Eighty-six ARL members submitted the institutional profiles. ARL consultants and staff2 used computer software, ATLAS.ti, to identify and analyze the ideas and themes contained in the narrative profiles. The software provided tools to isolate, code, and annotate the ideas and themes and to evaluate and rank them. The resulting set of reports not only broke each profile into a set of codes but also combined the codes into an overall view of the 86 responses, showing the frequency of themes and terms across all profiles as well as suggesting how libraries are similar and different. It should be stressed that the profiles are not inventories or lists of every service or program that a library provides. Indeed, two libraries may host the same activity and one may discuss it at length in the profile while the other may not mention it at all. A profile reflects what a given library viewed as important at the time the profile was written. Therefore, when the frequency of an activity is mentioned below, bear in mind that it is the frequency of how many libraries mentioned that activity, not how many actually perform it. Of the 86 libraries that provided profiles for analysis, 82 were academic libraries (7 Canadian, 22 US private, and 53 US public institutions). While all the profiles were valuable, this report focuses on the 82 academic libraries. As an overview, six broad categories emerged from the analysis of the pro- files. More detailed codes are grouped under each broad category and are too numerous to be discussed in detail in this brief report. Instead, major themes, similarities, and differences are discussed here along with suggestions for codes that merit further investigation and discussion as possible new measures. The six categories discussed here are: Management and Self-Assessment Collaboration and Support—External Collaboration and Support—Internal Library Services Branch Libraries Collections Analysis of Six Categories Management and Self-Assessment Virtually all of the profiles mentioned the need for assessment as indicated in RLI 271 27 ARL Profiles: Qualitative Descriptions of Research Libraries in the Early 21st Century ( C O N T I N U E D ) AUGUST 2010 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC
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