Reports from Working Groups

Paul Butler (Web Committee) said that all of the content on our home page that we intend to keep has successfully migrated to the new web page, which should be up by the start of the new semester.  He has asked Cathy Derecki a few questions, and she has responded to them.  The Web Committee will meet tomorrow, December 16.

Renee (Weeding Committee) said faculty members have until December 20th to go through the R’s that have been weeded.  Committee members have placed slips in the Q’s (through the QC’s) and she will soon notify the appropriate faculty members.

Jack (Assessment Committee) said that the committee has been addressing the questions asked in the ACRL Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. Rosemary has used this information as she works on an evaluation of the UMW Libraries.  The committee members met yesterday and soon they will be looking at the library websites and catalogs of UMW’s COPLAC and aspirant institutions.  Questions they will ask themselves include: “Does this library do something that we may want to undertake?”  “On the other hand, do we do things that other libraries fail to do?” “How does our catalog compare with other library catalogs?”

Some years ago UMW’s Department of Institutional Research (now Institutional Analysis and Effectiveness) distributed “comment cards” in all of the academic buildings.  Simpson Library’s patrons occasionally filled out the cards, which Beth distributed at staff meetings.  The cards are no longer used, but the concept may be adopted by the Assessment Committee.  Christie suggested that an online form could be devised, and Paul said that the new website is particularly suitable for online forms.

An EBSCO representative recently met with interested staff members from both libraries and answered questions while she demonstrated her company’s discovery system.  Donna (Discovery Systems Committee) said that the committee also had a conference call with the Proquest Summon representative. Committee and libraries staff members are comparing both systems and reading comments from listservs.  If the libraries decide to purchase a discovery system, Rosemary will make a budget request.

Convergence Center Update

Rosemary said that the Convergence Center Committee has been discussing a number of items, including doors.  She added that planning and building details are “on track.”  She remarked that she, Carolyn, Paul Boger, and Jack recently went to the University of Virginia so they could talk to staff members at the “Scholars’ Lab,” which is UVA’s learning commons.  She said that administrators at the Scholars’ Lab are doing a great deal to support projects in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), a cross-disciplinary field that we could also promote here.  Renee said that the digital Sanborn Maps are now available in a geo-referenced version.   Donna has contacted the Historic Preservation Department about their potential interest in this enhanced product.  Renee also mentioned that the USGS is now making their historical topographic maps available in a high-resolution “geoPDF” format.

VTLS and Chamo

Rosemary said that she will have a VTLS representative make a site visit to study our catalog and see how both we and VTLS can make improvements.  We are interested in upgrading to the new Chamo interface, which will change only what patrons will see while using the catalog (that is, nothing will change in the “back” or “staff” side of the catalog).  As we upgrade, she would like to see ways we can make the catalog work better for us.  We have money from the Pharos coin tower / printing, and the Chamo interface would be a good use of these funds.

Next Semester

Rosemary said that UMW will have a shortfall of roughly $2,000,000.  She does not know what that will mean for the institution.  Will positions be frozen?  Will line items be removed from budgets?  Simpson will have one opening, as Beth will retire on March 1.  Rosemary asked the Provost if we will be able to have a search, but he couldn’t say one way or the other.


Jean said that books from the Education Department are coming in.  These are identified by the blue labels over the call numbers and will be shelved behind the atlas case on Simpson’s first floor.  The Education Department, however, is not sending over all of its books but is keeping some of them.  If, however, the donated works are supposed to represent a textbook repository for Education majors, we need to have a comprehensive collection.  (Right now, for example, we have single volumes from multi-volume sets.)

Donna said that 1 reel of the Bullet has gone to Lyrasis for digitization.  If / when the resulting product has been approved, more reels will be delivered.

Rosemary said that the UMW Libraries’ Digital Repository Committee will soon be reactivated.

Paul Boger said that he and his staff are going through their books at the Stafford Library and stamping ones in Resources for College Libraries with an “RCL” stamp.  Months ago members of the Spacing Planning Committee used large white pages on an easel to elicit feedback from students.  Paul said that they have been doing something similar at the Stafford Campus.  Although the comments are few, they are all positive (students like the library, the staff is helpful, and it’s a quiet, comfortable place to study).

Wanda suggested that we move some of the chairs in the coffee shop area as they interfere with foot traffic a bit.  It was noted that that area is frequently full of students and we might want to conduct surveys / ask questions concerning this space.  For example, “How do you like the coffee shop area?”  “What would you like us to add?”

Renee said that some of the DVDs won’t play after they have circulated for just three times (though of course we don’t know how they were handled before we acquired them).  There are commercial products that “revitalize” DVDs.  Netflix does not offer accounts for libraries.

Donna said that circulation numbers have doubled for the Popular Reading collection.  She said that the location for the books certainly helps, as the volumes are now more visible to students.

Tim said that a new printer has been ordered for the microfilm / microfiche machines.