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Developing an instrument for the validation of competencies: the case of medical librarians.

Introduction

We, the authors of this paper, planned to conduct a study of competencies required for medical librarians. We needed a validated and suitable instrument that could be confidently used in this research. An extensive search through various databases and the published research did not yield one which we could use. We knew that reliable and valid tests / instruments were the foundation of good research and that weak instruments would result in weak research. Our failure in finding a reliable instrument led us to decide to develop a new one. We also understood that the procedure for developing a new test / instrument was a long and a complicated one.

We went through that long and arduous process and developed an instrument which has already been published (Catalano, 2016, p. 109-113). The understanding of the process of designing an instrument is important as it helps in assessing its validity and reliability. This paper describes meticulously the process of developing the instrument that we used for the identification and validation of competencies required by medical librarians. It provides full details of the various steps that were undertaken to develop the instrument. The results of our research were published in 2012 (Ullah & Anwar, 2012). The present paper is being published with the intention of providing a roadmap for those who need to develop a new instrument for their research.

Previous work on competencies

Earlier work on competencies has been ably reviewed by Roper and Mayfield (1993a). The following paragraphs will briefly review some of the previous efforts made for the identification of competencies for medical librarians only.

Bowden, Bierschenk and Olivier (1989) conducted a survey in 1988 of the members of the Association of Academic Health Sciences Library Directors (AAHSLD) in order to determine important professional skills and personal qualities desired by the employers of fresh graduates. The instrument used consisted of nine skills and 13 personal traits using "very important", "important "and "not important" as the choices. It is not known how these skills and traits were identified. Bowden and Olivier (1995) repeated the same survey in 1992. It was found that 'problem solving/analytical skills', 'microcomputer skills', 'bibliographic instruction skills', 'online searching skills', 'reference/information service skills', and 'MEDLINE searching skills' were rated as 'very important'. The following personal qualities were considered as 'very important': 'communication skills', 'enthusiasm', 'self-esteem', 'flexibility', 'service orientation', 'willingness to be a team player', and 'interpersonal skills'.

Roper and Mayfield (1993a) report the results of a survey of knowledge and skills in the health information sciences conducted by the Medical Library Association using a sample of 750 health sciences librarians out of which 375 (50%) returned the questionnaire. The survey instrument listed 63 knowledge-bases categorizing these in seven areas derived from the survey of literature and expert review. The respondents were asked to indicate the importance of each knowledge or skill for effective performance on a 5-point Likert-type scale from 'essential' to 'no importance'. The results are reported in five tables indicating the level of importance of various competencies. They conclude that "If health sciences librarians are not willing to take on the responsibilities which their clientele feel are appropriate, they will be replaced by other professionals who can and will" (p. 38). A fuller version of this report was published in the Bulletin of the Medical Library Association (Roper & Mayfield, 1993b).

Giuse, et al. (1997), using a four-step needs assessment process, designed a survey instrument consisting of 96 competencies divided into 13 categories (the appendix actually lists 98 items). It was administered to 300 respondents (150 librarians and 150 library users) with 131 (77 librarians and 54 users) responding. The response rate was 43.7 per cent. Each skill was rated for its importance on a 1-7 point Likert-type scale. It was found that "all of the knowledge and skills in their categorical groupings were rated above the Likert mean and, in fact, often exceeded the mean considerably" (p. 62). These competencies are dated now.

A study on the role of the clinical librarian using content analysis of job advertisements, job titles, and duties, using a structured questionnaire administered to a sample of five practicing librarians, followed by an interview was conducted in the UK (Sargeant & Harrison, 2004; Harrison & Sargeant, 2004). It was discovered that there was "a moderate degree of congruence between recruitment specifications and working activities of clinical librarians" (Sargeant & Harrison, 2004, p. 180). This is an interesting study but limited by a small sample. Robinson et al (2005) analyzed the previous literature to identify a variety of competencies and prepared a model consisting of: Professional competency (Content knowledge and Technical knowledge), Teaching skills (Professionalism, Basis of training, Design, and Evaluation), and E-learning skills (Creation and Delivery).

The roles of academic medical librarians in Malaysia were studied by using face-to-face interviews of 18 respondents (Santra, 2007). The focus was placed on the respondents' current activities, awareness of the skills and knowledge of emerging roles, and their education and training.

The Medical Library Association (2007) in its educational policy statement listed seven areas under 'Professional Competencies for Health Sciences Librarians', each with several subareas, as follows (p. 4-5):

1. Understand the health sciences and health care environment and the policies, issues, and trends that impact that environment

2. Know and understand the application of leadership, finance, communication, and management theory and techniques

3. Understand the principles and practices related to providing information services to meet users' needs

4. Have the ability to manage health information resources in a broad range of formats

5. Understand and use technology and systems to manage all forms of information

6. Understand curricular design and instruction and have the ability to teach ways to access, organize, and use information

7. Understand scientific research methods and have the ability to critically examine and filter research literature from many related disciplines

These areas are followed by a set of recommendations for various agencies (p. 6), a list of personal attributes that contribute to success (p. 9), and then a long listing of 'health sciences information knowledge and skills' (p. 10-13). The last section could become the basis of developing competency statements.

The published literature indicated that a variety of competencies were dealt with in many publications. However, none of these sources provided a comprehensive and satisfactory listing of competencies that we could use. It was felt that there was an urgent need for the preparation of an up-to-date and comprehensive checklist of validated competencies for medical librarians.

Instrument development

The survey instrument used for this study was designed using an extensive review of published literature, expert scrutiny and a pilot study as detailed below.

The scanning of a large amount of literature resulted in a large number of raw competency statements. These statements were listed, edited, sorted, compared, and merged to form the first draft of potential competencies. This list of raw statements and the sources were carefully and critically reviewed by the researchers for refining of statements and selection of credible sources. This process resulted in a tentative list of 133 items which were derived from 24 sources.

The 133 tentative competencies were initially grouped into the following eight subject domains: Health sciences environment and concepts (14 statements), management theory and techniques (28 statements), health sciences reference and information services (14 statements), health sciences resource management (18 statements), information systems and technologies (15 statements), instruction and teaching (14 statements), research methods (10 statements), and general and personal competencies (20 statements). Each of these 133 raw statements, followed by the sources derived from, is listed in Appendix A. Full bibliographical details of the 24 sources with the number of times each was used are listed in Appendix B. These statements were used as a raw list for critical review and study by the researchers with a view to reduce their number.

Draft Instrument

The raw list was revised several times in order to merge closely related and similar statements to reduce their number. The statements were merged keeping in mind that these should appear to be bona fide and natural units. This intensive exercise resulted in a draft instrument containing 87 competency statements which was submitted to the experts. Each statement was provided with a 5-point Likert scale and a column for comments by the panel of experts. Several rows were left blank at the end of each subject area if any of the experts might like to add another competency.

Expert Scrutiny

The draft instrument was submitted to the panel of six experts along with a covering letter. The panel consisted of two LIS faculty members (having a qualification of PhD and research contribution in the field of LIS competencies), two ex-library coordinators (medical faculty members having a research degree and contribution to the medical literature), and two retired medical librarians for content validity. The list was revised in response to feedback received from this panel. Keeping in view the comments of the panel of experts, some competencies were added and some were removed. The language of competency statements was also improved in light of changes suggested by the panel. The resulting list was submitted to them again for final examination.

The Scale Used

The respondents were asked to rate the importance of each competency statement on a 5point Likert scale from 5 to 1, considering: 5 = Highly Important; 4 = Very Important; 3 = Important; 2 = Somewhat Important; 1 = Not Important. For validation purpose the scale value of 3 was fixed as the cut-off point. A competency was considered "important" if it received an average mean score of greater than 3.00.

Pilot Study

The revised instrument approved by the panel of experts was tested in a pilot study using four medical librarians and four library coordinators, who were not part of the respondents of the study. A covering letter was also sent along with the pilot instrument requesting the participants to make comments if necessary.

The pilot instrument was amended in response to ambiguities identified by the participants of the pilot study. They also identified some technical and professional terms used in the instrument which were explained in common language. The pilot study resulted in the final instrument consisting of 84 competency statements which were categorized into the following eight subject domains: (1) Health sciences environment (9 statements); (2) Management theory and techniques (19 statements); (3) Health sciences reference and information services (10 statements); (4) Management of health information resources (10 statements); (5) Information systems and technologies (11 statements); (6) User education (7 statements); (7) Research methods (7 statements); and (8) General and personal competencies (11 statements).

The Study

An investigation to identify and validate competencies for medical librarians was carried out by Ullah and Anwar (2012). An instrument consisting of 84 competency statements divided into eight subject domains (Table 1) prepared after an extensive review of literature published during past 25 years, expert scrutiny, and pilot testing was used on 67 medical librarians and 63 medical supervisors of libraries in Pakistan. A 5-point Likert scale (5 'highly important' to 1 'not important') was used to obtain the opinions of the respondents on each competency. Of the 84 competencies, 83 were validated by the medical librarians and 80 by the medical library supervisors. All 84 competencies are listed in Appendix C arranged in order of decreasing mean value scored by the head librarians. Each statement provides the mean value, standard deviation and rank of head librarians followed by the same information for library coordinators. The values of the four statements that were not validated are not listed.

These 84 statements can be grouped into subject domains (Table 1) by using the code following each statement. These statements should be shuffled before using this instrument for research. Full details of the study are given in Ullah and Anwar (2012). The full instrument has been published in Catalano (2016).

Reliability of the Instrument

After collection of data the internal consistency of the 84 statements was tested using Cronbach's alpha (CA). The CA value of 84 statements was .964 for head librarians, .950 for library coordinators, and .960 for both combined. The CA values for the eight subject categories of statements varied from .887 to .786 for head librarians, from .889 to .677 for library coordinators, and .895 to .760 for both combined. The CA values for the 80 validated statements were .964 for head librarians, .949 for library coordinators, and .959 for both combined. The CA values reported above indicate a very high level of internal consistency of the instrument.

To assess the degree of internal consistency among competency statements Cronbach's alpha were calculated using SPSS. Table 1 presents the Cronbach's alpha of head librarians, library coordinators as well overall for the eight subject categories separately. It shows that responses of head librarians were internally consistent. The responses of library coordinators were also internally consistent for all categories except health sciences environment category (Cronbach's Alpha = .677) which was not. This table also presents the Crobach's alpha value for all 84 statements (Cronbach's Alpha = .960) and 80 statements (Cronbach's Alpha = .959) validated by both groups of respondents. It shows that these were highly internally consistent.

Conclusion

The instrument developed consists of 84 competency statements categorized into eight subject domains. Each statement has 5-point Likert scale for validation. The instrument was developed after extensive literature review, scrutiny by a panel of experts and pilot testing which provided high degree of construct and content validity. It was used on 67 medical librarians and 63 medical supervisors of libraries in Pakistan for validation (Ullah & Anwar, 2012). This instrument has acceptable level of reliability. It can be used in different areas to validate the identified competencies. The process described above can be used by researchers to design and validate competency instruments for various domains.

References

Bowden, V. M., Bierschenk, N. F., & Olivier, E. R. (1989). Medical library employer expectations. Journal of Library Administration, 11(3/4), 129-144.

Bowden, V. M. & Olivier, E. R. (1995). The first professional position: Expectations of academic health sciences library employers. Bulletin of the Medical Library Association, 83(2), 238-239.

Catalano, A.J. (2016). Streamlining LIS research: A compendium of tried and true tests, measurements, and other instruments. Snta Barbara, CA: Libraries Unlimited.

Giuse, N. B., Huber, J. T., Kafantaris, S. R., Giuse D. A., Miller, M. D., Giles, D. E., et al. (1997). Preparing librarians to meet the challenges of today's health care environment. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 4(1), 57-67.

Harrison, J., & Sargeant, S. J. E. (2004). Clinical librarianship in the UK: Temporary trend or permanent profession? Part II: Present challenges and future opportunities. Health Information and Libraries Journal, 21, 220-226.

Medical Library Association (MLA). (2007). Competencies for lifelong learning and professional success: The education policy statement of the Medical Library Association. Retrieved February 20, 2009 from http://www.mlanet.org/education/policy/

Robinson, L.; Hilger-Ellis, J.; Osborne, L., Rowlands, J., Smith, J. M., Weist, A. et al. (2005). Healthcare librarians and learner support: A review of competences and methods. Health Information and Libraries Journal, 22 (Supp.2), 42-50.

Roper, F. W. & Mayfield, M. K. (1993a). Shaping medical library education. Library Trends, 42(1), 25-44.

Roper, F. W. & Mayfield, M. K. (1993b). Surveying knowledge and skills in the health sciences: Results and implications. Bulletin of the Medical Library Association, 81(4), 396-407.

Santra, N. (2007). Academic medical librarians in Malaysia: What roles do they play? Malaysian Journal of Library & Information Science, 12(1), 83-96.

Sargeant, S. J. E. & Harrison, J. (2004). Clinical librarianship in the UK: Temporary trend or permanent profession? Part I: A review of the role of the clinical librarian. Health Information and Libraries Journal, 21, 173-181.

Ullah, M. & Anwar, M. A. (2012). Developing competencies for medical librarians in Pakistan. Health Information & Libraries Journal, 30, 59-71.

Appendix A

Raw Competency Statements and the Sources Used for their Identification
1. Health Sciences Environment and Concepts

Competency statement                Sources derived from

1.1 Familiarity with various        Medical Library Association,
health and health related           2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
associations and organization

1.2 Awareness of the                Medical Library Association,
institution's information           2007
policies

1.3 Knowledge of education and      Medical Library Association,
training patterns of medical        2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
profession

1.4 Knowledge of organization of    Giuse, et al, 1997; Roper &
health sciences literature          Mayfield, 1993a

1.5 Knowledge of health             Medical Library Association,
policies and programs               2007

1.6 Knowledge of accreditation      Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996
standards and issues

1.7 Knowledge of health             Giuse, et al, 1997; Medical
sciences professions and            Library Association, 2007;
specialties                         Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

1.8 Knowledge of health care        Medical Library Association,
system, trends and structure        2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

1.9 Knowledge of health care        Homan, Foundation & McGowen,
ethics and legal issues             2002; Medical Library
                                    Association, 2007

1.10 Knowledge of health care       Homan, Foundation & McGowen,
economics                           2002; Medical Library
                                    Association, 2007

1.11 Knowledge of medical           Homan, Foundation & McGowen,
sociology                           2002

1.12 Knowledge of meanings of       Guise, et al, 1997; Harrison &
medical terms                       Sargeant, 2004; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a

1.13 Some knowledge of anatomy      Harrison & Sargeant, 2004
and physiology

1.14 Basic knowledge of             Harrison & Sargeant, 2004;
epidemiology                        Scherrer & Jacobson, 2002

2. Management Theory and Techniques

Competency statement                Sources derived from

2.1 Preparing library budget and    Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
their fiscal management             & King, 1986; Khoo, 2005; Larsen,
                                    2006; Mahmood, 2002; Medical
                                    Library Association, 2007;
                                    Rehman, 2000; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a, 1993b

2.2 Recruit, select, train,         Guise, et al, 1997; Griffiths &
supervise, and evaluate the staff   King, 1986; Khoo, 2005; Larsen,
                                    2006; Mahmood, 2002; Medical
                                    Library Association, 2007;
                                    Rehman, 2000; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a; Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.3 Understanding of project        Harrison & Sargeant, 2004; Khoo,
development and management          2005; Larsen, 2006; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a, 1993b; Western
                                    Council of State Libraries, 2006;

2.4 Public relation and             Mahmood, 2002; Roper & Mayfield,
Interpersonal relations             1993a, 1993b

2.5 Marketing and promotion of      Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Mahmood,
library services and resources      2002; Roper & Mayfield, 1993b;
                                    Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.6 Evaluating library              Griffiths & King, 1986; Mahmood,
performance qualitatively and       2002
quantitatively

2.7 Planning                        Khoo, 2005; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a; Western Council of
                                    State Libraries, 2006

2.8 Make decision and               Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
recommendations based on            2005; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
available information (Decision
making)

2.9 Organizing extension            Mahmood, 2002
activities for users like
displays, exhibitions, talks,
seminars, etc.

2.10 Time management and setting    Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
priorities                          & King, 1986; Larsen, 2006;
                                    Rehman, 2000; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a; Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.11 Knowledge management in        Khoo, 2005; Mahmood, 2002;
libraries                           Reagon, 2005

2.12 Change management by           Khoo, 2005; Mahmood, 2002;
integrating library resources and   Western Council of State
services with environmental         Libraries, 2006
change

2.13 Conduct effective meetings     Griffiths & King, 1986; Larsen,
                                    2006; Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.14 Fund raising and proposal      Guise, et al, 1997; Medical
writing                             Library Association, 2007; Roper
                                    & Mayfield, 1993a

2.15 Facilities planning and        Khoo, 2005; Medical Library
space allocation                    Association, 2007; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a; Western Council
                                    of State Libraries, 2006

2.16 Apply national and             Medical Library Association,
international library standards     2007; Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.17 Able to do lobbying and        Bryant & Poustie, 2001
advocacy and play organization
politics

2.18 Environment scanning/          Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Khoo,
Environment sensitivity             2005; Medical Library
                                    Association, 2007; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a

2.19 Coordinating                   Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

2.20 Facilitating                   Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

2.21 Goal orientation               Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

2.22 Compose regular reports to     Western Council of State
the higher authorities regarding    Libraries, 2006
the library progress

2.23 Develop & maintain             Medical Library Association,
partnerships with other             2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a;
organizations/institutions          Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

2.24 Provide input into the         Western Council of State
architectural planning of library   Libraries, 2006
facilities

2.25 Negotiate contracts/           Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
agreements                          2005; Larsen, 2006

2.26 Formulate and apply policies   Mahmood, 2002; Rehman, 2000;
and procedures effecting library    Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
and information services

2.27 Apply critical thinking        Griffiths & King, 1986; Reagon,
skills to library problems          2005; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a

2.28 Communicate effectively in     Bank, Cogdill, Selden & Cahn,
oral, written, and electronic       2005; Bryant & Poustie, 2001;
form.                               Griffiths & King, 1986; Harris,
                                    Katherine, Parish & Smith, 2007;
                                    Khoo, 2005; Larsen, 2006; Medical
                                    Library Association, 2007;
                                    Reagon, 2005; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a, 1993b; Special Library
                                    Association, 2003; Western
                                    Council of State Libraries, 2006

3. Health Sciences Reference and Information Services

Competency statement                Sources derived from

3.1 Developing a sound knowledge    Mahmood, 2002
of ready reference source

3.2 Reference interview skill       Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996;
(conduct an appropriate reference   Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
interview)                          2005; Reagon, 2005; Rehman, 2000

3.3 Select the appropriate          Western Council of State
resource to match the use's need    Libraries, 2006

3.4 Resource sharing/cooperation    Mahmood, 2002; Medical Library
with other libraries                Association, 2007; Reagon, 2005;
                                    Rehman, 2000; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993b; Santra, 2007

3.5 Information needs/              Khoo, 2005; Medical Library
Information Seeking behaviour       Association, 2007; Reagon, 2005;
                                    Rehman, 2000; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993b; Special Library
                                    Association, 2003; Western
                                    Council of State Libraries, 2006

3.6 Developing specialized          Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996;
information services like           Griffiths & King, 1986; Mahmood,
selective dissemination of          2002; Rehman, 2000; Special
information (SDI), current          Library Association, 2003
awareness/current content
services, vertical file, bulletin
boards, referral, etc .

3.7 Developing user education       Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996; Mahmood,
literature and products             2002
(brochures, handbooks,
pathfinders, subject guide,
videos, slide tape show, etc

3.8 Information manipulation and    Mahmood, 2002; Reagon, 2005;
repackaging                         Rehman, 2000

3.9 Providing library services to   Mahmood, 2002
distance learners

3.10 Bibliometrics tools and        Roper & Mayfield, 1993b; Special
techniques for measurement and      Library Association, 2003;
evaluation of research outputs

3.11 Methods of information         Roper & Mayfield, 1993a, 1993b;
delivery and access                 Special Library Association, 2003

3.12 To work as information         Special Library Association, 2003
intermediaries/conduct
intermediary searches for complex
difficult or multifoil searches

3.13 Strong information literacy    Khoo, 2005; Larsen, 2006; Reagon,
skills                              2005;

3.14 Familiarity with medical       Santra, 2007
databases like PubMed, Cochrane
databases, American College of
Physicians (ACP) Journals Club
and Database of Abstracts and
Review of Effectiveness (DARE)

4. Health Sciences Resource Management

Competency statement                Sources derived from

4.1 Acquire materials according     Ameen, 2009; Mahmood, 2002
to academic and research programs
of the parent organization and
knowledge of acquisition tools/
selection aids

4.2 Knows "the best" textbooks,     Special Library Association, 2003
journals and electronic resources
of medical sciences

4.3 Knowledge of weeding and        Griffiths & King, 1986; Mahmood,
understand why weeding is           2002; Reagon, 2005
important

4.4 Understanding the processes     Mahmood, 2002; Reagon, 2005;
of printing, publishing and book    Rehman, 2000
distribution

4.5 Knowledge of copyright,         Medical Library Association,
licensing, privacy and              2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
intellectual property rights
issues/laws

4.6 Resource maintenance,           Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996; Medical
conservation and preservation       Library Association, 2007;
techniques                          Reagon, 2005; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a

4.7 Manage serial operation         Reagon, 2005
(ordering, claiming, invoicing,
renewal, holding reports,
binding, union list etc)

4.8 Knowledge and application of    Reagon, 2005; Rehman, 2000
classification schemes

4.9 Knowledge and application of    Roper & Mayfield, 1993a; Santra,
National Library of Medicine        2007
(NLM) classification scheme

4.10 Analyzing content of           Mahmood, 2002
documents to determine class
numbers and subject terms
(subject heading/key words)

4.11 Knowledge and application of   Roper & Mayfield, 1993a; Santra,
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)     2007

4.12 Knowledge and application of   Griffiths & King, 1986; Mahmood,
cataloguing principles, rules,      2002; Rehman, 2000
systems and tools

4.13 Bibliographic format (MARC,    Mahmood, n. d.
Z39.5, Metadata)

4.14 Data conversion utilities      Mahmood, n. d.
and copy cataloguing

4.15 Develop specialized thesauri   Griffiths & King, 1986; Roper &
and list of indexing terms for      Mayfield, 1993a; Special Library
databases                           Association, 2003

4.16 Operate the process of         Western Council of State
circulation (registration, issue,   Libraries, 2006
return, reservation, overdue
notices and fine management)

4.17 Ensure safety of resources     Reagon, 2005

4.18 Indexing and abstracting of    Griffiths & King, 1986; Mahmood,
documents                           2002; Reagon, 2005; Rehman, 2000

5. Information Systems and Technologies

Competency statement                Sources derived from

5.1 Retrieval techniques            Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
                                    & King, 1986; Khoo, 2005; Medical
                                    Library Association, 2007;
                                    Reagon, 2005; Rehman, 2000; Roper
                                    & Mayfield, 1993a,1993b

5.2 Knowledge of                    Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
telecommunication and net working

5.3 Computer programming            Roper & Mayfield, 1993a, 1993b

5.4 Knowledge and understanding     Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Khoo,
of Internet (email, discussion      2005; Mahmood, n.d.; Medical
groups, search engines, www)        Library Association, 2007;
                                    Reagon, 2005;

5.5 Library Management Systems/     Butler & Du Mont, 1996; Mahmood,
Integrated Library Automation       2002; Rehman, 2000; Reagon, 2005;
Systems                             Roper & Mayfield, 1993b

5.6 Managing automated systems      Mahmood, 2002; Reagon, 2005
(input, file maintenance, back-
up, security etc

5.7 Using MS Office (MS Word, MS    Khoo, 2005; Mahmood, 2002
Excel, MS Power point) and Inpage

5.8 Digitization (scanner,          Mahmood, 2002; Reagon, 2005;
software, OCR)/Utilization
digitization technology to create
documents for online use.

5.9 Knowledge and application Web   Maness, 2006.
2.0 in libraries (Library 2.0)

5.10 Ability to use Barcodes and    Khoo, 2005
RFID technologies for libraries

5.11 System administration,         Mahmood, n.d.; Reagon, 2005;
hardware maintenance, trouble       Roper & Mayfield, 1993a, 1993b
shooting, networking, system
migration etc

5.12 Basic knowledge of             Roper, Mayfield, 1993a
artificial intelligence and
expert system

5.13 Web-page portal designing      Reagon, 2005; Special Library
and management skills               Association, 2003,

5.14 Organize and maintain          Butlar & Mont, 1996; Mahmood, n.
computer assisted instruction       d.; Medical Library Association,
(CAI) services                      2007

5.15 Inter Library Loan systems     Mahmood, n. d.
(document portable systems/
electronic document delivery)

6. Instruction and Teaching

Competency statement                Sources derived from

6.1 Make oral presentation to       Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996
user groups, visitors etc

6.2 Ability to run user education   Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
programs, deliver library           2005; Medical Library
orientation lecture and teach       Association, 2007; Reagon, 2005;
information literacy courses        Rehman, 2000; Western Council of
                                    State Libraries, 2006;

6.3 Select appropriate delivery     Reagon, 2005
methods

6.4 Continuously evaluate           Reagon, 2005
learning and revise programs as
appropriate

6.5 Understand curriculum design    Guise, et al, 1997; Medical
and development                     Library Association, 2007

6.6 Educational needs assessment    Guise, et al, 1997; Harris,
and analysis/Identifies learners    Katherine, Parish & Smith, 2007;
needs                               Medical Library Association, 2007

6.7 Learning theory and cognitive   Homan, Foundation & McGowen, 2002
psychology

6.8 Keep up to date with latest     Special Library Association, 2003
training and instructional
techniques

6.9 Knowledge of instructional      Medical Library Association,
methodologies and teaching          2007; Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
techniques

6.10 Evaluation/assessment of       Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
learning outcomes

6.11 Enhances presentation with     Bank, Cogdill, Selden & Cahn,
effective audiovisual aids and      2005; Bryant & Poustie, 2001;
handouts                            Harris, Katherine, Parish &
                                    Smith, 2007; Reagon, 2005

6.12 Develop and conduct in         Larsen, 2006; Mahmood, 2002;
service courses for library staff   Special Library Association, 2003
especially regarding new trends.

6.13 Provide bibliographic          Buttlar & Du Mont, 1996
instruction

6.14 Participate in health          Lindberg & Humphreys, 2005
literacy programs

7. Research Methods

Competency statement                Sources derived from

7.1 Prepares research proposals     Harris, Katherine, Parish &
                                    Smith, 2007

7.2 Basic understanding of          Harrison & Sargeant, 2004;
research methodologies (both        Medical Library Association,
quantitative and qualitative)       2007; Reagon, 2005; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a

7.3 Knowledge and application of    Roper & Mayfield, 1993a
descriptive and inferential
statistics

7.4 Conduct regular user's needs    Reagon, 2005
assessments using research tools
such as questionnaires, focus
group, and interviews

7.5 Conduct research and publish    Larsen, 2006; Medical Library
findings in the professional        Association, 2007
literature

7.6 Scholarly Communication/        Reagon, 2005; Roper & Mayfield,
writing scientific report           1993a

7.7 Analysis, evaluation, and       Griffiths & King, 1986; Roper &
application of research results     Mayfield, 1993a

7.8 Expertise in evidence-based     Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Medical
medicine (identify and retrieve     Library Association, 2007
current relevant scientific
evidence)

7.9 Data analysis (Research)        Mahmood, n. d.
software (SPSS, Instate etc)

7.10 Citation software/reference    Mahmood, n. d.
managers (endnote, Procite, etc)

8. General and Personal Competencies

Competency statement                Sources derived from

8.1 Capacity and desire to work     Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
independently                       & King, 1986

8.2 Ability to work under           Khoo,2005
pressure

8.3 Demonstrating a knowledge and   Mahmood, 2002
commitment to the ethics and
value of profession

8.4 Participating in professional   Khoo, 2005; Mahmood, 2002;
activities outside the library      Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

8.5 Developing desk-top             Khoo, 2005; Mahmood, 2002;
publishing capacity

8.6 Understanding historical        Mahmood, 2002; Reagon, 2005
background of library and
information services in the
world.

8.7 Editing library publications    Mahmood, 2002

8.8 Knowledge of library and        Giuse, et al, 1997; Roper &
information legislation (national   Mayfield, 1993a; Western Council
& international)                    of State Libraries, 2006

8.9 Create an environment of        Special Library Association, 2003
mutual respect and trust

8.10 Is committed to lifelong       Roper & Mayfield, 1993a; Special
learning and personal career        Library Association, 2003
planning

8.11 Adaptability to change         Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Khoo,
                                    2005; Larsen, 2006; Reagon, 2005;
                                    Roper & Mayfield, 1993a; Special
                                    Library Association, 2003

8.12 Intelligence, common sense,    Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
creativity, decisiveness, and       & King, 1986; Khoo, 2005; Larsen,
patience                            2006; Reagon, 2005; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a

8.13 Initiative, innovativeness,    Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
multitasking and vision             2005; Larsen, 2006; Roper &
                                    Mayfield, 1993a

8.14 Self-supervision               Reagon, 2005

8.15 Sense of humour                Griffiths & King, 1986; Khoo,
                                    2005; Larsen, 2006

8.16 Capacity to take risks         Western Council of State
                                    Libraries, 2006

8.17 Willingness to ask questions   Harrison & Sargeant, 2004;
                                    Reagon, 2005; Roper & Mayfield,
                                    1993a

8.18 Ability to learn new skill     Bryant & Poustie, 2001; Griffiths
                                    & King, 1986; Harrison &
                                    Sargeant, 2004; Khoo, 2005;
                                    Larsen, 2006; Reagon, 2005

8.19 Committed to service           Khoo, 2005; Larsen, 2006; Roper &
excellence/Service orientation      Mayfield, 1993a; Special Library
                                    Association, 2003

8.20 Sees the big picture           Special Library Association, 2003


Appendix B

List of Sources Used for Raw Competency Statements

(Times each source used)

Ameen, K. (2009). Needed competencies for collection managers and their development: Perception of university librarians. Library Management, 30(4/5), 266-275. (1 time)

Banks, M. A., Cogdill K. W., Selden, C. R, & Cahn M. A. (2005). Complementary competencies: Public health and health sciences librarianship. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 93(3), 33847. (1 time)

Bryant, J., & Poustie, K. (2001). Competencies Needed by Public Library Staff. Guterloh: Bertelsmann Foundation. p. 4. Retrieved Feb 20, 2009, from http.www.bertelsmann-stiftung.de/INPL. (14 times)

Buttlar, L., & Du Mont, R. (1996). Library & information science competencies revised. Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, 37(1), 44-62. (9 times)

Giuse, N. B., Huber, J. T., Giuse D. A., Kafantaris, S. R., Miller, M. D., Giles, D. E., et al. (1997). Preparing librarians to meet the challenges of today's health care environment. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. 4(1), 57-67. (8 times)

Griffiths, J. M., & King, D. W. (1986). New directions in library and information science. White Plains, New York: Knowledge Industry Publications. Retrieved Oct 15, 2009, from http://www.eric.edu.gov. (19 times)

Harris, D. L., Katherine, C. K., Parish, D. C., Smith, M. U. (2007). Academic competencies for medical faculty. Family Medicine, 39(5), 343-50. (3 times)

Harrison, J., & Sargeant, S. E. (2004). Clinical librarianship in the UK: Temporary trend or permanent profession? Part II: Present challenges and future opportunities. Health Information and Libraries Journal, 21, 220-226. (7 times)

Homan, J. M., Foundation, M., & McGowen, J. J. (2002). The Medical Library Association: Promoting new roles for the health information professionals. Journal of the Medical Library Association. 90(2), 80-85. (4 times)

Khoo, C. S. (2005). Competencies for new era librarians and information professionals. Presented at the International Conference on Libraries (ICOL 2005), 14-16 March 2005, Penang, Malaysia. Retrieved April 13, 2009, from http://www.lib.usm.my/elmu equip/conference/Documents/ICOL%202005%20Paper%202%20Christopher%20Khoo.pdf. (26 times)

Larsen, G. (2006). Preparing for new and changing roles in research libraries -The need for continuing professional development. Liber Quarterly, 16(3/4). Retrieved April 13, 2009, from http://liber.library.uu.nl. (16 times)

Lindberg, D. A. B., & Humphreys B. L. (2005). The future of medical libraries. New England Journal of Medicine, 352(11), 1067-1070. Retrieved February 17, 2009, from www.nemj.org. (1 time)

Mahmood, K. (2002). Competencies needed for future academic librarians in Pakistan. Education for Information, 20, 27-43. (35 times)

Mahmood, K. (n.d.). ICT skills for LIS professionals. PPT presentation. Retrieved Feb 14, 2009, from www.paklag.org. (8 times)

Maness, J. M. (2006). Library 2.0 theory: Web 2.0 and its implications for libraries. Webology, 3(2). (1 time)

Medical Library Association (MLA). (2007). Competencies for lifelong learning and professional success: The education policy statement of the Medical Library Association. Retrieved Feb 20, 2009, from http://www.mlanet.org/education/policy/executive_summary.html. (30 times)

Reagon, R. A. (2005). Competencies required by South African, entry level, library and information science graduates. Mini-thesis, Department of Library and Information Science, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town. (35 times)

Rehman, S. U. (2000). Preparing the Information Professional: An Agenda for the Future. London: Greenwood Press. pp. 91-107. (16 times)

Roper, F. W., & Mayfield M. K. (1993a). Shaping medical library education. Library Trends, 42(1), 25-44. (48 times)

Roper, F. W., & Mayfield, M. K. (1993b). Surveying knowledge and skills in the health sciences: Results and implication. Bulletin of the Medical Library Association, 81(4), 396-407. (13 times)

Santra, N. (2007) Academic medical librarians in Malaysia: What roles do they play? Malaysian Journal of Library & Information Science, 12(1), 83-96. (4 times)

Scherrer, C. S., & Jacobson, S. (2002). New measures for new roles: Defining and measuring the current practices of health sciences librarians. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 90(2), 162-172. (1 time)

Special Library Association (2003). Competencies for special librarians of 21st century. Retrieved February 20, 2009, from http://www.sla.org/contents/SLA/professionals/meaning/competency.cfm. (16 times)

Western Council of State libraries (2006). Western Council of State libraries certification competencies. Retrieved February 20, 2009, from http://www.westernco.org/continuum/FinalCC.pdf . (20 times)

Appendix C
Composite List of Validated Competency Statements

S.   Competency Statement             Head Librarians       Library
No   (The numbers in brackets are                      Coordinators
     related to the Subject
     Domain)                           Mean    Rank     Mean     Rank
                                       (SD)             (SD)

1    Knowledge and understanding of    4.58      1      4.27       9
     Internet for library use (e-     (.700)           (.884)
     mail, discussion groups,
     search engines, web resources,
     methods of information
     delivery) (5.6)

2    Eager to learn new skills         4.57      2      4.33       6
     (8.10)                           (.701)           (.783)

3    Knowledge of bibliographic        4.55      3      4.06      21
     tools, selection aids, and       (.610)           (.896)
     acquisition of materials (4.1)

4    Communicating effectively in      4.54     4-5     4.29       7
     oral, written and electronic     (.682)           (.750)
     form (2.19)

5    Using MS Office (MS Word, MS      4.54     4-5     4.17      12
     Excel, MS Power point) and       (.682)           (.752)
     Inpage (5.8)

6    Commitment to service             4.54      6      4.41       4
     excellence (8.1)                 (.703)           (.775)

7    Knowledge of print and            4.52      7      4.37       5
     electronic reference resources   (.560)           (.725)
     in health sciences (3.3)

8    Ability to make decisions         4.49      8      4.11      19
     (2.3)                            (.637)           (.863)

9    Expertise in information          4.43      9      4.43       3
     retrieval and search strategy    (.722)           (.734)
     techniques (3.5)

10   Knowledge and application of      4.39     10      4.13      17
     cataloguing rules, standards     (.673)           (.924)
     for bibliographic formats,
     data conversion and copy
     cataloguing (4.4)

11   Resource sharing and              4.39     11      4.14      14
     coordination with other          (.717)           (.840)
     libraries in online
     environment (3.8)

12   Capability to work                4.39     12      4.21      11
     independently and under          (.816)           (.699)
     pressure (8.2)

13   Knowledge of Integrated           4.37     13      4.11      18
     Library Automation Systems       (.648)           (.785)
     (5.1)

14   Commitment to lifelong            4.36     14      4.52       1
     learning and career planning     (.732)           (.692)
     (8.11)

15   Knowledge of formulating          4.34     15      4.13      16
     policies and procedures          (.708)           (.833)
     relating to library services
     (2.6)

16   Capability of analytical          4.31     16      3.89      33
     skills and problem solving       (.763)           (.882)
     (2.4)

17   Personnel management and staff    4.28     17      3.97      28
     development (recruit, train,     (.692)           (.879)
     supervise, and evaluate staff)
     (2.17)

18   Ability to use medical            4.28     18      4.22      10
     bibliographic databases (3.4)    (.714)           (.958)

19   Ability to develop specialized    4.27     19      3.78      39
     information services such as     (.665)           (.870)
     selective dissemination of
     information (SDI), current
     awareness/current content
     services, bulletin boards,
     referral services, etc (3.7)

20   Capability of time management     4.27     20        4      26-27
     and setting priorities (2.5)     (.863)           (.842)

21   Knowledge and commitment to       4.27     21      4.27       8
     professional ethics and values   (.898)           (.700)
     (8.5)

22   Knowledge of serial management    4.25     22      3.62      52
     and operation (ordering,         (.704)           (.958)
     claiming, invoicing, renewal,
     holding reports, binding, etc)
     (4.6)

23   Planning and goal setting         4.25     23      3.94      31
     skills (2.2)                     (.785)           (.821)

24   Interpersonal and public          4.22     24      3.68      46
     relations skills (2.9)           (.775)           (.839)

25   Ability to develop and conduct    4.21     25      4.08      20
     training courses for library     (.708)           (.829)
     staff especially pertaining to
     new trends (2.18)

26   Understanding of the              4.21     26      3.79      38
     institution's information        (.845)           (1.109)
     policies (1.8)

27   Ability to evaluate library       4.19     27      4.02      24
     performance qualitatively and    (.701)           (1.039)
     quantitatively (2.16)

28   Create an environment of          4.19     28      4.44       2
     mutual respect and trust (8.6)   (.839)           (.778)

29   Ability to operate the process    4.19     29       3.7      45
     of circulation (registration,    (.875)           (1.102)
     issue, return, reservation,
     overdue notices and fine
     management) (4.9)

30   Self-supervision (8.8)            4.15     30        4       25
                                      (.803)           (.803)

31   Knowledge of different            4.13     31       3.7      44
     branches and specialties of      (.716)           (.796)
     health sciences (1.1)

32   Capacity to take initiatives      4.12     32      3.95      29
     and risks (8.3)                  (.826)           (.792)

33   Ability to make presentations     4.12     33      3.73      42
     to user groups, visitors, etc    (.844)           (.700)
     (6.6)

34   Knowledge of accreditation        4.1      34       3.9      32
     standards that affect medical    (.741)           (1.043)
     libraries (1.7)

35   Understanding of information      4.1      35      4.14      13
     seeking behaviour and needs of   (.800)           (.820)
     users (3.1)

36   Ability to manage automated       4.09     36      3.75      41
     systems (input, file             (.773)           (.897)
     maintenance, back-up,
     security, etc) (5.2)

37   Ability to conduct reference      4.07     37      3.94      30
     interviews and select the        (.681)           (.716)
     appropriate resource to match
     the users' needs (3.2)

38   Ability to prepare and manage     4.07     38      3.57      54
     budget and raise funds from      (.858)           (.797)
     external sources (2.7)

39   Understanding of medical          4.07     39      3.67      49
     terminology and concepts (1.4)   (.974)           (1.032)

40   Ability to conduct meetings       4.04     40      3.67      48
     effectively (2.11)               (.747)           (.718)

41   Expertise in evidence-based       4.04    41-42    4.03      23
     medical information searching    (.767)           (.861)
     (identifying and retrieving
     latest medical evidence) (3.6)

42   Understanding of digitization     4.04    41-42    3.68      47
     technology and management        (.767)           (.877)
     programmes to create digital
     resources (5.5)

43   Participation in professional      4       43      3.43      63
     activities outside the library   (.835)           (.995)
     (8.9)

44   Adaptability to change (8.4)       4       44      4.13      15
                                      (.853)           (.729)

45   Capability of indexing and        3.97     45      3.89      34
     abstracting of documents (4.5)   (.696)           (.986)

46   Knowledge of resource             3.97     46      3.56      55
     maintenance, safety,             (.834)           (.838)
     conservation and preservation
     techniques (4.7)

47   Basic knowledge of building,      3.96     47      3.71      43
     space and facility planning      (.706)           (.991)
     (to identify ways to use
     resources more efficiently and
     create healthy work spaces
     that increase productivity)
     (2.15)

48   Preparation of reports for        3.96     48      3.76      40
     concerned authorities (2.12)     (.912)           (.856)

49   Change management, i. e.,         3.93     49      3.84      35
     having the ability to            (.659)           (.884)
     integrate library resources
     and services in response to
     environmental change (2.8)

50   Ability to enhance                3.9      50      3.59      53
     presentation with effective a-   (.819)           (.796)
     v aids and handouts (6.7)

51   Knowledge of information          3.88     51      3.46      59
     literacy standards (6.1)         (.769)           (.758)

52   Ability to conduct environment    3.88     52       3.4      64
     scanning (a process of           (.826)           (.890)
     gathering, analyzing, and
     dispensing information for
     tactical or strategic
     purposes) (2.1)

53   Ability to use Barcodes and       3.87     53      3.32      69
     RFID (Radio Frequency            (.869)           (.930)
     Identification) technologies
     for libraries (5.3)

54   Knowledge and application of      3.85     54      3.67      50
     Web 2.0 technology in            (.892)           (1.047)
     libraries (Library 2.0) (5.4)

55   Knowledge and application of      3.84     55        4      26-27
     the National Library of          (1.067)          (.842)
     Medicine system of Medical
     Subject Headings (MeSH) (4.3)

56   Basic understanding of            3.81     56      3.48      58
     research methodologies (both     (.723)           (.877)
     quantitative and qualitative)
     (7.1)

57   Negotiating skills for            3.81    57-58    3.62      51
     contracts/agreements (2.10)      (.839)           (.869)

58   Knowledge of weeding practice     3.81    57-58     3.4      65
     (discarding and writing off      (.839)           (.925)
     unusable and obsolete
     materials) and its importance
     (4.83)

59   Marketing of library services     3.81     59      3.51      57
     and resources (2.14)             (.875)           (.998)

60   Knowledge of information          3.79     60      3.22      79
     literacy needs assessment        (.749)           (.832)
     (6.2)

61   Organizing activities such as     3.76     61      3.43      62
     displays, exhibitions, talks,    (.761)           (.893)
     etc. (2.13)

62   Basic knowledge of database       3.73     62      3.24      78
     management (5.11)                (.898)           (.995)

63   Knowledge and application of      3.7      63      4.05      22
     National Library of Medicine     (1.155)          (.923)
     (NLM) classification scheme
     (4.2)

64   Knowledge of education and        3.69     64       3.3      71
     training patterns of health      (.743)           (.891)
     related professions (1.2)

65   Knowledge and application of      3.69     65      3.79      37
     citation styles and reference    (1.033)          (.676)
     managers (endnote, Procite,
     etc) (7.5)

66   Ability to select appropriate     3.67     66      3.37      67
     delivery methods for             (.927)           (.725)
     information literacy
     programmes (6.5)

67   Knowledge of copyright,           3.64     67      3.81      36
     licensing, privacy and           (.829)           (.981)
     intellectual property rights
     issues/laws (4.10)

68   Ability to develop and deliver    3.64     68      3.38      66
     information literacy             (.865)           (.906)
     programmes and products (such
     as lectures, tutorials,
     brochures, pathfinders,
     subject guides, etc.) 6.4)

69   Ability to use research tools     3.64     69       3.3      70
     such as questionnaires, focus    (.883)           (.754)
     groups and interviews to
     conduct user's studies (7.3)

70   Ability to write research         3.6      70      3.54      56
     reports (7.7)                    (.889)           (.737)

71   Knowledge of health sciences      3.55     71      3.27      73
     scholarly communication          (.724)           (.902)
     patterns and information
     infrastructure (1.9)

72   Information manipulation and      3.55     72      3.25     74-75
     repackaging (finding,            (.764)           (.879)
     evaluating, selecting, and
     rewriting information for
     immediate use by the client)
     (3.9)

73   Knowledge of objectives of        3.51     73      3.37      68
     medical education at             (1.064)          (1.140)
     undergraduate as well as
     postgraduate level (1.3)

74   Web-page/portal designing and     3.48     74       --       --
     maintenance skills (5.10)        (1.020)

75   Basic knowledge of and ability    3.46     75      3.22      80
     to use expert systems            (.990)           (.851)
     (software which find
     information like a human
     expert in the field to solve
     problems) (5.9)

76   Analysis, evaluation, and         3.42     76      3.43      61
     application of research          (.972)           (.875)
     results (7.6)

77   Knowledge and application of      3.36     77      3.25     74-75
     biomedical informatics (3.10)    (.753)           (.879)

78   Knowledge of instructional        3.34     78      3.43      60
     methodologies and teaching       (.863)           (.837)
     techniques (6.3)

79   Familiarity with various          3.28     79       --       --
     health and health related        (.794)
     associations and organizations
     (1.5)

80   Knowledge and application of      3.25     80      3.24      77
     data analysis software (SPSS,    (.841)           (.893)
     Instate etc) (7.4)

81   Some knowledge of                 3.25     81      3.25      76
     telecommunication and net        (.910)           (1.150)
     working (5.7)

82   Basic knowledge of descriptive    3.16     82       3.3      72
     and inferential statistics       (.881)           (.978)
     (7.2)

83   Sense of humor (8.7)              3.06     83       --       --
                                      (.936)

84   Knowledge of health care           --      --       --       --
     ethics and medico-legal issues
     (1.6)


Mumtaz Ali Anwar, Ph. D. *

Professor, Department of Information Management, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan

<anwar.mumtazali@yahoo.com>

Midrar Ullah, Ph. D.

Librarian, School of Social Sciences and Humanities, National University of Sciences and Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan

<midrarullah2007@yahoo.com>

* Corresponding author
Table 1: Statistical Results for Reliability analysis

S. No   Subject Domains                   Cronbach's alpha

                                    Head        Library      Overall
                                 Librarians   Coordinators

1       Health Sciences              .803          .677        .760
        Environment (9
        statements)

2       Management Theory &          .887          .882        .895
        Techniques (19
        statements)

3       Health sciences              .836          .853        .847
        reference and
        information services
        (10 statements)

4       Management of health         .786          .888        .847
        information resources
        (10 statements)

5       Information systems and      .864          .869        .875
        technologies (11
        statements)

6       User education (7            .863          .847        .861
        statements)

7       Research methods (7          .879          .889        .881
        statements)

8       General and personal         .855          .781        .821
        competencies (11
        statements)

        All (84 statements)          .964          .950        .960

        Validated by both            .964          .949        .959
        groups of respondents
        (80 statements)
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