Librarians and classroom faculty spend their time thinking about different things. Classroom faculty concentrate on teaching their students the subject matter, while librarians tend to focus on the resources students need to learn those subjects.
I just started two important dialogs with faculty about our library resources:
- The Chemistry department and I need to make a decision about whether to move the web version of SciFinder, or stick with the client version for now.
- Subject guides for Astronomy and Physics have been neglected for years and were missing several vital resources. As I update these guides, I am asking for assistance from the Physics and Astronomy department to make sure that the resources included in the guides are the resources their students are using.
I’m waiting to find out how engaged the faculty will be in these discussions. My initial overture was an email explaining what was going on. I will probably follow this up with in-person discussions. I have found that a quick trip over the an academic department can save a lot of time typing up emails, and leads to a better overall relationship. As the semester draws to a close, classroom faculty get very busy with final exams and projects and it is often easier for them to express their opinions in a quick face-to-face conversation.