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DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY: STAFF RESOURCE CENTER
The Staff Resource Center provide instructional support that to faculty and staff with the latest equipment and software, including image scanning for the development of posters, handouts, brochures and presentations; Web page development; Internet activity; and many other presentation and communication activities. It is operated under the auspices of the Staff Development Committee. Please see attached committee membership. (IIC-20) Attached Staff Development Plan activities and budgets document Staff Resource Center budgets and inventory for the past several years (IIC-21). Since full-time staff that ran the center retired, and since staff development funds were cut from the state budget, the center is currently staffed with volunteers and with assistance from the Media Services Specialist. All employees have access to the center through a door code system.
In preparation for this report, the Accreditation Learning Resources Task Force reviewed and analyzed all relevant institutional research, including the "Survey of Student Perceptions," Spring 2000 and Spring 2003 (IIC-22); annual reports required by the State Chancellor's Office and the U. S. Department of Education National Center for Education Statistics (IIC-23); program reviews of the Library, AV and Learning Center (IIC-24); the "VC Trailblazer Self Assessment Study 7/13/00" (IIC-25); the "VC Trailblazer Self Assessment Study Response 9/20/00" (IIC-26); and the college's accreditation self studies, progress reports, and validation team responses completed over the past eight years. This led to the following:
- Identification and documentation of accomplishments
- Determination and documentation of how each learning resource area met the accreditation standard
- Identification of issues to work on for the future
1. Major accomplishments in Learning Resources
A. New Library Resource Center - Accomplishment
Completion of the goal of planning, building and equipping a new Library and Learning Resource Center has been a major accomplishment since the last accreditation report. Impetus for this project came out of two consecutive accreditations, culminating in 1991, in which both the college and the accreditation teams recommended major improvements in learning resources services. To resolve these self-identified problems, including space issues that inhibited growth of the collection, space for studying, and lack of patron security due to the physical layout of the library, the college implemented a reorganization of learning resource entities and a campaigned at the state level for a new learning resource facility. When the college moved into the new LRC during the summer of 2004, it finally integrated eleven centers scattered over the campus, including the library; tutoring; audio visual services; learning center labs and services, including labs for English composition, study skills and reading; the disabled students' Assistive Technology Training Center; the Foreign Language Lab; the Nursing Computer Lab; and the Staff Resource Center (IIC-27). Over the past nine years, 131 staff, faculty and students have served on LRC planning task force to create a state-of-the-art 86,000 square foot building that will facilitate student learning by providing the latest learning technology; online services; additional study space; room to increase the collection holdings by 50 percent; and, now that they are working in the same space, opportunities for collaboration between students and faculty from various disciplines,. (IIC-28).
The new building plan has provided for an expansion of services for both faculty and students. The facility has allowed the campus to streamline services, avoiding duplication, by incorporating five labs, previously scattered all over campus, into one. The Foreign Language Lab, Nursing Computer Lab, the English Composition Lab, the Assistive Technology Training Center and the Learning Center Lab are now incorporated into the 360 computer station Learning Center Lab. This incorporation has provided expanded service to students and staff; it has improved support for the Foreign Language Lab, Nursing Lab, Learning Center and Assistive Technology Training Center; it has replaced three to five year-old computers and software with state of the art technology in both software and hardware; and, by consolidating many labs into one space, it has improved technical support service, allowing for staffing efficiency.
B. Services to Off-Campus Students - Accomplishment
As the college began expanding its outreach by offering classes in neighboring communities and distance learning classes, the need to deliver learning resources services to these off-campus students became apparent. The completion of a second goal to "facilitate student access to information" and a third goal to "create an operational East Campus Learning Resources Center" have been major accomplishments that have expanded services to students taking classes not only at the East Campus, in remote sights, and online, but also on campus-all without unduly increasing staffing costs.
The college has greatly improved off-campus as well as on-campus library services through its online resources, including thirteen databases, catalog, and additional resources available through the Internet. These databases include Proquest, which encompasses Research Library Complete, National Library Complete, CINAHL, and Ethnic Newswatch; CQ Researcher; Gale-Biography Resource Center, Literature Resource Center, Opposing Viewpoint Resources Center-unlimited; Grove's Art Online and Music Online; General Science Abstracts; Book Review Digest; Britannica Online; Encyclopedia Universal en Español; and Title Source II for use by the staff (IIC-29). The college has also piloted and offered an online individual tutoring service at all locations.
Furthermore, the college has staffed and opened a new branch library/tutoring learning center at the East Campus at Santa Paula to serve the 500+ students who take general education and ESL classes at the site. Trained at the various learning resource centers on campus, the staff is supervised by the campus learning resources supervisor, ensuring a close and cooperative connection between the campus and the center. The East Campus at Santa Paula also offers media services so that off-campus faculty have a connection to audio visual resources on campus (IIC-30). (Please see also IIC-11.)
C. Changing Technology - Accomplishment
A third major accomplishment has been meeting needs, including student and faculty demand for instructional technology, that required staying abreast of numerous technological changes in library and learning resource services over the past eight years. This entailed creating a five-year library technology plan that spanned 1997-2002 and which has been updated to 2003-2006. This includes goals, strategies and plans in relation to learning resources technology (IIC-31). Recently completed activities in the plan include the following:
- Researching, identifying and purchasing new equipment and software in the old library and various labs, and doing the same on a much greater scale for the new LRC.
- Purchasing many new databases and electronic resources after piloting them with students and faculty (see page 5 for list); students can now electronically mail articles home for printing or for incorporation into their research papers; they can also use the databases from home.
- Continually upgrading and expanding the library automation software to improve services to patrons and staff; students can now view the catalog at home, determine if a book is on the shelf or checked out, search the catalog for specific topics, and quickly check out books with the automated system; staff have a much improved administration system that has increased efficiency in cataloging, inventory, managing reserves, technical processing, and administering circulation functions such as overdues and fines.
- Improving and expanding the system students use for printing in the library by networking it into an integrated vending system, which has improved copy quality and efficiency; this printing has since been expanded to include the campus's Internet Café.
A more detailed list of technology accomplishments is found in the following chart.
LIBRARY AND LEARNING RESOURCES
|Library alcove remodeled to add cabling and workstations.||An LCD projector and cart were purchased for the library orientation classes.||Upgrade of library Corp software and server, incl. Z39.50 and PAC enhancements.||Databases expanded to include CINAHL, Gale, Ethnic News-watch, CQ Researcher.||Upgrade library automation software to 3.0||Upgrade library automation software to 3.1||LRC Bldg. completed. Library, lab staff move into building.|
|Ten more student PAC stations were added.||Purchase of print-que software, a new printer for the student stations||Continue to purchase new electronic databases.||Continue to purchase new electronic databases.||Replace Library Server. Added branch license.||Continue technical support for library automation||Library Web site upgraded and enhanced automation changes.|
|Upgraded all computer workstations to Pentium level.||security software (Deepfreeze)||Cataloging and reference workstations upgrade.||Continue technical support for automation system.||Continue to purchase new electronic databases.||Continue to purchase new electronic databases. Added Opposing Viewpoints||Two higher level technicians added to the Learning Center staff.|
|Library automation software was upgraded.||Upgraded computers to Dell Pentium II.||Full-time computer specialist hired for division.||Added Taylor 's Encyclopedia of Officials online.||Continue technical support for library automation system.||Smarthinking online added to tutoring program.|
|Library Server migrated from Novell to NT. Workstations to NT.||Continue to update the software at student PAC stations.||ADA station added to PAC stations.||Upgraded server and operating system on workstations in Journalism Lab.||Replace computer workstations in Tutoring Center , added one for reception desk.||Technician hired for East Campus branch library.|
|The library Cd-Rom server upgraded to NT Server.||Web-based full-text database access begins with Infotrac.||Full-Text Databases expanded to include Proquest.||Upgrade and add 20 stations to 201, 206 and 211 in Learning Center .||Replace computer workstations in Learning Center room 211.||Branch Library for East Campus begins physical development.|
|Liberal arts received funds for six faculty computers.||LRC Bldg. Equipment list sent to state for approval.||New Learning Center server purchased.||Replace ghost server in Learning Center .||Branch library officially opens for business spring 2004.|
|State approves funds for new LRC Bldg.||Planning continues for new LRC Bldg.||Deepfreeze added to Learning Center & Composition Labs.||Tutoring appointment system software purchased.||Building and planning process continues on new building.|
|AV added LCDS, overheads, "smart" classroom technology.||Online tutoring, Smarthinking trial testing. Web site development.||LRC Bldg. equipment list submitted to state at 50 percent of completion for release of funds.|
|Computers & other technology purchased for Foreign Lang., English, Journalism & Theater.||Academic systems for online teaching.||LRC Bldg. equipment selection begins.|
|LRC Bldg. construction begins.||LRC Bldg., equipment and furniture ordered.|
This year, the Tutoring Center incorporated technology to enhance its student services despite the loss of its Tutorial Specialist and reduced operating hours due to budget cuts. Through a cooperative grant with Hancock College , the college was able to pilot and implement Smarthinking, an online tutoring service that offers every student ten hours per semester (IIC-32). The center has also developed a Web site to enable students to get up-to-date information on services available in the Tutoring Center (IIC-33). It is also piloting a computerized scheduling and payroll reporting program that will greatly improve the accuracy and efficiency of these activities, freeing up staff resources to provide more direct tutoring services to students. The new building also provides tutors with two group study rooms with "smart" boards and Internet accessibility. The general tutoring area is over two times the size of the existing one, allowing space for comfortable study and individual tutoring. It also houses a ten station computer area and textbook library.
Over the past eight years, the Media Services Center has fought for adequate resources to support student learning in the classroom. In the past, most classrooms were equipped with only the basic instructional technologies; however, resources from the new LRC have provided ten classrooms with new instructor stations that have the latest instructional technologies. Plans to build new classroom buildings over the next ten years with Measure "S" Bond moneys include a standardized classroom instructional technology configuration with "smart" instructor stations that house LCD projectors, large screen monitors, lap tops, DVD players, VCR players, and amplifiers. Each new classroom or classroom remodel will also have an overhead projector, slide projector and projection screen (IIC-34). Within ten years, all general use classrooms will provide instructors and students with the above equipment to support student learning.
The primary purpose of the Staff Resource Center is to provide staff with the equipment and programs they need to stay abreast of emerging technologies and to have them available for use. Over the past five years the center has provided many technology training sessions (IIC-35). This past year, with the retirement of its chief staff member, the activities of the center have been under the direction of the Staff Development Committee and have been augmented by resources from a collaborative distance learning grant. Fortunately, just as special technology training moneys from the state dried up, new equipment and software could be purchased from money allocated to the new LRC, keeping the center abreast of changing technologies (IIC-36).
D. New Teaching Strategies - Accomplishment
A fourth major accomplishment has been the development and refinement of new teaching strategies which incorporate technology to support student learning in English, reading, study skills and foreign languages. The impetus for this has been the planning of a 360 station state-of-the-art learning center in the new building. A collaborative Learning Resources Tech Task Force comprised of 17 faculty and staff formed to support of these activities. For the past four years, faculty scheduled in the Learning Center to conduct lab activities with their students have been researching projects to determine what teaching strategies best improve student learning. Faculty have attended educational technology conferences, worked together to explore various teaching strategies and technological innovations, researched what other model community colleges were using, and supported each other in their explorations (IIC-37).
Realizing that many of today's students learn best interactively, eight faculty from the Liberal Arts and Learning Resources Division attended the Tech Ed conference to learn about interactive software that teaches reading and writing. This resulted in faculty initiating pilot projects that infuse instruction with technology for interactive learning in composition and reading courses, using programs such as Plato, Academic System's Interactive English, Successful College Writing, Skillsbank, and Daedalus. All of these projects have been institutionalized and will be supported by the College's new high tech Learning Resources Center . The department also formed a Daedalus User's Group (IIC-38).
This work resulted in new teaching strategies that were gradually implemented and enhanced student learning. This drove the purchase of instructional software programs and the computers needed to run them in the old Learning Center reading/study skills lab, computer composition lab, and the foreign language lab. This not only served students, but also provided good data about what to keep or replace in the new Learning Center to maximize student learning.
E. Planning System - Accomplishment
A fifth major accomplishment has been the implementation of a system that incorporates the active participation of faculty, staff, and students in planning and decision-making on the macro college-level and the micro learning resources unit-level.
The perspectives of learning resources are incorporated throughout the Planning System, which will be described below. Three members from the Learning Resources Function participate on the Council for Institutional Development; they include the dean, a faculty reference librarian, and the learning resources supervisor. Their perspectives are reflected in the college-level planning elements. In addition, learning resource representatives serve on the following college councils and planning committees:
Managers and Supervisors Council
Cal Works Advisory Committee
Title 5 Advisory Committee
VC Crisis Intervention Team
Accreditation Task Forces
Facilities Oversight Group
Department Chair Council
Thus, on a macro college-level, the function of learning resources has incorporated its perspectives throughout the college planning system described in Standard I, p. 18.
To illustrate the connection between college-wide planning and learning resource level planning, the college mission leads to the development of a more specific library mission, as stated on page two of the "Library Policy Manual" (IIC-40). The college goals lead to the development of the library's objectives also stated on page two of the manual. The library's objectives and college goals drive the development of specific library goals for each year. (See page three for library goals.)
The library goals lead to the development and revision of a three year library technology plan, which is incorporated into the college-wide technology plan. (Please see IIC-31 for Learning Resources Technology Plan.) The library goals have also been translated into a new LRC facility plan, which is a part of the facilities master plan under the auspices of the Facilities Oversight Group. Library goals led to the development of various unit action plans that resulted in innovations and improvements. Some of these recent plans include the following: Library Patron Service Project, Library Policy Manual Development, Institutional Memberships in Library Organizations, Liberal Arts Faculty Exchanges, Library Internships, and Staff Development Plan Language Arts/Learning Resources (IIC-41).
Examples of earlier learning resource unit action plans, published in the "Ventura College Resources for Unit Planning Fall 2000," include the following:
a. "Smart" Classroom
b. Fundraise for New LRC Building
c. Integrating Technology into Learning Resources and Liberal Arts Division
d. Assessing Technology Needs for LRC Building
e. Library Collection Development
f. Library Orientation Update
g. Review and Revise Library Policies
h. Upgrade and Replace Technical Resources
Please see "Ventura College Resources for Unit Planning Fall 2000." Each plan is marked with the letter assigned it above (IIC-42).
Finally, self evaluation of learning resources leads to learning resources program review and accreditation self studies, both of which feed back into the learning resources planning loop. Please see Program Reviews for Library, AV, and Learning Center (IIC-24).
The "Library Policy Manual" outlines the membership, charge and meeting schedules of three groups responsible for learning resource planning, self evaluation, policies and operations. These include the Library Committee, the library staff, and the library executive staff. They serve as an interactive network working to promote communication and to oversee operations, review and recommend policies, develop and implement plans, and improve library services and the learning resources environment (IIC-43).
Over the past six years, faculty, staff, and students have been actively participating in learning resources planning, implementation of planning activities, and decision-making. Some noteworthy examples include the following:
- One hundred and thirty-one faculty and students served on task forces to plan the new LRC.
- An active Library Committee of representatives from all divisions, the student body, the library executive staff, the library operational staff, and the dean has met monthly for the eight years spanning this report (1996-2004) to establish learning resource guidelines and procedures; to regularly revise the Library policy manual; to review a Learning Resources Technology Plan that has been revised twice over the past six years; to participate in a program review; to review unit plans for specific projects; to participate in accreditation self studies (1998, 2003, 2004); to represent student and faculty perspectives in solving operational problems; and to be the communication and advocacy links between academic departments and learning resources services (IIC-44). Most recently a library subcommittee of staff, faculty and students has been formed to develop a book drive for the donation of 5,000 volumes.
- The Tutoring Center involves faculty in the recruitment and selection of tutors and tutees, in the training of tutors, and in some cases in reporting back to the Tutoring Center on student outcomes. Educational Assistance Center faculty each year train tutors in identifying learning styles and assisting students with disabilities. Until this past year there was a tutor training course; however, it was temporarily suspended due to loss of personnel.
- Student tutors have been intimately involved in decision-making about the administration of the program. Students have been active in planning for the new LRC Tutoring Center, involving themselves in everything from determining the location of various tutoring functions, designing the floor plan, choosing the furnishings, and planning how tutors will use technology to improve student learning (IIC-45).
- Faculty recommendations drive film and video collection development in the Media Services Center . Faculty and staff have donated money, videos, and films to the center.
- The Staff Development Committee comprised of faculty representatives from each division and classified and management representatives, has been directly responsible for the development and oversight of the Staff Multimedia Resource Center since 1993.
2. Addressing the Standards and Self-Identified Issues
Self Evaluation: Library - Evaluation and Self-Identified Issues
Data and Analysis
According to students' responses on the "Survey of Student Perceptions Spring 2000," 62.5 percent were very satisfied or satisfied with the library service, 28.5 percent were neutral, and 9 percent were dissatisfied with the service. (Please see IIC-22 for Student Perception Survey 2000.) The question students responded to was very general: "Please rate your satisfaction with each of the campus services listed below: campus library, learning center, tutorial services, language lab." The rating scale went from "very satisfied" to "can't rate/no experience."
An approximate 5 percent improvement in satisfaction is reflected in the students' responses on the "Survey of Student Perceptions Spring 2003." Of the respondents, 67.4 percent were very satisfied or satisfied with the library service, 27.2 percent were neutral, and 5.4 percent were dissatisfied with the service. (Please see IIC-22 for Student Perception Survey 2003.)
The Library Committee has used this information to establish a benchmark by which improvement will be measured. The Committee and library staff have set a three year goal for student satisfaction to improve an additional five percent, and have developed plans to achieve that goal. (Please see p. 3 for goals and p. 43 for action plans.)
Since this information is extremely general, the Library Committee has created a more specific survey that will provide data on student satisfaction with availability of information; convenience of library hours; helpfulness of assistance; adequacy of equipment, physical space, and technology; helpfulness of library orientation; and awareness of off-campus access to library materials. This survey will be given to students in the spring 2004 semester, and results will serve as a benchmark for future planning and for evaluation of library services. In addition, the data results will be analyzed to refine the survey next year (IIC-46).
Since the district faculty perception survey data does not cover the area of learning resources, the Library Committee has created a faculty survey with specific questions that will provide data on faculty satisfaction with library services. It asks faculty if they use the library services, which services they have their students use, whether the library services help their students meet the learning objectives of their class, if library services support their teaching needs, whether they have input into the selection of library materials, and changes they would like to see in library services. This survey will be given to faculty in the spring 2004 semester, and results will serve as a benchmark for future planning and for evaluation of library services. In addition, the data results will be analyzed to refine the survey next year (IIC-47).
Meeting the Accreditation Standard
The college has met accreditation standard IIC in regard to the library.
Self evaluation and self-identified issues in relation to the specific components of the accreditation standard is found below.
C. 1. The institution supports the quality of its instructional programs by providing library and other learning support services that are sufficient in quantity, currency, depth, and variety to facilitate educational offerings, regardless of location or means of delivery.
a. Relying on appropriate expertise of faculty, including librarians and other learning support services professionals, the institution selects and maintains educational equipment and materials to support student learning and enhance the achievement of the mission of the institution.
C.1. Self Evaluation-Library
The Ventura College Library states its philosophy for collection development in the Library Policy Manual on page 24 where it quotes the statement of the American Library Association Council entitled, "Diversity in Collection Development: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights" (IIC-48). The library states its collection development policy for books, databases and periodicals in the manual on pp. 5-6 (IIC-49).
Library collection development is addressed in a systematic collaborative manner to support instructional programs and cultural activities. Librarians work closely with instructional faculty to develop and maintain a collection that meets the needs of the curriculum in numerous ways, including the following:
Review recommendations from the California Community College League and other sources regarding electronic resources that community colleges should hold.
Pilot electronic resources with students before inclusion into the collection.
Assure that library resources meet student needs by participating in the course development process; as faculty develop a new course they must complete a section of the course outline that addresses adequacy of the collection to support the course's objectives; they then work with the librarians to remediate any problems (IIC-50).
Work with appropriate discipline faculty, following specific guidelines and the process described on page 18 of the Library Policy Manual, to order and evaluate books and periodicals and to cull the collection (IIC-51).
Order new books for the reference area and balance the overall collection.
The library executive staff devised a method to encourage faculty involvement in the collection development process by allocating the library's book budget to departments. Faculty are allocated money for new books and periodicals by individual departments, and librarians, department chairs and deans encourage them to order materials to support their disciplines (IIC-52). In addition, faculty can place materials and books on reserve, enabling students to obtain optimum access to resources they need to meet their course objectives.
Library services are continually being reviewed for quality and improvement by the Library Committee, which is comprised of faculty representatives from all divisions, from students, and from Learning Resources. The committee members meet bi-monthly and have the opportunity to discuss issues and problems that have come from their constituents. They also have the opportunity to participate in developing strategic and operational plans for the library and learning resources technology. (Please see IIC-44 for a sample of Library Committee meeting minutes.)
Similarly, problems and solutions are continually discussed at executive library staff meetings, held every other week, and at monthly library staff meetings (IIC-53). At these meetings, complaints that have been provided directly to library staff members or have been put into the complaint box are addressed. A major component of these meetings also includes planning. (Please see pp. 20-24 regarding the planning system.)
With regard to the currency of library technology, a support technician maintains and upgrades the library's computers and programs. Also, the library has in place a long-range technology plan that establishes criteria for quality and quantity of technology necessary to meet student needs. The Library Committee reviews the technology plan as it is updated. The executive library staff review and revise the plan annually and use it continually for planning. (Please see IIC-31 for the Learning Resource Technology Plan.)
Electronic database assessment is measured both by usage and curriculum need. Librarians have begun to review the usage of each database to assess its viability. For instance, the hits on the database Proquest this past year have shown that students use it heavily, and it is meeting their needs. Students' constant use of library computer stations has made the library insist they sign up during busy hours.
C.1. Self-identified Issue-Library
Evaluate adequacy of budgetary resources
Over the past five years, allocations for books, periodicals, and electronic resources have remained stable as the college has replaced general fund allocations for these items with restricted lottery funds and categorical state moneys designated for electronic databases; these were designated as Telecommunication Technology Infrastructure Program funds. However, budget cuts at the state level have impacted Learning Resources. Due to these state deficits, the categorical Telecommunication Technology Infrastructure Program funds designated for electronic databases are being folded into the college's general apportionment, requiring the library to compete with all other units of the college for future funds to continue its electronic databases for student research. In addition, due to extensive weeding of the collection in preparation for the move to a new facility, and due to the lack of inflationary increases in the budget for books and periodicals over the past five years, the library and audio-visual collection is far below standards for holdings of colleges of similar size.
As discussed on page six, the current collection of 52,000 books is 43,000 short of the minimum standards of the Association of College and Research Libraries for a college the size of Ventura College . Temporary expedients, such as the book drive for donated books, will not address the magnitude of the need for resources to fill the shelves in the new library (IIC-54). The college will need to build collection development into its resource allocation priorities, if plans to meet student needs for research are to be realized.
Staffing is a second major issue regarding funding that has impacted the quality and quantity of learning resources services. This issue was addressed in a recommendation in the 1996 accreditation evaluation team report, stating on page 17, "In order to ensure an adequate level of support to students and faculty, the College should thoroughly assess the need for additional library/learning resources staff. (Standard 5D)" (IIC-55). No progress in meeting this recommendation was reported on pages 17-18 of the 1998 accreditation midterm report, with the exception of the reclassification of a library technician to the position of Learning Resources Supervisor (IIC-56). However, with the added use of TTIP funds the division was able to hire a Computer Specialist in fiscal year 2001-2002 when a position was vacated, and in 2003 Title 5 grand funds were used to hire a Learning Resources Technician to staff the East Campus LRC/branch library.
All areas of Learning Resources have sustained major cuts in allocations for student workers and tutors, and in the spring of 2003 the Tutoring Center lost its Tutorial Specialist position due to budget cuts. (This 100 percent position has been temporarily replaced with a 40 percent substitute.) Equally significant is the fact that 11.5 additional new classified staff positions and two upgrades were required to operate the new Library and Learning Resources Center as it was designed to operate. The dean requested these positions for the past three years; the two upgrades were provided, but the existing tutoring specialist was deleted due to budget constraints, and none of the new positions were added. This has necessitated rethinking the original plans for the new Library and Learning Resource Center to conserve existing staff and add no new staff-deleting the TV studio with accompanying editing rooms, deleting a distance learning classroom, abolishing the two remaining Learning Center positions and creating two technical support positions, and determining creative ways to do time-intensive tasks such as implementing a self-check-out system for library books.
The college will not know how these expediencies will affect services until operations begin in the new facility. Analysis of data collected from the new annual learning resources student and faculty satisfaction surveys should help answer this question; however, based on standards set by the Association of College and Research Libraries which follow, there is concern that the college is already understaffed:
Staffing Requirements for Single-Campus Services**
|FTE Students||Admin||Librarians||Technicians||Other Staff***||Total Staff|
* Does not include student assistants
** Additional staff will be needed if enrollment is 50 percent greater than FTE
*** Secretaries, clerks, lab aides, etc.
These standards indicate that the current librarian staffing level of 2.5 FTE is well below the 8.0 FTE librarians recommended as a minimum for a school the size of Ventura College . Similarly, the college's "technician" staff level of 5 FTE is understaffed by 4.0 FTE. The "other" staff is nonexistent and thus down by 7 FTE. This situation is compounded by library/resource center studies showing that the opening of a new facility increases student utilization by 67 percent.
A further self-identified issue in this regard is the need for the college to develop a plan to address a chronic shortage of learning resources staff, which has been documented and has persisted for the past eight years.
C. 1. b. The institution provides ongoing instruction for users of library and other learning support services so that students are able to develop skills in information competency.
C.1.B. Self Evaluation-Library
The introduction to the Learning Resources Technology Plan explains the importance the college places on information literacy for students (IIC-57). This is reflected in a goal for the library: "Help students become information literate." (Please see p. 3 for library goals.) The librarians are faculty members who teach every day. Each student's reference question provides the opportunity for a private lesson on some aspect of information competency. In addition, Ventura College provides credit library orientation classes, taught by a reference librarian with the primary objective being to develop students' information competency skills, including facility in the use of the library and its resources. The library also provides customized class orientations to over 6,000 students each year. Faculty learn about the opportunity to schedule class orientations through memos, brochures, division meetings, and new faculty orientations (IIC-58). Instructors set the criteria for these orientations, and librarians meet with individual classes to provide information competency instruction. This includes not only instruction on how best to use the library's resources, but also instruction on the uses of Internet resources and how to evaluate their legitimacy. Librarians are continually revising the content and delivery of these class orientations using student feedback from a classroom assessment technique after the orientation session, and from analysis of data derived from the annual student and faculty surveys (IIC-59). Also, information regarding the library and its resources is currently available to all students on the library's Web page (IIC-60).
C.1.B Self-identified Issue-Library
A self-identified issue related to information literacy is the need to establish benchmarks for the number of students who receive library orientation, and increase that number annually; to revise the library orientation course based on student and faculty evaluation; and to develop, implement and evaluate a Web-based library orientation for off-campus students.
C. 1. c. The institution provides students and personnel responsible for student learning programs and services adequate access to the library and other learning support services, regardless of their location or means of delivery.
C.1.c. Self Evaluation-Library
Please see pages 15 and 16 regarding the major accomplishment of providing comparable services to students taking classes at off-campus locations and/or through distance learning.
C.1.c Self-identified Issue-Library
A self-identified issue is the need to create a benchmark against which to measure the effectiveness of these new services in improving student learning outcomes.
C. 1. d. The institution provides effective maintenance and security for its library and other learning support services.
C.1.d. Self Evaluation-Library
The library was designed with patron security in mind, providing a line-of-sight from the circulation and reference desks to the stacks, student study rooms and reading room. Security of the library collection is provided through security strips and an alarm system. All library materials and audio-visual equipment are inventoried.
C.1.d Self-identified Issue-Library
The self-identified issue of lack of staffing, previously discussed, compounds the problems of maintenance of the Library and Learning Resource facility itself and the equipment within it. Based on the current standard of one custodian per 24,000-40,000 square feet, the dean requested two additional custodians for the new 100,000 gross square foot building-neither of which was provided (IIC-61). Similarly, the dean requested an additional 3.5 technicians to maintain the networks, 547 computers and high-end software in the building, which is the most technologically sophisticated in the district. These positions were not filled, creating concerns about support and maintenance of the technology. A self-identified issue in this regard is the need for the college to develop a plan to address a chronic shortage of learning resources custodial and technological support staff-an issue that has been documented and has persisted for the past eight years.
C. 1. e. When the institution relies on or collaborates with other institutions or other sources for library and other learning support services for its instructional programs, it documents that formal agreements exist and that such resources and services are adequate for the institution's intended purposes, are easily accessible, and utilized. The performance of these services is evaluated on a regular basis. The institution takes responsibility for and assures the reliability of all services provided either directly or through contractual arrangement.
C.1.e. Self Evaluation-Library
The Ventura College Library has an inter-library loan agreement with the University of California at Santa Barbara . The Library has also successfully used the interlibrary loan process for faculty and students to obtain resources from other University of California and California State University campuses. The library participated in the Black Gold Cooperative Network, which formed interlibrary loan agreements in the local tri-county area, including the California State Library, University of California at Santa Barbara Library, Santa Barbara Public Library, California Lutheran University Library, and the Ventura County Library system. The inter-library loan policy is described in the Library Manual on page 10. Students and faculty learn of the service through their work with the reference librarians on specific projects (IIC-62). Also, through a cooperative Title 5 Grant with Alan Hancock College , the Tutoring Center has instituted online tutoring services.
C. 2. The institution evaluates library and other learning support services to assure their adequacy in meeting identified student needs. Evaluation of these services provides evidence that they contribute to the achievement of student learning outcomes. The institution uses the results of these evaluations as the basis for improvement.
C.2 Self Evaluation-Library
Several evaluation tools and processes are in place to provide data, which the executive library staff, the library staff and the Library Committee analyze and use to determine the effectiveness of learning resources support services in meeting student needs and in improving services. This process is described in the section of the Library Policy Manual entitled, "Library Governance for Policies and Operations" (IIC-63).
These tools include recently developed student and faculty satisfaction surveys of learning resources that will be used annually to provide benchmarks for improvement in the various learning resources services (please see IIC-46 and 47); data which the library collects on student use of services to establish benchmarks for increasing access; data on the number of students who receive library orientations to establish benchmarks to measure improvement; and evaluations of library class orientations which inform their content and delivery (IIC-64).
In addition, learning resources participates in the regular college program review and unit planning cycle; review of its programs through the Trailblazer Self-Assessment study sponsored by the Continuous Quality Improvement Network for Community and Technical Colleges, which was submitted in July of 2000; and ongoing self evaluation through several accreditation self studies and progress reports over the past eight years. (Please see Library Program Review, Learning Center Program Review and Audio-Visual Program Review IIC-24; Unit Plans IIC-41; and Trailblazer Self-Assessment Study IIC-25.)
C.1.d Self-identified Issue-Library
Self-identified issues regarding evaluation of learning resources include the need to expand and systematize learning resources evaluation processes, using the results to establish benchmarks, to improve learning resources services, and to inform college-level decisions regarding resource allocation. Projects for next year in this regard include developing a tool to collect data from classified learning resources staff on the adequacy of learning resources from their perspective, developing an evaluation process for the new East Campus Learning Center , establishing a calendar for each learning resource unit's program review cycle, and revising the student and faculty satisfaction surveys.