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Matthew J Jabaily
Electronic Resources and Serials Librarian, Kraemer Family Library, University of Colorado Colorado Springs
When assessing the value of electronic serials, librarians are typically limited to looking at the usage of serials to which their library already subscribes. While this is useful for making renewal decisions, librarians are often flying blind when considering new subscriptions. Librarians often look at interlibrary loan requests to gauge interest in unsubscribed materials, but we know that these requests don’t tell the full story. Without other available data, it is difficult for librarians to make informed decisions about what subscriptions to add.
This presentation will look beyond interlibrary loan data to discuss other methods for predicting future use, including usage numbers of similar materials, turnaway statistics, and data from failed link resolver requests. Each of these methods has strengths and weaknesses, and each can all tell librarians something different about how users are discovering and attempting to access materials.
I will discuss some of the recent literature that discusses the association of the data from these sources with usage numbers. I will also share preliminary data from my institution, attempting to correlate prior year indicators of interest in electronic serials with first year use of new acquisitions.