Chapter 24 - College Library Liaison Officers: Notes on good practice

  1. Responsibility
    1. The Library Liaison Officer (LLO) assists College/ Department and Library staff in ensuring that the Library’s collections and services match the teaching and research needs of the institution. In particular, this includes responsibility for liaising with the Library, assisting in the development of library policy, coordinating reviews (as necessary) of requirements in terms of library materials, and authorising book orders when necessary by College / Department staff and students.
  2. Liaison
    1. The LLO must be the main point of contact between the College / Department and the Library. All Colleges must appoint academic colleagues to these roles and their details (including e-mail, telephone and other contact details) communicated to the relevant Liaison Librarian. The LLO will be the designated recipient of most correspondence between the Library and the College / Department (e.g. month-end expenditure reports) except in cases of major strategic importance where others in the Department/College Executive Group may also be involved. It is expected that general library information (e.g. changes to services) will also be disseminated to College / Department colleagues via LLOs.
    2. The designated Liaison Librarian will be in contact with the LLO as required and can provide information about specific library resource usage by user groups pertaining to the College/ Department. Potential teaching involvement by Library staff, new courses, non-standard use of library services and service development issues should also be regularly addressed.
    3. The LLO will ensure that their designated Liaison Librarian is notified of, and invited to attend appropriate meetings for library-related agenda items including student/staff liaison committees, teaching committees or research committees.
  3. Expenditure
    1. The LLO is responsible for implementing the College’s book fund expenditure policy. Annual budgets should be set by Colleges for book expenditure and communicated to the Head of Library Resource Development. The Library will order items required for reading lists, monitor total expenditure and will provide monthly figures for expenditure and commitments. The College is responsible for deciding and regulating its book purchasing policy for items not included on reading lists.
  4. Policy and Review
    1. The LLO should ensure that all new academic colleagues are versed in appropriate library procedures such as requesting resources and are pointed to their liaison librarian to arrange an induction.
    2. The LLO should also ensure that library-related issues of concern to the College/ Department are passed to the Library as quickly as possible. This will normally be via their Liaison Librarian, who will take appropriate action and report back to the LLO accordingly.
    3. The LLO should ensure that all module co-ordinators are compliant with the Reading List Policy to ensure that the right library materials can be obtained in time to support student learning. If this is not taking place, the LLO should take action accordingly, involving the Department/College Executive Group where necessary.
    4. The LLO should ensure that reading lists are reviewed regularly and are sent to the Library as early as possible to ensure that the materials listed can be available for students to use. The Library will check that all items listed can be made available and will notify the LLO of items which cannot be obtained for any reason. Wherever possible, digital formats will be provided.
    5. In cases of inspection (such as QAA) the LLO should act as the main liaison between the College/ Department and the Library.
  5. Ordering
    1. Library staff will contact the LLO regarding book order-specific issues (availability, editions, price hikes etc.).
    2. All book purchase requests for a specific College / Department must follow agreed ordering procedures: the Library will order reading list material directly from budgets and the LLO must authorize any other expenditure, either by delegating authorization to the Library, or personally authorizing all other orders.

Last reviewed August 2020

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