This Week in LIS - 19 October 2012

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

Headline of the Week: Good Work – Well Done

The LIS Annual Report for the academic year 2011-12 has been finalized and linked from the LIS website (LIS Annual Report 2011-12). It captures the good work done by the LIS team in the past academic year. It includes several tables, graphs and statistics that help one understand the ongoing services and processes the team provides and supports. Starting my role in March, I continue to be impressed by the range and number of topics addressed by the team in the course of the year. I found reading the annual report helpful to begin to internalize the “rhythm” of the academic year without having been a part of a complete one to this point. I have come to appreciate the relationships between plans and objectives and schedules.

One of the key relationships I have discovered is the relationship between our planning days (I refer to them as strategy days), the production of the annual report and the amount of work the team is engaged in preparing for the new academic year, the arrival of students, the preparation and support of all the classrooms and labs as classes begin and then the homecoming event. The report is developed team-wide. If one wants to produce an annual report close to the end of the fiscal year it must begin in April, be largely done in May and finalized in June. Otherwise you end up on the September and October timeframe. Thanks to any of you who have been waiting on this report for your patience.

You will find in the vision section a discussion of some guiding principles. As higher education navigates the waters of change and Luther College with them, these represent ways to think about new LIS projects, process innovations and allocation of resources. I look forward to comments on them and their utility to guide our work.

There is a major section that captures our objectives for this academic year. These objectives represent the best ideas of the team from our strategy days and prioritized by the entire team augmented with work identified in the previous year that remains high priority and remains to be completed. We have organized them by the guiding principle to which we feel it most contributes.

I want to thank the team for all their good work in 2011-12. Well done!

Suggested Reading:

LIS Annual Report 2011-12

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LIS Blog Highlights from the Week

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

Notes from LIS Council

LIS Council is the leadership team within LIS. Among the topics discussed this past week were:

  • LIS Operational Agenda
    • Council members will be reporting on LIS operational views (metrics for processes and status of projects) regularly at LIS Council meetings. This week’s reports included the following:
    • Library
      • We looked at some analysis of Research Help desk workload. The Research Help desk is busiest at the beginning of the week. There are more questions on Tuesdays and less on Wednesday this year compared to last year.
      • 85% of Research Help questions are from students.
      • There are over 7,500 checkouts so far this year.
    • Software Development
      • Slate – Marcia showed the dashboard that tracks Admissions data.
      • Metrics – Some analysis of Help Desk calls showed that Datatel-related calls represent the largest category of Software Development requests and there are fewer requests this year than last.
      • Projects
        • The team continues to support the Christmas at Luther tickets processing with focus on payment.
        • Testing is planned for the facial time clock in October.
        • The Veterans website/kiosk is undergoing review and testing.
        • Reason site calendar development is underway.
        • Google custom search has been licensed and is being deployed.
        • Katie workshops for the new version are planned starting with the LIS team (Oct 18). Faculty have been queried for available times. We expect the workshop for Katie/Morsle to be offered 8-10 times.
        • For the Datatel SQL migration project, an updated test environment is being created. The team is also in conversation with a consultant on the project to see if we can leverage others’ experiences.
  • New Items
    • Staffing Changes
      • Lori has accepted a new job and her last day at Luther is Tuesday, October 23. A reception has been scheduled for 3-4pm in Hovde on Tuesday.
    • Katie Cloudflare Enabled
      • Cloudflare is a cloud service that sits between users and a website. It looks for possible attacks against the website and blocks them by challenging the request with a “captcha”. This service has been enabled for Katie.
  • Returning Items
    • Annual Report
      • We plan to publish the LIS Annual Report on Friday, October 19.

Upcoming LIS Training, Instruction, and Professional Development Opportunities

Click on the event below for specific information and for a link to register. More information on training and development events is available.

Course Format Date Location Enrollment
LinkedIn Workshop for LIS Staff Workshop Oct 25 2012 – 3:00pm 4:00pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Closed
New Katie Version Workshop Oct 30 2012 – 8:15am 9:15am Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie Version Workshop Oct 30 2012 – 11:15am 12:15pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie Version Workshop Oct 30 2012 – 1:00pm 2:00pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
ZOTERO Workshop Workshop Nov 7 2012 – 7:00pm 8:00pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
Intro to SAS Workshop Nov 20 2012 – 11:00am 12:00pm Olin 113 Open
Remote Access Options Product Demonstration Dec 3 2012 – 12:15pm 1:15pm Dahl Centennial Union – Mott Open
ZOTERO Workshop Workshop Dec 5 2012 – 7:00pm 8:00pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
Remote Access Options Product Demonstration Dec 6 2012 – 11:15am 12:15pm Dahl Centennial Union – Mott Open

Training and instruction is provided to the Luther Community through Faculty Development Sessions, Library Instruction Sessions, Product Demonstrations, Skills Training, Workshops, 1-on-1 Sessions, and Online Materials. To schedule a session, contact the LIS Technology Help Desk at x1000 or enter your request online at

This Week in LIS is published most Fridays by Paul Mattson, Executive Director of LIS at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

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