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Getting Started with Evaluation
Peter Hernon, Robert E. Dugan, and Joseph R. Matthews
Item Number: 978-0-8389-1195-2
Publisher: ALA Editions
Price: $69.00
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The e-book edition and the print/e-book bundle of this title are also available separately.

256 pages
6" x 9"
ISBN-13: 978-0-8389-1195-2
Year Published: 2014
AP Categories: A, C, I

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Everyone agrees that evaluation of library services is essential, but without a background in research it can be a challenge to apply abstract concepts such as strategic planning, evidence-based decision making, and accountability to real-world situations. Finally library managers have a workbook to help them master key concepts of service quality assessment, offering directed exercises and worksheets to guide them. Firmly rooted in practical application, this book
  • Presents an overview of evaluation and the types of metrics, linking them to strategic planning and infrastructure
  • Examines qualitative versus quantitative measures
  • Shows how to decide which metrics are relevant to one’s own institution, covering benchmarking, best practices, peer group filters, and those metrics that offer a high return on investment
  • Includes pointers for launching and maintaining successful library evaluation through flexibility and smart delegation among library staff
  • Offers advice on marshaling data to effectively communicate the value and impact of a library and its services, no matter the audience
Complete with a detailed list of sources for metrics and concrete examples of evaluation in practice, this workbook will be both valuable and immediately useful to managers at academic and public libraries, as well as to library trustees and others interested in assessing service quality.
Table of Contents


1 Evaluation
2 Evidence-Based Planning and Decision Making
3 Library Metrics
4 Internal Evaluation for Planning and Decision Making
5 External Evaluation to Inform Stakeholders and to Guide Continuous Improvement
6 Measuring Satisfaction
7 Measuring Service Quality
8 Measuring Return on Investment (ROI)
9 Measuring the Value of the Library and Its Services
10 Using and Communicating the Results
11 Positive Organizational Change

Selected Readings
About the Authors
About the Authors

Peter Hernon is a professor at Simmons College (Graduate School of Library and Information Science, Boston) and the principal faculty member for the doctoral program, Managerial Leadership in the Information Professions. He was the 2008 recipient of the Association of College and Research Libraries’ award for Academic/Research Librarian of the Year, is the co-editor of Library & Information Science Research, and has taught, conducted workshops, and delivered addresses in ten countries outside the United States. He is the author or coauthor of 55 books, including the award-winning Federal Information Policies in the 1980s, Assessing Service Quality, and Viewing Library Metrics from Different Perspectives.

Robert E. Dugan is the dean of libraries at the University of West Florida (Pensacola, FL). Prior to assuming this position, he had been at Suffolk University, Boston; Wesley College, Dover, DE; and Georgetown University, Washington, DC. He has also worked in state and public libraries during his nearly 40-year career. He is the coauthor of eleven books, including Viewing Library Metrics from Different Perspectives.

Joseph R. Matthews is a consultant specializing in strategic planning, assessment, evaluation of library services, customer service, use of performance metrics, and the balanced scorecard. He is the author of several books, including The Customer-Focused Library, Strategic Planning and Management for Managers, and Measuring for Results; and the coauthor (with Peter Hernon) of Reflecting on the Future of Academic and Public Libraries, Listening to the Customer, and other books.

"A useful introduction to the topic of evaluation that provides many resources for library managers. There are many tables and figures throughout the book, as well as references and useful exercises at the end of each chapter. The exercises make this potentially useful in a classroom setting."
— Catholic Library World

”Hernon, Dugan, and Matthews inspire readers to collect data to inform decision making whenever possible, and Getting Started with Evaluation provides the means to get started right away."
— Library Resources & Technical Services

”This is the book that you absolutely must have if you are required to evaluate a library service and your librarianship education did not touch on research methods or statistics. Although titled Getting Started, this work it does much more than ‘get started’. It takes the reader step-by-step through the whole process, from the introduction of basic terminology to the final presentation of results – and quickly too, in a compact 242 well-written pages."
— Australian Library Journal

”The solutions offered by Hernon, Dugan, and Matthews focus on existing, well-established best practices … for those just beginning to learn about assessment or embarking on a new evaluation program for their institution, this book offers a valuable entry point into the field."
— Journal of Library Innovation

”This book is a fine summary of what we as librarians have come to understand about evaluation. It is well written and would make a fine textbook for a class in library assessment, offering good suggestions for data collection and good summaries of prevailing concepts."
— Technical Services Quarterly

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Assessing Service Quality: Satisfying the Expectations of Library Customers, Third Edition
Item Number:  978-0-8389-1308-6
This extensively revised and updated edition explores even further the ways technology influences both the experiences of library customers and the ways libraries themselves can assess those experiences.
Price: $75.00
The Quality Infrastructure: Measuring, Analyzing, and Improving Library Services
Item Number:  978-0-8389-1173-0
In this collection of case studies, Murphy and her team of contributors describe how quality assessment programs have been implemented and how they are used to continuously improve service at a complete cross-section of institutions.
Price: $65.00
Build a Great Team: One Year to Success
Item Number:  978-0-8389-1170-9
Suitable for all levels of management, from first-line supervisors to library directors, this book lays out a clear path to learning the essentials of building and maintaining a first-rate team.
Price: $54.00