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2012-2013 Annual Report: Oklahoma City University School of Law Library: Access Services

Librarians and Staff

Jenny Watson and Natalie DeBerry have completed a combined 204.5 hours of online, local, and national professional development in the last year. 

Circulation Assistants

  • Bill Wakeham
  • Courtney Orosco 

Student Workers during 2012-2013

  • Reed Bentley
  • Kellynn Brack
  • Gloria Jones
  • Jeanne Lynn
  • John Kim
  • Andy Underkoffler
  • Joanna Marzec
  • Trent Brewer

The student workers are an important part of the library staff. They maintain the physical collection by shelving, shelf reading, straightening, keeping the newspaper and magazine collections up to date, and making sweeps of the building. Circulation student workers also help staff the circulation desk when needed.   

Law Student Workers

  • Caitlin Irwin
  • Mark Auten 

During the summer 2013 semester the circulation desk started employing law student workers. The law student workers take on more responsibility than the undergraduate student workers by assisting patrons at the circulation desk with directional questions. They bring a unique perspective to helping fellow law students because they have been through many of the same situations. Law student workers help maintain the physical collection by updating our looseleaf materials with the latest releases. Other projects taken on by law student workers include making sweeps of the building, updating library signage, and creating displays in the library.

Student Worker Training

Because both undergraduate and law student workers serve such important roles for the library, the Access Services Department develops training programs to ensure that they are ready to take on projects and assist patrons when needed. Access Services staff devote approximately 5 hours of one on one training to each new student hire when they are first added to the team. Last fiscal year, 4 new student workers were hired, for a total of 20 hours in new student worker training. In addition to the new hire training program, staff provide training throughout the semester when new projects and policies are introduced.  Access Services staff also conduct refresher training at the beginning of each semester to remind student workers of policies and procedures that they may have forgotten during the semester breaks. In all, approximately 47 hours of student worker training were completed during the 2012-2013 fiscal year. 

To assist with training, the Access Services Department utilizes tools that were created in house, as well as outside programs. The LC Easy computer program helps student workers learn the Library of Congress call number system with interactive exercises. This helps ensure that workers fully understand the call number system to maintain shelving accuracy. The Head of Access Services and Interlibrary Loan Librarian maintain training checklists for new student workers and refresher training checklists for returning employees. The Interlibrary Loan Librarian also compiles and maintains a folder for each project performed by the student workers to keep track of progress and remind workers of project procedures. 

Departmental Communication

The circulation desk was staffed 95.5 hours each week of the regular fall and spring semester. Though face-to-face communication is a daily occurrence between Access Services staff, many times shifts have very little or no overlap and electronic resources help fill the gap. Each night circulation assistants are emailed a list of tasks to be completed and information about the day. At the beginning of each shift, Access Services staff and law student workers prepare themselves for the day by reading their email and checking Ning and Gimlet. Ning is a private blog the staff uses to post policy or procedure changes, upcoming events at the law school and on the campus, course deadlines, and other information that can help staff assist patrons. Last year, 106 posts were made to Ning. Gimlet is the ultimate FAQ: a database of every question asked in the library by patrons. Many questions are asked multiple times by multiple patrons, so staff can be ready to give the right answer quickly. 2,506 questions were asked at the circulation desk last year. The vast majority of questions asked at the circulation desk were directional in nature. All reference questions are referred to a reference librarian.

Circulations of Nontraditional Items

Students, faculty, and other patrons can check out nontraditional items at the circulation desk including dry erase marker kits, headphones, Mac adapters, and HDMI switchers. Last year patrons checked out these items 449 times.

Permanent and Course Reserve Count

Permanent Reserve items are popular items held behind the circulation desk. Course Reserve items are required texts listed on course syllabi or items placed on reserve by faculty request. Both Permanent and Course Reserve items are 2 hour checkouts for use in the library. Permanent Reserve accounted for 9% of all circulations and Course Reserve accounted for 10%.

Demerits

Demerits are assigned to patrons with overdue materials as an alternative to monetary fines. You can learn more about our demerits policy on the Law Library website.

This proactive approach to timely returns of materials contributed to a decrease in overdue books. Of all circulations in the past year, only 9% were turned in after their due date.

Overdue books by fiscal year

Google Visualization API Sample

New Policies

Extended Circulation Periods
In January students, alumni, and attorneys were given longer circulation periods for items from the general collection.

Law Students
  • Check out up to 20 items at a time.
  • Check out treatises and Oklahoma CLEs for 28 days.
  • Renew treatises and CLEs for an additional 28 days up to 3 times.
OCU Law Alumni
  • Check out up to 7 items at a time.
  • Check out treatises and Oklahoma CLEs for 21 days.
  • Renew treatises and CLEs for an additional 21 days up to 3 times.
Oklahoma Bar Members  
  • Check out up to 6 items at a time.
  • Check out treatises and Oklahoma CLEs for 14 days.
  • Renew treatises and CLEs for an additional 14 days up to2 times.

More information on circulation privileges for these groups can be found on the Law Student Library Guide or the Alumni and Attorney Library Guide.

Public iPads
The Native American wing is now home to two iPads available for public patron, law student, and faculty use. They are equipped with WiFi and preloaded with applications and content relevant to law library patrons in their studies and future practice. The iPads are available during normal library operating hours.

New Study Room Reservation Process
The Access Services Department implemented a new way of making study room reservations during the Spring 2013 semester. Students can now make their own room reservations by using the calendars on StarNet. The new system enables students to easily view which rooms are available and where their study group is located. For more information, please visit our website.

Total Circulation Count

In the last year, 5,423 items were circulated a total of 10,704 circulations. The Law Library defines a circulation as an item charged and then discharged from a patron account. Included in our annual circulation count are items used in the library by our patrons but not brought to the circulation desk; we call these browsed items. 

Circulation Count by Patron Group

Law students checked out items 1,832 times this year accounting for 17% of circulations. The busiest months for student circulations were October and May with 228 circulations in both months. 

Law faculty circulations have decreased slightly since last year. Since July 1, 2012, law faculty checked out items 1,004 times accounting for 9% of circulations. The busiest month for faculty circulations was September with 169 circulations. 

Alumni and local attorneys accounted for 4% of total circulations in 2012-2013. 

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Study Room Usage

The library has 11 study rooms available for students to use throughout the year. Due to construction in Faculty Support Services only 10 rooms were available for student use in the fall. In the spring, the Lower Level North wing was closed for HVAC repairs and only 8 rooms were available for student use. In the exam reading period of fall 2012 7 rooms were available for students to reserve and 8 rooms were available in the exam reading period of spring 2013. Last year students made 1,108 reservations. Reservations were made at the circulation desk in fall 2012 and online through Starnet in spring 2013.

Continuing Projects

Access Services staff and student workers have been working on a variety of projects throughout the year. They include shelving, shifting, shelf reading, and other collection maintenance activities.  Access Services staff alsocreate book and bulletin board displays that highlight the collection and promote useful information for patrons. Other projects undertaken this year include updating Access Services policies and procedure manuals and updating library signage. 

National Library Week
Both Jenny Watson and Natalie Vaughn served on the National Library Week committee again this year. All of the Access Services staff helped enhance the celebration by making free coffee, passing out tickets for the study room raffle, and spreading the word about activities and prizes. Highlights of this year’s Library Week include the study room raffle, legal movie trivia, the all new library photo scavenger hunt, and cookies. More information about this year's festivities can be found on the Annual Events page.

Social Media
Jenny Watson and Natalie Vaughn are contributors to the Gavel, the Law Library Twitter account, and the Law Library Pinterest account. These services are used to pass along important information about the building and library services.  The Pinterest account is also used to promote displays and new acquisitions that are added to the collection.

Patron LibGuides
The Access Services Department is largely responsible for creating and maintaining Patron LibGuides, which received 1,318 page views last year. The Searching the Law Library Catalog guide was completely revised this year and now includes more detailed tutorials and instructional videos narrated by circulation student workers Reed Bentley, Kellynn Brack, and Gloria Jones. Between this guide's publication in October of 2012 and June 30, 2013 it received 74 page views. 

800 N. Harvey Oklahoma City, OK 73102 405.208.5271