Scholarly Communication Assessment Forum


Sacramento State University and San Jose State University have been awarded an IMLS National Forum grant to assess scholarly communication programs at M1 Carnegie classified public institutions. With new technologies and paradigms for creating and sharing work, scholars across all fields have seen changes in research output, dissemination and preservation of the scholarly record, emergent publishing models, and the measurement of scholarly impact. Libraries have broadly defined their efforts to address these concerns as “scholarly communication” services. While many libraries have invested in personnel, software, and other resources to grow these programs, quantifying the actual outcome or impact of these activities remains elusive, beyond output measures such as simple counts of consultations, workshop attendance, or by repository downloads or growth. This grant, the “Scholarly Communication Assessment Forum,” or “SCAF” will investigate best practices and make recommendations for better tracking academic libraries’ engagement in supporting the research lifecycle.

View the full proposal:


  • - Whitepaper articulating a set of assessment best practices for scholarly communication.

  • - Assessment rubric.

  • - Results will be disseminated broadly on professional listservs, institutional repositories, and this website.

  • - A future phase of this project may include developing training materials and hands-on workshops to guide implementations of the best practices and rubric.


  • October 17, 2019

    Focus groups with scholarly communication practitioners at the Digital Library Federation (DLF) Forum

  • November 7, 2019 & November 14, 2019

    Virtual focus groups with scholarly communication practitioners

  • December – February 2020

    Campus stakeholders interviews

  • May 4-5, 2020

    Scholarly Communication Assessment National Forum (Online Event)


Principal Investigators

  • Suzanna Conrad, Associate Dean for Digital Technologies & Resource Management, Sacramento State University Library
  • Nicole Lawson, Associate Dean for Academic Services, Sacramento State University Library
  • Emily Chan, Associate Dean, Research & Scholarship, San Jose State University Library


  • Dr. Lili Luo, Professor, San Jose State University, School of Information

Key Staff

  • Yvonne Harris, Associate Vice President for Research, Innovation and Economic Development at Sacramento State
  • Kelly Mihelich, Administrative Support Coordinator, Sacramento State
  • Daina Dickman, Scholarly Communication Librarian, Sacramento State

SCAF Forum, May 4 & 5, 2020

Scholarly communication practitioners and campus stakeholders, as well as library assessment experts, will convene online to present and discuss best practice and strategies for assessing scholarly communication services at M1 institutions.


  • Monday, May 4, 2020: 8:00am-3:00pm
  • Tuesday, May 5, 2020: 8:00am-3:00pm

Topics may include:

  • Mapping scholarly communication programs to library, campus and consortial strategic plans
  • Going beyond impact factor
  • Measuring library “embeddedness” in the institution
  • Integrating scholarly communication services in instruction & the campus curriculum
  • Celebrating faculty scholarship through marketing
  • Being purposeful with metrics and scholarly communication
  • Funding scholarly communication including grant funding, APCs, OA costs
  • Multifaced assessment for scholarly communication
  • Measuring the intangibles of scholarly communication such as word of mouth, success of outreach, engagement, and logging of anecdotal stories and evidence

Location: Online via Zoom

    This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (LG-35-19-0066-19).

    Graphics for the agenda and logo were developed by Lauren White.