Demand-Driven Success: Designing Your PDA Experiment
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Demand-Driven Success: Designing Your PDA Experiment



Presented by Charles Hillen, Head of Acquisitions & Serials and Glenn Johnson-Grau, Head of Collection Development, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA

Presented by Charles Hillen, Head of Acquisitions & Serials and Glenn Johnson-Grau, Head of Collection Development, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA



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  • For reporting and analysis: disciplines first, based on historical knowledge of active use; number of titles second, based on profiling content as best we could via eBOP; view overall expenses and number of titles purchased.

Demand-Driven Success: Designing Your PDA Experiment Demand-Driven Success: Designing Your PDA Experiment Presentation Transcript

  • Demand-Driven Success:Designing Your PDA Experiment Charles Hillen, Head of Acquisitions & SerialsGlenn Johnson-Grau, Head of Collection Development Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA
  • Research Environment LMU  5800 undergrad  Liberal arts and pre-professional  2000 grad  Largest are Education (M.A. and small Ed.D.) and MBA Library  Historically modest print collections  650,000+ volumes  Substantial budgetary growth in electronic era
  • Administrative Support Dean supportive of move to e-books  Strategic priority for the library  Feeling of languishing progress with e-book transition Recent successful e-journal conversion  Built trust with Dean, faculty, LMU administration  Realized savings with relative ease Met regularly with Dean through planning  Included Dean and Associate Dean in vendor meeting  Unique perspective, questions, and observations Dean regularly updated the CAO and President  “Easy to sell”; makes sense to non-librarians  Demonstrated need shows us as careful stewards
  • Desired Outcomes Agree with the obvious advantages: more “just-in-time” content accessible (logical) Conservative way to profile too-deep or too-superficial content  Compensates for collection weaknesses on the scholarly side  Provides discovery of titles in academic blind spots (pure expression of patron need) Immediate access to highly desirable content Turn-aways, high use, and no use titles will inform collection development policy design For non-subject specialist bibliographers, pressure to learn subtleties in content is lessened
  • Budget Picture No specific fund for the experiment Leveraged existing funds – think about days before approval plans and assimilating that model We committed to two weeks, come what may, based on profiling process (selected representative high-use subject areas) Process for management is more important than fiscal conditions
  • Choosing a Vendor Existing ebrary Academic Complete subscription since 2006. Also had established relationships with NetLibrary, Gale, Oxford, ASP, and others. Of all other platforms for e-book use, ebrary’s well regarded by Librarians on staff. Purchase trigger model weighed and considered by Dean and Library’s Management Council. Perceived as conservative and generous. License already in place. Only required an addendum to initiate profiling.
  • Decision Criteria for Profiling Caps Chose seven busiest, most populous disciplines across all schools:  Biology  Business  Communication Studies  Philosophy  Political Science  Sociology  Theological Studies Research potential considered to be the most intensive based on instruction class offerings, program size, and interdisciplinary relevance. Considered need for both current and historical research interests. Program distribution included professional, science, social science and humanities.
  • Profiling Process Spent approximately 12-15 hours over two weeks. In eBOP, used DDA eligible and subject term parameters to gather titles in each discipline. Obvious concern areas culled:  Reference (handbooks, directories, encyclopedias, dictionaries, etc.)  Identifiable popular (including How-tos)  Certain publishers (SparkNotes and others as discovered)  Price caps set by discipline (usually $150, but $200 for bio) No way to look at every title; exhausted concerns and stopped. Ended up with approximately 26,500 titles. Received weekly notification with spreadsheet via e-mail.
  • Records – Load Configuring Because of the existing vendor relationship, staff loaded the bibliographic records according to established procedures.  A separate file was available for each discipline profiled  Discipline area = fund code In order to identify the records within the catalog, we used our ILS global update function to add a MARC 9xx utility field: 941 $aebrary$bDDA$dyyyymmdd$ffund code$ntest
  • Monitor Expenses and Progress Reviewed ebrary’s weekly reports Addressed missed concerns as the experiment proceeded (weak titles, non-scholarly) Modest, steady and consistent purchasing each week for over six months. (avg. 13/wk) Surprises  Retrospective titles purchased often  Patrons gravitated toward sound scholarly content  Theology titles 2nd highest number of purchases!  Record enrichment concerns
  • Invoicing Workflows Invoices arrive weekly, attached to e-mail. Post-processing required:  Order record configuration (template)  Link to the ERM license record via item record (template)  Bibliographic record control data edited Pay by credit card using e-mail template. Handled by ER Assistant during the test.
  • Reporting (design) Ebrary sends Excel reports weekly. Easy to create a pivot table. Excellent tool to focus the discussion between Administration and Collection Development. Easy to see and tally accesses, triggers, “turn-aways,” etc. Provides new perspective on users, their needs, research content, etc. Shows immediacy of use that cannot be obtained by historical analysis of circulation.
  • Success! Why? Budget lived through it. Purchased desirable academic titles. Learned that patrons want e-books in a fuller range of content than is provided by Academic Complete. A lot of the titles were likely to have been missed in print collecting methods. Discovery of content through full-text searching increases chances of meeting research needs. The Dean was happy. 
  • Next Steps We are comfortable with overlap of print and electronic. We need time to figure out where duplication is occurring and determine the e-only tipping point. Over time, evaluate the nature of collecting from metadata vs. full-text review…
  • Next Steps (cont’d)Examples we would have and would not have bought in print History of Chinese Philosophy (Routledge)  Owned in print also; copy currently checked out.  Core subject matter for curriculum. Mr. & Mrs. Grassroots: How Barack Obama, Two Bookstore Owners, and 300 Volunteers Did It  Not scholarly; journalistic narrative.  Vendor’s selection tool metadata is very minimal.  or other source for information is not persuasive.  Cheaper to buy than to ILL. Advances in Parasitology, Volume 67 : Reflections on a Century of Malaria Biochemistry  Scholarly, but more esoteric than would normally be selected.  Expensive ($203.00). Would have been low priority at best.  Advances in Parasitology, Volume 69 was used but not triggered. Shows that use is not casual.
  • Next Steps (cont’d) YBP/ebrary integration of DDA-eligible titles into print approval plan profiling  Controlling subsequent editions.  Changed Reference titles to slip-only.  Single User Purchase Option preferred.  All publication dates included. Involve liaisons/bibliographers  DDA eligible titles available for selection.  Training/discussion about e-preferred content.
  • Thank you! Questions? Charles Hillen ~ Glenn Johnson-Grau ~