Library Resources for New Programs

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Library Involvement in Planning Process

The Library collaborates in the development of new undergraduate and graduate programs as an essential partner in the teaching, learning, and research at UW Tacoma. In a rapidly evolving digital landscape, the Library offers unique expertise, collections, and spaces that enable faculty and students to more effectively actualize the learning objectives of courses across the curriculum.

This document is intended to assist faculty planners in preparing the Library Resources section of their budget during the PNOI process. It outlines the areas of impact that should be be considered during the planning stages of new academic programs so that the Library will fully meet the needs of the proposed program and its students. Planners are encouraged to contact the Library Director, Lauren Pressley, early in the process.

Staff resources

Each librarian serves as a subject liaison in assigned areas, and depending on the nature of the program and the number of courses being offered, the Library may request staff FTE be added to your proposal based upon these criteria:

  • The number and type of classes being offered: Librarians collaborate with faculty to design assignments, offer targeted in-class instruction for students, provide one-on-one research consultation with students, and select and curate subject-specific materials. Historically, the number of librarians has not kept pace with the growth of campus, and currently all library liaisons are at or exceeding their capacity.
  • The required subject expertise of a new area: If a new program requires specialized training, knowledge, or expertise that currently not covered in the Library, the Library may require librarian FTE for the new liaison area.
  • Technology-rich learning needs: New programs that have unique technical needs that would be served by shared location like the Library or a potential Learning Commons may require additional staffing.

Unique collections needs

All UW Tacoma programs have access to the extensive collections of the UW Libraries, but yet new programs cannot assume that these resources will be available at little or no cost. The campus Library purchases both physical and electronic materials to support the UW Tacoma curriculum, and thus it may request collections funds for the following reasons:

  • Existing materials: Access to certain subject specific resources may already be available through UW Libraries, but the Tacoma campus may not yet be contributing to ongoing costs. Percentage contributions are largely driven by curricular need and relative share of overall student FTE, so adding a new program cause increased contributions.
  • New materials: Typically, new electronic resources must be licensed for a tri-campus environment. This often means that the Library must identify partners on the Seattle and Bothell campuses to share costs and often results in a higher than normal cost sharing arrangement for Tacoma.
  • One-time cost vs. ongoing subscriptions: Purchase of new monographs typically can be covered by a one-time cost, but often new databases, journals, and other electronic resources require ongoing payment with annual inflation.

Space needs

The Library is open more hours than any other unit on campus, and thus it is uniquely suited to provide students easy access to a variety of learning environments: silent study areas, computer workstations, collaborative study rooms, and much else. Also, the Library is currently in the process of establishing a Learning Commons for the campus that will collocate highly used academic services and include a variety of technology rich learning environments. The Library welcomes all opportunities to discuss how the campus might expand and improve the learning environments on campus for all students.

Unique digital collections, tools, and software

The Library also is actively involved in the production of new creative and academic work and sharing that work with a worldwide audience. It provides students and faculty access to needed software and tools, and through Digital Commons and other digital platforms, it offers a means for sharing this work. Over the past few years, the Library has reallocated resources to support emerging needs, but depending on the scope and scale of the proposed program and the work it will produce, additional support may be needed for the following reasons:

  • Gathering culminating work in Digital Commons: The Library provides access to a variety of culminating student projects, such as theses or capstones. Each new program that seeks to share its work requires outreach, training, and management of workflows.
  • Software programs and emerging forms of technology: The Library also installs software and provides limited support for a variety of software programs and emerging forms of technology. By working with the Library, these systems can be more easily accessible to a wider number of students.

Next steps: By outlining the full scope of its involvement in the curriculum, the Library seeks to partner with all new programs to improve the learning experience for all students at UW Tacoma. To determine the impact of a new academic program and recieve a preliminary projection of its impact on Library resources, please contact Lauren Pressley.