Who's afraid of the future


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  • Good morning (afternoon). It's such a pleasure to be here today and talk to you about the role of technical services in today's academic libraries. Technical services could be the area of the library that has been most affected by technology in recent years; it certainly has been at the forefront of employing technology to function more effectively. Many in the library industry wonder if new technology will mean the end of technical services as we know it. Bradford Eden (Associate Librarian for Technical Services & Scholarly Communications at UC-Santa Barbara) says "Google is going to become the library of the world". Google gives the user LOTS of information, fast, and easy. How can we compete with that? This directly effects library technical services, because we are the ones who select the resources, provide the resources, organize them and make them available. I think library technical services IS evolving; and that this evolution will make this functional area even more relevant and necessary in the years to come. Let's take a look at what technical services does...
  • The materials are changing, but these core functions remain.
  • However we feel about it, information and how we access it, is changing. In 2002, average ARL library spent 19.6% of it's library budget on electronic resources. In 2008, it was 51%. We've had ejournals for awhile now. Even ebooks are old hat to academic libraries and they’ve gone mainstream with the rising popularity of eBook readers such as the Nook and the Kindle. The more students use them, the more they will want them.
  • Acquisitions is another area where libraries have long taken advantage of technology to increase efficiency. PDA - allows patrons to identify and select electronically-available materials which the library purchases. Different vendors have different methods to accomplish the process, but it is usually seamless in the eyes of the patron. Possible issues: controlling spending, uneven collection development. Replaces "just-in-case" collections with "just-in-time"
  • Prepare items for use. Catalog – main entry-point to access collection; changes we see revolve around the catalog You wouldn't believe the amount of time it takes to catalog a book; there are LOTS of arcane rules and minutiae. 3 major trends: Simplify catalog/cataloging Library data made discoverable Automate the ordinary, spend resources on the unique (B. Eden) Shared cataloging, networked catalogs Metadata: data about data: the card catalog. Describes
  • Shift in mission/attitude from one to the other. Catalog has been referred to as a resource by librarians for librarians. Needs of users, NOT the need of librarians.
  • One place to access everything (Google) Non-traditional information about materials (tables of contents, cover art) Full-text availability Intelligent assistance (autocorrect, relevancy ranking, faceted searching, customization services) Communication and collaboration Multiple formats available (electronic and print) Remote access (to get resources without actually visiting the library) Most undergrads start research w/Google, not the library. If we want to compete, we need to offer, not just better information (which we have) but better means to access that information – this is at the heart of many of the changes we are seeing in libraries.
  • a. Single search interface – unified search, discovery services b. Intelligent assistance - autocorrect, relevance ranking, commentary from users (reviews) c. Communication and collaboration - social media, tagging, crowdsourcing, Sharing on FB e. Remote access, mobile access – PCPL example: search the catalog, sign in to account, reserve materials
  • The Future of technical services 1. Change from acquisition of content to facilitating user’s discovery of content (Gibbons) "...most libraries will need to move away from ownership in favor of access or information as a service " (McElfresh, Good Things, 4) 2. Less external content, more care and distribution of locally created content (IRs) "We make ourselves viable in this new environment by bringing to light all of our unique resources not available in Google" (Eden, Trans ., 9) "Google is going to become the library of the world" (Eden). 3. Fewer silos, more integration of resources and services 4. Bye-bye local catalogs (networked instead) 6. User interaction (PDA)/user added data (tagging, crowdsourcing, reviews)
  • Who's afraid of the future

    1. 1. The Evolution of Technical Services in the 21st Century Academic Library Dorothy Hemmo, Librarian Eureka College May 25, 2012
    2. 2. IdentifySelectAcquireOrganizePrepare...mostly print materials (books and periodicals)
    3. 3. Collection Development •From print to digital
    4. 4. Acquisitions  Patron Driven Acquisition (PDA)
    5. 5. Cataloging
    6. 6. To provide access to resourcesANDTo meet the needs of users
    7. 7. • Single interface• Intelligent assistance• Communication and collaboration• Remote access/Mobile access
    8. 8. • "Acquisition of content" changes to "facilitating discovery of content" o Less ownership, more licensing• Care & distribution of locally created content o Digitization, Institutional repositories• More integration of resources and services o The single search interface• User interaction/user added data o Tagging, user reviews, PDA
    9. 9. ARL. (2003). ARL supplementary statistics 2001-2002. Retrieved from http://www.libqual.org/documents/admin/2012/ARL_Stats/2001-02sup.pdfARL. (2009). ARL statistics 2007-2008. Retrieved from http://www.arl.org/bm~doc/arlstat08.pdfCalhoun, K. (2006). The changing nature of the catalog and its integration with other discovery tools. Final Report. Library of Congress. Retrieved from http://www.loc.gov/catdir/calhoun-report- final.pdfHead, A. J. & Eisenberg, M. B. (2010). Project Information Literacy progress report: Truth be told. Retrieved from http://projectinfolit.org/pdfs/PIL_Fall2010_Survey_FullReport1.pdfEden, B. L. (2010). The new user environment: The end of technical services? Information Technology and Libraries, 29(2), 93-100. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/325065718? accountid=131689
    10. 10. Evans, G. E., Intner, S. S. & Weihs, J. (2002). Introduction to technical services. Greenwood Village, CO : Libraries Unlimited.McElfresh, L. K. (2009). 21st century collection management and the small college library. Technicalities, 29(5), 4-6. http://search.proquest.com/docview/195008380?accountid=131689Medeiros, N. (2011). Transformation: Next generation technical services at the University of California libraries. OCLC Systems and Services, 27(1), 6-9. doi:10.1108/10650751111106500Rainie, L. (2012). Learning in the digital age. Keynote, 21st Annual Minitex ILL Conference. Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/Presentations/2012/May/Learning-in-the-digital-age.aspxRuschoff, C. (2007). Competencies for 21st century technical services. Technicalities, 27(6), 1-16. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/195006633?accountid=131689
    11. 11. Thank you!Dorothy HemmoTucson, Arizonadhemmo@yahoo.com