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3.8.3 Qualified staff

The institution provides a sufficient number of qualified staff—with appropriate education or experiences in library and/or other learning/information resources—to accomplish the mission of the institution. (Qualified staff)

Judgment of Compliance

Sam Houston State University provides a sufficient number of qualified faculty and staff to support the Library’s [1] and the University’s mission [2]. The Library faculty and staff meet or exceed the minimal educational requirements when employed. Both faculty and staff are encouraged to participate in continuing education and profession development activities to maintain proficiency and develop new skills. Staffing in all other learning/information areas are supervised and staffed by individuals who meet or exceed the educational and experience requirements of their positions. Please refer to Core Requirement 2.9 and Comprehensive Standards 3.8.1 and 3.8.2.

The present staffing level of the Newton Gresham Library and the other learning/information areas is sufficient to meet the needs of the University.

The Library staff configuration is shown in the table below.

Library Staffing
Librarians (tenure-track positions)
Professional Staff
Classified Staff (full-time)
Classified Staff (part-time)
Student Assistants (FTE, FY 2006)

In Academic Policy Statement 900417, the University recognizes the Master’s of Library Science as the appropriate terminal degree for librarians, in accordance with the Association of College and Research Libraries’ “Statement on the Terminal Professional Degree for Academic Librarians” [3] [4]. Two-thirds of the Library faculty have additional graduate degrees. A sample of faculty resumes is included in the documentation [5]. Requirements for additional education or experience are outlined in the job description for each position. Job descriptions are maintained in the office of the Director of Library Services. A sample of faculty job descriptions is included in the documentation [6]. Policies and procedures for evaluation for tenure and promotion follow the University’s Academic Policy 900417, Faculty Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion (for Librarians) [7]. Transcripts for the faculty may be examined in the Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

The criteria for evaluating librarians follows the Faculty Evaluation System, Academic Policy Statement 820317, and the University’s Faculty Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion policy [8] [3]. In the fall of 2004, a committee of librarians developed evaluation criteria and competencies for librarians [9]. The Library’s evaluation system was approved by the Provost in the summer of 2005.

Many members of the Library support staff have significantly more education than the high school diploma required for many of the staff positions. Eighteen staff members have a Bachelor’s degree and three members of the staff have Master’s degrees. A sample of staff job descriptions is included in the documentation [10]. Copies of the job descriptions are sent to Human Resources and a file is maintained in the Office of the Director of Library Services. Staff positions are reviewed and upgraded as needed. Staff members are evaluated annually by their supervisors using Human Resources’ Annual Merit `Review form [11].

The 2003 LibQual+™ Survey indicates general satisfaction with the services provided by the Library's faculty and staff [12]. The annual University Faculty Senate Survey reveals satisfaction with the services provided by librarians and staff; the survey indicates increasing confidence in library services [13].

The Library administration is dedicated to continuous training and professional development of all staff members. Travel funds are available to librarians to attend professional meetings and workshops. Travel funds are available to staff for expanding their knowledge and skills. The Library also provides in-house training opportunities for staff development. These activities include teleconferences and online classes from SirsiDynix (SIRSI) (vendor for the Library’s integrated system), Texas State Library and Archives (College of DuPage), Amigos, Online Computer Library Center (OCLC), Solinet, and the Association of College and Research Libraries. The number of workshops, training opportunities and conferences attended by library faculty and staff is shown in the table below.

Newton Gresham Library Faculty & Staff Development
Onsite/Online Trainings
2004 Faculty
2005 Faculty
2006 Faculty
2007 Faculty

Training sessions developed on campus by Computer Services or by librarians are offered to meet specific needs of the staff and faculty [14]. To ensure knowledgeable student assistants, the Library has increased its training program by providing online training for student assistants. In 2007, Access Service developed an online course using Blackboard as part of its training program [15] [16]. This training course is being adapted for other areas of the Library.

SAM Center
The SAM Center advisors include current and retired Sam Houston State University faculty members, in addition to the advising and mentoring staff [17]. The faculty advisors are selected on the basis of their academic credentials and knowledge of advising procedures. The advising staff has experience in academic advising and knowledge of advising procedures [18]. The mentoring staff has appropriate credentials and knowledge for planning programs for students in academic peril and solutions to help them succeed academically [19]. The SAM Center has been recognized by the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA) for making significant contributions to the improvement of academic advising [20].

Mathematics Tutoring Center
Graduate and advanced undergraduate students are employed in the Mathematics Tutoring Center. The Math Lab offers free tutoring services to all students enrolled in freshman or sophomore mathematics and/or statistics courses excluding the calculus sequence. The Mathematics Tutoring Center is under the supervision of a doctoral level mathematician. Mathematics tutors are approved through an interview process with the Center's Director.

Reading Center
Reading Center personnel include the coordinator, three graduate assistants, and five student workers. The Reading Center Coordinator has a Master’s Degree in Education as a Reading Specialist. The coordinator is a certified ESL teacher, a certified dyslexia teacher, and a certified learning resource specialist (library). At present, the coordinator is completing a doctorate in Higher Education Executive Leadership. The three graduate assistants and two student workers attend tutor training led by the Reading Center Coordinator to qualify them to assist students who need help with academic reading [21].

Writing Center
The Writing Center staff includes the Director, an Assistant Director, a staff assistant and undergraduate and graduate tutors [22]. The Director of the Writing Center holds a Ph.D. in English; both the Assistant Director and the staff assistants hold Master’s degrees in English. The Writing Center tutors are employed from all colleges and must have a 3.0 GPA and be approved by the Center's Director. Language tutors must be recommended by a faculty member who teaches the language. The duties for each tutor are outlined in a job description maintained in the Writing Center [23].

Computer Services
Computer Services employs 58 full-time staff members [24]. Following a self-evaluation in 2008, all positions were re-evaluated, job descriptions re-written, and positions re-graded. Entry-level technician positions require a minimum of 60 hours of college-level coursework, or at least one year of related experience. All professional positions require a minimum education level of a Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent years of related experience). Currently only three employees occupy positions that do not require a Bachelor’s degree as a minimum requirement. Performance reviews of all full-time staff are conducted annually [11].

Additionally, many Computer Services staff members hold advanced degrees and/or certifications. Seven employees hold Master’s degrees and eleven hold technical certifications in addition to their Bachelor or Master’s degrees. Staff members attend developmental training as appropriate. For example, database administrators attend Oracle training and subsequently take exams to qualify for Oracle certifications.

Student assistants are trained by full-time staff in their respective areas. Lab assistants attend an initial training session and are required to attend monthly training thereafter.

Supporting Documentation
Documentation Reference
Document Title
[1] Newton Gresham Library, Mission
[2] Mission Statement, SHSU - Undergraduate Catalog, 2006-2008 - Online Version
[3] Academic Policy Statement 900417 - Faculty Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion
[4] Terminal Degree Statement, Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)
[5] Faculty Resume Samples, Newton Gresham Library
[6] Job Descriptions - Faculty - Newton Gresham Library
[7] Faculty Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion (for Librarians)
[8] Academic Policy Statement 820317 - The Faculty Evaluation System
[9] Faculty Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion (for Librarians) Excerpt - Evaluation Criteria and Competencies
[10] Job Description - Professional Staff - Newton Gresham Library
[11] Annual Merit Review (AMR) Form, Staff, SHSU
[12] LibQual+™ Survey, 2003 Summary
[13] University Faculty Senate - Survey Results - Excerpt - Library Services, 2006-2007
[14] Computer Services - Technology Training
[15] Library - Online Instruction Series
[16] Library - Access Services - Blackboard Course
[17] Student Advising and Mentoring (SAM) Center - Advisors
[18] Student Advising and Mentoring (SAM) Center - Advising Staff
[19] Student Advising and Mentoring (SAM) Center - Mentoring Staff
[20] Student Advising and Mentoring (SAM) Center - Awards Webpage - National Academic Advising Association (NACADA) Award
[21] Reading Center - Personnel
[22] Writing Center - Staff
[23] Job Description - Writing Center Tutor
[24] Computer Services - Staff


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Sam Houston State University
Huntsville, TX 77341
(936) 294-1111