Some days I feel like I might go crazy if I read the word evaluation again… It pops up over and over and over and over again during my course readings. Its importance is emphasised and discussed almost everywhere I turn, in almost every article I read.
Then again, it may be driving me crazy, but at least I’m getting the point.
The evaluation of resources for selection is a key component of any librarian’s job, whether they work in a school, public, private or academic library. However, what I am really coming to understand is the importance of continued evaluation of resources within the collection. An later assignment features sections on selection, evaluation of the collection, and weeding (or de-selection). All of these emphasise key responsibilities of librarians and each involves the process of evaluating a resource, at several different stages.
I read an article for my subject just before, one of the many articles I have read lately which abundantly features the word ‘evaluate’ in all its forms. One line in particular stuck with me…
It is important to remember that the evaluation process does not end when a resource is subscribed to, purchased, or cataloged. Evaluation is an ongoing challenge that is vital to ensuring that a library’s e-resources collection remains effectual and meets the needs of the library’s user population.” (Latham & Poe, 2008, 265)
While the above quote refers specifically to the evaluation of e-resources, it is equally as relevant to any of the varied resources found within a library collection. More importantly, it clearly demonstrates the importance of continually evaluating resources to ensure that they remain relevant to the needs of users.
So there you have it. As much as it may be driving me slowly insane, as much as I might want to never read about it again, I cannot deny the importance of that word: EVALUATION.
Latham, B. & Poe, J. (2008). Evaluation and selection of new format materials: electronic resources. In J.R. Kennedy, L. Vardaman & G.B. McCabe (Eds.), Our new public, a changing clientele: bewildering issues or new challenges for managing libraries (pp. 257-265). Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited.