University of Oregon Libraries Annual Report, FY 2010-11

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Title: University of Oregon Libraries Annual Report, FY 2010-11
Author: University of Oregon. Libraries. Assessment Team; Slight-Gibney, Nancy; Willey, Laura L.; Munro, Karen; Fowler, David C.; Thompson, Michael
Abstract: FY 2011 included positive adjustments, both recurring and non-recurring, to the UO Libraries’ budget. The partial recovery of the market helped to restore the value of the UO Libraries’ endowment. Although the UO still falls well below the public AAU mean in total expenditures, we are closer to the mean in expenditures per student. Of most concern to the provost has been the university’s investment in the library as a percentage of total university expenditures. That percentage has declined from approximately 6.7% in FY 2005 to 5% in FY 2011 (excluding carry forwards). This concern has been partially addressed with another recurring investment for operations beginning in FY 2012. The nature of expenditures continues to illustrate the shift from print to electronic. Investments in both digital content and technology infrastructure continue to increase, while actual collection purchases, i.e. print, continue to decline. This shift follows the pattern of other research libraries. In several focus groups conducted during FY 2011, faculty strongly supported this shift, but remained concerned about their increasing reliance on interlibrary loan services. Usage of library collections and services showed some big swings in FY 2011. Not surprisingly, circulation of print resources has continued to decline while use in digital collections increased. A large decline in the use of electronic reserve materials is due to the incorporation of these resources into the course management system (Blackboard™), which the library also supports. The stand-alone e-reserve service will be phased out in FY 2012. Declines in traditional reference interactions are also a trend in research libraries. Although we have done no qualitative research as to why this is happening, the trend likely reflects the ease of finding factual information online. Anecdotally, reference inquires have dropped in number but become more complex in nature. Faculty continue to express concern about their students’ ability to do substantive research, and to evaluate the authenticity of information. This concern may be one factor in large increase in the library’s instructional program. Beyond the numbers, FY 2011 accomplishments include finalizing a new strategic plan; incorporating the Wired Humanities Projects (previously part of the College of Arts and Sciences); a collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences and Architecture and Allied Arts to create the Oregon Folklife Network which is located in the Knight Library; growth in the number of grants we are managing ourselves or in collaboration with UO faculty; the completion of the new Math Library as part of the Fenton Hall renovation; collaborations with faculty to publish two online open access journals; completion of the Creative Musicians Workstations project; and participation in the Western Regional Storage Trust, or the WEST Archive - a Mellon-funded project with the University of California to collectively manage and archive print journals. Last year was further evidence that the research library is in the process of redefining its functions within the academy. While traditional collections remain very important to the mission of the university, the efficiencies gained from a digital environment have opened up new opportunities for the library to support the teaching, learning, and research enterprise.
Description: 92 p.
Date: 2011-11

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