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Annual Plan 2010-2011

Arthur A. Wishart Library Annual Plan 2010-2011

The Arthur A. Wishart Library staff and resources are critical supports for delivering high quality education to Algoma University students and for ensuring student success. The scope of collections and instructional capacity of the library are areas that require constant improvements in order to meet the needs of a new, growing university.

The Library is an integral part of the overall academic experience, serving as the access hub to learning resources, and especially through providing learner-centered programs in research skills and information access. These services must be systematically built and delivered by trained staff and librarians in order to meet the goals of improving opportunity and access, improving student success rates, and expanding teaching and research capacity.

In order to meet the student driven objectives of the MTCU and realize the directions laid out in the Snowdon Report for Algoma University, the Library must “staff up” to meet the increased human resource and expertise demands associated with university independence. These demands result from the loss of staff/librarian support from Laurentian University, Algoma’s expanded program offerings and most importantly the Library’s growing role in contributing to university student success.

The Library is also facilitating the university’s legislated mission to “cultivate cross-cultural learning between aboriginal communities and other communities, in keeping with the history of Algoma University College and its geographic site” by organizing the Shingwauk Residential School Research, Archive and Visitor Centre as a unit of the library. In partnership with the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association and the National Residential School Survivors Society and the Aboriginal Healing Foundation, the library will organize and make the centre’s resources available online and accessible to the world. This collection is the best Residential School Archive in Canada and will be a defining special collection for the new university.

Additionally, the Library as part of an independent university now plays important provincial and national roles as a member of scholarly research networks such as the CONIFER library consortium, the Ontario Council of University Libraries (OCUL) and the Canadian Research Knowledge Network (CRKN). Algoma’s two librarians participate in strategic planning, budgeting, granting writing, administration and other activities for these networks, which benefit the university system as a whole, but require staff time away from the campus. Finally, the Library staff has also promoted its resources and services heavily to area high schools to enhance research skills at the secondary school level as well as to introduce secondary school students to university. The university continues to need additional librarians to promote services and reach out proactively to train library users.

The Five Year Vision

Think and act nationally in order to deliver excellence locally.

  • Increase substantially the instructional, reference and promotional services by investing in human resources available for access, reference, and instruction and information literacy as well as leveraging technological assets.
  • Improve access to digital information for all current and emerging academic disciplines at Algoma University through collaborative initiatives with CONIFER, OCUL, CKRN partners that benefit the university.
  • Leverage recent archival acquisitions of national and regional importance to build unique research collections that create primary source research and teaching opportunities at Algoma University.
  • Leverage partnerships with other academic libraries and use Open Source technologies to create world-class digital library and archives infrastructures, platforms, and processes.
  • Continue to develop integrated library system (catalogue) using the Evergreen Open ILS software as a full member of the CONIFER university consortium (Algoma, Laurentian, and Windsor universities, and the Northern Ontario School of Medicine).
  • Recruit additional Ontario academic libraries into the consortium to lower costs, distribute workload and add developer expertise.

Operational Plan 2010-2011

Quality and Needs Assessment

  • As part of OCUL, participate in LibQUAL+ 2010. LIBQUAL is a suite of services that libraries use to solicit, track, understand, and act upon users' opinions of service quality. These services are offered to the library community by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). The program's centerpiece is a rigorously tested Web-based survey bundled with training that helps libraries assess and improve library services, change organizational culture, and market the library.
    • Analyze LIBQUAL data and develop targeted information literacy services based on assessed needs (in person and online).


  • Recruit a professionally trained Archivist on a 3-Year contract to drive archival initiatives forward.
  • Recruit an Archives Technician on a 12-month contract dedicated to processing the large backlog of un-catalogued materials in the Residential School Archive and then digitize them.
  • Recruit a permanent Research & Archives Coordinator to manage the Residential School Archive for the long term, after the initial
  • Recruit a permanent Library Technologies Specialist to assist the faculty eServices Librarian and extend and enhance the university’s digital resource strategies.
  • Recruit enough regular staff to ensure that trained personnel operate the library at all times, so that students and faculty can be knowledgeably assisted.

Resource and Resource Network Development

  • Take a leadership role in strategic planning, budgeting, granting writing, administration, committees, and other activities as required by CONIFER, OCUL and CKRN; e.g. through:
    • Contributing computer code and project management CONIFER’s ongoing development of the Evergreen ILS and its development milestones.
    • Assisting with CRKN proposals to the Canadian Foundation for Innovation;
    • Assisting with OCUL proposals to government and other funders (such as the Geospatial Portal and the national Permanent Conservation of Print Collections in Canada initiatives);
    • Utilizing OCUL’s and CRKN’s existing scholarly database programs.
  • Increase monographic collections less expensively, without using space, with current titles. Multiple users can access on and off campus.
  • Prepare the next phase of access offered by the inter-library loan network (digital delivery) that enhances student and faculty direct access to off-campus knowledge resources.
  • Focus collection development the new 4-year degree options (Anishinaabe Studies, Biology, Fine Arts (BDesign), Geography, Sociology and Social Work) and research initiatives (Geospatial and Health Informatics, Invasive Species).
  • Increase capacity of library to manage and produce new knowledge access for researchers and students through the Institutional Repository (born digital collections) and archival collections made accessible online.
    • Drive knowledge dissemination and conservation efforts of partners such as the Anglican Diocese of Algoma, Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association and the National Residential School Survivors Society and the Aboriginal Healing Foundation.


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