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Web > Web Committee Notes, 04 May 2010

Web Committee Notes, 04 May 2010

Web Committee Notes for Tuesday 04 May 2010

Present: Dana Craig, Sarah Coysh, William Denton (chair), Walter Giesbrecht, Angela Hamilton, Tim Knight, Nisa Lawson (secretary), Anna St. Onge, Mark Robertson, Louis St-Amour, Robert Thompson

Regrets: A Lupton.

Notes from previous meeting

The notes from the 06 April 2010 meeting were approved after minor modification.

Business arising

  • SFX and VuFind: R Thompson and A Lupton had looked into this. R Thompson reported that SFX has things configured so that it is easy to point to the more popular catalogue systems, but VuFind is not one of those yet. A Perl script would need to be modified.

    ACTION: W Denton to ask on the VuFind mailing list if anyone has set this up.

  • W Denton will follow up on several actions from last month which remain open.
  • T Knight reported that over fifteen people came to the Zotero session, with broad representation from across the libraries. It was a successful event.
  • Also successful was the CMS Refresher Workshop, reported W Denton and A Hamilton. About fifteen people came. There was interest in more workshops, some one more advanced subjects some as image manipulation. W Denton and A Hamilton intend to do more workshops on a regular basis.
  • Subject guides: S Coysh reported that she will soon meet with S Bury to discuss this project.
  • W Denton reviewed recent Feedback comments, questions and suggestions.
  • There will be a VuFind open session on Thursday 6 May.

Other web-related news and updates

Taras Danylak has made a special tool that will make it easier to set up special features on the home page.

ACTION: W Denton to ask Christina Pringi to send around a link to this.

S Coysh pointed out the Aiming for Accessibility: Meeting Standards, Making Change conference held on June 8th and 9th at the University of Guelph. This conference has a focus on Web accessibility. S Coysh sees this as an excellent opportunity and will most likely attend.


M Robertson briefly reviewed his Library Forum presentation from 13 April 2010. The committee looked at four of the 22 core questions, and one local question, in detail (the other online-related data being more in the purview of the Information Literacy Committee, subject librarians, etc.):

  • IC-1: Making electronic resources acccessible from my home or office.
  • IC-2: A library Web site enabling me to locate information on my own.
  • IC-6: Easy-to-use access tools that allow me to find things on my own.
  • IC-7: Making information easily accessible for independent use.
  • Local: Ability to navigate library Web pages easily.

The committee reviwed the radar charts in general and the adequacy mean graphs for those questions in particular.

There was some discussion about the questions, their meaning, and what we can draw from this report. What did respondents interpret “a library Web site” to mean? Our web site? Online journals and databases? Everything? Is the information “easily accessible” under our control or vendors’? Is there any statistical significance to minor changes (for example, a rise from 0.1 to 0.2) in the adequacy mean graphs, year to year? Ultimately there was no answer to these questions.

Two things to remember: VuFind had launched mere weeks before the survey, and the new web site template had launched last September. Faculty and graduate students could have been comfortably familiar with the old catalogue and site and reacted badly to changes.

Undergraduates were all in the blue, but just a little bit, meaning their minimal requirements are being met. With graduate students and faculty there was a lot of red, meaning they are unsatisfied with what we provide them. With graduate students, IC-7 remained about the same as last time, but IC-2 and IC-6 went down strongly. With faculty, there was a slight improvement in 2007 but then a decline this year. IC-2 went down quite a bit.

W Giesbrecht suggested cross-tabulating the responses by age, and noted that many faculty responses commented on the ambiguity of the questions.

M Robertson said that the 22 core questions are not meant to provide detailed answers, but instead give a general indication of where problems lay and where more work is necessary. He hopes to find out more by following up on all parts of this survey with more in-depth research using appropriate techniques.

W Denton noted some SFX-related comments: it seems that the “Find It @ York” button misleads people.

M Robertson observed a recurring theme of being unable to find e-journals on the web site, that most people want results comparable to Google Scholar.

D Craig asked if the new catalogue catered to undergraduates or also to graduate students and faculty. When work began on, it as clearly stated it is intended to serve the needs of undergraduates. W Denton said he disagreed with this and the new system should now be improved so that everyone can use it.

L St Amour initiated the topic of personalization for faculty and graduate students, keeping a generic home page but also make personalized pages.

After much discussion, it was decided that the committee should think about the results some more, and would discuss it at the next meeting.

ACTION: Everyone on the committee to come to the next meeting prepared to discuss what we can do that will lead to improvements in the next LibQUAL+ survey.

ACTION: W Denton to ask A Lupton to categorize the comments.


The meeting adjourned at 3:50 PM.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday 1 June 2010 at 2 PM in the SMIL Screening Room.

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