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2021/22 Library & Learning Commons Annual Report


2021/22 Annual Report

Director's Welcome

Dr. Debbie SchachterThis year has been a significant year of change, challenges and successes, with the campus community returning to in person teaching and activities. It has been such a pleasure to see so many students on campus and back in the Library, and to welcome many new employees into the Langara community. It continues to be clear that the Library and Learning Commons are central to students’ study and learning needs, and we continue to develop our services to meet the changing needs of both student learning and faculty teaching.

A great deal of planning and responsiveness to these changing needs took place during the early part of the academic year, including the front line work at the service desk and reference services behind plexiglass, staff circulating laptops for the first time, the return to significant in-person teaching and events, and more. One of the most significant achievements this year has been the collaborative work to develop our new  2022-2025 Strategic Plan. Two facilitated sessions, involving contributions across the Library, as well as focus groups to incorporate student and faculty input, culminated in a plan that aligns with the College’s Strategic and Academic plans. Underpinning the Library’s strategic objectives is our commitment to support Indigenization and Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion through our work. The four pillars of our plan are:

  1. Integrating and Expanding Student learning Supports
  2. Building, Promoting, and Enhancing Accessible Resources and Practices
  3. Forging and Reinforcing Cross-College Collaborations
  4. Excelling in Library Services and Practices

In recognition of the expansion in digital learning that was evident through the pandemic, the Library was able to confirm ongoing funding for a number of electronic resources, allowing us to continue with resources that were found to be invaluable to students and faculty during the pandemic. The Library continued in its commitment to Indigenize and decolonize our collections in a project under the guidance of our Fine Arts / Art History liaison librarian, to more properly locate many titles by and about Indigenous artists with other art books. This ongoing work addresses the TRC’s Calls to Action for Canadian libraries to ensure that materials are selected, classed and described in culturally appropriate and respectful ways. This year, the Collections Librarians also focused on acquiring more titles by Indigenous LGBTQQIA2S+ authors and increasing the number of Indigenous children's books in our collection, and added titles on reconciliation, MMIWG, Indigenous art and artists, traditional ways of knowing, memoirs, and graphic novels. 

Open Langara continued to see growth with 205 courses using open textbooks, and two $1,500 open education grants awarded during the year. In partnership with Student Engagement and Mental Health Initiatives, we hosted Long Night Against Procrastination (LNAP) each semester, with the summer event held online, and the fall and spring semesters incorporated a hybrid format, and we participated with other student services on De-stress Fest each semester.  While services showed a decline during the pandemic, we are seeing the rising usage once again, particularly in tutoring services, Writeaway, and Askaway, and we anticipate the in-person services will continue to grow as the number of students on campus increases.

Thank you to our dedicated and supportive employees, who provide a welcoming, supportive and academically relevant services to our students. Notable retirements this year include former Director Patricia Cia, Reference Assistant Louise Reid, and Borrower Services Supervisor Glenda MacLean, while we welcomed librarians Maddie Walter, Satinder Kahlon, Martina Keller and new Reference Assistant Vanessa Brown. Covering the maternity leaves for Annie Jensen and Lindsay Tripp were Mia Clarkson, Jarvis Sparks and Caroline Korbel, and we wish them well in their new positions at other libraries.

Dr. Debbie Schachter

Library Director

Strategic Plan Themes

This Annual Report highlights the Library's successes within the context of the 5 themes identified in the Langara Library and Learning Commons Strategic Plan, 2013-2020:

Langara Library Strategic Plan

  1. Learning and Life Competencies: Sharing Unique Expertise
  2. Content & Resources: Curated, Seamless, Dynamic
  3. Interactive Spaces: Innovative Environments for Learners
  4. Community Connections: Meaningful Relationships
  5. The Team: Organizational Effectiveness

In summer 2022, the Library published its new 2022-2025 Strategic Plan. The new updated plan focuses on 4 priority areas: 

  1. Integrating and Expanding Student Learning Supports
  2. Building, Promoting, and Enhancing Accessible Resources and Practices
  3. Forging and Reinforcing Cross-College Collaborations
  4. Excelling in Library Services and Practices

Future annual reports will provide updates and accomplishments within this context.