STANDARD FIVE: LIBRARY AND LEARNING RESOURCES

The college provides those learning resources necessary to support the educational program and intellectual and cultural development of staff and students, day and evening, on and off campus. The adequacy of an institution's learning resources is judged in terms of its goals and programs. The effectiveness of an institution's learning resources is judged by how well and how much they are actually used.

Learning resources include the library and its collections, learning laboratories and centers, other collections of materials that support teaching and learning, instructional technology and support services, distribution and maintenance systems for equipment and materials, instructional information systems, instructional computers and software, telecommunications and other instructional media, and the facilities that house such equipment and services.

Standards 5A.1-5A.3 General Provisions

5A.1 Library holdings, media resources, facilities, and staff are sufficient in quality, depth, diversity, and currentness to support the institution’s educational offerings.

5A.2 The library collection and other learning resources are adequately supported in relation to the total budget and needs of the institution.

5A.3 Learning resources are designed to provide support for varying modes of instruction appropriate to students’ needs and learning styles and are augmented to serve curricular changes.

DESCRIPTION: The materials collection of the library comprises approximately 43,500 books, 300 periodical titles in paper or on microfilm, nearly 11,000 pamphlets, and a variety of nonprint materials. Current periodical subscriptions are down to 191 (5.1). There is a variety of equipment for use of nonprint material in the library.

The library is now housed in its interim facility on campus. The move from its storefront location made possible the addition of more shelving and an increase in seating capacity.

EVALUATION: The state’s special funding for library materials and instructional equipment has been withdrawn, returning the ability to purchase library materials to its former depressed state.

Regrettably, services such as orientations for classes have recently been curtailed, because if only one librarian is on duty, many students are deprived of reference service during orientations.

Student and faculty surveys indicate that the research needs of students are being met. This perception is due to the efforts and creativity of librarians who find information in unlikely sources when the more usual sources are unavailable due to lack of budget (5.2; 5.3).

PLAN: A permanent library facility is expected to be completed in fall, 1996. This facility should help to alleviate the space problem. As state funding for equipment and materials for the new facility is quite inadequate, planning for obtaining alternative funding sources has begun. Pursuit of adequate staffing for the current and future library will be continued.

5A.4 Technical assistance is provided to faculty in the production of tests, syllabi, audio-visual programs, and other instructional materials.

DESCRIPTION: All faculty members are entitled to have their syllabi, quizzes, and tests reproduced at the school’s expense. However, they must obtain the signature of the cluster chair before placing the order with the reprographic center. All other copying must either be done at the instructor’s own expense or produced and sold to students through the campus bookstore.

Faculty may obtain assistance in the production of audio-visual and other instructional materials from the campus Instructional Media Assistant. At present, the IMA is working with approximately thirty faculty members reproducing video tapes, audio tapes, and slides. Also, the IMA consults with these faculty members on the proper presentation of these materials and provides assistance in the physical set up and operation of all A-V equipment.

A-V equipment is installed in various locations for permanent use and is also available for checkout for classroom and seminars.

EVALUATION: Many faculty have need for more copying than they are currently receiving. Reproducing material to be sold in the bookstore is not always practical as vital information which an instructor may wish to distribute to a class may become available at the last moment.

Currently, the Instructional Media Assistant is meeting most of the needs of all faculty who come to him for assistance. However, needs are not always met expeditiously due to understaffing. All requests are serviced chronologically.

PLAN: a video editing and post-production facility is planned to aid in the production of instructional materials. Two to three student workers have been requested to assist in production and presentation of instructional materials.

5A.5 Learning resources equipment is properly maintained

DESCRIPTION: Repairs for the microfilm reader/printers are ordered through Plant Facilities. The InfoTrac CD system is maintained through a lease contract. The copying machines, also leased, are maintained by the vendor. Maintenance on all other campus equipment is performed on a preventative maintenance and as-needed basis.

EVALUATION: The system works well except at times when the Instructional Media Assistant has a large backlog of work or when funds are not available for parts and or repairs.

PLAN: Budget constraints mandate continuing in the above described mode until a move to the new building with new, warrantied equipment ameliorate the situation.

STANDARD 5B: Resource Development:

5B.1 There is an organized procedure in which faculty and administrators participate in the selection, evaluation, and elimination of library holdings, learning resources, and materials.

5B.2 Faculty and staff are kept informed about new developments in learning technologies.

DESCRIPTION: The library has a written policy for the selection, acquisition and disposition of materials (5.4). Memos are routinely sent to faculty members encouraging them to request library materials. This service is provided throughout the year. Library forms are available, but all written requests are accepted. Publisher’s information received, which is deemed to be of interest to a particular faculty member, is transmitted to that individual by one of the librarians. Instructors are informed that materials they requested have been received.

As a curriculum committee member, the Library Department chair is apprised of new courses and programs. Librarians regularly peruse reviewing media to make selections which support the curricula and achieve a balanced collection.

Surveys sent by government agencies offer an opportunity to assess balance and deficiencies. Responding to reference questions gives librarians the opportunity to note deficiencies and select accordingly.

Also librarians cooperate with other faculty members in the preparation of library assignments for their students.

Pamphlet files are weeded systematically; books are not, because of staffing constraints.

Title III funding has provided some instructors access to some of the newer learning technologies. Many of these will be available in the permanent library building.

EVALUATION: Some books were weeded in preparation for the move to the campus. It was hoped that more could be discarded, but with no funding to replace the only books held on a subject, the decision was made to keep many of them.

PLAN: The move to a permanent facility will provide the opportunity to discard obsolete material and purchase new sources of information in a variety of formats.

Standard 5C: Accessibility

5C.1 Use of the library and other resources is promoted through a comprehensive program of orientation, instruction, and printed material designed to assure [sic] substantial use of these resources by students, staff, and faculty. Attention is given to the needs of both traditional and nontraditional students.

5C.2 Learning resources are available to students at off-campus centers for both day and evening students.

5C.3 Hours of service provide adequate access to learning resources.

5C.4 Where reliance is placed on the resources of another institution or organization, the arrangement is clearly delineated in a written agreement.

DESCRIPTION: Since the fall of 1991, the interim library has been housed in the ground floor of the Campus Center building, which, being centrally located as the name indicates, has increased enormously the use of many services. That is, the move from storefront quarters located blocks from classrooms to a permanent campus has greatly increased its accessibility (5.5).

Library services and functions comprise the selection, ordering, cataloging, and circulation of materials to students and staff of the college. Reference services are available to students from other colleges and the community as well. Orientations for classes to the use of the library as well as specialized instruction to meet the needs of a particular discipline or assignment are available by appointment. Nonprint materials and equipment for their use are available to students. Traditional audio-visual services involving the distribution of equipment and materials to instructors for classroom use as well as the duplication of materials is supervised by the buildings and grounds administrator. Also located in the library are the Learning Assistance Center and The GAIN offices and lab.

Because of lack of staff and funds, Friday library service hours were eliminated as of October 1993. Surveys, however, indicate that both faculty and students desire extended evening and weekend hours, the most frequent request made by students (5.2).

Currently, hours of operation are Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. through 9:00 p.m.

By memos, by notices in the campus Bulletin, and in announcements at various meetings, faculty members are encouraged to use library services. Suggestions for enhancing the usefulness of library assignments are made to instructors.

The Library Handbook provides information on how to use the library (5.5). A variety of study aids prepared by librarians is available as handouts (5.6). Materials on instructors’ book lists are acquired as budget permits.

Library faculty members view the instruction of students in the art and science of information gathering as their primary goal. To date, the card catalog is used for the location of books and pamphlets. Print and electronic indexes provide access to periodical articles.

Librarians participate in committee work such as the Curriculum Committee, the Council of Instruction, the Planning and Advisory Committee, the Library Building Committee, and the senate and district library chairs committees.

EVALUATION: While a convenient location and pleasant facility have greatly appreciated accessibility and usage, staffing constraints have forced curtailment in services such as hours of operation and orientations. Now that the college is offering more Friday and Saturday classes, additional library hours are even more urgently needed. Maintenance of equipment for the use of nonprint media is problematical.

PLAN: Additional funding for the current and the new library will be sought.

Standard 5D: Faculty and Staff

Learning resource staff are sufficient in number and properly qualified in various specialty areas to serve users and to provide technical support.

DESCRIPTION: Current library staff members are the library department chair, two additional full-time librarians and twelve part-time librarian hours, three library-media technical assistants and a variable number of student assistant hours. Assistance is provided to students in the use of equipment and materials software available for information, instruction, and remediation by the library learning assistance center staff, depending on the function. The Senior Graphics Artist and an audio-visual Instructional Media Assistant report to the Buildings and Grounds Administrator.

EVALUATION: In the fall of 1993, Friday public hours were eliminated because of insufficient staffing. This time is now being used to restructure assignments, retrain staff, and streamline operations. Requests have been made for an additional librarian, an additional LMTA, and additional student workers, but a district freeze on hiring precludes this possibility at this time.

A large majority of students and faculty believe that staff attitude, effectiveness, and responsiveness are well above average. All but one faculty member believe that the library is inadequately supported (5.2; 5.3).

PLAN: Library staff will be trained to upgrade skills required for the permanent, technologically advanced library. Title III funding will provide some opportunity for training, but much of it will await on-the-job training when equipment and software are available in the new facility.

Standard 5E: Information Technology

Computing and data communications services are provided as learning resources in sufficient quality and quantity to support the educational offerings of the institution.

The institution provides service to support full utilization of its information technology resources.

DESCRIPTION: In the library, cataloging is performed with the Bibliofile System. A subscription provides software and hardware updating and maintenance. There is one CD ROM station with access to Books in Print. Another CD ROM station provides access to INFOTRAC. Two other computers provide access for the library to district network services. Not yet operational is one WestLaw work station with modem.

In the Learning Assistance Center, there are four stand-alone IBM computers with Word Perfect available to students for word processing. There are two groups of eight IBM computers linked to file servers that have PLATO installed for basic skills work with students. There are also three Apple computers with fifty discs of basic skills material available to students. In the Title III laboratory there are eight computer work stations, four installed with the New Century interactive basic skills tutorial program. There is also another work station installed with ELIS, a multimedia, interactive, tutorial, ESL program.

The Title III laboratory will soon be a fully operational, high technology, computer laboratory which includes a Video Toaster that will enable faculty to develop interactive media of the highest quality, including full animation, video interaction, sound, and closed captioning. Faculty can use this laboratory to learn about and evaluate all forms of computer-assisted instruction.

The computer work stations in the learning resources center and in the Title III laboratory are currently used by students in laboratory classes and lecture classes in basic skills. Support material for other levels of course work is currently being evaluated by faculty in the Title III laboratory.

A satellite downlink has been installed and a room set up in the Campus Center for video conferencing. All rooms in the Instructional Building have been wired for data communication. Also, the college is working with the local cable company to wire all rooms for video reception.

In the Instructional Building, the office administration laboratory has thirty-five computer work stations, the engineering laboratory has fifteen, the electronics laboratory has twenty, and the computer laboratory has sixty.

Currently there is one computer technician who gives full-time support to the maintenance and installation of all information technology on campus including that available to support instruction.

EVALUATION: In the library and learning resources center, the Apple computers are obsolete and are being phased out. More computer work stations for students in basic skills are needed. More computerized support material for other academic classes to be included in the computer work stations needs to be evaluated, purchased, cataloged, and installed for student use. An additional existing WestLaw workstation in the computer science laboratory and in the library needs to be activated. The ELIS workstation in the Title III laboratory needs to be put into service. There is a need for Satellite uplink and downlink for full video conferencing capability and for a full electronic classroom to use new technology available to assist instruction. There is a need to install more software such as WordPerfect on all existing workstations. The library needs more CD ROM stations and software.

More support staff is required to enable the expanding computer-assisted instructional capability of the college to become fully operational. Because there is only one staff member to service all of the equipment on campus, including the computers used by faculty and administration, projects are delayed. There is a need to continue training faculty and staff to evaluate and use computer assisted instruction.

PLAN: The new library and learning resources building will answer many of the needs outlined in the evaluation. It will contain 300 computer workstations, three fully equipped electronic classrooms, a faculty laboratory for developing and evaluating computer-assisted instruction, and a fully equipped video conferencing center including a second satellite dish. As part of the plan for equipping the new building, all computers will be installed with required software. The planned increase in centralization of all computer-assisted instruction will help with the insufficient support staffing. As an interim plan, additional resources will be sought to provide software and support for existing workstations in the Library and the Learning Assistance Center.

Works Cited

5.1 Annual Report to the President

5.2 Los Angeles Mission College Learning Resources Center, Student Survey

5.3 Los Angeles Mission College Learning Resources Center, Faculty Survey

5.4 Los Angeles Mission College Acquisitions Policy

5.5 Library Handbook

5.6 Library Study Aids