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ARL Library Investment Index: why is it important?. Presented by Brinley Franklin Martha Kyrillidou Colleen Cook Bruce Thompson. Library Assessment Conference Seattle, WA August 5, 2008. The real husky!. New Ways of Measuring Collections Task Force. Summary of activities

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arl library investment index why is it important
ARL Library Investment Index: why is it important?

Presented by

Brinley Franklin

Martha Kyrillidou

Colleen Cook

Bruce Thompson

Library Assessment Conference

Seattle, WA

August 5, 2008

the real husky
The real husky!

new ways of measuring collections task force
New Ways of Measuring Collections Task Force
  • Summary of activities

  • Composition (convened Dec. 2004)
    • Statistics
    • Research Collections
    • Membership
  • Process (Spring-Summer 2005)
    • Interviews of 100 ARL members

most important issues
Most Important Issues
  • Data is not expressing uniqueness of materials
  • Relevance to teaching, learning, research not adequately reflected
  • Collections go beyond printed volumes
  • Research library is more than collections – include its services; ARL is not telling the story
  • Increase in expenditures for Electronic Resources
  • Ownership to Access
  • Consortial relationships/cooperative collection development

most important issues cont
Most Important Issues (cont)
  • Shared storage facilities
  • Duplicate serials based on bundling
  • Special collections not reflected
  • ARL Membership Committee wasn’t basing membership on Membership Index

purpose of measuring
Purpose of Measuring
  • Historical significance of long dataset to show trends
  • Accounting for university’s investment
  • Comparison; benchmarking


ARL Membership Index had become “misunderstood, misleading, and unhelpful”

october 2005 task force recommendations to arl board
October 2005 Task Force Recommendations to ARL Board
  • Exploratory factor analysis
  • Profile of contemporary research library
  • New meaningful measures development
  • Publication of the membership index

consultant reports
Consultant Reports
  • Engaged Spring 2006
  • Quantitative (Bruce Thompson)
    • Confirm membership index
    • Established new expenditures-focused index
  • Qualitative (Yvonna Lincoln)
    • Profile


action agenda
Action Agenda
  • Reserve current membership index for membership issues
  • Implement Library Investment Index (previously named expenditures-focused index); report these index scores to Chronicle of Higher Education
  • Begin to develop service-based index
  • Revise definitions of collections-related data categories, especially serial counts
  • Collect qualitative data for individual member profiles that demonstrate the library’s value to its parent institution and to the broader research community

library investment index
Library Investment Index
  • Principal Component Analysis
    • Variance Explained = 92.6%


Total Expenditures

Salary Expenditures

Materials Expenditures

Professional plus Support Staff

  • ..measuring the size of library collections cannot be what it used to be …

Martha Kyrillidou, “Reshaping ARL Statistics to capture the new environment” Feb 2008,

profile elements as identified by task force
Profile elements as identified by Task Force
  • services to the library and scholarly community
  • distinctive research-oriented collections and resources of national significance in a variety of media
  • the nature of use made of the collections and services by faculty, students, and visiting scholars
  • the preservation of research resources
  • the leadership and external contributions of the staff to the profession
  • the effective and innovative use of technology
  • consortial memberships (including cooperative collection development and preservation efforts)
  • important locally created digital collections
  • library collaborations with faculty.

celebrating research
Celebrating Research
  • Brief descriptions are offered of the special collections at each library

more info
More info …