Strategy, Vision, and Focus
Although the terminology can differ--mission statement, vision, focus, strategic planning--the idea is the same: to evaluate where your library is now and determine where you want it to be in the future.
In Academic Libraries
Because of their status as part of a larger institution, academic libraries may choose to use their parent organization's mission statements, either in whole or in part.
Examples of Strategy, Vision, and Focus Statements
ARL-member academic libraries:
Nelson, William Neal and Robert W. Fernekes. 2002. Standards and Assessment for Academic Libraries: A Workbook. ACRL: Chicago. (0838982115) Shows how to use mission statements in planning and assessment, as well as how to evaluate how library services, instruction, resources, access, staff, and facilities fit into the goals of the parent institution. Also contains appendices fitting ACRL standards to those of the various major US regional accrediting agencies.
ACRL's Standards and Guidelines for Libraries in Higher Education (approved June, 2004). From the forward: "These standards are intended to apply to libraries supporting academic programs at institutions of higher education. Earlier standards for libraries relied heavily upon resource and program 'inputs' such as financial support, space, materials and staff activities. These new standards continue to consider 'inputs,' but they also take into consideration 'outputs' and 'outcomes.'"
ACRL Standards and Guidelines pageincludes professional standards on faculty status, tenure, and collective bargaining, as well as guidelines for such things as lending special collections materials, information literacy instruction, and distance learning services.
The National Center for Education Statistics lets you compare academic libraries using your choice of parameters, including FTE, expenditures, gate count, number of reference transactions, serial subscriptions, and number of staff. These comparisons are currently based on numbers from 2004.
Institutional Accrediting Agencies
As listed by the US Department of Education:
Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Higher Education, covering higher education institutions in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Middle States Commission on Secondary Schools, covering career and technology programs in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
New England Association of Schools and Colleges, covering both higher education and career and technology institutions in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission, covering degree-granting institutions of higher education in Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, including schools of the Navajo Nation.
North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement, Board of Trustees, covering non-degree, postsecondary education in Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and in the Navajo Nation.
Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, covering postsecondary educational institutions in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges, covering degree-granting institutions of higher education in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
Western Association of Schools and Colleges, covering career and technical schools, community and junior colleges, and senior colleges and universities inn California, Hawaii, the United States territories of Guam and American Samoa, the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.