexes. A comparison between the old and new view of Medline shows four lines instead of eight. The Medicine section text was reduced by 20%.
    • In the discussion of the new view of "See Also" the committee decided to delete the words "includes indexes not listed above" following Multidisciplinary Indexes.
    • Continuing discussion of "See Also" also brought agreement to additional wording "other resources in paper " to follow Research Guides ….
    • It was agreed to rollout this new view of the subject sections of Indexes.
    • Sam distributed an Excel spreadsheet entitled "Index Inventory, 3/8/00"
    • The committee is to especially review columns "G", "H" and "I" for any "No's"
    • In column G, review older descriptions drafts of longer and fuller descriptions will provide additional keywords for our website search engine. T. Haynes agreed and will continue to consult with bibliographers for improvements to database descriptions.
    • Ron said that "No's" in Columns H and I need prompt attention
    • Theo raised the issue of updating the IDEALibrary description … more publishers. Discussion ensued about keeping pace with updates. Jeanne said that information from the license agreements needs to be excerpted.
    • Question of evaluation came up time consuming … Theo volunteered to review the columns and bring a report to the next WAC meeting
    • Jeanne will look at JSTOR and share the information with Rebecca
    • Sam will utilize vendor database instructions whenever possible
    • In the discussion ensuing, the group is to prioritize search guides and downloading, emailing, and printing guides separately
    • Sam will produce Excel spreadsheets for research guides, catalogs, decommissioning and other WAC housekeeping chores
  2. Progress Report: I'Things (Theo)
    • Library Literature is coming very soon. Sam has coded the pages; just an announcement and ready to go live in a day or so. Will be listed in a new Library and Information Science section under Social Sciences.
    • Early English Books Online (EEBO) an index, is in process … Theo wrote the description and R. Sewell is preparing a guide.
    • RILM, a music index is in process … Description written by Theo is under review by Roger Tarman
    • Shepard's Citations is in process … Vibiana Kassabian is working on a guide. She has written a several paragraph description and Steve Perkins is reviewing. Some discussion about Alexander Library's use of the Matthew Bender website (http://www.bender.com) for access to Shepard's … Ron will contact Mary Fetzer for more information
  3. Progress Report: Research Guides (Au)
    • Brian Hancock is working on a Jewish Studies research guide.
    • The Career Research Guide is being reviewed … written by Leslie Murtha and coded by Sam.
    • A Dissertations research guide is being developed by Jeanne Boyle.
    • A Statistics research guide is being developed.
    • The Nursing research guide is in preliminary development by Ann Watkins.
    • Ron began some discussion about which research guides should be next in the queue … Au and the Research Guides subcommittee will discuss further and report back to WAC.
    • Au reported that the Business School in Newark has taken the RUL logo and made some alterations to use on new pages for their cyber reference library on their computer server
    • Ron mentioned the need for a literary criticism research guide … many queries at the Alexander reference desk … the committee also raised the issue of adequate pointers to Literature Resource Center LRC (GaleNet).
  4. Evaluation/Assessment of RUL Website
    • WAC history on this subject goes back to our 11/30/99 meeting
    • We are 80% complete in mounting new pages on the RUL website; completion of the remaining 20% will be the most difficult
    • We are not receiving the volume of complaints and suggestions for improvements which would be most helpful
    • Marty commented that the RUL website is fine for visitors who know what they want, however, our artificial arrangement may not be as suitable for undergraduates. Are the students using our website as a gateway to the library?
    • Ron referred to the uniformity of the RUL website, i.e., the alphabetic arrangement of databases under subjects in the indexes section
    • Marty said that because we are working in a web environment our website should be very easy to navigate. Ron asked what we would do with an undergraduate interface if one were developed. Sam said that instruction then takes precedence. Much discussion then ensued about assessment methods
    • Jeanne said that the Design Group had suggested collecting input from librarians. Harry said that a very brief questionnaire would be most effective. Two possible queries could be: What is the problem most heard about the website? And What is the best thing about the website? Theo suggested that part time librarians be included. Marty said that we should also ask information assistants … Jeanne recommended staff and Theo said that Access Services personnel should also be included.
    • Ron then said that the method of discussion is the survey … Marty spoke about use of the survey to gather information about use of the smart classrooms … Theo recommended a review of Natalie's Ask A Librarian faq, etc. Jeanne concurred with a survey of both librarians and staff for their comments about the public (non staff) pages on the RUL website
    • Rebecca recounted how the Department of Food Science conducts blind taste tests … and application to our situation … more discussion ensued about preparing an exercise … Theo recommended using students in a Camden marketing class … Harry agreed to idea. Theo will speak with the appropriate Dean.
    • More discussion … Jeanne mentioned the IRIS Information Desk module … Marty reiterated the value of analyzing Ask A Librarian queries and answers. Jeanne said we can save time by reading Natalie's FAQ and her AAL annual report. Jeanne also recommended inviting Natalie to a WAC meeting … Ron will email Natalie to apprise her of our discussion
    • More discussion about the blind test method … the topic of sample size arose … Jeanne recommended speaking with our colleagues with Ph.Ds who understand such matters.
    • More discussion … we are looking at our website's design and ease or lack of ease of navigation … Au inquired whether or not we are prepared to make changes based upon the responses we receive.
    • More discussion … design of the survey … different questions for librarians and end-users like students …
    • WAC agreed to a survey for public services staff to focus upon the public pages … also a survey for users … for the latter will need expert advice … can get started on the librarians/staff survey. Ron will speak with Natalie about AAL data; review this data and then discuss [with WAC] launching a full end User survey … Theo will approach Camden faculty who have experience with focus groups … Marty suggested approaching the Eagleton Institute … much more discussion.
    • Marty Kesselman took the action to develop a draft of questions that we could use for the librarian survey.

    Recorder: Pat Piermatti

    Next meeting: 9:30 April 12, 2000, SCC/Heyer Conference Room

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