From the Executive Director, Elijah Scott

JULY 2018

Elijah Scott

A recent article from Inside Higher Ed describes a study by the University of Georgia that suggests, “college students provided with free course materials at the beginning of a class get significantly better academic results than those that do not.” The results of the study are described in detail in a paper in the International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, available here. Like many of you, I’ve been immersed in the textbook affordability and OER conversation for a number of years now, and one of my main concerns has been the near-total emphasis on cost savings coupled with a near-total neglect of the impact of OER on student success. As this study aptly notes, “there is more to the OER story than simply reducing debt” (273).

FALSC is actively continuing our work with OER, as you’ll read further in this Update. Our consortial membership in the Open Textbook Network (OTN) began this academic year, enabling us to send representatives from both the FCS and SUS, as well as from FALSC, to the OTN Summer Institute and Summit in Minnesota. Later this year and early next year, we’ll be scheduling a series of OER workshops across the state that will be led by experts from the OTN. In this and in all of our other work with OER, we will emphasize the benefits to students in terms of both cost savings and the positive impact on student success.

In other areas of FALSC, we’re continuing work on one of our largest projects, the upgrade to bring Aleph up to the most current version of the system. Our two overarching goals in this project are to ensure that our users have access to the most current features available in the system, and also to ensure that the system is stable and supported for the period of time that will be necessary to identify and implement a Next Generation ILS.

A quote often misattributed to Albert Einstein, Richard Feynman, and even Woody Allen, suggests that “Time is what keeps everything from happening at once.” Although the actual origin of the quote is a science fiction piece by Ray Cummings, the intent still speaks well to what summer often feels like in an academic library – a time when everything is happening at once! For many of us, summer in a library can be far busier than people outside our profession would imagine, as we struggle to catch up on projects we put off during the spring semester and labor to prepare for the upcoming fall semester.

May you all have adequate time for everything this summer!

– ELIJAH SCOTT, Executive Director, Florida Academic Library Services Cooperative


Governance and Advisory Processes

MCLS Quarterly Meeting – May 15-16

To download materials from past MCLS and Executive Committee meetings, go to FALSC.org.

The next MCLS Quarterly Meeting will be September 11-12, 2018 at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota in Bradenton, FL. More details to come.

The Executive Committee of the MCLS met on July 18.


Other Library Projects


The Collections Management and E-Resources Standing Committee issued a survey to the college and university libraries, hoping to gauge their local institutional interest in a variety of e-resource products in the marketplace. The survey responses will help the committee in its charge to recommend which resources to license in 2019 with the annual legislative allocation for licensing electronic resources for the Florida public colleges and universities. The survey will end on July 18, 2018. We are currently working with vendors on the 2019 Group Licensing process and some vendors have reached out to us regarding potential new products as well.


Digital Services an OER Unit

  • Open Textbook Network Summer Institute- FALSC, College, and University representatives are attending this month.
  • Florida OJ- Open Journal Systems (OJS) Upgrade coming soon. Florida OJ will be updated to OJS 3.1.1-2 over the next few months. Florida OJ users will be provided access to OJS 3 on a test site, and each journal will be able to preview their own items and workflows in the new software (Estimated September 2018).
  • Archon to ArchiveSpace- After the last member’s council vote to proceed with ArchiveSpace we have negotiated a contract and are making plans for migration. If you are a current Archon user and do not want your content migrated to ArchiveSpace please contact us right away. FALSC support and hosting of Archon will be discontinued after the ArchiveSpace migration is complete.
  • Question to Members?- How do you identify faculty who use OER or low-cost resources in their courses? Contact me at rsauls@flvc.org and let me know!


Centralized Data Loads, Extracts, and Reports

SUS Aleph record counts for June are complete. June monthly FCS reports have been released. SUS Aleph record counts through May are complete.

Ad hoc reports for various institutions were prepared on:

  • New titles for specific collection
  • Reports for missing, lost, and circ lost for an institution
  • Report of patrons with blocks and notes
  • Report of serials metadata for a specific collection
  • Revised Custom-cir-04 report
  • Report of periodical holdings
  • Report of specific collection with reading level of books
  • Updated ISBN list
  • Circulation report for 2 months for specific location
  • Circulation for last 5 years for specific call numbers
  • Report for use with ACRL reports

Recent Data loading projects:

  • LC Authority loads complete through
  • USF Genload revised Digital Theatre Plus
  • FAMU Serial Solutions load current for June
  • USF MARCiT! Load current for June

Other recent FALSC activities include:
The Aleph upgrade from version 20 to version 23 is moving along as scheduled. Phase 2 is set to begin in July and continue through the first quarter with Phase 3 taking up the second quarter. The target is to go live during the winter break in December.


Around the Libraries

FSU Names New Dean of University Libraries
Florida State University has named Gale S. Etschmaier as dean of University Libraries, effective Sept. 7.
Etschmaier has served as the dean of library and information access at San Diego State University since 2011.

“Florida State is pleased to welcome Gale Etschmaier as our next dean of libraries,” said Sally McRorie, provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs. “Our extensive library operations are critical to student and faculty success at every level and in every program. Dean Etschmaier’s proven record of innovative leadership will help keep our academic progress toward the Top 25 on track.”

Etschmaier succeeds Julia Zimmerman, who concluded her 11-year tenure as dean June 30. Read more here.

Valencia State College Winner of the 2018 Learning Resources Commission Exemplary Practice for Library Services
The Human Library, presented by Nardia Cumberbatch, Jeannie Rodriquez, and Regina Seguin at Valencia College West Campus was awarded the Winner of the 2018 Learning Resources Commission Exemplary Practice for Library Services. See the presentation here.

TCC Welcomes New Library Director
Tallahassee Community College recently welcomed its new library director, Stephen Banister. Banister comes to TCC from Minot State University in North Dakota, where he had served as library director since 2010. He has also been the library director at McKendree University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Lamar State College.

“I am excited to be with TCC, and I am looking forward to working with the library staff and with the College community,” said Banister. “The library is a critical part of the campus, and I am looking forward to building on the positive developments the library has already made over the last few years.”

Banister holds a Master of Library and Information Science degree from Louisiana State University and pursued further graduate work at Capella University. Read more here.

If you have any news that you would like to share in this newsletter and on our website, email us!


Upcoming Events

The Members Council on Library Services will meet:

  • Sept. 11-12 at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota
  • Dec. 6-7 at the Tallahassee offices of the Florida Virtual Campus (FLVC) and FALSC

See Previous Updates

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