This Week in LIS - 8 May 2009

Weekly news and updates from Luther College Information Technology Services. To receive email updates, please sign up here.

Headline of the Week: What You Think Is Important


This past February, LIS administed the Merged Information Services Organizations survey (MISO) for the second time in three years to the Luther community. All faculty, staff, and approximately one-fourth of our student body were invited to participate. Luther had outstanding participation rates (73.3% for faculty, 68.9% for staff, and 56.9% for students). The survey has been administered since 2005 at more than 30 colleges and universities nationwide (principally liberal arts institutions). The MISO Survey is a Web-based quantitative survey designed to measure how students, faculty, and staff use and evaluate the services and resources of colleges and universities with merged library and computing units. Gathering this data allows us to both evaluate the services we provide in the context of our community as well as our peers at other institutions. The data is very rich and very valuable to us as we plan and prioritize our services.

As part of the survey we ask faculty, staff, and students to rank the importance of a wide array of library and technology services provided by LIS. As we seek to deliver meaningful and relevant services to the community, this data helps directly inform the areas where we need to ensure we devote strong attention, and where we must work to ensure quality service. Each constituency displays different tendencies, though some common themes emerge.

Faculty Students Staff
  1. My.Luther
  2. Technology in Classrooms
  3. Technology Help Desk
  4. Library Circulation
  5. Support for Classroom Technology
  6. Online Library Catalog
  7. Access to Resources from Off-Campus
  8. KATIE
  9. Interlibrary Loan
  10. Library Website
  11. Library Databases
  12. Wireless Access
  13. Library Reference
  14. Instructional Technology Support
  15. Help Desk Website
  16. Campus Computing Labs
  17. Technology Instruction
  18. Library Liaison/Contact
  19. Online Course Reserves
  20. Quiet Work Space in the Library
  21. Library Research Instruction
  22. Borrowing Technology Equipment
  23. Study Carrels
  24. Datatel
  25. Borrowing Laptops
  26. Digital Image Collections
  1. Wireless Access
  2. KATIE
  3. My.Luther
  4. Campus Computer Labs
  5. Quiet Work Space in the Library
  6. Library Databases
  7. Online Library Catalog
  8. Access to Resources from Off-Campus
  9. Library Website
  10. Library Circulation
  11. Library Reference
  12. Study Carrels
  13. Technology Help Desk
  14. Online Course Reserves
  15. Interlibrary Loan
  16. Help Desk Website
  17. Borrowing Technology Equipment
  18. Digital Image Collections
  19. Borrowing Laptops
  20. Residence Hall Phone Service
  1. Technology Help Desk
  2. My.Luther
  3. Datatel
  4. Wireless Access
  5. Access to Resources from Off-Campus
  6. Help Desk Website
  7. Technology in Meeting Spaces
  8. Support for Meeting Space Technology
  9. Borrowing Technology Equipment
  10. Borrowing Laptops
  11. Campus Computing Labs
  12. Library Website
  13. Library Circulation
  14. Online Library Catalog
  15. Library Reference
  16. KATIE
  17. Interlibrary Loan
  18. Videoconferencing
  19. Quiet Work Space in the Library
  20. Library Databases
  21. Study Carrels
  22. Digital Image Collections

Do these lists match your own? Services such as My.Luther display a high importance across constituencies, while Wireless Access (the #1 priority for students) does not make the “Top 10” for faculty. The Technology Help Desk, ranked highly by faculty and staff, only makes #13 in importance for our students. This begins to accurately describe both the breadth of service provided by LIS, as well as the differing points of view across the community of where top priorities lie. Of course, LIS works to meet and exceed expectations in as many of these areas as possible, and we will continue to use this and other data to help us accomplish that going forward.

LIS Staffing News

LIS has launched a recruitment for a Programmer/Analyst. We are currently planning for campus finalist interviews.

LIS Blog Highlights from the Week

The following articles are sampled from those available on the LIS Blog:

Notes from LIS Council

Topics discussed by the LIS Council this week included:

  • Faculty Roll 2009 and Hardware Vendors
  • Upcoming Loan of Luther Art to Germany
  • 40th Anniversary of Preus Library Dedication
  • Luther Sign Committee and Upcoming Signage Changes
  • Recruitment Update
  • Student Advisory Team Meeting
  • Locks in the Library
  • Annual Reports
  • Emergency Response Documentation/Planning
  • MISO Survey Review
  • LIS General Planning

NITLE Opportunities

As a member of NITLE (National Institute for Technology and Liberal Education), Luther has the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of developmental and training programs intended for faculty, librarians, and information technologists. Events listed at the link below are currently open for registration by Luther participants. LIS Staff who are interested in participating in an event should speak with Christopher Barth. Faculty who are interested in participating should speak with Lori Stanley. Participation is contingent upon available funding and program acceptance.

A full list of events (sortable by registration deadline) is available at

Next Week in LIS

Notable Internet Resource of the Week: Dead At Your Age

The premise of this website is rather simple. By providing your date of birth, the site will return to you individuals that either have died around your age, or for the younger set, those who may be twice as old as you are now. Perhaps the most interesting story told here is benchmarking your own age against names we have heard of in popular culture (and honestly a few you probably haven’t heard of). Warning: this does not necessarily make you feel very productive … but this certainly is not a measure or productivity or happiness. It’s just trivia. Sign up for the email/RSS alerts, and this website will be a gift that keeps giving, marking your own progress against the greater timeline of humanity. I’m halfway to Giovanni Battisti Amici (who we all know invented the oil-immersion microscope), and I’ve safely passed Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Who knew?

On the web at

Around the Web

Here are a few links to interesting developments over the past week:

Want to follow these updates during the week? or via RSS? Point your browser to

This Week in LIS is published most Fridays by Christopher Barth, Executive Director of Library and Information Services at Luther College for the Luther College community as well as those interested in information services and higher education.

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