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Traditionally academic law libraries have been evaluated and rated based largely on statistical counts such as titles and volumes added, reference questions answered, and volumes and pieces circulated. In a hard copy collection built on in-house and interlibrary-loan patron services these statistics were relevant, if not totally indicative of the quality of collections and services.
As evidenced by the report of the AALL Future of Law Libraries in the Digital Age Committee and years of anecdotal observations, electronic resources have impacted collection resources and library services to such an extent that it is apparent that new methods of assessment are needed. The ABA standards and interpretations relating to law libraries must be sufficiently flexible to accommodate the digital library of the future.
CHARGE: The ABA Standards for Academic Law Libraries Task Force can play an important role in redefining the ABA standards, interpretations, and questionnaires for academic law libraries as illustrated by the following charge:
- Review the existing ABA standards for academic law libraries,
- Review the existing annual and site evaluation questionnaires and
- Recommend appropriate changes that reflect the changing nature of law libraries in the digital age, and
- Seek to work cooperatively with the Law Libraries Committee and any other relevant entities of the ABA Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar.
The Task Force shall submit an interim report to the Executive Board for its meeting in November 2003 and a final report to the Executive Board at the November 2004 meeting.
SIZE: The Task Force will consist of co-chairs and six members. The members will be appointed by the President and serve until December 2004. A non-voting Executive Board liaison will be appointed.