University Library Committee

Ask a Librarian

February 22, 2006

Present: Althen, Braithwaite, Breckenridge, Calcese, Frazier, Hellstrom, Hogle, Lundin, Mason, Milner, Potter, Roper

Others: Burton, Gilbertson, Gottlieb, Guthrie, Helman, Konrad, Kruse, Owens, Paul, Van Gemert

1. Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the 12/7/05 meeting were approved without change.

2. Announcements


2. Reports from Library Directors

Ken Frazier (General Library System)
An external review of information technology on the UW-Madison campus will occur March 6-8, 2006. The review team includes the Chief Information Officers at University of California-Berkeley, Purdue University, and Pennsylvania State University, as well as representatives from University of California-San Diego and Inacom Information Systems.

Frazier and Van Gemert have reviewed plans to remodel the 4th floor of Steenbock Library to allow for the consolidation of the two units of UW Archives into one building. (Currently one unit of UW Archives is at Memorial Library and the other is at Steenbock Library.) The Archives project will be funded through Parents Fund dollars. Steenbock currently is undergoing a Concentrated Upgrade and Repair of Buildings (CURB) project. The CURB project is timely in terms of the future building renovation to accommodate Archives.

Frazier recently visited UW-Foundation to serve as a "cheerleader" for the students who were fundraising for the Parents Fund campaign. Parents Fund dollars have been used to remodel the Jounalism Reading Room and reconfigure space at Steenbock Library for group study, among other projects.

Terry Burton (Ebling Library)
Ebling Library was awarded a grant of $159,794 over a three-year period for "Library Collection Support for Public Health Research and Teaching." The Blue Cross/Blue Shield Grant allows for the acquisition of a solid core collection of public health resources, including print and online journals, books and monographs.

Staff of Ebling Library will help facilitate the submission to PubMed Central (PMC) of articles written by NIH-funded investigators

Ebling Library's Historical Reading Room is featuring an exhibit entitled "This Dread Messenger: Public Health and Human Crisis in the Age of Cholera." The exhibit, which features books and pamphlets, describes the outbreak of cholera in England during 1831-1832.

This summer, Ebling will sponsor an exhibition of illustrated works in natural history and medicine. The exhibit will coincide with the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators annual conference, which will be held in Madison.

Deborah Helman (Wendt Library)
Wendt recently has published a new version of its website.

Three new staff members have been hired: Eric Larson, Digital Services Librarian; Amanda Werhane, Bioengineering Librarian and Marketing Coordinator; and Jennifer Nowak Velasco, Resource Sharing Librarian.

Wendt staff are working with units in the College of Engineering on a pilot project to populate Minds@UW with COE materials.

Jean Gilbertson (Steenbock Library)
The February 14, 2006 issue of Wisconsin Week featured an article about "[r]apid article delivery, a new library service at UW-Madison that allows swift retrieval of articles from any scholarly journal not available on campus..." The new service, part of Library Express, reduces the turnaround time for document delivery to about one day.

Steenbock will incorporate a photomural into its space.

Lee Konrad (Memorial Library, Public Services)
A research intern librarian has been hired by the Office of Scholarly Communication and Publishing.

Memorial Library staff continue to work on space planning and service consolidation.

4. Library Preservation Facility Update and Discussion

Van Gemert reported on his recent meeting with the Campus Planning Committee (CPC.) The CPC approved a proposal for a preservation facility administered jointly by the Wisconsin Historical Society, Veterans Museum, and UW-Libraries for the 2007/09 biennium. This new facility is the linchpin for the libraries' future strategic planning. With this facility, campus will not need to construct new library buildings. Constructing the preservation facility allows for student study space, space for growing collections, and modernization within our present library structures. The new facility will not accommodate browsing and books will not be arranged in Library of Congress (LC) call number order.

Some library users have expressed concerns about what currently is being transferred to the Middleton Shelving Facility. It is hoped that ongoing communications between the libraries and their users will alleviate those concerns. Frazier plans to contact the Secretary of the Faculty to ask for time at a future Faculty Senate meeting to address the concerns of faculty members. Roper emphasized the importance of learning how other universities have handled similar concerns.

5. Undergraduate Library Services Trends and Directions

College Library director Carrie Kruse gave background on the undergraduate library movement of the 60s and 70s. She also described current trends and future directions in undergraduate libraries nationwide and at UW-Madison's College Library. In the 1960s, there was concern that undergraduates' needs weren't being met by university libraries as they were then structured. This gave rise to the construction of undergraduate libraries. Today, undergraduates' needs have evolved to needs for learning communities, learning spaces and a quality first year experience.

Current trends in undergraduate libraries include:

  • Transformation to "information commons," consolidating computing services, library services and a writing center.
  • 24-hour access.
  • Flexible use of space. At UW-Madison the Open Book Cafe ( is an example of a new use for library space
  • Emphasis on group study space, including access to computing and video. Group study space ideally should be outfitted with flexible-use furniture, tables on wheels, movable computers, access to projectors and screens, and ability to videotape groups and presentations.
  • Combinations of study options: group study, quiet study
  • Ubiquitous computing, including wireless, kiosks, desktops, and connections for laptops.

College Library strives to take its cues from its undergraduate student users. The library may form a student advisory group in the future.

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