Takeaways from the Library Assessment Conference

Sofia Leung
Teaching & Learning Program Manager and Liaison Librarian
MIT

Thanks to the generosity of ARL and the Library Assessment Conference planning committee, I was able to attend the Library Assessment Conference (LAC) in Arlington, Virginia, this year. It was an exciting opportunity to meet and learn from librarians with plenty of assessment expertise. While I enjoyed all of the sessions I attended, some of my biggest takeaways came from the keynote speakers and Career Achievement Award winners.

Stephen Town, one of the Career Achievement Awardees, helped me understand how assessment is just like all of our work as librarians, when he said, “Assessment is all about building partnerships and collaboration with our campus partners.” That’s exactly how I see our work as librarians. Assessment also prompts us to take apart our assumptions and, as the third keynote speaker, Brian Nosek, emphasized, it helps us recognize what we don’t see. This element of assessment is probably my favorite, as I think that’s where we need to start when we take a social justice approach to our work. Assessment holds us accountable to our work and most importantly, to our users—the students, faculty, and staff we serve.

Thank you again to ARL and the LAC planning committee for this eye-opening opportunity!

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