ACRL

College & Research Libraries News

Library and information science collections

By Margaret E. Galloway Associate Director of Libraries North Texas State University

A survey on financing, housing, and staffing of collections for Schools of Library and Information Sciences.

In the spring of 1986, a survey questionnaire was prepared and mailed to the 56 ALA-accredited library schools in the United States. The purpose of this survey was to identify the source of financing for and the location of the collection which served each accredited library school. A survey with this particular emphasis has not been reported in the literature for a number of years.

Fifty of the 56 questionnaires (89%) were completed and returned; of the returned questionnaires, 49 could be evaluated as planned. The questionnaire was comprised of four major questions which examined the source of funding, housing, and servicing of the library school collection. Responses to the four questions are reported below. All 49 respondents answered the initial two questions; 38 answered the third question; and 29 answered the fourth question. Additionally, 20 respondents provided other written information in order to clarify or expand upon one or more of their answers.

Question one asked how the school of library and information sciences collection was funded. Fortyone respondents indicated that the associated main library budget was the chief source of funding. Eight others indicated that they were funded primarily from the departmental and/or school budgets. None of the respondents indicated significant outside sources of funding.

Question two asked for the location of the library science collection. The main library was the indicated collection site for 34 of the respondents, while 12 respondents indicated that their collections were located in departmental or school environments. Three others reported that their collections were housed in branch libraries not tied to the library and information sciences school and also outside the main library collection.

Question three, an amplification of certain answers to question two, asked whether those collections housed in the main library were integrated into the main collection. Twenty-five respondents reported that the library science collection was integrated into the main library or some part of the main collection. Thirteen indicated that the collection was maintained as a separate unit within the main library.

Question four asked how many full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) worked with the library science collection, with regard to its development, reserves, reference, circulation, and other associated activities. The answers to this question ranged from a high of eight FTEs to a low of one half-time person. Most responses fell in a range of 1.5 to 2.5 FTEs. The mean was 2.89 FTEs. Where the collection was integrated into the main library, many respondents noted that since the collection was, indeed, an integral part of the main library, no accurate figures could be provided regarding staffing activities for library science patrons.

In recent years, a number of ALA-accredited schools have reported significant changes in their library school programs. One of the reported trends centers on having the main library collection and its associated programs serve as the laboratory collection for the school of library and information sciences. Several survey respondents alluded to budgetary constraints as an important factor in decision-making regarding housing and staffing for such collections. At least one respondent noted that the separately housed library science collection was to be integrated into the main library collection by 1988. Beyond obvious budgetary concerns, as the curriculum expands to include more information and computer science collections, the necessity for utilizing the entire library collection as a laboratory would appear to be a major influential factor in placing the library science collection.

ALA’s Carroll Preston Baber Award

The American Library Association is inviting research applications for the Carroll Preston Baber Award, established to honor Kansas librarian Carroll Preston Baber (1885–1970).

The $10,000 Baber award, donated by Eric R. Baber, encourages innovative research in the field of library science to improve library services to specific groups of people. It is the largest single ALA award. In 1986 Paula R. Moore and Leslie M. Edmonds became the first to win the award for their research into the effectiveness of children’s use of online catalogs at the Downer's Grove (Illinois) Public Library.

For the academic librarian wishing to investigate innovative means of serving students, faculty, staff or external groups, the award provides a vehicle for conducting research. Joint proposals that involve library faculty and faculty elsewhere in the institution are welcomed, as are proposals that involve different institutions.

The award is named for Carroll Preston Baber, who served for 28 years as librarian, professor of library science, library school director and librarian emeritus at Kansas State Teachers College, now Emporia State University. He directed the building of its William Allen White Library and won national recognition for its library school. Baber was active in ALA and served several terms on ALA Council.

Baber Research Award Jury Chair Robert Klassen says that new uses of technology in improving library services and cooperative library projects will receive special consideration for the award. Applicants must document their ability to complete successful projects and to obtain sufficient release time from their regular responsibilities.

Information and applications are available from Elaine K. Wingate, ALA Headquarters, 50 E. Huron St., Chicago, IL 60611; (312) 944-6780. Applicants are invited to submit a draft proposal by December 1 and discuss their ideas with the jury at the ALA Midwinter Meeting, January 17–22. The final application deadline is March 2, 1987.

The award will be presented July 1 at the ALA 1987 Annual Conference in San Francisco.

Copyright © American Library Association


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