Introduction to Collection Analysis
Instructor: Karen Kohn
Dates: January 6th through February 2nd, 2020
Credits: 1.5 CEUs or 15 PDHs
Data plays a role in almost all collection development decisions. From choosing what subscriptions to renew to negotiating pricing for packages to making decisions about what formats to collect, data can help make a decision or an argument. As collection development has become increasingly informed by data, a subset of the collection development role has emerged called collection analysis, sometimes also referred to as collection evaluation or assessment. This course will introduce some of the common types of data that are used in collection decisions, such as COUNTER reports and circulation statistics, while also noting limitations and controversies around these reports. Students will practice identifying which kinds of data would be useful for a particular analysis as well as teasing out the shortcomings of the data. Students will learn and practice techniques for combining data from multiple sources into a master Excel spreadsheet. The course requires some reading and discussion but emphasizes hands-on practice in selecting appropriate data for an analysis and working in Excel to compile the data. It will be helpful if students have used Excel before, but it is not necessary to have experience with formulas.
By completion of the course, students will be able to:
- Identify common types of data used for collection analysis
- Plan an analysis by deciding which data to use
- Name limitations of common data sources and brainstorm ways these can be mitigated
- Use VLOOKUP formulas to import data from one Excel spreadsheet into another.
Karen Kohn is Collections Analysis Librarian at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA and the author of Collection Evaluation in Academic Libraries: A Practical Guide for Librarians (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015). She has published articles in College & Research Libraries, Journal of Academic Librarianship, Journal of Documentation, and Collection Management. She has an MLS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an MA in Sociology from Temple University.
This is an online class that is taught asynchronously, meaning that participants do the work on their own time as their schedules allow. The class does not meet together at any particular times, although the instructor may set up optional sychronous chat sessions. Instruction includes readings and assignments in one-week segments. Class participation is in an online forum environment.
You can register in this course through the first week of instruction (as long as enrollment is not full). The "Register" button above goes to our credit card payment gateway, which may be used with personal or institutional credit cards. (Be sure to use the appropriate billing address). If you want to pay with Paypal, or if your institution wants us to send a billing statement or wants to send us a purchase order, please contact us by email to make arrangements.