Rodney A. Briggs Library

Unit Annual Report

2003-2004

 

 

Personnel

Conner, Matt                  Assistant Librarian/Instruction Coordinator

Dean, LeAnn                 Director

Dent, Christine              Assistant Librarian/Reference Coordinator, Government Publications (resigned May 2004)

Haji, Shaheen                Library Assistant/Circulation

Hickman, Michelle        Library Assistant/Technical Services

Kill, Sandy                    Library Assistant/Interlibrary Loan

Larson, Ardath              Head of Technical Services

Miller, Shirley               Library Assistant/Technical Services (75% time)

Panton, Miriam             Office Specialist 

David Wuolu                 Head of Systems, Head of Research & Consultation Services

YuiJin Kim                   Morris Administrative Intern for Electronic Services (Fall)

Jake Grussing                Morris Administrative Intern for Electronic Services (Spring)

Student Assistants         3.8 FTE

 

Purpose

The primary purpose of the Rodney A. Briggs Library is to support the mission of the University of Minnesota, Morris in its commitment to instructional excellence and undergraduate and faculty research.  Briggs Library provides quality information resources and services to the students, faculty and staff comprising the campus community.  The library is also an educational resource and cultural center for citizens of West Central Minnesota.

 

Function

1. Briggs Library supports the mission of the college by providing instructional services to the University of Minnesota, Morris and greater West Central Minnesota communities.

2. Briggs Library supports the curriculum by purchasing, organizing, maintaining and providing access to print and electronic information resources.

3. Briggs Library provides access to information beyond its local resources through fast and efficient interlibrary loan of materials from libraries throughout the United States and the world.

4. Briggs Library provides an environment that supports independent inquiry by maintaining quality reference service and sponsoring a user education program.

5. Briggs Library provides a friendly atmosphere that accommodates a variety of learning styles through interactions with a staff sensitive to cultural diversity and differences in individual learning needs.

6. Briggs Library, as well as the Rodney A. Briggs Library Associates, provides cultural enrichment opportunities through programming, exhibits, displays and print and electronic collections.

7. Briggs Library supports the outreach efforts of UMM by providing access to U.S. federal documents and the local collection and by providing user education and reference services.

 


Narrative

Ever-changing is an apt term to characterize academic libraries in general, and Briggs Library is no exception.   FY 2004 saw the successful implementation of the 2nd generation automation system.   The transition to a system used by all U of M libraries (Ex Libris/Aleph system) required enormous hours of training and procedure discussions both before the July 28, 2003 "switch to production" date and in the months following. The integrated nature of Aleph required greater cooperation among the four campus libraries than had been the case.  In addition to learning the technical aspects of Aleph, additional adjustments were required.   For example, it was necessary to re-examine, compromise and adapt local policies to be in harmony with the needs of other UM libraries.  Briggs staff can take pride in the fact that the migration was accomplished smoothly with a minimum of disruption for library users.   In addition to the significant changes in the underlying structure, there were a number of enhancements to the online catalog and borrower information that help serve users more effectively.   Individual staff members contributed a great deal to the migration.  Since the Acquisitions and Serials modules were totally new, the technical services staff (Miriam Panton, Ardath Larson, Shirley Miller and Mickey Hickman) evaluated and revised local procedures to fit the demands of an automated system.  The necessity of retraining all the student assistants who staff the circulation desk made life interesting for Shaheen Haji.  On the public side, Instruction and Reference services were adapted to the new system by Matt Conner and Christine Dent.  As Systems Librarian, David Wuolu was given the primary responsibility for the technological "backbone" of our new system.   Much credit for a successful migration should be given to him as well as the entire library staff, who endured the stress and extra work with positive attitudes.  

 

Change is also evident in the ever increasing reliance on electronic journals.   Driven by budgetary concerns, but perhaps more by requests for the convenience and efficiency of desk top delivery, a significant number of print titles were cancelled in favor of electronic subscriptions.   Full text databases added this past year included:  American Chemical Society Web-Archives, PsycARTICLES, E-HRAF Collection of Ethnography, Early English Books Online, Historical New York Times, BioOne and additional JSTOR collections.

 

A significant change for the library was the retirement in June, 2004 of Ardath Larson.  In her 38 year career at UMM she made significant contributions to the success of the library in the areas of management, cataloging, acquisitions and reference.  It's pretty obvious to her coworkers that "We shall never see the likes of her again!"

 

The Briggs Library web site received a fresh new look in May, 2004.   Using Dreamweaver and php technology, David Wuolu and Christine Dent created the new pages after listening to focus groups, consulting with UMM colleagues, listening to staff comments and studying other library sites.

 

Change in options of reference service occurred in FY 2004 with full implementation of the "Ask a Librarian" link on the library's home page.  The opportunity to seek and receive research assistance remotely complements the in-library reference service that is an essential component of the library's contribution to learning and research experiences.  Another change in the area of reference is a revamped Research QuickStart whereby library and internet resources are grouped by topic so that users can more effectively identify research starting points.

 

A highlight of this year was the summer 2003 construction of the Library Classroom/Computer Lab.   Equipped with new computers purchased with Student Technology Fee funds, this facility provides an effective learning environment as well as an up to date campus computer lab.  The summer third floor renovation was mutually beneficial for the Academic Assistance/Disability Services office and the library.       Re-carpeting the entire third floor required considerable planning (as well as actual work shifting books) as the stacks were reconfigured to widen the aisles in the interest of ADA compliance.

 

Also ranking at the top of the list of FY 2004 highlights was the fully functioning Associates of Rodney A. Briggs Library.   Organized in FY 2003 and lead by a capable Executive Board, this group in FY 2004 cosponsored the Yvetuschenko Poetry Reading, sponsored the second annual "Evening of Superlatives," held a book sale, and provided financial support for collection enrichment and furniture purchase. $ 1000 was given to enrich the classical CD collection and two DVD display cases were purchased. 

 

Change, in terms of dramatic growth, occurred in the interlibrary loan.  The number of requests filled increased by 26%.   Sandy Kill and her team not only managed the significant increase in the amount of requests, both in lending and borrowing, but she also increased the "fill rate" or percentage of requests successfully completed.

 

The Government Documents collection also changed in FY 2004.  After much study and deliberation, it was decided to reduce by 2/3 the number of documents received in paper form.   Although we will continue to have access to everything the government depository program produces in online form, the dollars saved in processing, supplies and staff time will be used to support other areas of the collection.   Under the leadership of Christine Dent, Briggs Library hosted the annual Minnesota/South Dakota Government Documents Forum in May 2004.   Librarians who attended were complimentary of the content and organization of this workshop.  

 

COLLECTION

 

Materials held

 

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Held at beginning of year

175,246

179,767

182,296

184,642

186,862

190,088

194,079

197,220

Books added

3,883

2,994

3,147

2,779

2,952

3,274

2,820

1,556

Non-Print added

225

103

155

215

400

388

312

297

Musical scores added

91

27

115

8

97

120

152

9

Curriculum materials added

322

285

628

137

313

605

257

280

Materials withdrawn

0

880

1,699

919

536

396

400

174

Materials held at end of year

179,767

182,296

184,642

186,862

190,088

194,079

197,220

199,188

Periodical titles (current)

967

965

927

898

911

913

885

663

Periodical titles (inactive )   

1,361

1,389

1,389

1,424

1,342

1,230

1,252

1250

Govt. Documents (FY end)

179,539

188,131

194,057

214,640

211,430

214,784

207,802

207,683

Curriculum Library  (FY end)

 

 

 

12,162

12,398

13,001

 

13,251

13,525

 

SERVICES

Circulation of Materials (Loans and renewals)

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Student check-out

17,880

31,258

21,135

19,923

30,175

16,610

24,014

21,981

24,699

Faculty/Staff check-out

4,067

6,525

5,886

8,156

10,965

7,309

11,138

11,042

8,552

Community check-out

1,235

1,853

1,602

1,099

1,310

997

413

1,716

1,586

Course Reserve (paper)

16,004

22,481

18,266

13,610

22,327

10,092

15,017

7,069

6,180

Course Reserve (online)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18,628

25,403

Library web site visits

 

 

 

90,270

113,270

119,337

165,189

220,342

255,360

Searches of licensed databases

 

 

 

 

 

 

97,562

109,296

149,529

In-library book use

2,344

4,487

2,290

5,833

1,968

5,724

4,856

5,889

N/A

In-library journal use

 

 

 

 

 

9,649

8,993

8,063

5,277

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interlibrary Loan

Briggs Library as Lender

 

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Requests received

783

736

738

732

771

934

1,758

Originals loaned

337

365

349

332

408

560

1,263

Photocopies provided

125

103

120

119

132

134

166

Requests unfilled

321

268

269

281

231

240

329

Total number of filled requests

462

468

469

451

540

694

1,429

Briggs Library as Borrower

 

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Requests received

9,824

7,670

8,306

7,926

8,182

8,232

10,273

Originals borrowed

3,524

1,957

1,797

2,182

2,774

3,492

5,204

Photocopies received

5,910

5,004

4,870

4,346

4,082

3,284

3,938

Requests filled locally

748

371

1029

588

872

1,112

776

Requests unfilled

389

709

610

810

454

344

355

Total number of filled requests

9,435

6,961

6,667

7,116

7,728

7,888

9,918

 

Reference Service (average number of transactions per time period)

Hours of the day

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

8:00

.8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9:00

1.4

2.5

 

10:00

2.1

3.7

2.6

3.1

2.2

2.0

1.9

1.8

2.0

11:00

2.0

3.5

2.6

2.6

2.3

2.0

1.9

2

2.0

12:00

1.7

3.8

2.0

2.3

2.4

2.4

2.1

2.1

2.0

1:00

3.1

6.0

2.3

3.1

2.4

2.5

2.5

2.2

2.4

2:00

2.9

7.6

2.8

3.4

2.4

2.9

2.7

2.3

2.3

3:00

3.0

7.6

2.4

3.8

2.6

3.0

2.9

1.9

2.7

4:00

2.1

4.4

 

7:00

2.8

3.9

2.3

2.3

1.8

1.9

1.8

1.8

1.9

8:00

2.7

5.6

2.8

2.2

1.8

2.1

1.9

1.8

2.1

9:00

2.4

5.2

2.5

1.9

1.3

1.7

1.6

1.8

1.6

Days of the week

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Monday

19.7

25.1

13.6

17.6

12.1

14.4

16.0

14.6

13.7

Tuesday

19.3

39.1

16.5

17.3

16.8

15.5

17.8

16.4

16.8

Wednesday

21.7

30.0

13.9

20.1

15.0

15.8

17.3

16.8

17.7

Thursday

15.9

20.4

14.3

20.2

15.7

16.7

17.5

16.1

16.2

Friday

16.8

24.1

17.5

15.0

12.5

12.2

14.4

12.4

14.1

Sunday

12.3

19.0

9.5

5.2

4.3

4.9

4.5

4.3

3.7

Nights

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Monday

15.0

23.4

9.1

8.7

8.0

9.7

9.1

8.2

8.5

Tuesday

7.8

11.1

9.5

9.2

7.0

5.8

6.2

5.5

5.9

Wednesday

5.0

9.8

7.1

4.6

4.4

5.7

6.8

4.5

4.0

Thursday

5.8

7.9

4.7

5.1

5.1

3.1

5.0

4.5

4.5

Sunday

6.6

12.1

10.6

6.6

4.7

4.5

4.0

4.3

4.9

 

Ask a Librarian (Electronic reference): 93                   Research QuickStart usage:   4,680

 

Total Reference Transactions

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Total

4,606

7,664

3,913

4,137

3,259

3,451

3,811

3,463

3,675

 

 

 

Library Instruction

 

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Sessions

58

87

100

83

147

146

161

126

155

Attendees

1,230

1,691

1,526

1,332

1,991

2,367

2,320

1,637

2,279

 

 

 

              

Introductory

Subject Specific

Number of sessions

87

68

Faculty/Staff attendees

56

47

UMM student attendees

1391

751

Community/high school attendees

3

31

 

Patron Gate Count

 

FY 1996

FY 1997

FY 1998

FY 1999

FY 2000

FY 2001

FY 2002

FY 2003

FY 2004

Number of patrons

254,734

243,548

231,204

223,529

198,749

 

178,331

228,076

224,136

211,314

Average number of patrons per day:         

Sunday                             436                                                    Thursday                         812                                          

Monday                            772                                                    Friday                                605      

Tuesday                           789                                                    Saturday                           301                                                                  

Wednesday                     842                                                   

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

Evaluation:  The library made progress towards realizing goals set forth in its Long Range Plan:

 

        Focus One: To heighten the awareness of services and collection and to encourage utilization of the resources and physical facility, the library staff will pursue resources and connections to improve the image and perception of Briggs Library:  continued to involve community and UMM individuals in the Library Associates organization; offered instruction sessions and services to community groups, such as  the Stevens County Genealogical Society; held focus groups to advise library staff in revamping library web site; evaluated, purchased and promoted new online databases to enhance on site and remote research experiences;  promotion via displays, newspaper articles and meetings disciplines.

         Focus Two To enhance the library's contribution to the overall success of UMM and the effectiveness of library services to both the UMM and regional communities, increased emphasis will be placed on collaboration with other units and organizations: co-sponsored Census Workshop, Instructional Technology Fair, Instructional Technology Institute; Tech Tuesdays, and poetry readings;  played a leadership role in the new initiative to make local 6th grade students aware of the local resources (Briggs Library, Stevens County Historical Society, Morris Public Library, West Central Minnesota Historical Research Center)  to enhance their Minnesota history projects; interacted with the Art Discipline in the annual student art awards for works to enhance the aesthetic appeal of the building; worked with Academic Assistance Center in enhancing research and study skills;

        Focus Three: The library's commitment to instructional excellence and scholarly research will be exemplified by continued and expanded attention to content organization and management: successful migration to a new automation system; government documents collection access via the online catalog improved;  meetings with individual disciplines informed collection selection and management as well as service to faculty; additional online resources.

 

 

 

        Focus Four In recognition of the reality of massive amounts of information facing library users, the library will undertake initiatives to enhance information literacy, research skills and instruction activities across the curriculum: continued participation in the First Year Seminar experience and the continuation of a collaborative relationship with the Faculty Center for Learning and Teaching concerned with faculty use of technology. 

        Focus Five In order to strengthen the crucial role of the library staff in the mission of Briggs Library, more effort will be made in the areas of professional development and staff recognition: continues to be the most problematic section of the long-range plan; concentration on the utilization of the new automation system continued to dominate the limited travel opportunities for FY 04.   

 

Major Changes/Plans for 2004-2005

 

1) Identifying, hiring and orienting three new staff members with receptivity to the new ideas, skills and abilities they bring; current staff responsibilities will be reconfigured to promote efficiency and cross-training.    It will be very difficult to function without David Wuolu and Christine Dent, extremely capable and energetic librarians who left at the end of FY 2004 to pursue other career opportunities.  But we are optimistic that we will be able to recruit new librarians who will also be assets for the library and UMM.

 

2) Learning and implementing a new version of Aleph (scheduled for Jan. 2005)

 

3) Beginning the process of integrating the UMM Archives and West Central Minnesota Historical Research Center with Library services, including providing bibliographic access to those materials.

 

4) Developing an assessment plan for the library with the assistance of a Morris Intern who will devote the year to a literature search, data-gathering, observation and a presentation of findings.

 

5) Expanding the information literacy initiative to include more faculty and courses.

 

7) Continuing to work towards building renovation with Lowell Rasmussen for facility planning and Maddy Maxeiner for fund raising.

 

10) Developing the sixth grade history project initiative exemplifying civic engagement and outreach.

 

11) Acquiring and promoting new online databases (SciFinder Scholar, Academic Source Premier, Communications and Mass Media Complete and others).

 

Recommendations and Concerns

 

1) Just as with other UMM units, inadequate funding continues to dominate concerns.   The continued erosion of purchasing power has a very real negative impact on the contribution the library can make to the overall success of UMM.    Once again in FY04, a sizeable percentage of the books added to the collection were gifts.    We are truly grateful for these valuable additions and for the personal support underpinning the gifts.   However, lean budget years which preclude purchasing literature and scholarship for the current year will result in gaps that will weaken the collection permanently.  Minimal staffing levels compared to our comparison group is another aspect of our funding concerns.   Three open positions going into FY 2005 will be extremely problematic for service levels and will be very stressful for remaining staff members.   The mandate to keep positions open for six months as well as the ongoing reduced contracts for three existing staff members is extremely worrisome for the library.

 

2) Increasing costs of interlibrary loan service at the same time that demand is rising is problematic.  As

more institutions within our region cancel journal subscriptions and are unable to purchase as many monographs, it becomes necessary for us to borrow from libraries with which we do not have reciprocal borrowing arrangements.   Fees are rising dramatically.  We continue to look for ways to stretch ILL dollars, such as the agreement reached in June 2003 with other COPLAC libraries to provide ILL within our group at no cost.

 

3)  The concern of the diminishing ability to support professional development opportunities for the library staff also is a repeat from past annual reports.     Good library service, wise collection management decisions, and up-to-date technological expertise are dependent on a knowledgeable, motivated staff.   The few opportunities for staff to interact beyond our library in the last two years centered on migration to a new automation system.   This need will continue, but it is essential that support be provided to encourage participation in a wide variety of in-state and national conferences.   With new librarians joining the staff in 2005, the need for increased support is even greater.

 

4) Just as we strive to implement improvements in library services and collections, we look to an improvement in the physical facility.   The creation of an Instruction Lab in FY 2004 has been a very positive addition that is much appreciated by students   While we are mindful of the serious fiscal challenges facing both UMM and the U of M system, we are not willing to give up our goal to renovate the library in the near future.   Renovation is necessary for safety and structural concerns and also to meet the needs of today's scholars in the context of rapidly changing research and information environment.

 

 



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