CRD Membership Survey-Added Value of CRD
How could the College and Research Division make PaLA membership more valuable to you?
Although some responders thought that the College and Research Division is doing a good job, many (15%) had no suggestions as to how the division could add value to PaLA membership. The majority of survey takers did offer some ideas.
The number one way suggestion (17% of the responses) was that CRD should use Adobe Connect to hold online workshops and discussions, which would be site agnostic. Some felt that CRD should focus on academic library issues. Since CRD’s by-laws state, “The object of this Division is to promote the professional growth of academic librarians and to improve services in college and research libraries,” I think that what those people meant is that PaLA should focus more on academic issues so that it is not perceived as being just for public libraries.
Others suggested that CRD should provide more professional development and networking opportunities, including social events, in more regions across the state. It should be more relevant to them, providing programming that has a broader focus than just reference and teaching, including topics on emerging trends, archives and special collections, and technical services.
One responder said that CRD has a “scholarly-lite” reputation and suggested that it try to change this perception. Along this same line, others want “a clear way to be active in the association in ways that can contribute to the tenure process” or want CRD to maximize “opportunities for me to share my research with my colleagues, and for me in turn to be exposed to the research my colleagues are doing.” Another person thought that CRD should “help academic libraries justify their existence to the people making funding decisions, on campus and elsewhere, including taxpayers.”
One responder remarked that the “challenge with CRD” is not to “replicate or compete” with other organizations so CRD should consider partnering with other organizations such as ACRL-DVC and WPWVC-ACRL or with smaller regional groups such as TCLC. Another view expressed was, “Pennsylvania academic librarians are way too fragmented. If CRD is big enough to bring together enough academic librarians from PA, that would be appealing.”
There were several people who though that the cost of membership was too expensive or that the way membership dues are calculated (percentage of salary) is not fair. Some suggested that CRD should target and engage younger academic librarians and help with job search information.
Other suggestions included the following: hold more community college focused events, provide mentoring opportunities, support Open Access efforts, create Interest groups for different topics, advocacy, reach out to interested non-professionals, and offer a universal academic membership consortium ID for vendors, publishers.