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JMU Libraries & Educational Technologies
Annual Report 2007-2008

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Preparations for the opening of the East Campus Library dominated JMU Libraries and Educational Technologies efforts this year. In March, construction of the building was completed. In the following months, 24,000 linear feet of shelving was installed, and furniture and equipment were purchased and moved into the building. Staff began occupying their offices in ECL in May, and the science book and journal collections were relocated there in June. By the close of the fiscal year, it was clear the building would meet its deadline of being open, staffed, and ready for the beginning of Fall Semester 2008 (see Section 4 for more details about East Campus Library).

Although getting the new library building online required contributions of time and energy from nearly every member of the organization, L&ET also achieved numerous objectives in its strategic plan, many of which are outlined in the following report. The report uses the goals of the L&ET Strategic Plan as its framework; see the full Strategic Plan for more details.

Some major accomplishments include:

Staffing: L&ET undertook a large-scale recruiting and reorganization process in FY 2007-2008. L&ET added approximately 28 new positions: 16 were new positions in the East Campus Library, and six were new positions in Carrier. Three new positions were added in Carrier Center for Instructional Technology, and three in CIT East. Reorganizations took place in the Public Services, Technical Services, Digital Services, and Educational Technologies units. A third of L&ET staff has been a part of the organization for less than a year.

Learning Commons: JMU Libraries defined a new service model for ECL’s Learning Commons: a tiered service model that uses a well trained team of students, professional support staff, library assistants, and librarians who are prepared to meet the wide variety of needs for library users. This model utilizes a single Information Desk that offered one-stop service for book check-out, research assistance, and technology questions.

Subject guides: JMU librarians devised a new template for online subject guides and set a goal of migrating to the new format during the coming year. The guides will promote library collections and services; instruct and guide faculty and students in finding, evaluating, and using information they need (information literacy skills); and provide expert assistance. They will be particularly useful for reaching distance education students. Overall, the new guide advances the Libraries’ efforts to promote information literacy in every discipline at JMU.

Faculty Development: JMU Libraries held its third annual three-day Information Literacy workshop on May with eleven faculty participants. CIT’s Faculty Development Services facilitated 151 regularly scheduled and customized workshop sessions in FY08. For the second time, the CIT offered the Instructional Design & Technology Solutions to Teaching and Learning Challenges Institute, with ten faculty participants.

Online Courses: The number of completely online distance courses and enrollments continues to climb each year, with 162 online distance courses and 4,107 enrollments in FY 2007-200. Summer courses contribute significantly to these numbers.

Delivery Service: Enhancements include twice-a-day deliveries to all JMU Libraries (up from one per day), and delivery to departmental mailboxes for JMU Faculty and grad students The Libraries also will begin offering article delivery of print or microform articles held in the journal collections to all JMU students and faculty.


1: Enrich the experience of learners and scholars.

Learning Commons service model: JMU Libraries made plans to implement a Learning Commons service model in East Campus Library. The Learning Commons will rely on a well trained team of librarians, library assistants, professional support staff, and students who are prepared to meet the wide variety of needs for students, faculty, and scholars. It will feature a single Information Desk that will offer one-stop service for book check-out, research assistance, and technology questions. The Learning Commons will employ a tiered service model; students and paraprofessionals will receive training in all aspects of library services, including circulation functions, technology assistance, and the reference interview. One of the skills emphasized is to know when to refer the library user to a subject librarian for more specialized help. ECL administrators have scheduled an intensive two-day workshop for staff and student workers for August.

Library Instruction: Instruction activity was down slightly this fiscal year compared to last. The Instruction program reached 7530 students, faculty, and staff in instruction, a decrease from last year of about 176 students.Nineteen librarians taught 266 sessions for 38 departments; this amounted to 29 fewer sessions than last year. Liaisons report more faculty are doing information literacy instruction themselves rather than asking their liaison librarians to do it for them. In these cases, librarians sometimes provide support such as handouts, the research guide, or PowerPoint presentations. They also report more collaboration with faculty on information literacy assignments. Librarians are integrating more instruction into their subject guides by adding how-to guides and learning objects such as PowerPoint presentations, tutorials, learning modules, and search tip sheets that are links within the guides. The subject guide is evolving into a major way of delivering instruction online.

Faculty development: JMU Libraries held its third annual Information Literacy workshop in May, sponsored in cooperation with the Center for Faculty Innovation. This was the second workshop to focus on courses in the major, and provided an opportunity for eleven teaching faculty to work with a liaison in their subject area to develop a resource-based assignment that incorporated information literacy objectives. The Libraries provided a $1,000 stipend for faculty participants. The workshop helped the Libraries to move toward its goal of developing information literate students in every major.

CIT’s Faculty Development Services facilitated 151 regularly scheduled and customized workshop sessions in FY08. Workshop topics included Blackboard and various related features and tools, including Photoshop Elements, podcasting, CPS (“clickers”), WebSurveyor, Qualtrics (replacement for WebSurveyor), Adobe Presenter, Dreamweaver, Elluminate Virtual Classroom, Google Pages, Google Picasa, blogs and wikis. Many of these topics reflect the collaborative nature of today’s instructional technologies.

For the second time, the CIT offered the Instructional Design & Technology Solutions to Teaching and Learning Challenges Institute (formerly known as the Working Seminar for Professional Development in Instructional Technology). This institute was a six-week series facilitated by the CIT Instructional Technologist. Ten faculty members were accepted into this professional development initiative.

J-ESS records indicate that the CIT provided 6196.7 hours of professional development in FY2007-2008 (contact hours equals the number of participants in an event multiplied by the number of training hours for that event). This represents 846 participants at regularly scheduled workshops, customized workshops, the CIT Teaching and Learning with Technology Conference, faculty forums and house calls that were counted as training. The CIT accumulated an additional 354 hours of professional development and 236 participants through facilitation of CFI-sponsored workshops. In total, the CIT provided 6550.7 hours of professional development to JMU faculty and staff in FY 2007-2008. Data for in-class training for students (not included in J-ESS) totaled 539 contact hours, making a total number of training contact hours with faculty, staff, and students of 7089.7.

In May 2008, The Coordinator of Distributed and Distance Learning Services worked with Faculty Development staff to coordinate and facilitate the sixth annual Summer Institute for Online Learning, a week-long event. Eleven faculty members participated in the Institute this year.

CIT staff conducted customized institutes for faculty from JMU and other institutions who were preparing to teach online distant courses for a cross-institutional masters program in speech pathology for the Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) department, an abbreviated 3-hour institute for Health Sciences faculty, and a 31-hour customized institute for the Outreach Program.


2: Enhance virtual environments to empower learners and scholars.

R2: The Research Databases & Resources search tool/pages (R2) won the American Library Association / Thomson Gale Award for Excellence in Reference and Adult Library Services. (

Content Interfaces Initiative: A librarian and a staff member within Digital Services are spearheading a new initiative to focus on the needs of web interfaces to such content as LEO, R2, Periodical Locator, and Check for Full Text. A primary functions will be to develop a checklist used to evaluate LEO functionality following upgrades and detect any system problems.

Subject guides: A new template for online subject guides was completed in June, 2008, after a year and a half of collaborative effort involving all liaisons and some Digital Services staff. The guides will serve as a primary subject gateway and communication tool liaison librarians use to promote library collections and services; instruct and guide faculty and students in finding, evaluating, and using information they need (information literacy skills); and provide expert assistance. The new guide is a significant advance in the Library’s effort to promote information literacy in every discipline at JMU, and to reach distance learning students. The new subject guide template allows integration of instruction and information literacy concepts into the guide. Librarians have the option to include links in the guides to learning objects (small chunks of educational content that can be reused and shared in various learning environments). Teaching faculty can insert links to the guides in their Blackboard course sites or use the guides and learning objects in their own instruction. An improved path to the guides from the library’s web page makes them easier for users to find.

LEO Upgrade: JMU Libraries implemented a new version of LEO the library catalog in May immediately following the end of Spring Semester. The new LEO offers a new look, plus several features to assist users in their searching, such as Search History and Relevancy Ranking. The new version also highlights My LEO, a tool that enables JMU users to interact with LEO to renew their books online, view their Reading History, create preferred searches, and create alerts to notify them when the library acquires materials in their topics of interest. The advanced keyword search screen is now the default, and search results are sorted by relevance as the default display.

Library Web site: No major changes to the web site took place this year. The web site’s navigation continues to be based on L&ET’s organization units; the CISAT Library page will be revised to an East Campus Library page during the summer.

Table 1
Visits to Library Web Pages

  2006-7 2007-8  
  # of visits # of visits % change
Carrier Library front page 671,351 653,702 -3%
Music Library front page 72,356 76,485 6%
CISAT Library front page 69,086 51,237 -24%
Media Resources front page 25,377 39,204 35%
Special Collections front page 15,824 16,341 4%

Source: Digital Services Unit Annual Report

The most visited sections of the library web are shown in Table 2 below:

Table 2
Most Visited Library Web Content

Top Content Directories 2006-07 2007-08  
  # of Visits # of Visits % Change
Connect from Off Campus/Home* /proxy/ 40,214 4,090,470 1017%
InfoApp** 924,266 1,074,482 16%
Research Databases (R2) /resources/ 501,846 771,439 54%
Music Library 207,640 174,837 -16%
Media Resources 96,376 111,123 15%
Special Collections 113,578 108,542 -4%
Organizations (hosted sites external to L&ET) 92,022 106,820 16%
CISAT Library 77,513 81,828 6%
The Knowledge Edge 49,612 63,175 27%
Go for the Gold /gold/ 58,033 62,505 8%
Help 29,345 49.258 68%

Source: Digital Services Unit Annual Report

Online Courses: The number of completely online distant courses and enrollments continues to climb each year. As indicated in Figures 1 and 2, both numbers have increased dramatically over the past few years. In FY 2007-2008, there were 162 online distant courses and 4,107 enrollments. Summer courses contribute significantly to these numbers.

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 1
Source: Center for Instructional Technology Annual Report 2007-2008

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 2
Source: Center for Instructional Technology Annual Report 2007-2008

Interlibrary Loan: For the second consecutive year, JMU was a net lender of interlibrary loans. The total number of materials lent to other libraries (both returnables and article copies) was 16,451, while the total number of items borrowed was 12,246. Lending to other libraries increased by over 12 percent, while borrowing increased even more at 18 percent. The rate of returnable materials borrowed dropped by 20 percent, while the rate of articles borrowed nearly doubled.

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 3
Source: Interlibrary Loan Annual Report 2007-2008

The number of articles lent to other libraries dropped by 12 percent, while the rate of returnable items lent rose by 41 percent (see Figure 4 below).

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 4
Source: Interlibrary Loan Annual Report 2007-2008


3: Cultivate content in appropriate formats for learners and scholars.

Materials Budget: Once again the Library received a $500,000 increase to the materials budget as a result of the SACS initiative. The budget was $3,558,624 up from $3,055,816 in the previous year.

Figure 5 shows the percentage of expenditures by material type. Spending for journals and standing orders showed the highest percentage increase over last year, rising to 40 percent compared to 33 percent last fiscal year. The proportion of spending for databases dropped somewhat, to 29 percent from 33 percent, while the percent expended for other formats remained steady.

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 5
Source: 2008 JMU Libraries Collection Financial Report

Figure 6 below tracks expenditures by material type for the past five years. Journal and standing order costs jumped markedly in FY 2007-8 compared to the previous year. This is due primarily to increased journal expenditures, which rose by 26 percent ($1,262,200 for journals in FY 2007-8, compared to $1,005,679 the year before.)

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 6
Source: 2008 JMU Libraries Collection Financial Report

Monographs: Monograph expenditures increased by 12 percent from the previous year. The actual number of monographs purchased increased by six percent (18,172 compared to 17,093 the year before). The average cost per title was $49.88, up from $47.38 last year. Figure 7 tracks the number of monographs purchased over the past five years.

Annual Report 2006-2007

Figure 7
Source: 2008 JMU Libraries Collection Financial Report

New monograph collections that became available this year include comic books, graphic novels, American Broadside e-graphics, and several collections of e-reference books.

In preparation for the collection move to East Campus Library, over 8,000 items were weeded, primarily from the sciences.

Serials: The Libraries added 463 journal titles in FY 07-08 for a total of 10,335 purchased subscriptions. In addition, the Libraries received access to a total of 2,575 VIVA journal subscriptions. In all, the Serials Unit maintained access to almost 147,000 journal and standing order titles available through subscriptions, VIVA, aggregator full-text databases, and open access sources. During the year, over 6,000 journal volumes were withdrawn from the Carrier Library bound journals collection in preparation for the move to the new East Campus Library. Table 3 provides a snapshot of the Libraries’ journal subscriptions:

Table 3
Journal Subscriptions: FY 2007-2008*

Print   1,315
Subs   9,040
VIVA   2,575
Total Electronic   11,615
Microform   209
Total Subscriptions   13,139
% Online   88.4%

*Includes gifts and duplicate subscriptions

Databases: Database expenditures increased from $994,693 in FY 2007-2008 to $1,036,502, or 29 percent of total materials expenditures. This year, 29 databases were trialed, and 37 new databases were added as new subscriptions. In addition, the libraries acquired several new databases through the VIVA contract with Ebsco for full text multidisciplinary periodical databases. The databases in this contract include many of EBSCO's "Complete" packages (Table 4, below):

Table 4
Complete Packages

Academic Source Complete* Education Research Complete
Business Source Complete* Environment Complete
Communication & Mass Media Complete* Hospitality & Tourism Complete*
Computers & Applied Science Complete Humanities International Complete
Consumer Health Complete  
Additional Databases

Alt Health Watch MedicLatina
Associates Programs Source Military & Government Collection*
Economia y Negocios Newspaper Source Plus*
Fuente Academica Psychology & Behavioral Sciences Collection*
Health Source: Consumer Edition* Regional Business News
Health Source: Nursing/Academic Ed.* Religion & Philosophy Collection
Legal Collection Salud en Espanol
MasterFILE Premier Vente et Gestion
  Women's Studies International
*JMU previously had access to this resource or a version of this resource

Special Collections: In consultation with the English librarian and Professor Mark Rankin, Special Collections purchased four 17th Century titles and one 16th Century title. This represented significant additions to the rare book collection that also served curriculum needs and interests. The Shenandoah Valley Oral History Collection, the first born-digital oral history collection processed in Special Collections, and was made available through an interactive online finding aid as well as through catalog records in LEO. With the assistance of two interns and a graduate assistant, nearly 130 of the 139 interviews have been transferred from cassette to archival gold CD-R's from which archival and service copies have been loaded onto the streaming server, for a total of 234 sound files.

Special Collections received a third place award from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference for the finding aid of the McHone Brothers (LLC) Collection of Houck Tannery Records, 1870-1913, in MARAC's annual Finding Aids Award Contest. The award recognizes "outstanding achievement in the preparation of finding aids" within the Mid-Atlantic region, which includes institutions from NY, NJ, MD, PA, DE, DC, VA, and WV.

The NEH "We the People" Grant was implemented in tandem with Special collections' first Burruss-funded competitive summer internship. This $5,000 NEH grant was used to purchase supplies to re-house archival and manuscript materials in Special Collections. The $2,000 paid internship was advertised nationally, and yielded 16 applicants. The intern, working closely with the Preservation Specialist, and with the support of the SC Librarian and student assistant, will assess the quality of intellectual access to collections, rehouse at-risk collections in archival containers, and develop strategies for more significant preservation and intellectual access.


4: Develop physical environments, which reflect our mission by supporting learning, research, teaching and the work of our organization.

East Campus Library: The new facility is 106,000 square feet in size, contains approximately 24,000 linear feet of shelving, and houses the science book and journal collections. With a seating capacity of almost 1,000, it offers library users a mix of traditional reading rooms for individual study, spacious lounge seating areas, and a large flexible use area with moveable furniture and whiteboards. The building contains 45 group study rooms, nine with LCD displays. Full wireless Internet access is available throughout the library.

The building’s design incorporates two main areas: a square-shaped building that contains the traditional reading rooms, book stacks, and offices, and a curved “wing” that houses the open study areas. Numerous windows throughout the building provide natural light, and views of Harrisonburg, the campus, and surrounding mountains.

Adjoining the spacious lobby on the library’s main floor is a Learning Commons with 76 computers and a one-stop service desk for circulation, reference, and technology assistance. Also on the first floor is a coffee bar, and 24-hour computer lab and study area with secured access via JAC card.

The fifth floor offers meeting and work spaces for faculty development, including the Center for Faculty Innovation, and a second location for the Center for Instructional Technology. Technology support for faculty includes a walk-in computer lab, a Teaching and Learning with Technology lab, plus a recording and video editing studio.

The architectural firm for the building was The Design Collective of Baltimore, MD. Building contractor for the project was Nielson Construction Company of Harrisonburg.

Construction reached “substantial completion” status on March 20. Over the course of the spring and early summer months, 24,000 linear feet of shelving was installed; furniture and equipment were procured and moved into the building. The library contracted with Hallett Movers, an independent moving company from the Chicago area that specializes in library book collections to relocate science book and journal collections in Carrier to the ECL. This move took place mid-June. The collections transferred to ECL include the general science, biology, chemistry, mathematics, geology, agriculture, health sciences/medicine, technology, and computer sciences book collections. Journal and media collections that support curricula on East Campus were also moved to ECL.

In July, the CISAT Library closed permanently, with the space reverting to CISAT. Also beginning in May, three librarians were recruited to fill positions in ECL as liaisons to the Health Sciences, Sciences, and Applied Sciences.

Carrier Library: Carrier Library continues to be a busy destination for study and social interaction. The gate count during the October 2007 sample week increased slightly, at 22,939, compared to 22,173 during the 2006 sample week. Table 5, below, shows the trend in traffic for the past five years.

Table 5

October Sample Week Gate Counts: 2003-2007

2003 18,033
2004 17,056
2005 19,446
2006 22,173
2007 22,939

Source: Circulation Services Statistics

Reference transaction counts for the October sample were down slightly from the previous year (741 compared with 782). Total reference question transactions for the entire year registered a significant decrease of 43 percent, with 4,591 compared to 7,986 in the previous year. This year 271 questions were submitted to the Ask-a-Librarian email service, compared with 319 during the previous year.

Circulation: Circulation at all library locations continued to decline. Excluding all checkouts of laptops and equipment, circulation at all locations was 153,716, compared with 158,162 last year. Checkouts of equipment at all locations totaled 30,839 in FY 2007-8, compared with 16,750 in the previous year. Reserves checkouts also declined from the previous year (18,523, compared with 21,817 in FY 2006-7).

Collection Moves: In addition to transporting the science collections to ECL, Hallett Movers also reset the entire Carrier collection, following a reorganization devised by Carrier Circulation staff that will make it easier for users to navigate the circulating collections. Bound journals were moved to the lower stacks and government documents to the upper stacks. The book collections were rearranged starting in Stack Level 2, wrapping throughout the second floor, and finishing up on the third floor. The new arrangement places more of the circulating collection in the open stacks in the new part of Carrier Library, and will make it easier for users to locate materials. In the period after the science collections were moved to ECL but prior to the building's opening, users were able to request those materials through the Libraries' delivery service.

After government documents were removed from Stack 2A in Carrier Library, the area was renovated, with part of the area to be used for additional space for Circulation. The microform collection will be moved into the remainder of the Stack 2A in late summer, and the current Microforms Room on the second floor will be used for study space.

Delivery Service: JMU Libraries is enhancing its delivery service in response to the new library and resulting divided collection. Deliveries will be made twice a day, Monday through Friday, to and from the Carrier Library, Music Library, East Campus Library, and the Educational Technology Media Center in Memorial Hall. JMU Faculty and graduate students with a department mailbox will be able to request materials delivered to their offices. The Libraries are also offering article delivery of print or microform articles held in the journal collections. Faculty, Staff, and Students may request copies of journal articles and book chapters from any print or microform title; articles will be delivered electronically whenever possible.

Room Scheduler: A dozen L&RT staff participated on a project team to develop a room scheduler application allowing staff to schedule rooms in both Carrier and East Campus Libraries. The team also developed the specifications for a group study room scheduler to be developed within the next year.

The room scheduler consists of a public interface for the application; integration with Oracle Calendar so that meetings are automatically created, updated, or deleted in the user's calendar; and an administrative interface for Room Scheduler application which allows the creation of building, room, equipment, and user records as well as the ability to assign user rights and room policies.

Technology classrooms: During 2008, new technology classrooms were added, bringing JMU close to 100 percent saturation. Some new services provided in some classrooms include additional classrooms with clickers, dual projection systems in Duke Hall, and the implementation of the Classroom Recording and Streaming System, or CRASS, to assist in recording Communication Studies presentations in Harrison classrooms.

CIT Expansion: CIT added a second location on the fifth floor of ECL that opens to the public in August, 2008. Each location includes a fully-equipped walk-in area with PC and Mac computer workstations, video edit suites and a video/audio recording studio. The recording studio in the CIT East location is larger and includes a control room.


5: Be a planful and agile organization that embraces innovation while balancing priorities to serve learners and scholars.

Staffing: Perhaps the biggest change in L&ET besides the new building is the expansion and changing nature of our workforce. In 2007, the entire L&ET organization of full-time and part-time faculty and staff numbered around 92; by the end of FY 2007-8 the number of staff totaled 126. Much of this recruitment was to staff the new library building, but a number of positions were added in Carrier Library as well. L&ET added approximately 28 new positions in 2008: 16 were positions in the East Campus Library, six were new positions in Carrier, three new positions were added in Carrier CIT, and three in CIT East.

This year the Acquisitions, Serials, and Processing units in Technical Services merged into a single department under the direction of the Head of Acquisitions. A Collections Management unit was created under the direction of a new Collection Management Librarian; the unit contains two staff positions transferred from Serials, and one position from Digital Services.

Digital Services expanded its scope to providing IT systems support for the entire L&ET organization. The unit hired six new staff persons, including two web assistants, a research databases specialist, four IT technicians (two of which will provide support in ECL), and a library applications specialist to provide support for Content Interfaces. Support for research databases transferred from Digital Services to Collection Management in June, with the research databases specialist position moving to that unit.

In preparation for CIT’s expansion, its organization was completely restructured, several staff were promoted or reassigned, and new staff positions were created. Three assistant director (AD) positions were created to reflect three of CIT’s primary areas of expertise and service: Assistant Director of Faculty Development, Assistant Director of Media Services, and Assistant Director of Systems, Research & Development. Two workshop facilitator positions were created and report to the AD of Faculty Development. The existing and new instructional technologist positions report to the AD of Faculty Development. The Learning System Support positions were moved from the Distance and Distributed Learning area to the Faculty Development area. Lastly, two Media Specialist positions were created to provide more frontline direction and support for the walk-in services. The CIT staff has grown from 6 full-time and 2 part-time staff in 1998 to 18 full-time staff in 2008.

The number of new hires has transformed the L&ET organization. A third of L&ET faculty/staff have been a part of the organization for less than a year; 43 percent of L&ET faculty/staff joined the organization within the last two years, and more than half of our employees have been here less than three years. To assist in the transition, an online staff photo directory (password-protected for privacy considerations) was implemented to assist staff in learning to recognize new faces.

Library Reorganization: JMU Libraries hired four new librarians during FY 2007-8. Three librarians were recruited to fill positions in ECL as liaisons to the Health Sciences, Sciences, and Applied Sciences. Following a reorganization in Technical Services, the department gained an Acquisitions Librarian and a Collection Management librarian, both recruited internally. A Public Services librarian also took on added responsibilities as a General Education librarian.

Graduate Assistant: Special Collections was selected by the History Department to host the first Graduate Assistantship offered by the Department for a graduate student in public history for one semester. This was mutually beneficial partnership, as the student greatly increased productivity in Special Collections and while gaining experience working in archives.


Looking to Next Year

With the opening of the East Campus Library, L&ET will plan events to celebrate the occasion and begin the work of integrating a new facility, staff, and operations into our organization. As a renewed, larger organization we can put more focus in the coming year on implementing the goals and objectives outlined in our Strategic Plan. As the fiscal year ended, troubling news about an uncertain state and national economy loomed, making it all the more imperative that we be a planful and agile organization.


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