In 2016, the speakers embarked upon a multi-institutional project to compare print and e-book usage across four Southern California institutions (Claremont Colleges Library, Loyola Marymount University, Pepperdine University, and University of Southern California). The preliminary results of this comparative usage analysis, presented as a poster session at the Charleston Conference, revealed that print books in certain art and architecture classes and subclasses are used over e-books, suggesting “leanings” in format preferences of users.
While this collaborative research project provided provocative insights into art and architecture e-book usage, it also raised important research methods questions related to collaborative analysis using multiple library systems in areas like data extraction and normalization. Usage reports for electronic resources have seen a high degree of standardization following the development of the COUNTER Code of Practice, but no such standard exists for integrated library systems (ILS) reports. Individual librarians who are familiar with the idiosyncrasies of their own ILS reports may be able to overcome system-specific obstacles, but it becomes much more difficult to do so when librarians using different ILSs collaborate on a project combining these reports.
At this lively lunch, four librarians from four different institutions will lead a discussion focusing on the complexities of the research process rather than the outcomes, and will engage attendees with the following questions:
● Under what circumstances would a research project benefit from collaboration between institutions? When does collaboration hinder or complicate the research project?
● What challenges and opportunities have attendees encountered when doing multi-institutional research?
● What challenges do ILSs pose as data collection and extraction systems in collaborative assessment projects?
● What solutions are needed to improve multi-institutional collaboration?
Attendees will leave with a firm grasp of considerations that need to be addressed at the start of a collaborative multi-institutional, multi-ILS assessment project.
Dickerson, M., Hazlitt, J., Muglia, C. and Whitt, J. (2017, November). Choose Your Own Adventure : A Thrilling Journey of Collaborative Collection Assessment. Presentation at Charleston Library Conference, Charleston, SC.
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