ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award

Submitted by City College of San Francisco Library & Learning Resources

I. CCSF's Library and Learning Resources is Unique: Overview of Structure and Planning

The mantra "Helping to Achieve Student Success" is not an empty idea at CCSF's Library and Learning Resource Center (LLR). Our mission emphasizes students first in the provision of materials and services that are responsive to the changing needs of people with diverse ethnic, cultural, social and economic backgrounds, library research instruction and information competency skills. What makes us unique is the size and structure of City College of San Francisco and the way that the Library & Learning Resources (LLR) is responding to the challenge of a large and incredibly diverse curriculum, faculty, staff and students.

City College of San Francisco (CCSF), founded in 1935, is "the largest multi-campus single community college district in the nation, educating approximately 95,000 students annually." (2002-2003 CCSF Catalog). CCSF offers credit and non-credit classes at 10 neighborhood campuses and more than 150 sites throughout the city of San Francisco, and with a campus at the SF Airport. More than 2,000 faculty members provide instruction in 150 academic and vocational programs. The College confers the Associate of Arts and Science degrees and grants Certificates of Completion, and prepares students for U.S. citizenship, English language proficiency and high school equivalency. CCSF's students are ethnically diverse: about 41% Asian/Pacific Islander, 6% African-American, 25% Hispanic/Latino, 14% non-Hispanic White, as well as other smaller ethnic/racial groups. It has been claimed that 79 different languages/dialects are spoken at CCSF. More than one-third of the students are 50 years of age or older, reflecting an extraordinary outreach to both a retired population and a large number of individuals needing career re-training. Another distinction is that CCSF houses and owns a world famous mural, "Pan-American Unity Mural," by the Mexican artist Diego Rivera.

How has the Library & Learning Resources, with very limited materials and staff development budgets responded to the challenge of serving the information, research and instruction needs of so many diverse students, faculty and staff spread across so many campuses? This section describes the planning process and organizational structure. The following two sections, section II. and section III., document implementation and results of the Library's goal setting and planning process. These examples of creative and innovative approaches to providing responsive services and resources attempt to capture the dynamic interplay of inputs, outputs and outcomes to achieve LLR's goals and objectives. Section IV. documents how the critical component of LLR staff, through individual and group leadership, has made it possible to provide a vast array of services and information resources for the diverse and large college community. Section V. provides a summary and selected indicators of effectiveness in promoting student success.

Library & Learning Resources, as one of the College's academic departments reporting to the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, is part of the College's annual strategic planning and assessment process. LLR staff develop an annual plan with goals and objectives which are then used to complete the College's cost centers annual plan. LLR then assesses at mid-year and at the end of the year its progress in meeting these objectives. The Dean of LLR, as a member of the Chancellor's cabinet, provides information and copies of all important college planning documents to the LLR Advisory Committee. Thus, the annual goals and objectives directly support and tie into the College's strategic, education and technology plans.

Organizationally, Library & Learning Resources comprises one Library composed of nine units at five locations, (Ocean/Phelan campus, Downtown campus, John Adams campus, Southeast campus, and the Gough St. facility), with funded plans underway to develop two new library/learning resource collections for the Chinatown and Mission campuses with approximately 80 staff distributed among them. The Ocean/Phelan campus is the largest campus serving primarily credit curricula. LLR's presence on this campus is also the largest with five collections/centers: the Rosenberg Library, Media Center, Language Center, Audio-Visual Unit and the Alice Statler collection serving the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Studies Department. The Alice Statler collection is not only unique to CCSF but also to California and the western U.S. It provides a special collection of research and circulating materials concerned with the Hospitality industry, including over 10,000 volumes, over 3,000 pamphlets, 1,000 periodicals and 80 current subscriptions, as well as an extensive collection of menus, videotapes and other professional materials relating to the hotel and restaurant field. Its location helps promote its use, as it is in the same building as the kitchens and classrooms of the culinary arts/hospitality department. This collection's secondary clientele is the hospitality industry, including local chefs, food writers, journalists, hotel managers, and students from other hospitality programs in the Bay Area. Reference inquiries come from around the nation.

The Louise and Claude Rosenberg, Jr. Library & Learning Resource Center opened for service in a five-story building December 1995. In addition to the Library, three other LLR units reside in the Rosenberg facility: the unique Language Center, Media Center and Audio-Visual Unit. Since opening, the LLR has served almost five million individuals; it is the largest community college library in California, providing users with interactive language labs; special equipment for disabled users and ADA-compliant computer workstations; fax and color printing services; teleconferencing facilities; heavily used print, audio-visual and online collections, dynamic local archives and state-of-the-art computing and media resources. The Language Center supports the instruction of the Foreign Languages Department. It provides audio, video, software and Internet-based resources for independent study using 24 video and DVD stations and 20 computer workstations. It also has an electronic classroom where instructors bring classes to view videos and multi-media and, with the assistance of the Language Center staff, train students to use foreign language computer applications and do Web research. The Media Center provides a large collection of videos and other non-print materials with up-to-date equipment and maintains two service counters: one for the in-house use of the collections and the other designed specifically for the listening/viewing needs of English as a Second Language (ESL) students. Last spring, service was expanded to ESL students by reconfiguring space to accommodate 24 computer stations for specific ESL course use. The Audio Visual unit provides faculty with a variety of services: campus-wide video programming and satellite downlinks, delivery of instructional equipment, films and videos from its collection, and graphic support services, such as transparency production, mounting of posters and Powerpoint presentations.

Implementation and Results

II. Creativity in Serving Our 95,000+ Students

With a relatively small materials budget of $166,000 for an institution our size for all library units excluding the Language Center, Media Center and Audiovisual Department, creative thinking and approaches are critical. Thankfully, collection grants, fiscal support from the Friends of the Library and new positions in the past seven years have helped a great deal. Currently, our major strategy for implementing goals and objectives has been to expand access to existing materials and services and to find innovative ways to increase services and resources throughout the district. The Library’s commitment to helping students succeed is truly reflected by the level of staffing and fiscal support given to reference and library instructional services. Like most academic libraries, LLR has concentrated over the past few years in increasing and improving its online resources and delivery of instructional services so that building hours and the student's location need not limit access. Specifically, this commitment is demonstrated by:

  • The Gateway to Information Resources and Services: LLR Web site - The Library & Learning Resources Web site, is dynamic and ever responsive to the changing modes of teaching and learning. The homepage provides one-stop access to all the library's online resources which are available 24/7 to all members of the City College community. Our electronic reference service, E-REF, is prominently displayed on the home page to serve those who are off-campus. The virtual tour of the Rosenberg Library has proven to be particularly effective when making presentations for community groups and at other CCSF campuses. In addition to organizing and presenting information about the diverse services and resources of LLR, librarians are increasingly adding content to the "Instruction & Orientation Services" page, such as Web pages to support the library instruction/information competency program and the needs of distance learners.. One of the most striking uses of the Library's Web site is the ever-changing images reflecting the Library's active exhibitions and programs. The Web site is currently undergoing some major revisions so that services, such as the inter-campus materials delivery and the new Subject Guides to distance learners and faculty, are arranged and displayed more directly.
  • The addition of a new position for a Distance-Learning/Electronic Resources librarian
    Because of the growing distance learning initiative, this position was secured to focus on services to students taking online classes, to the information resource needs of students at CCSF campuses without libraries, and to students who may find it difficult to visit one of the campus libraries because of full-time work and family responsibilities. The coordinator of distance learning/electronic resources began the position full-time in Fall 2002. Accomplishments already include: participation in a pilot video-streaming instructional project; implementing a procedure to provide library barcodes via e-mail for students taking online courses and at campuses without libraries and the creation of new orientation and instructional Web pages about LLR resources and services, and the use of the online catalog and databases. Moreover, this librarian has already met with the campus deans and, with the help of the Dean of LLR and her Advisory Committee, has begun to prioritize the needs of the campuses without collections and services. Starting next semester, the most pressing need will be partially addressed, which is to expand our popular inter-campus materials delivery service to several other CCSF campuses. Planned for the next academic year are group orientation and instruction workshops for classes at these campuses. No new monies will be available, so creative approaches to using exiting staff are being planned.
  • Outreach to faculty and high school/middle school students, senior citizens, EOPS and other student programs
    As part of the new staff training and orientation process, outreach to academic and vocational programs has been given an increased emphasis. A checklist and a packet of examples of outreach approaches were distributed to all librarian selector-liaisons and discussed at the October 2002 Library Council meeting.
    Several CCSF campus librarians have worked with counselors, faculty and staff to offer resources and services to specific student groups. This initiative supports the College's outreach and recruitment efforts. The Southeast campus library has successfully offered instructional workshops on using the Web and other online databases to senior citizens, as well as teaching the Library's one-credit information literacy course (LIS 10) to middle school students who are part of the Discover College program targeted at the Martin Luther King Middle School students. The Rosenberg Library's coordinator of reference services has made contact with a neighborhood high school that lacked a library and developed a policy/procedures statement distributed to all the high school teachers. He also customized orientation tours for several high school classes. During the Spring 2002 and Fall 2002 semesters, Rosenberg Library joined with San Francisco middle and high school librarians to share information. In early Fall 2002, LLR hosted this group at the Rosenberg Library. As part of that meeting, they toured the Diego Rivera Mural and obtained information about the Curriculum Project that they can use in the their schools and learned more about CCSF's programs from CCSF's Dean of Outreach and Recruitment Services. Outreach to the Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) has involved providing special library research workshops and lab sessions to incoming students and students on probation. The Library has had a long record of teaching special sections of the LIS 10 library research skills credit course to college and high school students in the African-American Achievement and African American Retention programs respectively.
  • Orientation services and information competency skills instruction
    A commitment to advancing information literacy instruction was realized by the Dean of LLR’s securing another new position three years ago. With the new leadership of the coordinator of library instruction/information competency, planning and vision have infused the Library's instructional services program. During the past academic year, 644 workshops, tours and orientation sessions were provided for 11,786 students. The coordinator of library instructional services/information competency has worked with the Library's Information Competency/Curriculum Development Committee to develop an instructional services and assessment plan which has resulted in:
    1. The redesign of a series of four information competency, hands-on workshops in the Library's instruction lab for the students at the Ocean/Phelan campus, with librarians at some of the other campuses modifying the content and instructional materials to serve their local needs. These workshops have also been adapted for the needs of ESL and international students. A fifth workshop, "Research Paper/Project Skills," will be offered Fall 2003. As part of the redesign and revision process, all five of the workshops have been submitted to the campus Curriculum Committee for approval and listing in the course schedule. All of them generate positive attendance credit for LLR. These drop-in workshops are widely publicized and have seen an increase in enrollment, as some faculty now require their students to attend. Limited staffing has stifled increases in the number of workshops offered, although the coordinator of instructional services and the coordinator of distance learning are looking at other modes of delivery. Web tutorials and basic orientation information have already been increased as a supplementary instructional delivery mode.
      An exciting opportunity to expand the reach of these workshops involved the use of video streaming technology. As part of a collaboration between the Library and Information Technology Services a pilot streaming video project was tested during summer 2002 using one of the workshops as the content. The coordinator of distance learning presented one of the workshops to another campus location to test the feasibility of using this technology to extend our instructional offerings. The pilot project was effective and the College has acquired the necessary equipment and staff expertise to assist the Library with this type of instructional technology. 
    2. A major revision of the one-credit information competency course, LIS 10 - For several years LIS 10 had been offered as both a self-paced, workbook-oriented course and one in a classroom setting for high school and college students in the African-American Achievement Program. When the campus first announced several years ago it would begin to offer online courses, the coordinator of instructional services submitted a proposal to be among the first eight courses to pilot online learning. The workbook-based material was entirely revised by a team of librarians, staff and input from students for the online environment. The online LIS 10 course, offered 3 times a year, since Fall 2000 has been extensively revised to address the national ACRL information competency standards and to take advantage of "best practices" in online learning. It enrolls about 150 students a year. For students transferring to San Francisco State University, it satisfies its information competency requirement. It has also been offered at the Southeast campus in a course for middle school students.
      Since Summer 2002, this course has expanded to include a classroom section for the general student population at the Ocean/Phelan campus, based on student need for a traditional classroom setting. Four sections of LIS 10 are planned for Fall 2003: one online and three classroom sections. 
    3. The re-introduction and expansion of course-related information competency workshops in a variety of academic and vocational programs - Using the campus librarians and the Rosenberg librarian subject liaisons, the number of assignment and course-related workshops and orientations has increased and many academic and vocational curricula now include integrated library research skills assignments and/or presentations.
    4. Currently, as part of a campus-wide initiative to improve basic skills instruction, the coordinator of instructional services, working with the Information Competency/Curriculum Development Committee have launched a three-pronged initiative that will improve orientation for new students to the Rosenberg Library. Collaborating with the director of campus orientation services and student counselors, this initiative involves librarians developing a special "new students orientation" Web page that will be linked from the College's "Welcome to Online Orientation at CCSF" Web page. Librarians will also work with the Orientation Services staff to revise the pages about library services in the "Student Handbook & Planner." In addition, a new interactive, self-guided walking tour will be developed.
  • Superior level of reference service and staffing
    The Library's dedication to assisting students through reference services at all campus libraries is manifested by the fact that all librarians provide reference and instruction service, and virtually all librarians are cross-trained so they may substitute at any campus library as needed. The one-to-one instruction that librarians provide at the reference desks flows from their teaching information competency workshops and involves completing an assignment sheet after the workshop. This double role is best demonstrated by the level of staffing in the Rosenberg Library. Unlike most academic libraries, there are two Reference desks staffed by two to four professional librarians 73 hours per week -- all hours the Library is open. During the peak hours of 9 am to 4 p.m., the two desks are staffed by four librarians. This high level of commitment to staffing reference services may explain why the Library has consistently been rated very highly by students and faculty in campus surveys of Colleges services.
    Somewhat atypical is the integration of 70+ public service computer workstations in the Reference area at the Rosenberg Library. This fairly large number includes a specially equipped workstation for disabled students. Reference resources are typical of a community college of our size. However, what is somewhat unusual for a community college library is the integration of special and archival collections which support course assignments associated with the Diego Rivera Mural. Special finding aids and archival materials are seamlessly integrated into service provided by reference librarians.

III. Collaborations That Promote Teaching and Learning

Many of the creative approaches highlighted above also involved collaborations with other CCSF units or staff, but those described below illustrate a range of involvement by several LLR staff which contribute significantly to the academic, cultural and aesthetic life of the campus community:

  • Diego Rivera Mural Curriculum Project - As part of a grant-funded project, a College Committee as been developing and working with faculty across the curriculum to design instructional materials that relate to the historic, social-political, and cultural themes in the Diego Rivera "Pan American Unity" mural, located in the Diego Rivera Theatre on the Ocean/Phelan campus. One of the founding committee members is a librarian who has been a major advocate and leader in preserving and publicizing the mural, as well as expanding its educational use. She has developed an impressive and unique collection of primary and secondary print and non-print materials supporting the mural. This collection, the Diego Rivera Archive, is located in the College archives, housed and maintained by the Rosenberg Library. Thanks to the cataloging staff, this collection of nearly 300 titles has been fully cataloged and included in the online catalog. To expand access, some materials were purchased in duplicate and some primary sources have been duplicated and located on reserve and in the circulating collection to assist faculty, students and Rivera scholars with their work. She and other librarians have worked with faculty to develop assignments and curriculum to use this resource in their courses. Faculty in Art, English, Foreign Languages, Graphic Communications, History, Interdisciplinary Studies, Latin American Studies, Theatre Arts, Transitional Studies, Speech, and Women's Studies departments are currently using the mural. A traveling exhibition about the mural has been developed with assistance of library staff. A bilingual (English/Spanish) web site showcases the work of the College and Library staff at
  • Speech Faculty-Library Collaboration - The Speech curriculum is one of the few at CCSF which requires library research in every single course. To expand library research/information competency learning opportunities and handle the large number of course-related requests for workshops, the coordinator of library instructional services/information competency invited the Speech department faculty to explore other ways to teach information competency skills to the nearly 2,000 students per semester. They suggested some type of online instruction and met with two librarians to outline the content. Using the suggested outline and information provided about the nature of evidence, the coordinator of distance learning/electronic resources, who is also the Library's Webmaster, used sections of the Library's one-unit credit, online information competency course, sections of the TILT Tutorial, developed and shared by the University of Texas at Austin and new material. This collaboration was expanded to include two staff members in the Educational Technology Office, who loaded the TILT tutorial on the campus server and maintain a shareware database program for tracking student performance and producing reports for the Speech faculty. The Speech tutorial contains five modules with online quizzes and will be fully implemented during the Spring 2003 semester.
  • Web Subject Guides - Librarian selector-liaisons are developing Web-based subject guides, similar to pathfinders, for the academic and vocational depts/programs, using the suggestions and input of the faculty in those programs/depts. For example, the Subject Guide for Psychology ( was revised after several psychology faculty made suggestions for additions and deletions to better support their courses. Another example involves the collaboration with a interdisciplinary group of faculty who attended a librarian conducted workshop on plagiarism that was offered during the College's professional development days at the beginning of the Fall 2002 semester. As a result of the comments and discussion among faculty at that workshop, the librarian-presenter created a thorough subject guide entitled "Encourage Academic Integrity and Prevent Plagiarism," for faculty and student use, ( An article about this Web resource was featured in the campus’ weekly newsletter, City Currents in December 2002. The new Subject Guides initiative will be fully implemented in Spring 2003.
  • Librarians and staff in the Media Center and the Language Center have also participated in important collaborations. The new ESL computer area in the Media Center is the latest evidence of close cooperation between the ESL Department and the Library. The Language Center staff, some of whom also teach in the Foreign Language Department, routinely collaborate in the development of services and resources. They also act as consultants to help faculty solve problems and creatively use technology in their courses, such as working with French and Spanish instructors to adopt web-based placement tests for French and Spanish and helping the Japanese instructors develop new web-based curriculum supplements. Evidence of this close collaboration is found in the excellent web site developed by a Language Center/French instructor, which reflects the close relationships between the Language Center and the Foreign Language curriculum. Language Center support was also provided to the 2002 award-winning Chinese online course. This award was given to CCSF instructor Joyce Liou from the California Virtual Campus.
  • Exhibitions and programs are one of the Library's unique contributions to the academic, aesthetic and cultural life of the College. Programming might be considered a "bonus" in some community college libraries, but at CCSF, the LLR has made programs and exhibits a part of its core services. A LLR sub-committee plans, coordinates, oversees and lends support to the well developed yearly calendar of programs and exhibitions. Virtually all of these involve collaborations and co-sponsorships with various departments, student groups on campus and even neighborhood community organizations. Many of the exhibitions involve student contributions and nearly all capture viewer reactions in a "Comments/Reactions" journal. Most all the programs and exhibitions include a librarian-prepared bibliography or webliography that ties the themes, issues and images to the information resources of the LLR. During the past academic year, 62 exhibitions and programs were offered or co-sponsored by the Library at five different campuses. The lectures and performances were attended by 2,562 students and community members. Here is a sampling of some programs and exhibitions from the past academic year:
    • Programs - In the economically challenged areas served by the Josephine Cole Library at the Southeast campus, the librarian hosted or co-sponsored several relevant programs: federal and state tax preparation workshops for the community; job fair programs aimed at having students learn more about available jobs; a large number of programs for junior high and high school students to learn about doing research in libraries; and exhibits to commemorate various ethnic festivals (e.g., lunar new year, African-American History Month, Cinco de Mayo).
      At the John Adams campus the librarian has been active in presenting workshops, exhibits, and other events for students. One such project was the publication of "Stories of Survival: Through Generations of Southeast Asian Americans Share Their Lives," which was accompanied by a book-signing party and a workshop on the project.
      At the Rosenberg Library, the celebration of Black History Month involved two film screenings, two lectures, two performances, a reception and a display/exhibition. Another celebration of National Latino/Hispanic Heritage Month resulted in more film screenings, slide lecture presentations and author talks. Other examples of recent, innovative programming included an "Understanding Iranian Culture" film series moderated by a librarian; "East Meets West," an author's panel and book signing; and for Women's History Month a display and contest to research famous women.
    • Exhibitions/Displays - Under the leadership of one of the Rosenberg reference librarians with art and museum curatorial experience, the quality of exhibitions has greatly improved and all are now integrated into campus programs and curricula. A few examples of some recent exhibitions will illustrate the unusual collaboration and involvement of several campus units:
      1. "re)consider 9.11" was a collaboration between the Library, the Graphic Arts and Art Departments of CCSF and Creative Time in New York City. The Rosenberg Library was designated the only West coast distribution center for the posters published by Creative Time, a N.Y. City alliance of poets, writers, and teens working with professional graphic artists. These posters addressed themes of world peace, anti-war, racism, western expansionism and expressed feelings of shock, fear and sadness in reaction to the horrific events. The Library and the Graphic Arts Department published a poster for the exhibition and co-sponsored a reception attended by well over 200 individuals that included a poster distribution event in the Rosenberg Library. The exhibition later traveled to the John Adams campus and smaller versions of it traveled to six other CCSF campuses. Sacramento City College) and the National Gallery of Afghanistan were other locations that showcased all or part of this exhibition of 9/11. 
      2. "Klak*Pow!Whine#: Comics, Cartoons and Manga from City College of San Francisco" featured the work of the CCSF student and staff. Three events brought classes and others groups to campus: an artists' talk by three comic artists, an author talk on the Japanese comic forms of anime and manga and a reception for the artists. A bibliography and a webliography were created. The exhibition was co-sponsored by the Cartoon Art Museum and included self-published comic books, manga, single panel cartoons, comic strips and three dimensional objects. 
      3. "Hecho en la Mision: Made in the Mission, Anti-Gentrification Posters from the Mission District" featured posters made by Mission District artists and the San Francisco Print collective. Since many of the posters had been mounted on construction sites and public walls, this was their first gallery appearance. The exhibition was used in three Speech classes and many students came to the library for articles on San Francisco’s housing and economy. The posters were bilingual, Spanish/English. A sampling of student comments written in the "Reactions" journal include:

"Thanks for the exhibits! I really look forward to the new ones. I feel like they add to the atmosphere of the library and I get exposed to things I might not pursue on my own."
"This comic exhibition is cool! So far I've liked all the exhibitions-informative, educational, broadening."
"It's inspiring to see such political art outside of the community and into a wider audience. The posters are intelligently quick, inspiring, catching of the eye and strongly done. It's good to see these issues being raised in a place of learning. More and more people should be educated on issues that happen in their city…Beautiful job to all the artists, curators and activists. Keep on luchando!"

IV. Leadership: A Critical Component

Any organization is only as good as its staff and CCSF’s staff certainly contribute to the making of an excellent library. LLR's organizational structure is flat with all professional staff reporting directly to the Dean of LLR and support staff reporting to department supervisors/coordinators and to the Dean's administrative analyst. In this type of environment individual initiative is encouraged. Many LLR committees provide the mechanism for individual and group leadership development. For example, the LLR Advisory Committee helps shape policy and is well informed about CCSF planning and developments. The LLR Budget Committee works directly with the Library's budget and planning documents to allocate resources in support of the College's priorities.

In addition to the several "movers and shakers" in the Library, all 80 employees of CCSF’s Library and Learning Resource Center have demonstrated involvement in committee work, professional development opportunities, and in a varying array of community-based activities. The result of this participation and leadership allows CCSF’s Library and Learning Resource the extraordinary opportunity to participate in the many cultural, philanthropic, and educational aspects of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Campus and City College District

All librarians and many support staff serve the College and LLR by participation in hiring committees, tenure review committees, and internal LLR operations committees (e.g., Personnel, Facilities, Budget, Technology). In addition, many library staff are active in faculty governance. There is always a librarian member of the Academic Senate and College Curriculum Committees. Librarians often attend and make presentations at the College's Board of Trustee meetings. During the College's last WASC regional accreditation work, two librarians co-chaired one of the College's self-study committees. Other examples include librarians who are active on the Academic Policies Committee and the Works of Art Committee.

The coordinator of instructional services/information competency has provided leadership in expanding awareness and understanding on campus about the instructional role the Library plays and about information competency. Examples of her activities include: taking the lead role on the Academic Policies committee to implement an information competency requirement; by penning articles each semester for the campus newsletter about information competency; and by presenting professional development workshops dealing with ways to help faculty teach information competency skills. She has also reached out to innovative faculty instructional projects and volunteering to be a resource person, such as for the SCANS (Secretary of Labor's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills), project which involves about 40 faculty a year who revise their course assignments to include workplace competencies, one of which is information technology skills. Other examples of innovative faculty groups she has worked with include the Teaching & Learning with Technology Roundtable, and the Online Courses Faculty Forum.

Another librarian, who chairs the Works of Art Committee has continued to be one of the "movers and shakers" in the ongoing development work to increase international awareness and local use of the College's art gem, "The Pan-American Unity" mural. She has helped sponsor symposia at City College about the mural and Diego Rivera, has brought visiting scholars to the campus, has helped to sponsor publications on the subject, and through her collection development work to create the Diego Rivera archive has helped make City College an important resource on the subject of Latin American art.

Another venue for which librarians and staff excel is the organization and participation in programs and exhibits. One example is a newly hired librarian who has contributed to the College's emphasis on understanding diverse cultures by organizing and leading discussion of several films dealing with other cultures.

Regional, State, National and International

Virtually every librarian and professional staff member at CCSF belongs to professional organizations and contributes a considerable amount of time on committee work, conferences, and workshops for the various committees of these organizations. Led by the LLR dean, who for many years has been active in ALA and who was recently elected to the board of ACRL, librarians are active in ALA, CLA, CARL, OCLC, Middle Eastern Library Association, and many more such organizations. Several librarians have been involved on California Community College Chancellor's Office's committees, and their work has directly benefited City College and other community colleges in California in such ways as securing instructional equipment grant monies, improving the annual data collection process, and planning for improved uses of instructional technologies. A staff member in the Language Center presents frequently at regional language and technology conferences. What follows is a brief sampling of involvement and leadership at the regional, state, national and international levels:

  • One librarian was the founder of the San Francisco Historical Society, and served as its president for 14 years. He has also written three books on San Francisco history, and was a trustee of the California Historical Society for a cumulative 20 years.
  • Another librarian was recently awarded a Creative Work Grant from a foundation and is producing a project entitled, "Our Worklives: Three Generations of the Bay Area Work and Workers.
  • Yet another librarian, in addition to important responsibilities with the California State Community College Chancellor’s Office, with ACRL, and CARL, spends a great deal of time on the affairs of the Strybing Arboretum Society in Golden Gate Park
  • The librarian who heads the library’s automation department has been on the board of the Central Asia Institute for five years. The Central Asia Institutes promotes public health and environmental issues through community-initiated education programs in the mountain regions of Central Asia. She has made several trips to Baltisan and to Afghanistan to help in the work of the Institute, specifically building school libraries and developing instructional materials for teachers.
  • The coordinator of library instructional services/information competency has been on two recent ACRL Task Forces which wrote the "Information Literacy Competencies for Higher Education" and which drafted the "Best Practices in Information Literacy Programs" documents. Regionally, she initiated a collaboration of six Bay Area community colleges for a project to develop and field-test an information competency proficiency exam. This 3-year project was awarded a CARL Research Award. In its final year, sample test items, scoring rubrics and supporting documentation are being provided at the project Web site,
  • A Language Center staff member's French Online Grammar Quiz has been cited on Web sites on every continent except Antarctica, and is the most frequently used faculty Web site at CCSF.

V. Summary and Indicators of Effectiveness in Promoting Student Success

Within the past several years CCSF’s Library and Learning Resource Center has undergone a massive transformation to become a focused and proactively responsive library with collections and services on five campuses and an increasing online presence to all the CCSF College community. In order to accomplish the many challenges, the librarians and staff of CCSF’s Library and Learning Resource Center have galvanized themselves into an effective team to ensure that the resources and services promote access to information resources and services and student success. They have involved themselves in an unprecedented way in the various committees essential to LLR's planning and operations, and they have done similarly for the College, the San Francisco community and to a more limited extent the California community college system. In addition, these same librarians and staff have a multiplicity of professional and personal interests and expertise that enhance their role at the College, as often the passion and dedication which an individual engenders in his or her personal commitments will spill over into their capacity to serve the students at CCSF. In the current environment at CCSF, where librarians and staff must serve the needs of large number of students whose English language skills are minimal and who frequently ask for help to do their assignments, the traditional role of a librarian to help a student find information has greatly expanded. All of the reference librarians extend themselves to help these students be successful with their coursework.

In summary City College's Library & Learning Resource's mantra of everything being about and for student success is made possible by a dedicated staff who work as a team as well as take initiative to be College leaders and innovators; a range of responsive services, programs, exhibitions, and collections targeted to the student needs and curricular settings of the various campuses; and a commitment and demonstration of organizing staff and resources to serve the information and instruction needs of distance learners and instructors and the students and faculty at campuses without libraries.

Selected Indicators of Effectiveness - Fall 2001-Spring 2002

  • During the past academic year, 62 exhibitions and programs were offered or co-sponsored by the Library at five different campuses. The lectures and performances were attended by 2,562 students and community members.
  • Heavy use of the Library and Learning Resource Center’s Web site which has more than doubled since it began 2 1/2 years ago. Since July 1, 2002, there have been over 400,000 "hits" and within the academic year this will exceed one million.
  • Reorganized Web pages for Distance Learning and Faculty, including the new Subject Guides, Research Process Guide, and Avoiding Plagiarism Guide.
  • Growth of the Library's instructional services program which provided 644 workshops, tours and orientation sessions for nearly 12,000 students during the past academic year and instructed 2,385 students in the several sections of information competency and library research skills credit courses for a total of 14,385 students served.
  • Languages, in addition to English, spoken and utilized by librarians and staff to assist patrons: Spanish, French, German, Italian, Czech, Slovak, Russian, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), Persian (Farsi), Vietnamese.
  • Approximately 35 informational presentations made by librarians to College committees, deans, department chairs, counselors and other College groups about the services and resources of LLR.
  • Campus-wide initiative underway to implement information competency as a graduation requirement.
  • Librarians are leaders at the College, in the San Francisco Bay Area, in the state and in national professional organizations.
  • Adapted equipment and software on some public computer workstations and special services provided for disabled students, such as the Books on Tape service that library circulation staff coordinate with the Disabled Students Programs and Services Office.
  • Library rated with highest rating in recent survey of students, faculty and staff.
  • A Language Center staff member's French Online Grammar Quiz has been cited on Web sites on every continent except Antarctica, and is the most frequently used faculty Web site at CCSF.
  • Circulation and in-house use of print and non-print collections and instructional hardware and software was 151,472 items.
  • In 1995, a grant from the State of California amounting to $2,390,000 provided all library units with funds to acquire new materials for their respective collections. This grant, which had a three-year duration, allowed for the acquisition of approximately 35,000 print and 5,000 non-print library materials.
  • The Friends of the Library supplements the Library's annual materials budget with much needed funds, especially after the state grant funds were fully expended. Through their generosity, the library is able to acquire books from non-traditional sources such as out-of-print and remaindered book dealers.
  • Utilization of TTIP funds for periodical database subscriptions. The library participates in consortial subscriptions negotiated through the Community College League of California and utilizes the State's
  • Telecommunications Technology Infrastructure Program (TTIP) funds in conjunction with college funds to pay for these subscriptions. Consortial pricing greatly benefits all community colleges which participate by allowing for lower negotiated fees for all.