Continuous Improvement: National Standards and Guidelines for Australia's Public Libraries

By Quinn, Sherrey; McCallum, Ian | Australasian Public Libraries and Information Services, September 2011 | Go to article overview

Continuous Improvement: National Standards and Guidelines for Australia's Public Libraries


Quinn, Sherrey, McCallum, Ian, Australasian Public Libraries and Information Services


There has been significant progress by individual Australian states in developing criteria for the delivery and improvement of their public library services. Queensland has a suite of standards and guidelines, with a rolling cycle of updates. New South Wales takes an evidence based approach, using data from its annual survey of public library activities to set targets for a select group of measures (standards), supported by guidelines for service delivery in key areas. The Queensland and NSW guidelines are informed by the work of the other, and by work elsewhere. In Victoria a framework and toolkit for self assessment and peer review has been developed to assist public libraries in meeting their service obligations and objectives. The Australian Library and Information Association (Alia) and the public library associations have a simple set of national standards and guidelines based on prior work. 'Beyond a quality service: strengthening the social fabric; standards and guidelines for Australian public libraries" was launched in April 2011. This paper reviews the national standards initiative and explains how the standards and guidelines might be applied to evaluating and continuously improving library services. It also comments on the characteristics of the evidence base.

**********

Beyond a quality service: strengthening the social fabric," standards and guidelines for Australian public libraries was launched at the Public Libraries Western Australia conference, Fremantle on 1 April 2011 by Margaret Allen, vice president and president elect, and Sue Hutley, executive director of the Australian Library and Information Association (Alia). It is available on the public libraries pages of the Alia website.

Background

In 1990 Alia published Towards a quality service: goals, objectives and standards for public libraries in Australia.: It was reprinted in 1994 and for two decades was the only Australian document which presented a broad set of guidelines for public library service delivery. However, by late in the first decade of the 21st century, it was clear that a guide written before the explosive impact of information technology and the internet in libraries was no longer particularly useful.

State based guidelines, particularly in Queensland and New South Wales, were developed to provide guidance for public library services in those states. Queensland's suite of standards and guidelines (3) was developed between 2007 and 2010, and has a rolling cycle of updates. They are published by the State Library of Queensland, and the work is overseen by the public library standards steering group. (4) The Queensland standards replace earlier editions published by the Library Board of Queensland in 1997 and 1986. (5)

New South Wales takes an evidence based approach, using data from its annual survey of public library activities to set targets for a select group of measures (standards), supported by guidelines for service delivery in key areas.

The first edition of Living learning libraries; standards and guidelines for NSW public libraries was published in 2008 by the State Library of New South Wales on behalf of the Library Council of New South Wales. The second edition was issued in 2009 (6) and the third edition is in preparation (2011). Updates are overseen by the State Library public library services team, and the public library network research committee. (7)

The Queensland and NSW guidelines are informed by the work of the other, by prior work elsewhere, and by collaborative feedback from public library and local government stakeholders in the respective states.

Late in 2009 Alia and the public libraries advisory committee (Plac) commissioned Libraries Alive! Pty Ltd (8) to examine the feasibility of developing national standards and guidelines for Australian public libraries. The result, Beyond a quality service: strengthening the social fabric; standards and guidelines for Australian public libraries, was launched in April 2011. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Continuous Improvement: National Standards and Guidelines for Australia's Public Libraries
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.