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IS554 Public Library Management and Services

IS 554 Developing an Evaluation Action Plan

Joann Irby Instructor Dr. K. C. Williams

5.1 Develop a rationale to propose user-centered assessment/evaluation of the selected PL service. Access the selected PL service carefully and explain your proposal in relation to participation of primary, secondary, and tertiary users identified in the earlier assignment The analysis provided in this narrative will focus on early childhood literacy and how it involves children development. The goal of user-centered assessment is to generate data from the user to improve services in order to provide the best possible support to families in the community. The user-centered assessment will gather information from the Cordova library users about the Early Reading Literacy Program for young children.

The Cordova Public Library staff understands their users from direct engagement and careful observation. The primary users were identified as preschoolers. The secondary users were considered to be students of all ages (Himmel & Wilson, 1998). The library addresses the tertiary users by supporting individuals of all ages who desire their education. CPL’s staff addresses the desire for self-direct personal growth and development among their users and community.

5.2 Identify the problem (related to your selected service) in terms of: production bottlenecks; tasks that are performed frequently; activities that require frequent movement; and declining budgets. Cordova Public Library (CPL) promotes their literacy program for children’s in their community with newsletters, newspapers and flyers. This program is similar to the “Assessment for Learning and Development in K-3” (NC Assessment for Learning & Development, 2013) in North Carolina. . CPL’s children literacy development program offers different approaches to learning, which includes language development/communication, cognitive development, emotional-social development, and physical development. CPL’s children literacy program mission is to benefit a lifelong learning, joy of reading and the value of knowledge.

The only problem with CPL’s children literacy program it is that there is not enough staff personnel to work with the children at the library. There’s only one or two children’s librarians promoting the program and working closely with the children. In most cases, the children’s librarian is working with at least a 60 children at one time. The children Literacy Program is offered every summer, Monday through Friday, from9: am until 12 noon and it starts in early June. At times, the reference librarians help out if they are not working with other patrons. This challenge of hiring more staff could be a budget issue which deals with the economy of Shelby County, Tennessee. Nevertheless, the previous years’ evaluation suggests that the Children’s Literacy program is generally successful from the staff and users’ perspective.

5.3 Determine the scope of analysis in terms of what specific information/aspects about the selected PL service do you hope to gain by eliciting feedback form the PL users. In other words, what is the purpose for doing the evaluation? Is the library attempting to improve its operational efficiencies (internal focus), or is the study being done to better understand the effectiveness of a library service? Explain in detail.

The purpose of this evaluation/assessment is to better understand the usefulness of CPL’s Children Literacy program. The Children literacy program is about learning to read, developing language skills, and learning to communicate and use cognitive abilities. CPL will be mailing hundreds of questionnaire surveys to gather statistics from the residents to of their community. The letters sent out will have a prepaid postage to return the surveys back to the library. The residents are asked to mail the survey back by a certain date. The surveys are anonymous and participation is strictly voluntary. The survey sent to CPL’s users was written to ask the following questions.

• Are children benefiting from Early Children Reading Program? • How interested or excited are your children about the literacy program? • What interest you and your child the most about this program? • How many children will be attending the Children Reading Program this summer?

5.4 Determine the kinds of data that you hope to gather (be specific). What evaluation methodology and design will be used (quantitative and/ or qualitative methods: be very specific in the types of tools that will be employed?? How will data be collected? The projected user-assessment will gather quantitative data form CPL’s residents’ by using surveys. The survey will be mainly multiple-choice and some questions will be fill in the blank and the survey will only ask the users to answer the questions carefully. The survey will inform them that their opinion is very valuable and will help us to better understand the needs of our CPL users. It will only take up 20 minutes of the library users’ time. The data gathered in the survey will address issues of, how do they use these particular services, who uses the services, and what are their thoughts about the services.

• How do you use the service: frequency, often, sometimes • Who uses the service: children, age, sex, visitors • Users’ perceptions: Did they find what they needed, would the service be commended, satisfied/unsatisfied, any suggestions for improvement.

5.5 Describe the user-centered assessment/evaluation strategies that you are proposing to conduct community analysis and gather feedback from users about the selected service at your PL. identify and analyze what methods you will use to gather feedback from various kinds of users as a part of your effort. How do you propose getting assess/permissions to select users? Provide a timeline for implementing your proposed methods.

The user-centered assessment/evaluation survey proposed to gather feedback from the residents and users of CPL about the Children’s Literacy Program. The Questions will use the quantitative method approach. The CPL staff members will meet and make comments, suggestions, and changes to the survey. There will be six staff members working on the assessment/evaluation surveys. The staff will discuss the survey design and date of completion. The design will be created by staff member using a computer software. The staff members will also discuss the date the design will be completed. In addition to, the dates the surveys will be mailed out and the date the surveys will return. CPL wants to give to give the users enough time to complete the surveys, so they are asking the users to return the surveys in three weeks. The staff members will be given two weeks to read and count the returning surveys. The goal is to have a least 500 hundred or more responses from the surveys. Personal names will not be a factor in filling out the surveys. CPL only wants the users to answer the questions and return the survey.

5.6 Share the data collecting instrument that you propose to use. Identify the qualitative and / or quantitative measures you propose to use (what aspect are you trying to measure). Provide strategies to gather consent (consent forms, assent forms as appropriate) and your data-collecting tool(s) with listed question/prompts, etc. You can explore multiple research methods to gather user-center assessment/evaluation of the selected services.

The questions used and sent out to CPL users’ are listed below. The data gathered will support the assessment/evaluation process which will help to deliver strong reading skills in young children.

Questions for User-Centered Evaluation/Assessment for Cordova Public Library:

1. Are you a registered user of the Cordova Public Library?

2. How many small children do you have in your household?

3. How many programs have you signed up for at CPL? Which ones?

4. Are there any particular books your children are interested in reading?

5. Has your child ever attended CPL story time?

6. Has your child attended Read& Feed?

8. Did you know that the CPL offered several different reading program for young children?

9. Did you know your child can learn language development & communication?

10. Did you know, as a parent, that the approaches to learning address how a child learn?

11. Did you know that behaviors, skills, capacities, and tendencies compose a children approach to learning and that it is critical to the child’s success in school?

12. Did you know this Literacy program teaches cognitive skills which deals with reasoning, remembering, attention and problem-solving?

13. Did you know that CPL offers children metacognition skills to develop their understanding? The following document will be sent to patron users of CPL as a consent form regarding the survey.

Hello [Name of Patron]:

I am a graduate student at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. I am studying in the field of Information Science. I am working on a case study of Cordova Public Library and performing a user-centered assessment/evaluation in relation to children literacy. I would like to ask you some questions about the different reading programs offered at CPL. Our main focus will be on the Children Literacy Reading program. The staff here at CPL would like for you and your children to participate in the assessment/evaluate study on a voluntary basis. Please let me know if you are willing to participate in this study. All surveys will be kept confidential. There will only be statistic of age and gender used. No personal information will be kept, shared, or revealed to anyone other than the staff members at CPL. After CPL staff members accumulate and total all the survey questions, all the surveys will be destroyed. The staff members will be responsible for destroying the surveys after statistic are collected.

5.7 Provide strategies to maintain anonymity and confidentiality of users participating in your study (if appropriate). CPL will maintain anonymity and confidentiality to their users conducting the survey because there will be no personal information required on this survey. CPL also has a confidentiality policies in place. Names are not required on the survey. The survey does not ask the name of children’s schools or daycare information. Not one survey will be made public.

5.8 Create a budget in terms of investment of resources (e.g., money, time, efforts, human input, etc.) to orchestrate user-centered assessment/evaluation of various kinds. Identify stages for orchestrating a plan for the PL (e.g., previous efforts made, current efforts, future efforts) and describe what will be feasible as part of your efforts in this course during this semester.

5.9 Determine the kinds of analysis you will do with the data collected. How do you plan to report the findings based on the data collected? CPL staff members will compile answers from the surveys and draw conclusions and make statistical reports (Matthew, 2007). The purpose of the survey is to gain an insight on how the users perceive the Literacy Reading Program. Therefore, a demographic page was included with the assessment/evaluate survey in order to gather data on who the users are. The findings will help the staff to discover strengths and weakness in the program. It will help better inform them on the quality of the service. Most of the questions in the survey was based on quantitative type of data measurement. Quantitative research records are calculated measurements. The end results will be a newsletter report, a computer bar graph and chart presenting the findings from the survey. The data collected will also ask multiple-choice questions to find out the demographic of CPL users’ profile. The questions can be found below.

Cordova Public Library Demographic Survey:

1. Are you () Mail or () Female

2. What is the highest grade completed?

() High School () some high school () College () some college () Graduate school

3. What is your age group?

() 1-18 () 18-24 () 25-34 () 3-45 () 46-54 () 55-65 () 66+

4. How did you find out about CPL Early Childhood Reading Program?

() Website () Program/Events () Flyers () Media () other:

5. If your child has participated in the Early Childhood Reading Program in the past: would you recommend the program to other parents? Were you satisfied with the program?

() Yes () No () Have not participated in the program.

References:

Charles R. McClure and others, Planning and Role Setting for Public Libraries: A manual of Options and Procedures (Chicago: American Library Assn. 1987): Ethel Himmel and William James Wilson, Planning for Results: A

Matthews, Joseph R. (2007). The evaluation and measurement of library services. Westport, CT Libraries Unlimited.

North Caroline Assessment for Learning & Development (2013).

Spring 2015

Contact K.C. Williams

451 Communications Building, 1345 Circle Park Drive, Knoxville, TN 37996-0341

Phone:865-974-2148
Fax:865-974-4967
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