PaLA2010 Annual Cultivating Technical Services


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Presentation at PaLA 2010 in Lancaster, PA for the Technical Services Roundtable, October 26, 2010

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  • E-journals, databases, reference sources, dissertations, E-books, hidden collections, Institutional Repository collections, streaming video, digital collections, locally hosted files
    Print resources, weeding, database maintenance
    RDA, FRBR, next generation catalogs and replacements for integrated library systems
    WorldCat Local
    Blurring as formats blur
  • Formats blending
  • Online training classes, webinars, self-paced tutorials, wiki for documentation , post-it sessions
    Use of interns ; some outsourcing – authority control, record sets, some comes back to us –dvds, videos

  • 16,740 volumes weeded in 2009/2010, primarily print journal runs we have online coverage for; PALCI cooperative storage
  • Final binds
  • The one constant is change
    Purchase items requested often; adding links for open source electronic
  • Reclass project, print recon work
  • The previous slide outlined what I’ll discuss about our work processes. Judy provided an overview of our entire department but I’ll be focusing on our work processes in cataloging to provide somewhat of a case study of how our department has been affected by change. One primary factor that has affected our work processes in cataloging, as well as other areas, has been the increase in the cataloging of resources accessible online. This chart shows that increase over the past 15 years, in segments of five years.

    As an aside, I should note that this is just the cataloging of these resources, as we also have online access to other resources that are not cataloged yet our department does manage access to such resources through tools such as SFX (for example, we do not catalog all titles available through ProQuest). Our last official count of the number of resources managed through SFX was from June of 2009, with the count being 32,124.

    You can see the biggest jump has been with government documents, followed by electronic books (and the figure for the most recent five years doesn’t even include the 46,313 records that were added earlier this year for our new subscription to ebrary). We continue to see an increase in electronic journals, even after the massive additions that were made in the late 90s and early 2000s to address new subscriptions to aggregate databases. And our electronic conferences have exploded as small, specialized associations that don’t have publications as their primary mission forge their way into online publishing.
  • The first project I’d like to talk about is the cataloging of our theses and dissertations. At Lehigh, all cataloging is done within Technical Services, with some exceptions, one of those being that the cataloging of items in Special Collections is done by the Special Collections staff. In the past, our theses and dissertations were cataloged by our Archives and Special Collections Librarian, one title at a time. As necessary, he would seek additional help from the Technical Services Team Leader and the Catalog Librarian.

    But, in 2007, we worked with ProQuest to begin acquiring records from them. Initially, they provided a load of almost 900 records, which included an 856 field to link to the full text of our dissertations, back to 1997.
  • Minor editing = add 655 Electronic books. Genre heading; add 710 ebrary, Inc.; add 856 $z Available to Lehigh users; add 949 call number/holdings statement; add 978 (experiment to capture statistics, based on Rutgers University’s use of the 978)
  • Since the initial load of 46,313 in April, ebrary record loads have become part of the routine. 4,161 records have been loaded since then, in batches ranges from 2 to just under 2,000. Batches are normally done on a monthly basis but our Collection Development librarians also make selections on a title-by-title basis.
  • In 2008, our Collection Development librarians established an Ebook Committee and, during their work, the subject of access arose. They connected with the Technical Services department regarding our practices with ebooks and we reviewed our application of the genre heading “Electronic books”.

    We decided to begin applying this term, to empower searching for such materials and so, based on our specifications, our Systems staff pulled records from our system that we then edited with MarcEdit to ensure uniform application of that term to records already in our system. This enabled a canned search for electronic books, developed by our Digital Library team, as well as for general searching in our catalog.
  • We (that is, me and our intern, Phil Hewitt) used a canned report in our ILS to extract approximately 7,500 MARC records which we then edited in MarcEdit. We had a base URL with which to start but did some creative editing by duplicating and dicing of the series statement to capture the volume number, which was then merged with the base URL in the 856. We were then able to overlay the records and, voila!, had our URL.
  • We finally broke from referring to our Systems staff or using a canned ILS report and, instead, extracted 657 records rom our catalog, using MarcEdit’s Z39.50 server. The records were pulled using the base URL that is in bold, above the graphic. The records were manipulated a bit to put them into Excel in order to filter them for those under the Annals… series. This left 364 records remaining. The 260 and 440/830 fields were duplicated and edited to merge with the new base URL that you can see in the graphic. They were then loaded back into the system to overlay the records with the old URL.
  • Much of the work I’ve mentioned has heavily involved use of Terry Reese’s wonderful tool, MarcEdit. I’m just beginning to scratch the surface of using MarcEdit’s capabilities.

    I’ve planned a series of 16 courses through WebJunction that I hope will help me develop a greater skill set to use MarcEdit, and other tools, more fully. If you don’t know about WebJunction, go to to see their list of self-paced courses on a variety of topics, many or all of which are $5.00 per course, thanks to Commonwealth Libraries.

    There are other tools out there, including one recently mentioned on Marshall Breeding’s Library Technology Guides. I haven’t looked into this yet—has anyone used this?

    One more thing about MarcEdit—I’m wondering if it would be desirable to have a session at next year’s annual meeting on MarcEdit. Is there any interest in that? And, if you would be willing to co-present, I’d love to hear from you. I think it might be helpful to have a number of people provide detailed presentations on how they’ve used MarcEdit, something that attendees can learn about and take back home to implement.
  • A recent issue that has arisen for us a number of times concerns files that we cannot access remotely. A vendor will supply us with files, mostly PDFs, that we’ve purchased but does not provide remote access. So providing online access is up to us. Our first, and temporary, attempt was to put them on my individual webserver space.

    But, as we’re developing our IR, we decided to make this part of the development and we’re now beginning to load the files into CONTENTdm. In the case you see here, we received almost 100 PDFs for musical scores. There were no records for them in WorldCat so a student is creating the metadata, after we developed guidelines, consulting Dublin Core standards and Music Library Association recommendations.

    Once the metadata is complete, it will be exported, converted into MARC using MarcEdit, and then loaded into our catalog, with referring URLs. We do have MARC records for other files and will do the opposite, exporting the records from our system, running them through MarcEdit to convert into Dublin Core, and then putting that metadata into CONTENTdm as a base for the PDFs.

    These files are for Lehigh access only (our users can access them off-campus, with their Lehigh login; visitors can access them on campus).
  • And, in the search for new solutions, I should mention our involvement with the Kuali OLE Project.
  • PaLA2010 Annual Cultivating Technical Services

    1. 1. CULTIVATING TECHNICAL SERVICES Pruning and Growing for the Future Judy McNally Technical Services Team Leader Doreen Herold Catalog Librarian LEHIGH UNIVERSITY October 26, 2010
    2. 2. Contents • Challenges • Lehigh’s Technical Services Team • Our Work Processes • The Search for New Solutions • Summary • Questions/Comments/ Conversation
    3. 3. Challenges • Trends – Acquiring fewer print publications – Explosion of online/digital resources – Keeping up with critical ongoing duties – Dealing with reduced budgets and staffing levels – Preparing for future changes – Blurring of the lines between traditional staffing units – The one CONSTANT is CHANGE
    4. 4. Challenges • Criticisms of traditional procedures – One-by-one adding/editing of records – Access vs. the perfect record – Reliance on MARC vs. other metadata standards – Continuing to check-in print periodicals – Continuing to bind and house print journals
    5. 5. Challenges – Outdated OPACs and technologies • Competing with the popularity and power of search engines • Limited ability to link out to the web and make use of Web2.0 technologies – Staff and data silos HOW DO WE SORT THIS ALL OUT? WHAT DO WE PRUNE? WHAT DO WE CULTIVATE?
    6. 6. Technical Services at Lehigh • Online catalog continues to be valued by Collection Management Librarians • Shifting responsibilities and workflows • Cross-training and staff development • Outsourcing • Batch Processing
    7. 7. Technical Services Team • Traditional Team units – Serials/Bindery, Cataloging, Acquisitions, Government Documents – Staff members welcome change, learning new skills and collaborating – Recognizing individual strengths and talents and building on them
    8. 8. Technical Services Team • Serials – Shift from print to electronic – Serials/Cataloging Assistants • Decline of check-in duties • Transition to work with electronic formats, copy cataloging, inventory and deaccession projects • Projects originating from Collection Management, Special Collections, Access Services, Government Documents
    9. 9. Technical Services Team • Serials (cont.) – Bindery Assistant • Declining bindery duties • Transition to work in Remote Storage Facility – Back-up staffing for Access Services Team – Mending duties – Projects for Special Collections
    10. 10. Technical Services Team • Serials (cont.) – Senior Serials Cataloging Assistant • All electronic journal copy cataloging (print also) – New subscriptions, JSTOR titles, title changes, holdings information, SFX issues • Resolving electronic journal access problems for Collection Management Librarians, Help Desk and ILL staff (and our clients) • Collaborates with Senior Serials Acquisitions Assistant; Resource person for Serials staff
    11. 11. xISSN History Visualization Tool (Web service)
    12. 12. Technical Services Team • Serials and Acquisitions – Senior Serials Acquisitions Assistant • Vendor/publisher/aggregator issues, licensing issues, backfiles, changes to packages, moving from print to online • Resolving access problems • Monograph Acquisitions – Exploring link with ILL – Ordering electronic books, PDFs
    13. 13. Technical Services Team • Government Documents – Government Documents and Metadata Coordinator • Shift towards online Government Documents and training of Serials/Cataloging Assistants • Transition into split position, on Technical Services and Library Technology Team (working on Digital Projects)
    14. 14. Technical Services Team • Monograph cataloging – Decline in amount of new print material • 1998/1999: 13,116 titles, 19,203 volumes added • 2008/2009: 7,299 titles, 9,155 volumes added – Expanding into electronic resource cataloging, Special Collections projects, metadata work for Institutional Repository – Hidden collections
    15. 15. Our Work Processes • Increased batch cataloging – ETDs (from original to batch) – From print to print+online to online only (LNCS, et al.; one by one to batch) – New subscriptions (ebrary) – DB maintenance (Z39.50)
    16. 16. Increase in Cataloging of Online Materials 2991 3484 5939 12 183 35721581 1836 2507 396 651 390 1429 28483 51319 0 10000 20000 30000 40000 50000 60000 1995-2000 2000-2005 2005-2010 Electronic book Electronic conference Electronic journal Electronic resource Government documents
    17. 17. ETDs The Old: •Original cataloging by Archives and Special Collections Librarian, with assistance by Technical Services Team Leader and Catalog Librarian The New: •Records acquired from ProQuest •Edited locally, using MarcEdit, by Cataloging Assistant with additional help from Technical Services Assistant
    18. 18. From Print to Print+Online to Online Only “As you've probably noticed, the MRS proceedings site is a nightmare. The system makes sense to the members (I guess...) but it's pretty hard to navigate if you're new to the site. Links in ASA are a big help (gee, catalogs do perform a function).” Sharon Siegler Lehigh University’s Engineering Librarian
    19. 19. From Print to Print+Online to Online Only • Print – One-by-one cataloging • Print & Electronic – One-by-one cataloging – Verifying (and sometimes finding) URL • Electronic ONLY – Developing search strategies for WorldCat – Batch searching by OCLC number from Springer – WorldCat Collection Sets (free from Springer!)
    20. 20. New Subscriptions “The emphasis on perfection, on creating the perfect bibliographic record, which was a hallmark of technical services for decades, is being replaced by a model that places a higher value on access to information rather than on the information itself.” Pamela Bluh Associate Director for Technical Services and Administration University of Maryland School of Law Making Waves: Technical Services, Past, Present, and Future
    21. 21. New Subscriptions • 46,313 GOOD vendor records • Minor editing in MarcEdit • Loaded in 12 minutes (a “slow news day” for the server)
    22. 22. New Subscriptions
    23. 23. Database Maintenance Adding a genre heading: “Electronic books”
    24. 24. Database Maintenance Adding URLs: Early American Imprints • 37,500 records for our microform/electronic access to Early American Imprints, series 1 (the Evans set)… • …but 7,500 are missing URLs • MarcEdit to the rescue!
    25. 25. Database Maintenance Updating URLs: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences From to
    26. 26. The Search for New Solutions • Editing records • Locally-hosted files • OLE
    27. 27. The Search for New Solutions Editing Records
    28. 28. The Search for New Solutions Locally-Hosted Files
    29. 29. The Search for New Solutions Kuali OLE
    30. 30. Bibliography (2010, March). Public Perception. American Libraries, 41(3), 24. Ambaum, G., & Barnes, B. (2010, October 11). Unshelved, Bluh, P. (2008, October 17). Making Waves: Technical Services, Past, Present, and Future. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Potomac Technical Processing Librarians, Bowie, MD. Paper retrieved from &context=fac_pubs Eden, B.L. (2010). The New User Environment: The End of Technical Services? Information Technology and Libraries, 29(2), 93-100. Fessler, V. (2007). The Future of Technical Services (It's Not the Technical Services It Was). Library Administration & Management, 21(3), 139-155. Godin, S. (2010, January 9). The Future of the Library. Seth’s Blog, McLeod, S. (2009, November 3). 10 Questions About Books, Libraries, Librarians, and Schools. Education Week LeaderTalk Blog, LeaderTalk
    31. 31. THANK YOU FOR JOINING US! Judy McNally Doreen Herold
    32. 32. Questions/Comments/Conversation Suggested starters: • How does your own technical services department manage change, as affected by resource format (print to electronic), budgets, etc.? • Has your serials check-in changed? Doing more or less? Have you stopped checking-in? Do you “check-in” electronic issues? How are other serials procedures changing and being affected? Bindery? Weeding? • What do you outsource? What are the pros and cons of your experience? • How are libraries implementing some of the new cataloging standards (RDA, other metadata schemas)? • What staff changes are you seeing and how are you managing them? Staff decreases/increases? Cross-training? Moving to/collaborating with other departments? • How do you manage the cataloging of resources, especially standing order resources, that were print but are now online?
    33. 33. pa-la-2010-annual-cultivating- technical-services