NB Technology Team Meeting Minutes July 27, 1999

Present : MK, JC, RW, RJ, BH, SH, DK
Recorder: Scott Hines

Actions to be taken by next meeting:

  1. Scott will ask Mary Fetzer to put tech discussion on agenda for August NBLF meeting.
  2. Scott will talk with Mary Page and Marty will speak with Farideh about a liaison to the tech team from Collection Services and Access services.
  3. Marty will edit technology SRA proposal to include suggestions discussed today.
  4. Team members will send additional goals to Marty.


  1. Liaisons to other groups
  2. SRA-type proposal for learning new information technologies (I hope to have a draft for all of you to look at on Monday).
  3. workshops for the Fall
  4. Goals for the next year
  5. Other business


Liaisons: Scott will ask Mary Page and Marty will ask Farideh about liaisons from Collection Services and Access Services.

A question arose regarding greater Tech team involvement in decisions and projects related to technology. For example, the network printing project spearheaded by Jeanne and Donna Cryan - shouldn't there have been more involvement of the tech team throughout the process? The details about this aren't clear. Scott was involved in writing up a proposal for the networked printing to send to VP Seneca, after bringing proposal to tech team where it was tabled due to concerns about whether students would go for cost recovery plans. The proposal was sent in but there was no word about what the status is right now. (NOTE: Ryoko said after tech team meeting was held that the money ($25,000) was received by Jeanne.) But Tech team was not consulted

Tech team has a base in new brunswick, but many tech projects are RUL wide and some involvement of tech team with RUL Public Services would be good. Maybe Jeanne should be invited to a tech team meeting for discussions along these lines.

A good example of projects that could benefit from tech team involvement RUL wide is the interaction of the CIIT (Center for Instructional Information Technologies) at Dana and D21 at Douglass - these compete to some extent and could better be integrated through tech team involvement.

Technology SRA (short research assignment)/"Technology tune up"

A proposal (attached at end of minutes) was written up by Marty and distributed to the team for a program similar to the SRA meant to provide opportunities for "tuning-up" and learning new technology skills. A first suggestion was to change the name to something like "Technology Professional Development". Suggestions: Applicant must submit description of how time will be spent, with 22 days (same as SRA) being used, for example, to go to another institution and to spend one week on self-directed learning growing out of the off-campus work.

We should also consider that unlike SRA, where "applications in consecutive years are discouraged", the technology SRA should allow for applications in consecutive years.

Self-study is an option for this program, as well as courses, and maybe the element of training others can be used to justify the cost of a course. In taking a course, time to spend after the course on practicing skills learned in the course is very important and could be part of a tech SRA.

Maybe it should be "up to 22 days of SRA and/or Technology Professional Development" are allowed per year.

Should we provide for release time for actually working on a project? But this technology SRA is precisely defined for learning and might be less effective if broadened to include actual work on a project for which skills have already been learned. In addition, release time for working on a project requires a local decision to close ranks to compensate for absence of the person doing the project. The emphasis here should stay on learning, though a technology SRA could be a stepping stone to other sorts of release time for actually doing a project.

In many organizations, Continuing education is an integral part of performance evaluation and is measured in terms of hours of continuing ed taken. Should we consider that? But faculty are not evaluated as staff are. But maybe Technology SRA could be used to produce a product that could count as research.

Maybe we should produce a guide to technology learning resources available to librarian faculty at RU. The TEC (teaching excellence center) offers students who come to your office, for example, to help with technology, and this is a resource that many librarians could use.

Should this Technology SRA include activities such as taking a SCILS course? But the guidelines say blocks of time should be one week, so maybe we could make it more flexible to accommodate the distribution of time over a semester's coursework.

Maybe SCC could have technology clerkships for librarians. But workshops may be more efficient, though scheduling workshops is difficult.

Part of the development effort for librarians is to determine how best to use technology librarians. Maybe technology librarians could better be used in technology-related BI activities rather than having them lead general BI's. Collaborations of tech librarians and subject specialists on web-based or automated instruction might be more efficient use of time than throwing more bodies at general BI. But automated/web instruction doesn't substitute for in-person instruction. Projects pointed toward integrating the two might be best.

Should we share our plans with the Training task force?

Goals for the tech team:

Presenting workshops in XML, Cold Fusion, Linux, RDBMS (relational database management systems), file and graphics formats and standards, metadata standards and methods.

Maybe general "raising awareness" discussions would be good. The idea is to start with general discussions of why technologies are needed, what they're good for, then move to workshops that present specific techniques. Scott will ask Mary Fetzer about putting tech discussion on the agenda for August NBLF meeting.

Increase tech team involvement in introducing technology into public services/reference. For example, teaching and discussion concerning licensing issues related to IP addresses and subnets for networked resources.

How do we fit into RUL? We should develop a more precise plan for integrating tech team into RUL planning and decision-making.

Producing white papers on technology topics for use by staff, librarians and administrators in planning and making decisions.

Role of IT librarians.

Plans for training and continuing education.

Planning for integration of efforts to obtain ICI and other outside funds for technology projects.

Please send additional goals to Marty.

Utilizing the Short Research Assignment Guidelines for a Technology Tune-UP

The purpose of the Technology Tune-UP is to give members of the library faculty an alternative opportunity to further their study and training in new information technologies.

Colleagues will "close ranks" to enable the participant to take the leave. Each Technology Tune-UP application should include the following:

1 A description of the information technology and plan for training /self -teaching

2 A statement regarding the rationale for learning this particular technology and its potential applicability to the work of the library.

3 Expected results from the training may include a plan for teaching others, an outline of a project proposal incorporating the technology in question.

4 If an SRA or FASP has been awarded to the candidate within the last three years, please atttach a copy of the final report(s).

Time Limits:

Technology Tune-Ups provide up to 15 working days to be taken in blocks of no less than one week at a time, within 6 months, upon recommendation of the Unit Librarian and the Research Leave Committee to the University Librarian.

Eligibility Guidelines:

Technology Tune-Ups or SRAs will be limited to one per year for any individual. Librarians in their terminal year (including the year of resignation) are not eligile regardless of whether the application has already been approved. etc. etc.

Application time Line:

Pretty much the same as for the SRA


Within thirty working days of completion of the Tune-UP, a brief written report must be submitted to the University Librarian. The Library Personnel Office will distribute copies to the Unit Director, and Chair of RLRC, and the Scholarly and Professional Activities Committee. An oral presentation on the technology, and if relevant, a training session for colleagues, is expected. Potential of the technology in the libraries should be included in both the written and oral reports.

Last updated: November 19, 2009; February 4, 2010; February 24, 2010
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