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Library Services Annual report 2013/14

Informing learning, inspiring creativity

2 Introduction 4 London College of Fashion Library 6 The Learning Zone at Kings Cross 8 Services 10 Collections 12 2013/14 in numbers 14 Academic support 16 Research support 18 Resources and processes 20 Priorities for 2014/15 22 Staff publications 24 Contact details

2013/14 was a significant year for Library Services. Firstly it marked the launch of two major strategies: the Library Services Strategy and the Strategy for Academic Support. These articulate our vision, values, strategic priorities and success measures for the three year period until summer 2016. Secondly, the responsibilities of the Director of Libraries and Academic Support Services were extended to include the Language Centre with effect from August 2013. This structural change is already providing new opportunities for Library Services, Academic Support and Language Centre colleagues to collaborate on activities that support students in their studies. During the year a number of major initiatives were progressed successfully, including: • refurbishment of LCF Library • relocation of the Learning Zone at Kings Cross • delivery of extended opening hours • launch of the Library Management & Discovery Systems Project • UAL Research Online’s contribution to the University’s REF2014 Submission • publication of Academic uses of archives, museum and special collections 2009–13 These projects and other highlights of the year are featured in this report. I would like to thank all Library Services staff for their dedication and professionalism throughout the year. The developments that are referenced in this report and the high praise the Department continues to receive from academic staff and students are testament to the hard work and engagement of staff within every team.

Pat Christie Director of Libraries and Academic Support Services




London College of Fashion Library is the UK’s leading fashion library, with extensive resources including unique collections of information on fashion designers, DVDs, fashion forecasts, magazines, academic and trade journals, as well as 70,000 books covering historical and contemporary aspects of the study of fashion. The Library was completely refurbished over the summer of 2013, and re-opened in September 2013, with a brand new look and improved individual and group study facilities. The inclusion of a lift between the ground and first floors has also improved accessibility. The Materials Collection has now been incorporated into the Library, and is available on open access. This refurbishment provides an improved experience for our staff and students, as well as for the many researchers from other institutions and the fashion industry who use the Library.


London College of Fashion Library


Learning Zone at Kings Cross


The Learning Zone is a dynamic, flexible and innovative space that supports curriculum activities across the six UAL Colleges and  cultivates a strong sense of student engagement. Its emphasis is on social learning and activity-based work within an ambience that fosters collaboration and creativity. Over summer 2013 the Learning Zone was relocated from the 4th floor to the 1st floor of the Granary Building at Kings Cross, and is now co-located with the Central Saint Martins Library, creating new synergies and easy movement between the two areas. This is not the first move for the Learning Zone: with each reiteration we have developed the service offered, based on experience of managing this space, student feedback, and also on specific research into the ways in which our students and staff are engaging with Learning Zones.




In addition to improving our library spaces and learning environments, several service developments took place in 2013/14. Library opening hours were extended by almost 2000 additional hours, over the year, creating greater parity across the Colleges and increased access to resources and facilities. Early analysis shows that this is proving popular, and that the postgraduate community made particularly good use of the new hours outside of BA term time – one of the aims of this initiative. Library Services includes a post dedicated to improving access and inclusion. In May 2014 we hosted and led an Inclusive Arts Libraries Forum, to share our experience to date in supporting students with disability, to invite contributions from other arts libraries, and to hear the experience of library users. It was also an opportunity for us all to consider how services should develop, as we move from a specific notion of accessibility centred on disability support to a broader understanding and interpretation of the inclusive library. Ask, an online enquiry and FAQ service was launched in the Spring Term 2013. Questions can be submitted online, by phone and Twitter, and are picked up and answered by library staff across the service. The use of social media by Library Services grew rapidly in 2013/14, and Twitter has become established as a highly effective communication channel with our students; we now have nearly 7000 followers.


Collections 10

There have been a number of important developments relating to our collections over the period covered by this report. As well as maintaining extensive print collections, we continue to invest in e-resources; e-books in particular are now well established. Following last year’s successful trial, Patron-Driven Acquisition (PDA) is embedded as standard practice, allowing library users to select e-book titles. New online collections include Digital Theatre Plus, Taylor & Francis e-journal collection, Fashion Studies Online and the Social Theory Archive. A new guide was published, Academic uses of archives, museum and special collections 2009–13. It describes how these collections are embedded within teaching, learning and research across the University, and celebrates good practice through a selection of case studies. Engagement with object-based learning continued to grow, and it now features as a strategic priority in the Learning, Teaching and Enhancement Strategy, 2014-2017. New additions to the archives include the Les Coleman Collection of rare and underground American comics. Items from the Stanley Kubrick Archive were on show to the public as part of the Kubrick Travelling Exhibition, which visited Amsterdam, Sao Paolo and Krakow in 2013/14, and several items from our library collections were loaned to exhibitions in museums and galleries throughout the year. Our aim is for the libraries to be places of inspiration: as well as displaying items from the collections, we celebrate and display our student’s work. Numerous exhibitions of student work were held in the libraries throughout the year.


2013/14 in numbers

529,807 Items held by libraries




396,985 Loans

84% Loans through self-issue kiosks



Downloads of full text articles

Outputs in UAL Research Online



Visits to the libraries

Additional opening hours


Student satisfaction: Further Education Survey


Student satisfaction: National Student SurveyÂ

1,721 Total study spaces


Student satisfaction: Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey 13

Enhancing academic support in order to improve retention, attainment and student success continues to be a major priority for the University. The new Strategy for Academic Support provides a highly effective framework for enhancing this work. It also facilitates greater coordination across Library Services, Academic Support and the Language Centre enabling a holistic and consistent approach to supporting all students. With effect from 2013/14 all library sites act as locations for dropin sessions and student tutorials for the Language Centre and College-based study support teams, complementing the range of support already provided by library staff. During the year, LCC’s academic support team moved into spaces within the Library and Learning Zones, increasing the visibility of these activities. The new University-wide programme of academic support events was launched in February 2014. This innovative approach, which positions academic support as an enhancement activity, has been a great success. Library Services staff co-delivered some of these events with the Academic Support Coordinator, most notably workshops on object-based learning using the University’s archives and special collections. In summer 2014 Cite Them Right Online replaced the Guide to the Harvard System of Referencing. It explains how to do referencing, why this is important and how to avoid plagiarism. This can be accessed on the Library Services website. Throughout the year library staff supported academic staff in copyright issues related to the use of materials on the University’s Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle. Training sessions were run across all the Colleges and further advice and guidance is available on request.


Academic support


Research support


Library Services continues to provide high quality support to researchers through library and archive collections, specialised information skills support, and through scholarly communications developments. UAL Research Online has continued its established position as an international exemplar of an online repository for research outputs in the arts and design disciplines. The University made a submission to the Research Excellence Framework, the REF, in November 2013 and in the run up to this the Scholarly Communications team worked collaboratively with staff in Research Management and Administration (RMA) to ensure a successful submission, contributing and checking metadata, and ensuring that all the outputs were well represented on UAL Research Online. The team also supported RMA staff in the establishment of a research data repository, and contributed to the Community of Practice in Research Data Management. During this period of rapid change, Scholarly Communications staff contributed to national consultations on open access policy and prepared internal briefings on open access developments in the UK and globally, informing the University’s own policy in this area. UAL Research Online makes available all UAL’s newly submitted PhD theses, by agreement with students, and during 2013/14 a project was initiated to increase access to older theses through retrospective digitisation. Theses are one of our most important and highly viewed collections, and UAL Research Online plays an important role in making these unique, original research outputs available to a wider audience.


A major project was initiated in 2013/14 to review our library management system (LMS) and discovery tools, and the decision was taken to move to formal procurement for a new LMS. This work is now underway, and we are on target to implement a new system in September 2015, working closely with students to ensure that we understand their needs, and that these are reflected in our requirements. As part of this project we have reviewed several business processes, through Processfix workshops. The results are leaner processes, freeing up staff time for other activities, and providing a more efficient service to library users. Following thorough consultation we implemented a new e-resources discovery tool from Deep Web Technologies. This is a next generation federated search product, and is unique, as far as we know in displaying search results visually as well as by the usual list of search results. Library Services was pleased to receive the BIC reaccreditation for effective supply chain management, in 2013/14, in recognition of the workflows achieved by the Resources and Systems team. This emphasis on maintaining strong workflows ensures that we acquire library materials with best value for money, as responsively as possible. We also focussed on communication in 2013/14, developing the first formal Library Services communications strategy. From this we have prioritised a set of key actions – including the production of this annual report.


Resources and processes


Priorities for 2014/15


The main priority for the department will be the selection and implementation of the new library management system in order to go live in September 2015. This will provide an attractive and easy-to-use interface that will enhance access to our collections. It will also facilitate process improvements in the acquisition and circulation of our stock. The chosen system will utilise state of the art technology and be hosted in the Cloud. Other priorities include: Collections • Development of the Library Services Digitisation Strategy • Accreditation of the Archives & Special Collections Centre Services • Launch of LibQUAL+ Lite Library Survey • Initiation of Customer Services Excellence Academic Support • Development of content for the launch of Academic Support Online • Increased library input to the University-wide programme of Academic Support Events, particularly in relation to information and digital literacy and object-based learning. Research Support • Retrospective digitisation of PhD theses • Contribution to open access initiatives and research data management developments Resources and Processes • Development of the Internal Communications Strategy • Implementation of the Staff Development Framework Also in 2014/15 the University will launch its strategy for 2015– 2020. Library Services will contribute to the development of this new strategy and also review our own strategies to ensure their ongoing relevance with the broader ambitions of the University.


Staff publications


Selected staff publications David Bracegirdle, GLAD (Group for Learning in Art and Design) Conference, 26 June 2014. Studio or Learning Zone? Prezi presentation: campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share Karen Carden, Patron-driven acquisition in a specialist arts library: a trial at the University of the Arts London. Sconul focus 60, 2014, pp. 34–36 Jess Crilly, SLA conference 2014: Tomorrow’s world: futureproofing yourself and your library. CPD25. Keynote presentation Gustavo Grandal Montero and A. Harezlak, Sent/received: invitations and other ephemera related to the Nigel Greenwood Inc. Ltd. gallery, 1969–1974. Bright Light, no.1, 2014, pp. 43–54 Leila Kassir and Sara Osman, ARLG Conference 24 June 2014. Becoming more inclusive: our journey at University of the Arts London Jessica Lervitlai, ARLIS-Norden Conference, 12–14 June 2014, Material explorations: the investigation of natural & new materials in craft and design Sarah Mahurter, Academic uses of archives and special collections: thrill of the real. Sconul focus 60, 2014, pp. 17–21 Stephanie Meece, Open Repositories 2014, 9 –13 June, Data management for arts research: the experience at University of the Arts London UAL Library Services, Inclusive arts libraries forum, Central Saint Martins, 16 May 2014


For additional information please contact: The Directorate Office Library and Academic Support Services University of the Arts London 272 High Holborn London WC1V 7EY Tel: 020 7514 8072 Designed by Anne Odling-Smee, O-SB Design All images Š Christine Donnier-Valentin, except: p.3: O-SB Design pp. 5, 19: Ana Escobar p.15: Graham Barton


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Library services annual report 2013 14  

Library Services Annual Report 2013-14, University of the Arts London

Library services annual report 2013 14  

Library Services Annual Report 2013-14, University of the Arts London