Re: Journal evaluation Peter Picerno 28 Aug 2002 14:14 UTC

In a previous position I held we did an annual review of all serials titles
for each department based on use (this was for print titles in a basically
non-circulating collection) and use in relation to cost. Since it was a
place where there was a less-than-luxurious materials budget, it was
important to communicate to the faculties the need for being vigilant about
subscriptions. Each year, the acquisition of new titles was balanced against
the retention of old titles and decisions were made on the basis of how much
the department's fund allocation was and how that impacted not only their
journal titles but also their monograph and other library materials
acquisition funds. This was not necessarily a quick and easy process but
what it did was to bring the realities of materials acquisitions of all
types to the patrons who sometimes cried out the loudest and criticized the
most. When the 'big picture' was communicated, most of the time there was at
least acceptance of the decisions which needed to be made and why, and
sometimes the proverbial 'light' would go on in people's heads and they'd
see that more funding was necessary (and, of course, that was the time to
launch into the sermon about "library funding will only come when YOU, the
faculty, make your library needs known to the higher administration.") As a
result, I was often invited to departmental meetings (and only on a few
occasions did I feel I needed to wear a bullet-proof vest) along with
library liasons for that department, and basically, by involving faculty
members in the process, at least some understanding of the process was
communicated and I like to think that at least there was complicity in
decision making rather than a we-versus-them atmosphere. The bottom line, I
think, is to agree on an evaluation process and a decision making process in
concert with the patrons.

Peter V. Picerno

-----Original Message-----
From: SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum
[mailto:SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU]On Behalf Of Skwor, Jeanette
Sent: Wednesday, August 28, 2002 9:33 AM
Subject: Re: Journal evaluation

***Cofrin Library went through a form of this process, and actually still
uses it on an as-needed basis.  Our collection development librarian gave
each department a list of journals pertinent to their discipline, and the
costs, and let them decide if they want to keep those or drop some and add
others, keeping within the allotted budget.

***When a request comes in to order a new title, the same process is put in

Jeanette L. Skwor
Serials Dept.
Cofrin Library
University of Wisconsin - Green Bay
Green Bay, WI 54311-7001
(920) 465-2670

-----Original Message-----
From: Schleper, Susan P. [mailto:spschleper@STCLOUDSTATE.EDU]
Sent: Tuesday, August 27, 2002 11:41 AM
Subject: Journal evaluation

To Serialst:

As budgets shrink and journal prices rise - St. Cloud State University =
is trying to reconfigure how we access the journals we need to support =
the curriculum here.  One of the things that I am hoping to do is survey =
or contact in some way each of the colleges at our university to get =
some kind of feedback about what is useful to our faculty and what kind =
of compromises or adjustments they are willing to make so that our =
dollars will stretch further.

Has anyone on the list done this type of survey or serials evaluation?  =
We hope to make it an annual thing - taking one college (we have 5 =
academic colleges) each year and evaluating how we are doing with =
getting the journals they need.

As of now, I plan to develop a survey to get some idea of how faculty =
perceive the services in the serials dept. and accompany that with an =
"information packet" that would actually be an analysis of journals we =
get in print with information on their electronic counterpart.  One of =
the motivations for this is that our electronic holdings are used many =
time more than our print journals.  In addition, we spend about 3 times =
as much on print journals (about 1500 titles) as we do on electronic =
titles (about 15,000 titles). =20

I appreciate any feedback I can get from the list. =20

Susan Schleper
Serials Librarian
St. Cloud State University, MN