Module 5 Reflection: Evaluating Collections

Module 5 explored collection evaluation and collection analysis. This is an area which I have explored a little myself when completing a weeding project at a previous school. After reading the module material and articles I am more aware of specific evaluation tools and criteria.

The Module material provided an overview of several areas which make up collection evaluation – including analytics, weeding, and responsibility. While I have experience in weeding collections, I have not fully considered the ways in which data and analytics can support this. Grigg and Johnson covered a variety of evaluation methods, including quantitative and qualitative methods. Johnson also separates methods into ‘collection-based’ or ‘use- and user-based’, which provides a useful breakdown of where certain types of tasks relate. Grigg focuses on 6 main methods of assessment which could apply to both print and e-books. The methods which stood out to me as effective and simple to implement were ‘usage data’, ‘focus groups’/user observation/user opinion surveys.

Larson’s CREW method for weeding was also of interest. This is not a method I was previously aware of.

C- Continuous

R- Review

E- Evaluation

W- Weeding

The design of the CREW method integrates collection analysis into an item’s life cycle. Larson states that CREW enables information to be gathered in collection strengths and weaknesses. I consider this a useful resources which I hope to come back to and review fully.

I hope to incorporate a variety of qualitative and quantitative collection evaluation methods into my future library positions. I would like to use opinion surveys and focus groups to direct purchasing towards filling gaps of student and curriculum interest. I would also like to identify the best reports in my LMS to assist with weeding, and integrate the CREW method into how I weed.

 

References

Grigg, K. S. (2012). Assessment and evaluation of e-book collections. In R. Kaplan (Ed.), Building and managing e-book collections: a how-to-do-it manual for librarians (pp. 127-137). American Library Association.

Johnson, P. (2018). Fundamentals of Collection Development and Management. American Library Association.

Larson, J. (2012). CREW: A weeding manual for modern libraries. Texas State Library and Archives Commission. http://www.tsl.state.tx.us/ld/pubs/crew

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