Andrew Eynon’s Library Blog

A blog about librarianship in Further Education

Posts Tagged ‘Self-assessment’

December FE library update – feedback on the self-assessment toolkit

Posted by andrewey on December 15, 2008

A somewhat early update this month owing to my being on leave for the next couple of weeks.

Self-assessment toolkit

There was some very useful feedback from the recent event in the West Midlands:

Merged services – The self-assessment exercise was seen as beneficial for library services which are likely to merge as a result of one of the many proposed mergers of colleges within the FE sector in England. The toolkit would aid two (or more) merging libraries benchmarking themselves against each other.

Strategic planning– the fact the toolkit is written in ‘management speak’ should enable content to be lifted directly from self-assessment using the toolkit into an institutional/developmental plan.

New builds– the toolkit was seen as beneficial to library services involved in new builds ie by helping to plan service development

Converged services– the toolkit was seen as beneficial to library and IT services which had merged or were planning to merge through improving the understanding of what each service contributes to the institution.

Aspirational – the toolkit was seen as something to be aspired too, which will hopefully make services more proactive and help measure the service’s impact on learning.

Inclusive– the toolkit can be used by the whole LRS team but is also relevant to college managers.

Quality systems– the toolkit should complement existing quality systems such as quality (service) standards, service level agreements, SARs and strategic planning.

Issues for future consideration:

Relevance of Quantitative performance indicators

Events needed to promote the toolkit with senior college managers

Support completing the toolkit – this is already being offered by JISC-RSC in the West Midlands, but is also a process where colleges can support each other informally or through the development of a peer review scheme (as is the case in Wales).

Further events on the toolkit include:

CoFHE Mid West ‘Know thyself, market thyself’ 4 February 2009 in Reading (also includes sessions on marketing, policy writing, surveys etc)

and events are also being planned for the south west and London.

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Self Assessment toolkit for FE Learning Resource Services (update)

Posted by andrewey on November 27, 2008

A couple of corrections have been made to the toolkit – to standardise the title and to remove references to the Library Resource Manager being on the Senior Management Team of the college (now just reads College Management Team). The updated version should appear on the CoFHE website shortly.

Now that the toolkit has been finalised the printed version should be circulated early in the new year – the plan is to provide ample copies to each FE institution in England for distribution to LRS staff and other college managers.

Dissemination events are taking place. Feedback from the recent event in the north west (20 November at Wirral Metropolitan College) was very positive. There was a feeling that guidance notes and possibly proformas should be made available on the CoFHE website – this will be discussed at the next CoFHE National Committee meeting. Colleges also found that working through the toolkit with LRS staff from other institutions proved beneficial.

A dissemination event also took place in London on 14 November – I’ve not heard any feedback from that event yet. The next dissemination event takes place in Wolverhampton on Friday 5 December – organised by JISC-RSC West Midlands. An event is also planned for the south west (waiting confirmation of date/venue of that one).

If you have any feedback on the toolkit or if you wish to promote (or feedback on) one of the dissemination events then please leave a comment.

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Learning resources self-assessment quality toolkit for England

Posted by andrewey on September 22, 2008

The electronic version of the FE quality toolkit for learning resource services (LRSs) in England, mentioned in my August update, is now available on the CoFHE website.

The toolkit includes an introduction giving the rationale for such a toolkit and a vision statement on the role of college LRSs in the 21st century.

There is a brief section on how to use the toolkit – it would also be possible to provide blank proformas for self-assessment to be made available on the CoFHE website.

The toolkit itself consists of 5 Key Questions which have been mapped to the 5 Key Questions in the Ofsted Common Inspection Framework.

Each Key Question is broken down into a series of quality indicators and key prompts. Each one of which is given a performance indicator, ‘who responsible’ and example sources of evidence.

For each Key Question there are also grade illustrations describing what a Grade 1,2 3 or 4 LRS would possibly look like. These are indicative as all colleges will differ in both their strengths and weaknesses.

CoFHE is currently working on producing a printed copy of the toolkit for distribution to all colleges in England and dissemination events are being planned – which will hopefully be delivered in co-operation with the JISC RSCs in England.

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