ILA/ACRL Newsletter, vol. 6, no. 3, November 1996

Election Results

The votes for 1997 officers were counted on October 31 by members of the Nominating Committee, and election results are as follows:

Vice President/President Elect: Mary Beveridge Secretary/Treasurer: Betty Rogers Member-at-Large, 2-year term: Mary Anne Knefel Member-at-Large, 1-year term: Joan Loslo

Some 50 % of ILA/ACRL's 227 members voted in the election--all the races were very close. A special thank you to all candidates for agreeing to run, and to the Nominating Committee who helped put together an excellent slate of candidates and a strong roster of committee members. Nominating Committee members this year were: Pam Collins (Iowa Western CC), Susan Marks (UI), Randy Roeder (Coe), and Susan Vega-Garcia (ISU).

Parting Words from the President

by Bob Rose, UNI

Thanks to the efforts of ILA/ACRL officers, committee chairs and committee members, and other active participants, 1996 has proved to be an extremely busy and productive year - a year marked by, among other things, excellent programming and innovation.

Special thanks go to Carolynne Lathrop and other Fall Program Committee members for two excellent concurrent sessions at ILA. Though marked by some pre-session jitters (Michael Gorman's plane landed 19 minutes prior to the scheduled start of his presentation), that session and the ILA/ACRL Discussion Forum featuring Robin Martin, Barbara Allen, and Greg Cotton went off without a hitch and were well received by appreciative audiences.

This year saw the development of a major new means of communication for the organization with the implementation of the ILA/ACRL Web Page and the initial discussion of a possible Iowa academic librarians listserv. We approved a major revision of the ILA/ACRL Strategic Plan which will serve as a framework for the organization's activities over the next few years. We offered a resource-sharing grant and continued to offer scholarships to attend the Spring Conference and ILA. Plans were begun for a joint conference with the Nebraska Chapter to be held in 1998. The Nominating Committee put together a slate of outstanding candidates for ILA/ACRL office. And, as usual, good programming was a hallmark of the year.

This year was also a particularly active year for the Executive Board with considerably more meetings held than has been usual. Those meetings have been particularly useful and productive and I would like to extend my thanks to Executive Board members for their helpfulness, wise advice, and hard work.

And finally, I would like to extend a special thank you to Mary McInroy, Vice-President/President Elect, for the wonderful job she has done this year. Mary's been an absolute delight and has done an extraordinary amount of work. I have every confidence that she will prove to be one of the best Presidents ILA/ACRL has had to date.

See you in Iowa City on April 25 for the Spring Conference.

ILA/ACRL News from Mary McInroy, 1997 ILA/ACRL President

Here is an update on two items of business that were begun in 1996 and will continue to be worked on in 1997. First work on setting up a listserv for Iowa's academic libraries continues. Next, I have heard from our Nebraska counterparts regarding the possibility of a joint meeting in 1998. As of this writing, plans are to have 3 or 4 interested people from each state meet early in 1997 to determine if--then how--this joint conference could be co-planned and presented. Good news: Kathy Parsons, Elizabeth Kaschins and Daria Bossman have all verified an interest in helping with this possible Nebraska-Iowa Conference. Stay tuned on this issue, and if you have friends and/or acquaintances working in Nebraska's academic libraries, please encourage them to be vocal in their support of this idea.

ILA Fall Conference, ILA/ACRL Speaker

"Cataloguing, Chaos, and Cataloguing the Chaos" by Michael Gorman

Michael Gorman is well-known in library circles, especially to cataloguers, as co-editor of AACR2 as well as a prolific author of books and articles. He is currently Dean of Libraries at California State University, Fresno.

Gorman opened his remarks by reminding his audience of the minor miracle that bibliographic control systems make possible--that of enabling anyone in even a large library to access any book or article housed there in just minutes. The control structures (MARC, AACR2, LCSH, etc.) that make this possible have been developed over many years, are now highly standardized, and almost universally accepted. But as Gorman pointed out with several personal examples, anyone who has used the Internet knows that these structures and controls have not been extended to information on the Internet. Much of the hype about the Net, according to Gorman, ignores the shortcomings of searching a universe lacking any bibliographic control. An incredible amount of noise is produced by even very specific searches and keyword searching produces unacceptable levels of recall and relevance.

On the topic of the Internet Gorman is an admitted skeptic. He belittles the claims that it will mean the elimination of all other forms of communication and that all libraries will become virtual. Contrasting information with knowledge, he points out that the former, consisting of data and facts, is well adapted to electronic formats. Knowledge, on the other hand, is contextual and is best presented as print-on-paper. Libraries deal with both knowledge and information and need the means to present and preserve each optimally. Gorman is not a technophobe. Libraries, he says, need to have a mix of both traditional and electronic collections.

Tackling the idea of applying bibliographic standards and controls to files on the Internet, Gorman calls for librarians to commit themselves to identifying, cataloguing, and preserving those documents that we agree are useful. Librarians should consider adding any electronic document to their collections that they would add in print form. Electronic formats, he says, are not intrinsically different from print formats. We are still talking about a means of communicating and preserving knowledge, he says. Our current cataloging standards and practices, he argues, are readily adaptable to electronic documents and predicts that Chapter 9 of AACR2 will be revised to address description of electronic documents.

A number of other changes and innovations are suggested by Gorman. He criticizes full-text keyword searching and suggests that if all useful documents on the Internet were assigned LC subject headings aimless surfing could be replaced by high relevance and recall. But Gorman is also a critic of LCSH. He would make several changes based on computerizing Big Red. Computerizing would allow easy access to all terms and sub-headings, linking narrow to broader terms, and replacing out-moded language more easily.

Further, Gorman suggests that Dewey classification be used in conjunction with LCSH as part of a subject structure on online systems. Dewey theoretical basis lends itself better to subject retrieval than does LC. And because the number would not be for shelving purposes but rather recall, several numbers could be assigned any given document. Gorman notes that OCLC is studying an approach which combines DDC and LC subject headings for improving subject retrieval. He also suggests a thorough overhaul of the MARC format, which was originally designed with the production of catalog cards in mind. He believes that the present structure of the MARC record does not allow taking full advantage of modern online systems.

In conclusion Gorman acknowledges that it is probably difficult for some to see that the bibliographic structures and techniques that librarians have been using all along offer a cost-effective, user-friendly approach to transforming the chaos of the Internet. It is the job of the real library of the future, he says, to not only continue established collections but to continue that minor miracle with the vast information resources of the Internet for future searchers.

Phil Hjemboe, Iowa Wesleyan College

Notes on the ILA/ACRL Discussion Following Michael Gorman's Speech

Robin Martin of Central College served as the moderator. Along with Barbara Allen of the University of Northern Iowa and Greg Cotton of Cornell College she presented comments and reactions to Michael Gorman presentation.

There seemed to be general agreement with Dr. Gorman that, while the Internet is an amazing breakthrough and discovery, it does not signal the eminent demise of the book or other forms of communication either. Some of the reasons are there is a misperception that the electronic media is always correct and also that the new forms of communication are portable but less durable.

Among other comments, Robin Martin said to catalog all books but be selective in cataloging electronic items. It is a value judgement made by the professional. The question to ask is, would I have added this to my library if it was in print format? She was concerned about the trend in some libraries to do away with technical services altogether in their local libraries. She did say, though, that shared cataloging arrangements might be useful. Michael Gorman, who was in attendance at the Discussion Forum following his talk, commented that OCLC had no technical services in their new installation.

Among comments by Greg Cotton was the observation that people tended to be more interested in the format rather that the information when new formats become available. He said to go ahead and use multiple numbers with the new electronic formats. He agreed with Michael Gorman that call numbers should be used more for classification purposes rather than shelf location. Greg also said to attach URLs to items in your electronic catalog that you would like to be able to pull up on Netscape.

For her part Barbara Allen, as did Robin Martin, raised some questions regarding cataloging of Internet sources. She was not sure whether Internet resources cataloging would really be necessary except for some very few selected ones. Some reasons for this are that Internet search engines might become more effective and also web pages could be created, as is already being done. Web pages are a way of selecting good Internet resources and presenting them in an organized way.

Peter Hartford and Darlas Shockley

Library News

St. Ambrose University Library was dedicated and named the O'Keefe Library for the retired Davenport Diocese Bishop, Gerald F. O'Keefe D.D. on Sunday October 6, 1996. Ms. Mary Dempsey, Library Commissioner for the Chicago Public Library gave the address. The month of October has been filled with celebration events. Colleagues are welcome to come visit. Since our opening last March we have doubled our attendance and activity; we have added three new staff members: Patricia Kranovich, Reference Librarian; Katie Dobbeleare, Interlibrary Loan LTA and Jennifer Calkins, Technical Services LTA. Jim Corbly left St. Ambrose in September for the Head Librarian position at Penn State, Fayette Commonwealth Campus. Jennifer Davis has been promoted to the position of Head of Technical Services.

Corinne J. Potter as told to Kathy Wachel

Flora S. Lowe, Director of the Mount Saint Clare College Library reports that the college has received a $150,000 grant from the Carver Charitable Trust. The purpose of the grant is to automate the library. It will enable them to join the Quad-LINK Consortium run by the River Bend Library System of Coal Valley, Illinois. The Consortium hopes to have their system fully operational by December 1996 at which time they will become a full member of OCLC.

Flora S. Lowe as told to Kathy Wachel

1997 Committee Structure


Communication Committee
      Jeff Dodd,UI (Chair)
      Peter Hartford, UI
      Pam Collins, Iowa Western
      Genny Yarne, Kirkwood
      Jim Knutson, William Penn
      John Wynstra, UNI
      Joan Leysen, ISU
      Linda Scarth, Mount Mercy

Directory Committee Ross Petra, UNI (Chair) Barbara Allen, UNI Rachel Crowley, Teikyo Westmar Jeff Dodd, UI Phil Hjemboe, Iowa Wesleyan Deb Seiffert, NEIaCC Randall Roeder, Coe Molaan Mosell, ISU

Membership Committee Daria Bossman, Morningside (Chair) Cedra Williamson, Coe Kris Gerhard, ISU John Schacht, UI Susan Moore, UNI George Mullally, UI Margaret Emmons, IaCCC Randall Schroeder, Wartburg

Nominating Committee Mary Beveridge, Drake (Chair) Susan Marks, UI Susan Vega-Garcia, ISU Cynthia Dyer, Simpson Karen Dole, NIACC

Fall 1997 Program Committee Richard Reitsma, Northwestern (Chair) Mary Monson, UI Norma Hervey, Luther Kate Martin, UNI

Spring Program Committee John Goodin (Chair) Chris Neuhaus, UNI Kathy Wachel, UI Mary Beveridge, Drake Pam Collins, Iowa Western Charlene Lehman, UI

Scholarship Committee Bob Rose, UNI (Chair) Judy Doorenbos, UI Sarah Mort, UNI Donna Hirst, UI Carolynne Lathrop, University of Dubuque

Staff Development Committee Jane Campagna, Scott Community College (Chair) Jan Dellinger, Hawkeye Community College Kathy Parsons, ISU Rachel Crowley, Westmar Stan Lyle, UNI Dottie Persson, UI

Ad Hoc Web Committee Barbara Allen, UNI (Chair) Chris Neuhaus, UNI Sandy Ballasch, UI Jeff Kushkowski, ISU

Take a Bow, Communication Committee, 1996

Pam Collins, Iowa Western Community College Jeff Dodd, University of Iowa Phil Hjemboe, Iowa Wesleyan College Suzanne Munsinger Julich, University of Iowa Marianne Ryan, University of Iowa Darlas Shockley, Indian Hills Community College Kathleen Wachel, University of Iowa

I wish to thank the above people, the ILA/ACRL Communication Committee for 1996 for their willingness to seek out stories for the Newsletter whether the stories were news from the academic colleges and universities around the state or write-ups of ACRL speakers at our Spring Conference back on May 3 in Storm Lake or at the ILA Annual Conference in Waterloo on October 10. Looking back at the 1997 Committee listing you can see that Jeff Dodd, Pam Collins as well as myself are holdovers. Best wishes especially to Jeff since he will be the Chair for 1997... Again, I wish to thank all of you.

Peter Hartford, 1996 Chair