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FY 2014 Add Change Delete Data Elements

Page history last edited by Kim Miller 6 years, 6 months ago

 

 

FY 2014 Data Element Proposals main pagehttp://plsc.pbworks.com/w/page/67874172/FY%202014%20Data%20Element%20Proposals 

 

Proposals are due by COB Friday, October 4.  All comments on proposals should be posted by COB Friday, October 18.

You must have an account to post data elements and/or comments.

 

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 

 

Proposed New Data Elements:

 

1.  Wireless Sessions – Annually

Definition: Report the number of wireless sessions provided by the library wireless service annually.

 

Rationale: Wireless internet service is a key and increasing service of libraries.  It makes sense to have a national statistic regarding the level of service to monitor trends and to inform local, state and national broadband policies and initiatives.  The information would come from wireless service providers and/or software.

 

Colleen Hamer (MT) 

 

__________________________________________________________ 

 

Proposed Changed Data Elements:

  

1. 552 Provided To (Change – highlighted in orange)

These are library materials, or copies of the materials, provided by one autonomous library to another upon request. The libraries involved in interlibrary loans are not under the same library administration. “Library administration” means Administrative Entity (not anything broader). Do not include items loaned between outlets within the same library administrative entity. Exception: Where libraries are user sharing libraries sharing the same ILS, where items may be obtained via a place hold function within the ILS and the patron is from one of the sharing libraries, these may not be counted as inter-library loan. These data are reported as annual figures.

 

2. 553 Received From (Change – highlighted in orange)

These are library materials, or copies of the materials, received by one autonomous library from another upon request. The libraries involved in interlibrary loans are not under the same library administration. “Library administration” means Administrative Entity (not anything broader). Do not include items loaned between outlets within the same library administrative entity. . Exception: Where libraries are user sharing libraries sharing the same ILS, where items may be obtained via a place hold function within the ILS and the patron is from one of the sharing libraries, these may not be counted as inter-library loan. These data are reported as annual figures.

 

Rationale: Sharing arrangements amongst groups of libraries make it possible to increase collections and decrease overhead. A “share” within such groups is not the same as an inter-library loan in the sense of the cost or complexity of the transaction. With the current definition, narrowly defining the library entity, it requires these transactions to be counted as inter-library loan. These transactions are dissimilar to traditional inter-library loan transactions and the nature of a shared ILS makes it difficult to track the transactions as inter-library loan.

 

Colleen Hamer (MT)

 

3. Replace: 502 Reference Transactions

 

A reference transaction is an information contact which involves the knowledge, use, recommendations,

interpretation, or instruction in the use of one or more information sources by a member of the library staff. It includes information and referral services. Information sources include printed and non-printed materials,machine-readable databases, catalogs and other holdings records, and, through communication or referral, other libraries and institutions and people inside and outside the library. The request may come in person, by phone, by fax, or by mail, electronic mail, or through live or networked electronic reference service from an adult, a young adult, or a child.Do not count directional transactions or questions of rules or policies. Examples of directional transactions are “Where are the children’s books?" and “I’m looking for a book with the call  number 811.2G.” An example of a question of rules or policies is “Are you open until 9:00 tonight?"

 

Note: If an annual count of reference transactions is unavailable, determine an annual estimate by counting reference transactions during a typical week in October and multiply the count by 52. A "typical week" is a time that is neither unusually busy nor unusually slow. Avoid holiday times, vacation periods for key staff, or days when unusual events are taking place in the community or in the library.Choose a week in which the library is open its regular hours.Include seven consecutive calendar days, from Sunday

through Saturday (or whenever the library is usually open).

 

With:

 

502 Public Service Transactions

 

A public service transaction is an information contact which involves a query from a patron or member of the public to a member of the library staff. It includes information and referral services, as well as directional questions, library policy questions, or requests for technical assistance. Do not include circulation or payment transactions. The request may come in person, by phone, by fax, or by mail, electronic mail, or through live or networked electronic reference service from an adult, a young adult, or a child.

 

A transaction is an exchange of information on a related topic that may include multiple questions; do not count each question as a separate transaction. A verbal conversation is one transaction; an e-mail request and response is a single transaction (additional requests and responses are additional transactions); a string of text messages or live chat that constitute a session are a single transaction.

 

Note: If an annual count of public service transactions is unavailable, determine an annual estimate by counting reference transactions during a typical week in October and multiply the count by 52. A "typical week" is a time that is neither unusually busy nor unusually slow. Avoid holiday times, vacation periods for key staff, or days when unusual events are taking place in the community or in the library.  Choose a week in which the library is open its regular hours.

 

Rationale: I’m offering this proposal because I’d like us to discuss this sacred cow.

 

Phoenix Public Library, the largest in AZ serving 1.5 million residents, told me they were abandoning the collection of reference questions this year in favor of public service transactions. Neither Pima nor Maricopa counties (serving a combined 1.5 million as well) have collected reference transactions for a number of years.

 

Base d on observation, the libraries that do respond are all over the place on this one. The libraries complain that the number they need to collect should help them determine staffing – and taking out directional and policy questions doesn’t leave them with a number they can use.

 

American Libraries Star Index purposefully does not include Reference Questions. The online FAQ says: “Reference transactions do not correlate sufficiently with the four LJ Index output measures to justify inclusion. The decision to exclude reference transactions does not reflect on the value of reference services at all. It is due to questions about the quality of reference statistics, which appear to have both validity and reliability problems. It is not clear that reference data count only the intellectual product of trained librarians, or a wider range of services, such as directional questions. Also, the data are not necessarily counted in the same way by all libraries.

 

“While all public library statistics can be questioned on those grounds, concerns are greater for reference because it is very weakly related-consistently so over time-to the four LJ Index indicators.” http://lj.libraryjournal.com/stars-faq/#FAQ13

 

I’m not sure that Public Service Transactions will be any more successful, but would like to discuss this change. I could be persuaded that circulation and fines are quite fine to include.

 

Laura Stone (AZ) 

 

4. 550 Total Circulation

          The total annual circulation of all library materials of all types including renewals.

5. 551 Circulation of Children's Materials

          The total annual circulation of all chidren's materials in all formats to all users, including renewals.

 

Change to:

 

550 Total Circulation

The total annual circulation of all library materials of all types including excluding renewals.

551 Circulation of Children's Materials

The total annual circulation of all chidren's materials in all formats to all users, including  excluding renewals.

 

RATIONALE: If it is open season on sacred cows, then I'm going to recommend this one--again.  I will speculate that an argument against Laura's recommendation will be the same one used against mine in the past--that the definition change would prevent comparing numbers before and after the change.  (And yes, that was not the only argument but inertia had a lot to do with it.)

 

It is reasonable to assume that renewals were originally included because (a) it was the era of paper circulation cards and libraries would have balked at having to keep their renewal and first time circulation cards separated to get accurate counts of first-time lent materials and (b) finding and stamping cards involved staff time.  With ILS systems, neither reason applies.  

 

If you ask a lay person what it means when informed that the library circulated 100 items annually, the response will be 100 different lent items, not, "Well, it depends, a certain percentage will be one-time uses and a certain percentage will be renewed, sometimes once, sometimes twice and some up to the limit permitted and it's impossible to tell how many items were lent at least once." Because our numbers are now widely available because of the Internet (tekkies insisted on saying World Wide Web because the Internet was the means and WWW was content but the vernacular won out), we need to go with the vernacular and not the cloistered.  

 

Bruce (Tilting at Windmills) Pomerantz  

Minnesota   

  

6. Change "Licensed Databases" to Databases (456, 457, 458)

  

The wording for this category assumes that all databases are licensed not purchased or developed by the library. I would propose that the SDCs (and State Librarians) authorize the LSWG to revise the wording to reflect including any purchased or any locally produced databases.

 

Rationale: The recent question from the SDC in Nevada had me re-read the definition. I think that the language should be revised to be more inclusive.

 

Michael Golrick

Louisiana

 

7. 450 Print Books (Change from 450 Print Materials)

 

Books are non-serial printed publications (including music and maps) that are bound in hard or soft covers, or in loose-leaf format. Include non-serial government documents. Report the number of physical units, including duplicates. For smaller libraries, if volume data are not available, count the number of titles. Books packaged together as a unit (e.g., a 2-volume set) and checked out as a unit are counted as one physical unit.

 

Rationale: In 2011 “Serial back files in print” was removed from the data element 450 Print Materials; however, the first part of the definition was not updated to reflect this change. Updating the name of the data element to “Print Books” and deleting “Report a single figure that includes both of the following: 1. Books in print” would appropriately update the data element to reflect the changes made in 2011.

 

Nicolle Steffen (CO)

__________________________________________________________

 

Proposed Deleted Data Elements:

 

  

1.  710 Metropolitan Status Code (click on link to see definition)

 

IMLS would obtain the Metropolitan Status Code during the geocoding process of the data in the compilation phase of the survey cycle.  The C_MSA data will be placed on the file for release.  This item would not appear in WebPLUS. 

 

 2. 353 Print Materials Expenditures354 Electronic materials expenditures355 Other materials expenditures.

 

I'm submitting as a brain-storming suggestion and would like to hear if others have had a similar thought.  I initially thought it would be important to track the changes between print material expenditures and electronic materials expenditures as the public’s  media preference transitions from print to electronic.  Now I’m wondering if the distinction is important, then it’s important only at the local level for the librarians to explain to policy makers and funders.  Should we just have one number: All Materials Expenditures (357)?  

 

Bruce Pomerantz

Minnesota

 

3. 103 Total Unduplicated Population of Legal Service Areas

 

I do not understand the purpose of this question nor how I am to calculate it as a state with overlapping jurisdictions because county revenue is provided to independent libraries within a county. These libraries can jusftifiably each claim the entire county population because the county funding prevents them from denying service to a non-city resident. 

 

Because unserved areas are not included in this item and IF the intent is to detemine the number served by public libraries and the number not served, wouldn't it be clearer to ask "Population total and percent not served by public libraries."

 

 



  



Comments (15)

Michael Golrick said

at 10:26 pm on Sep 12, 2013

I want to be sure I understand all that is said for Deletion #1. The Metropolitan Status Code would be available to us, it would simply be an item which we would no longer be required to provide. (Right now, it is an item which I lock for my survey, and provide for the libraries. However, it is useful for data analysis.)

Michael Golrick said

at 10:28 pm on Sep 12, 2013

Question on <b>NEW</b> data element #1. Would this be done at the Administrative Entity (AE) level or at the Outlet level. I am having a hard enough time collecting it from my 68 libraries on the AE level. Outlet level data (while nice to have), would be a real problem to collect.

Scott Dermont said

at 4:11 am on Sep 13, 2013

I think the proposed Wireless data element could be really useful to have. My concern is that it could be really hard for a lot of libraries to determine. Michael is concerned about getting the data from 68 libraries - Iowa has 544! Most of those are under 2500 population, so you can imagine the difficulty. I am torn because I think the data would be really useful.

I would definitely not want to see the Expenditures elements removed. I find it very useful to look at materials expenditure breakdowns at the state level. They are very useful for analyzing trends, especially with downloadables. We've gone a step further and added elements for audio and video expenditures as well. I don't see that the data would be any less useful at the federal level. I would not remove those elements from the Iowa survey, even if removed at the federal level.

Joyce Chapman said

at 10:20 pm on Sep 13, 2013

If we add a new element does that mean everyone has to answer it, or can it be optional for folks who don't have the ability to do so? I think the Wireless sessions data elements would be very useful (we've just started collecting in at a state level this year, for any libraries who can provide it), but there's no way all libraries could report it, and there's no way to sample for this like with some of the other questions everyone can't answer. Could we just collect it for anyone who has the technology to report? I think that would be useful even if everyone wasn't reporting it. For those who have the ability to report it, the question doesn't add almost any work.

Juan Tomás Lee said

at 1:10 am on Sep 17, 2013

1. Metropolitan Status Code. I'm OK with this proposal.
2. I would like to retain 353, 354 and 355 as they are. I admit I have some difficulty with my smaller libraries separating their collection expenditures by format, but I try to make the point with them that it is important to have that detailed information AT THEIR LEVEL to make educated assessment and further planning for their collection development.

Susan Mark said

at 4:50 am on Sep 17, 2013

If I am understanding the proposed changes to 552 and 553, Wyoming will no longer have a single interlibrary loan since we're all on the same shared ILS. (Well, there will be a few to/from non-WYLD libraries.... but not many.) This would not be an accurate picture. The cost savings due to it going through a shared ILS are negligible, while the processing costs of fulfilling the request are significant. Both libraries have the expense of packing up the materials and shipping them and either getting it to the patron or putting it back on the shelf. Each of those libraries takes those expenses out of its own budget. The savings from not having to have everything on the shelf are not quantifiable and, in reality, may be nonexistent. Libraries aren't cutting collection budgets because they can get it from another library -- they're cutting budgets because their overall budgets are getting tighter. Given the cost of an ILL and the fact that patrons want to be able to browse the shelves and not wait, libraries still have to have a good collection locally. And, even when we go out of WYLD, we're using WorldCat, so the complexity is not all that much greater. I suspect a lot of libraries are doing something like that. I am strongly opposed to this one.

Wireless -- great number if you can get it. Not opposed to collecting it, but we'll get sparse, sketchy data. Most of mine won't be able to provide it.
Joyce -- every data element is sort of optional. There's always the option to enter -1 if they can't provide that data element. We'll get a lot of -1 responses on that one.

I, too, want to keep collection expenditures by format and not turn it into one big chunk. Mine seem to have no difficulty with that one, and it provides us useful information.

BrucePomerantz said

at 10:28 pm on Sep 18, 2013

WIRELES SESSION

Minnesota collected wireless sessions for two years with abysmal results. In 2011, of the 350 libraries that provided wireless, 23 (7%) did not have a means to count and of the counts I did receive, it was impossible to distinguish between in-house use and and people in the parking lot or environs during, before, and after operating hours.

I also opine that it is not worth counting the number of libraries that provide wireless. The service is ubiquitous akin to asking if the library provides access to the Internet. It's upiquitous. Minnesota does collect this number but I am considering dropping it for 2014. Only 11 of 360 (3%) libraries do not provide it. Several of these libraries are so small that they are deficient in most other services, also, including open hours.

BrucePomerantz said

at 10:49 pm on Sep 18, 2013

INTERLIBRARY LOAN REDEFINITION

I agree with Susan. It's not the means of finding out if a library has a specific item that is being measured. It's, as Susan points out, the labor to physically move the item to the requestingn library that is being measured.

Minnesota has an interface that permits individuals to peruse the collections of all public libraries and request an item even if the libraries do not have the identical ILS systems. In keeping with the intent of the proposal, Minnesota also should not have any count for ILL providing or receiving except for out of state.

Nicolle said

at 1:42 am on Oct 1, 2013

Wireless Usage: I agree that measuring wireless usage is important and I would vote to add this data element. In Colorado we’ve collected this data since 2011; however, about a third of the libraries are non-respondents and another 10% provide highly questionable data. Library directors tell me they can’t provide wireless usage data because of technical difficulties, while others simple state they have no idea how to measure it. This data element is a good addition to the PLS, but it will be challenging to collect it.

ILL: I agree with Bruce and Susan on this one. ILL is defined as the lending and borrowing of materials from one library jurisdiction to another. In Colorado we have a couple of consortia that provide a shared ILS; however, the libraries do not have a common collection. In addition, Colorado has two patron initiated ILL systems and I tell library directors to report patron initiated ILL because the key is “library materials, or copies of the materials, provided by one autonomous library to another upon request” regardless of how the materials are ordered or processed.

Metro Status: Like Michael, I lock this data element, so it’s no trouble for survey respondents. We’ll probably leave it in our collections so that it is in the data set we publish.

Materials Expenditure: Questions about e-material expenditures and their relationship to other expenditures come up frequently enough that these categories seem relevant. I would not recommend collapsing them.

Eleanor Bernau said

at 2:29 am on Oct 1, 2013

Wireless Usage: As with Scott Dermont's post, I also think the proposed Wireless data element could be really useful to have. My concern is also that it could be really hard for a lot of libraries to determine. And Nicolle is on target: accurate collection of wireless data will be challenging for many libraries.
However, in reviewing New Mexico's FY13 annual reports, many libraries are reporting somewhat reduced public computer sessions. The reason is the same for the reduction: more people bringing in their own devices/laptops and using the library's wifi. If it's not adopted as a new data element, NM will add it as a state question for the next annual report.

Materials Expenditures: I would like to retain 353, 354 and 355 as they are. They are useful for NM especially in some smaller and tribal public libraries.

Scott Dermont said

at 10:41 pm on Oct 1, 2013

502 - I am OK with broadening the definition of reference transaction to public service transaction. I think a lot of libraries are still confused over what a reference transaction really is. Broadening it to include things like directional questions would make it a lot easier to count for the librarian. I guess this can cause the issue of consistency with past statistics, but I'm afraid that reference transactions in their current form are quickly losing their relevance. Maybe we need to make this into a completely new question rather than changing the definition - this kind of change would only affect us as the federal level and wouldn't cause a lot of extra burden for the libraries.

550&551 - I see major political and funding implications if we remove renewals from circulation. Libraries in Iowa are already panicking because we are seeing a general but gradual decline of circulation. But removing renewals from the total cause a fast and widespread crash and burn of circulation. I can imagine a pretty serious revolt from library directors. A lot of funding agencies still see this as the main indicator of library use.

Michael Golrick said

at 8:46 pm on Oct 8, 2013

About #550 & #551 - I have a sense that we agree that the definitions for the two items should be parallel. (But I wanted that explicitly out there.)

I agree with Scott about tremendous implications of change in this definition. I'll also note that if the item is in circulation it cannot be used by other users, so it does serve as one measure of what is actually on the shelves. It also serves as a measure of demand for materials.

I need to sleep and think more about #502. I have incredibly mixed feelings about this. Oh, and if it changed here will it also be changed for the SLA survey? (Yeah, I get to be a keyholder for that one, too.)

BrucePomerantz said

at 1:16 am on Oct 11, 2013

Concerning counting or not counting renewals in circulation total: The political and funding implications would primarily be at the state level. States are free to collect renewals and add them to the one-time circulations for reports to their respective policymakers.

BrucePomerantz said

at 1:55 am on Oct 19, 2013

450: Print Materials to Print Books
This would eliminate counting individual magazine issues that libraries circulate as part of the collection.

The earlier data element counted serial back files as part of the collection if they were: (1) bound or (2) unbound as if they were bound if a majority of that year's issues were available. When serial back issues became available online, we discontinued counting bound serials when binding became obsolete. Because we continued to count, as part of circlation, individual issues of serials (i.e., magazines) , we decided to count individual issues as part of the collection. For that reason, we titled 450 as Print Materials and not Print Books..

Kim Miller said

at 1:29 am on Dec 4, 2013

On behalf of Wayne Onkst, Chief Officer, KY and member of the LSWG:

Regarding proposed new data element #1:

I would support this change. We need to know the extent of wireless usage. Many of our libraries are not in a position to do this currently, but the technology required for doing this is becoming better and less expensive. Many are already doing it and we need to push the ones that are not in this direction.

Regarding the changed data element #3:

I would strongly support this change. For many years the number of reference transactions has been irrelevant. If libraries are honest, this number has fallen precipitously as we are doing so many other things (that are not counted) and the demand for this service has declined. Using public service transactions speaks much better to what is going on in libraries. If we want a meaningful statistic, then public service transactions is a much better option and worth the effort of collecting.

Regarding changed data element #4:

I would strongly oppose this change. Our libraries would be absolutely opposed to this change as they would see a huge drop in circulation that could compromise their arguments for relevance. Circulation remains the strongest statistic available in support of continued public funding. Mandating a lower circulation statistic does not appear wise at this critical time. The reaction to this change would be swift and unpleasant from our libraries, damaging our credibility and our ability to get good answers on the rest of the survey.

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