Humanities & Sciences Library Committee
4th Floor Conference Room, James Branch Cabell Library
April 30, 2010 3:00 to 4:00 pm
Leigh Ann Craig, Bonnie Davis (chair), Denis Demchenko, Sandra Gramling, Les Harrison, Craig Larson, Laura McLay, Bernardo Piciche, Mike Valdman, Fang-shen Wu
Staff: Dan Ream, John Ulmschneider, Antonia FD Vassar (recording secretary)
Guest: Nita Bryant, Library Assistant, Research and Instructional Services
Review and approval of agenda
The agenda was approved as presented.
Review and approval of minutes from March 2010
Dr. Davis will send Mr. Ulmschneider some minor corrections to the minutes (add a.m. / p.m. to times, etc.). With these changes, the minutes were approved.
Student Technology Fee proposal for academic year 2010-2011 - handout
Mr. Ulmschneider updated the Committee on the Student Technology Fee proposal from the VCU Libraries. The Student Technology Fee is a fixed amount paid by students, of which the VCU Libraries receives 15%. Funds received from the Student Technology Fee must directly benefit students. The VCU Libraries develops a plan for expenditure of these fees, which is then reviewed by students and the VCU Libraries advisory committees.
Although VCU has approved higher tuition rates, the Student Technology Fee will remain the same. Any increase in funds distributed to the VCU Libraries comes from total student enrollment increases. The fee proposal submitted by the VCU Libraries is equal to the amount received last year plus and additional 30% (to account for any increase in funds due to higher enrollment). Dr. Demchenko asked how much students pay in technology fees and was told that the fee is $68 per year. Mr. Ulmschneider noted that these fees were instituted several years ago and approved by the student government at the time.
The handout outlined proposed expenditures for Student Technology Fees totaling a little over $166,000 for next academic year. The primary investment will be updating and replacing outdated and broken equipment. In addition, the new Learning Commons will require some new equipment and furniture. Media Reserve Services also will replace some obsolete equipment, and a new, larger scanner will be installed in the Learning Commons area. There also are some purchases for the Hunton Learning Center on the MCV Campus. In the past, prices indicated on the proposal have been higher than what was finally paid, and it is expected that this will be the case this year, as well.
Dr. Larson inquired about the distribution between the Monroe Park Campus and the MCV Campus. Mr. Ulmschneider replied that the bulk of the money will go to James Branch Cabell Library, since the Monroe Park Campus has a higher student population.
Dr. Wu asked if the VCU Libraries has slide scanners, and if not, are they in the proposal. Mr. Ulmschneider assured him that VCU Libraries does have digital slide scanners in Media and Reserves that can accommodate up to 30 slides.
The Student Technology Fee Proposal for 2010-2011 was unanimously approved by the Committee.
Change in fees for lost library materials - handout
The VCU Libraries has not reviewed lost materials fees since 1998, despite increased materials replacement costs. The VCU Libraries charged an internal task force to review current fees. The task force recommendations were itemized on the handout, and have been endorsed by the other VCU Libraries advisory committees. Mr. Ulmschneider brought the proposed increases to the Humanities and Sciences Committee for approval. The changes will take affect July 1, 2010.
There are some challenges with the current fees and policies for lost materials. Mr. Ulmschneider explained that students sometimes simply keep a book for a whole semester, especially one being used as a text for a course; it can be less expensive to pay the late fee and then request a refund when the student “finds” the book at the end of the semester than to purchase the book outright. The task force recommends a time limit for a “found book” refund of 6 months, and recommends adding a non-refundable processing fee to the fine structure. (An item is late after 42 days from the due date.) Currently the maximum fine is $10 and the lost book fee is $70; $60 is the book cost and $10 is the processing fee. This fee structure will be replaced with an $80 for JBC materials JBC and $150 for TML, to reflect the average cost of items at each facility.
The Committee suggested changing the 6-month time limit for refunds to three months, so that students cannot keep texts for an entire semester and avoid buying books for classes. Dr. Valdman asked why give a refund at all, and Mr. Ulmschneider responded that the VCU Libraries is rarely able to replace items in under three months, and returned items are much less expensive than processing costs for a replacement.
The fees for lost Inter-Library Loan (ILL) items also are changing. There will now be a $25 non-refundable processing fee, plus the actual cost of replacing the item. This will avoid any difficulties with the co-lending intuitions. Dr. Davis asked about Inter-Library Loan institutions, and in particular wished to know from which institution we borrow the most materials. Mr. Ulmschneider replied that 33% are from in-state institutions, and reminded the Committee of the reciprocal borrowing privileges through Richmond Area Library Consortium (RALC).
Mr. Ulmschneider reported that changes have been made to how fees are collected. The VCU Libraries no longer puts holds on enrollment, but unpaid fees can prevent a student from graduating.
The recommendations from the Lost Materials Task Force were unanimously endorsed.
Reports and Discussion
Update on Learning Commons and relocation of materials to 500 Academic Centre
Mr. Ulmschneider reported that the renovations at 500 Academic Centre have been completed and the space is now opened. Over the last few weeks, a contractor who specializes in moving libraries relocated over 200,000 volumes from Cabell Library to the new storage facility. Lesser-used journals from the collections were identified for relocation, and all remaining bound journals are now housed on the 1st floor of Cabell Library.
On May 17th, construction begins for the new Learning Commons located on the 2nd floor of Cabell Library, former location of the bound journals. The project is on schedule and on budget. Students have already begun to modify now vacant space, fashioning make-shift tables and study areas. The renovated space is sure to be extremely popular with the students.
Change to fees for photocopy services
Mr. Ulmschneider reported that all the photocopiers in JBC have been replaced with machines that have a much less expensive lease. Consequently, the VCU Libraries is reducing photocopy fees, $.08 per page (formerly $.10) and $.12 per page for duplex jobs. The new fee structure brings photocopy costs to the same per-page charge as the pay-for-print service managed by VCU Technology Services. Photocopy use is declining, as more students are using the digital senders. Dr. Piciche noted that he finds the digital senders extremely helpful, and Mr. Ulmschneider reminded the Committee that there are currently digital sender machines on each floor at Cabell Library.
Demo: Jing and Counseling & Therapy in Video
Nita Bryant gave the Committee an overview of two helpful resources: Jing and Counseling & Therapy in Video.
Counseling & Therapy in Video (http://ctiv.alexanderstreet.com/) provides over 400 hours of counseling and therapy resource video. Users can browse by subject or video, and this could be a valuable resource for social workers, as well as many other professions. Ms. Bryant pointed out several key features, including the ability to play clips, embed, generate playlists, find linked teaching guides, and click directly on the transcript to jump to the appropriate spot in the clip. This resource is linked under the VCU Libraries catalog, as well as in the database list. The licensing agreement allows for teachers to show these videos in the classroom.
Jing (http://www.jingproject.com/) is free software that allows users to add visual content such as screen grabs to online conversations, e-mails, and presentations. Ms. Bryant and several of the attendees present noted that they have found it very useful in explaining the location and use of library resources, instructions for computer resources, and even teaching classroom content. Jing presentations can be embedded in Blackboard. Ms. Bryant cautioned that the most effective videos are short in length.
In general discussion which followed, questions were raised about citation software, and Mr. Ulmschneider assured the Committee that he would look into compatibility issues with the Zotero (http://www.zotero.org/) citation program and VCU Libraries computers. There are problems with compatibility with Firefox (the browser used by the VCU Libraries) and Zotero.
Mr. Ulmschneider expressed his appreciation to all of the Humanities and Sciences Committee members for their input and hard work throughout the year, and assured them that their work has a direct impact on VCU students. Committee membership for the next academic year has not yet been finalized, but letters are being sent out to the appropriate departments, and appointments should be made by mid-May.
The next meeting will be held on September 24, 2010. There was no further new business, and the meeting was adjourned.