RLI 262 18 ARL Statistics: Redefining Serial Counts and Remaining Relevant in the 21st Century Martha Kyrillidou, Director, ARL Statistics and Service Quality Programs TUniversity of Minnesota. A landmark collection of data that hashe ARL Statistics 2006–2007 marks the 100th anniversary of theannual gathering of data established by James Gerould at the shaped the way research libraries have viewed themselves in the 20th century, the ARL Statistics are still relevant today thanks to the ongoing stewardship of the ARL Statistics and Assessment Committee. Through the work of the committee, the annual data collection was augmented in 1994–95 to include elements describing services, and in Fast Facts from ARL Statistics 2003–04 to include expenditures for 2006–2007 electronic resources. Half of a research library’s materials budget Last year, the committee implemented• is spent on electronic resources. another change that makes the ARL • Statistics even more relevant for the 21st Both interlibrary borrowing and lending are decreasing as century: the definition for counting serials access to electronic resources is increasing. was changed from serial subscriptions to • ARL libraries are adding a growing number serial titles, emphasizing the scope of the of e-books to their collections. content rather than the multiplicity of formats.1 The scope of the content available to library users is a more valuable indicator of a library’s relevance to the research, teaching, and learning processes within a research university. In earlier years, libraries were instructed to report the “total number of subscriptions, not titles, but electronic serials acquired as part of an aggregated package (such as MUSE or Academic’s IDEAL) [were] to be counted by title.” ARL library directors and other staff expressed concern that the serials count was problematic since many libraries engage in multiple consortial arrangements and the serials count was inflated by duplicate titles held in multiple packages. The FEBRUARY 2009 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC
The new reader is still in beta!