Have you ever built a great online module or LibGuide only to have the collaborating faculty vanish after it’s finished? Moving face-to-face content into an online environment is a daunting task. This is especially true when the library takes on the task without prompting from the academic colleges on campus. The effort of producing engaging, interactive digital learning objects can make any librarian take pause, so when a faculty member requests it for a course, it can feel like half the battle is over. How about when you design an awesome student or faculty workshop only to have an empty classroom? When other academic support units include face-toface library workshops as part of a campus-wide series, it can seem like a no-brainer to jump at the opportunity to reach patrons. However, the library needs to have a supportive culture and assessment plan in place for the times when labor-intensive projects fail due to outside variables. Faculty who are gone with the wind after the tutorial is created make assessment and feedback nearly impossible. Likewise, how do you gather meaningful data from just one workshop participant? Designing thoughtful and engaging curriculum should not be dismissed as a failure merely because students did not show up. Failures, whether current experiences or attempts by predecessors, should not hinder librarians from seeking best practices, implementing an action plan, and continuing to provide quality library interactions with faculty and students on campus. We will share our hard lessons on dealing with ghost faculty, impossible assessment strategies, and building an organizational culture that is not adverse to failure when seeking to improve library services. We will also pass on the smart steps we’ve taken to keep relationships strong both in the library and across campus.
Salsbury, Meghan; Blackburn, Heidi; and Owens, Tammi M., "Ghosted by Faculty: When You Build It and They Don’t Come" (2017). Criss Library Faculty Proceedings & Presentations. 86.