Measuring Information Service Outcomes @ the Library

This post was written by Jeff Gatten, Associate Dean for the William H. Hannon Library.

In February 2019, the William H. Hannon Library surveyed LMU undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty to gather information the library services we provide. The purpose was to address the following research questions:

  • What services and resources are important to the LMU community, and how successfully do we deliver them?
  • How effectively do we communicate with the campus about our services and resources?
  • How skilled is each group (undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty) in the use of library resources? What additional skills do they wish to learn, and how do they wish to learn?

Responses to the survey were representative of population demographics, including across colleges/schools. Subjects were asked how often they use selected services; how important each service is to them; and how satisfied they are with the services. The results revealed an impressively high level of satisfaction among all three groups. Less important items still scored very high on satisfaction.

When compared against other institutions, the results were nearly always in LMU’s favor – especially regarding satisfaction with most services and resources. One notable exception was the use and the importance of interlibrary loan, where LMU scored lower.

Examining survey results and reviewing open-ended user comments, we have already addressed physical comfort issues in the library by repairing nonworking outlets and replacing or reupholstering all of the public seating. We are working with Facilities Management to fix lighting problems in public spaces, including the installation of LED bulbs. We are also conducting an audit the technology available in the group study rooms.

Next steps, based on survey results, will include building increased support for graduate students into our next strategic plan; engaging the Faculty Library Committee in discussions centered on the open-ended comments from faculty, graduate, and undergraduate students and discrepancies in the scores among the three populations; and uncovering the  “why” behind the quantitative survey responses.

Here are three infographics highlighting some of the results we gathered from the MISO survey in Spring 2019:

Grad students MISO survey results


Undergraduate MISO survey results


Faculty MISO survey results