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Lisa Horowitz's picture

Evidence-Based Librarianship DG -- Notes from ALA Annual 2012

ULS Evidence-Based Librarianship DG
Saturday, June 23, 2012
ALA Annual

The group discussed the difference between assessment and "evidence-based" librarianship. I was struck by Jennifer's description of assessment as continuous improvement, and evidence-based as making decisions and solving problems. Both of these are based on data.

Some ideas that described evidence-based librarianship:
- Idea of decision-making based on data.
- How to make sense out of evidence gathered.
- In a discussion of databases: Why low usage stats: more effective searches? Less marketing? Someone brought up the idea of low usage proving success. What a neat idea! That we make an improvement to something, and show that usage of a service decreased because of the improvement.
- Evidence-based is what a library does, while outcomes-based is what a library influences.
- Evidence-based research is more aligned with quantitative research methods, and is more rigorous.
- Question formulation the SPICE model (Setting, perspective, intervention, comparison, evaluation). From: “Clear and present questions: formulating questions for evidence based practice” by Andrew Booth in Library Hi Tech, 24(3), 2006, 355-368.
- How rigorous is your evidence?
- Data-based decisions may become best practices.
- Looking to literature for best practices.
- Accreditation agencies want mission tied to data. (Possible discussion topic?)
- Potential here for developing an EBL email listserv -- I'll investigate that.
- An open-source journal out of Canada, EPLIP, is focused on this topic. They may have a logical scope that we could use to define the listserv focus.

Jo Alcock's picture