The Advisory Committee to the Associate University Librarian for Services (SAC) serves as a mechanism for communication and consultation between the AUL for Services and Library faculty and staff engaged in the direct provision of Library services, as a venue for the discussion of Library-wide service issues and initiatives, and as a venue for the discussion of initiatives being pursued by SAC Working Groups, e.g., Library Assessment Working Group, and by coordinate working groups and committees across the Library, e.g., Web Content Working Group, User Education Committee.
Much of the committee’s work throughout the year had to do with assessment projects proposed and/or conducted either by the committee or by its Library Assessment Working Group (LAWG). Among the projects engaged by the committee this year were the Reference Effort Assessment Data (READ) Scale pilot, led by LAWG, and the Snapshot Day program , led by SAC. The committee also continued to provide leadership for the ongoing search for a Library Assessment Coordinator, a position for which its members have advocated since 2006. With the failure of a second round of internal recruiting for the position in FY11, the committee provided input to the Executive Committee that led to the placement of the Coordinator position onto the Library’s Hiring Plan for FY12. The committee looks forward to active involvement in this national search in the coming year.
The committee was also involved in planning for the second annual “Library Retreat” program in January 2011 – “Listening to Our Users.” Committee members helped to plan this half-day review and discussion of activities led by individual Library faculty and/or Library units to engage our users in the design of Library services and collections, and/or to collect information on their use.
Finally, the committee engaged in discussion of the scope of subject specialist responsibilities and the manner in which we might assess the provision of subject specialist services. The initial impetus for this discussion was the desire to take a closer look at the scope and quality of services provided to Library users as part of collaborative agreements recently reached between the Library and partner programs, e.g., UI-Chicago, Indiana University, and the CIC. Through committee discussion, this evolved into a broader desire to articulate the role and scope of subject specialist services provided on the Urbana campus, more generally. In collaboration with the Collection Development Committee, a Joint Working Group was formed to pursue these discussions, but, as of the conclusion of FY11, these discussions were still ongoing.
In addition to these major efforts, the committee was involved in numerous, more narrowly defined discussions, e.g., providing advice to the Associate University Librarian for Services in response to questions raised by student groups, including the request for more robust information on the Library Gateway regarding status of system services, the request to expand late-night service hours in the Undergraduate Library on the weekends, and the resolution passed in support of enhanced security measures in the Library.
One major issue posed in the committee’s report from last year that was not discussed at length was the idea of promoting a "Services Leadership Council" that could serve to better coordinate Services leadership across the Library. With the progress made during FY11 toward the Reference New Service Model and other changes, this remains an important issue for the committee to engage in the coming year.