We are working on gathering data for spring and I am struck again on how challenging it is to gather meaningful statistics on some of our core services--reference/consultation and instruction.
These are high-touch and potentially some of the highest impact services we provide but our data collections techniques are almost non-existant for these face to face interactions.
What we did in Fall....
For Reference we gathered email and chat transations from Questionpoint--the software we use to facilitate these services.
-email addresses aren't required
-U of M email address aren't required
-no data on desk transactions in any location
-no data on consultations or small group sessions with librarians
For Instruction we gathered our workshop *registrations* and we gathered *class lists* of courses who had a one-short/guest lecture sort of session.
-not matched up with actual attendance or any last minute drop-ins
-missing entire classes due to confusion over section, professor, etc.
-missing non-course session (e.g. dept. orientation sessions, clinical groups, etc.)
-challenging to make multiple sessions obvious in reports
Bottom line: We are missing tens of thousands of interactions and uses of our libraries.
So...I have been asking myself....
- Can we ask students to swipe with each session or consultation or question at the desk?
- How do we adequately reflect this high touch, nuanced interactions?
- How do demonstrate the range of activities in these categries (from 5 minute interaction to multiple session class time or hour long consultation)?
Do you have any ideas?