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 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. Amazon.com 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.