Professional Development

In the 'Conferences' Category...

2014 Access Services Conference

Tuesday, November 25, 2014 12:18 pm

This was my first time attending the Access Services Conference in Atlanta, GA. This is the 6th year of the Conference and there were over 300 attendees.

The Keynote speaker was Trevor Dawes, the 2013-14 President of ACRL. Citing recent reports, such as the NMC Horizons Report, he spoke on the future of libraries and the skills needed to meet new trends.

Sessions and highlights included:

Assessment of an ILL Buy Not Borrow program

  • The presenter from Northern Illinois University concluded that their program did not save time or money but still considered it a success because they were able to fill requests for items that were difficult or impossible to obtain through ILL. Items purchased were sent to the subject specialist to determine if it would be added to the library collection. 72% were added.

Opening Course Reserves for self-check out

  • If we have a spare $31K (CAD), we could set up open shelves for students to retrieve and check out Course Reserves material on their own. This includes a security gate and a self-service check out machine. The library at the University of Toronto Scarborough was circulating Reserves books at a higher rate than the rest of their collection so this plan freed the staff to focus on other tasks. They saw a 30% increase in the use of the Reserves books. Food for thought.

Orienting Access Services staff to other library service points

  • Rob Withers of Miami University shared how they changed their training by beginning with a staff-initiated list of questions about other services in the library. Rather than inundate new staff with a building-wide tour using local acronyms, they invited staff from other areas of the library to come to meetings to tell Access Services about their role in the library. In addition to an improved retention rate, they reported that the staff was better informed and could provide better service.

OERs and Open Textbooks

  • This session reported on the efforts of libraries to help deal with the cost of textbooks. At the University of South Carolina they initiated a reserves textbook program in 2008. They have over 1,000 in their collection and do not de-accession in case an older edition will meet a need. The cost is $20-25K per year and the circulation of the textbooks accounts for 20% of their total circulations. At Valdosta University the library is encouraging faculty to develop OERs (Open Educational Resources) in place of textbooks.

Marketing a new library service

  • When the University of Maryland joined the Big 10 Conference the library gained access to an expedited delivery service called UBorrow. This session outlined the process of promoting the service to the campus community. One of the first steps was to create an adorable mascot named UBot. The others steps were: Plan, Define message, ID audience, Use data to plan, Execute campaign. Because this service duplicated some OCLC ILL services, the library saw a 47% decrease in OCLC requests which they calculated as saving $100K.

A library storage facility’s success

  • At the University of Syracuse they have a storage facility that is similar to ours so I wanted to see how they operated. The setting up process was very familiar probably in part because they were working with Chris Brennan from GFA who helped us set up our facility and was at this presentation. Like ZSR, they use ILLiad to process requests but differ in that they purchased a satellite license for ILLiad at the storage facility.

To Boldly Go: E-Reserves from Home-Grown to Standalone to CMS

  • So I attended this session thinking I would hear about a new approach to electronic course reserves using a course management system. Instead I learned that the library at the University of West Georgia no longer manages electronic reserves for their faculty. They abandoned their plans to use Ares as a course reserves management system. Citing the Georgia Board of Regents’ policy that faculty are personally responsible for copyright compliance, the faculty use their CMS (Desire2Learn) to post articles. The remaining related services offered are scanning and copyright consultation. They reported that there had been no negative feedback regarding this decision. I’d be interested to hear others’ thoughts on this.

In conclusion, I certainly appreciated the professional relevancy of almost all of the sessions. This was my favorite aspect of the conference. The Atlanta traffic was not. (I live in a town with 1 stoplight.)

 

Charleston Conference 2014

Friday, November 14, 2014 3:09 pm

Contents: 1. short tidbits (e.g. Alma from Ex Libris, “screen reading” effects, take care in using downloads as a measure, shared print storage) and 2. the rising cost of e-book short-term loans with a DDA program

1. the short bits

Alma – was the commercial ILS that I heard mentioned repeatedly, often in the context of migrations. At a poster session, I spoke with a librarian from the University of Tennessee Libraries about their migrating order records to Alma (from Aleph) and the next day I spoke with a librarian from another state about migration to Alma. I came away with the impression that both were satisfied so far. I heard other librarians mention Alma as the ILS of interest or having recently selected it.

Steve Shadle – “How Libraries Use Publisher Metadata” Steve worked with Springer on metadata and realized other publishers could use the same kind of understanding. Publishers at the presentation were engaged and asking questions. (I say, “hooray!”)

Carol Tenopir – “To Boldly Go Beyond Downloads” reported from research with focus groups and interviews that downloads are on the decline and “be careful about using it as a measure.” The survey just went out, so keep an eye out for later reports from that part of the research.

David Durant (ECU) and Tony Horava (University of Ottawa) - “Future of Reading and Academic Library” The presenters referenced Jakob Neilson’s F shaped pattern (of eye tracking) and explained linear and tabular reading and how they affect learning. Their research includes the differences between “screen reading” and reading from print. Look for their article in the January 2015 issue of Portal.

Emory and Georgia Tech’s shared print repository, Emtech, was helped along by support from the presidents at both universities and the prior establishment of a 501-3c to support other initiatives. (I asked because I had wondered how a private/public partnership for something long-term like this could work.) They determined that they had only 17% overlap in collections and each library is putting 1 million volumes into the shared facility — serials from Tech and monographs from Emory. They are storing microforms there; with the Atlanta climate, a cooler will have to be used when pulling those from facility, so that they gradually warm up from the 50 degrees without moisture forming on them. It will be one unified collection and they are contemplating whether they will need a separate OCLC holding symbol. This will be Harvard style — with static, not mobile, shelving.

Jeff already reported on plenaries and one session that he and I both attended,plus DDA with Kanopy streaming video, and included some lovely photos.

 

2. increasing cost of short-term loans (STLs):

Summary: All parties, publishers, librarians and aggregators are adopting a “let’s work together” attitude and showing understanding that workable pricing models are yet to be figured out with e-books because monographs are different from journals; everyone is inclined towards keeping DDA rather than eliminating it. The consortia named below who facilitated a lively lunch all pulled DDA records from their catalogs but I learned in a sidebar conversation that a large consortium removed only the EBL DDA records for the same titles in ebrary Academic Complete (generally considered to be primarily a backlist) and made no other changes. We’re implementing this change, literally as I’m writing this, since we just got the subscription product through NC LIVE. (See also Carol’s report.)

Details on STLS: Following up on this summer’s announcement that a number of publishers were raising the prices of STLs, I asked Derrik to do some analysis of our own experience prior to the conference. The bottom line on his analysis is that the rise in cost is affecting our bottom line noticeably. I managed to get to a lively lunch session with a mix of publishers, librarians, and aggregators in the audience. Facilitators included a representative from: Connecticut-Trinity-Wesleyan (CTW Consortium); Colby-Bates-Bowdoin Consortium; Tri-College Consortium (Bryn Mawr, Swarthmore, Haverford); The Five Colleges Consortium (Amherst College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst) The lively lunch facilitators asked specific questions and my take-aways were:

  • reaffirmation that sales of books (whatever format) are dropping and the volume of STLs isn’t rising to meet the cost of publishing them (not from conference, but see this explanation of the cost of publishing an e-book)
  • inconclusive discussion on setting an optimal dollar amount or percentage of list price (I went to the mic and commented that setting a percentage was a questionable strategy with some publishers now raising the list price for electronic to be more than print; note that the e-book was not always, but often, close to hardcover price until recently)
  • in general an embargo was undesirable from all perspectives
  • differentiated pricing on frontlist versus backlist could be considered (I wonder if this wouldn’t add undesirable complexity and there might be a better solution)

Also on the STL crisis topic, Carol and I both were at a session titled, Sustainability not Profitability: the Future of Scholarly Monographs and STL.” Carol’s coverage, also linked above, differs slightly from mine (and is brief).

  • Barbara Kawecki from YBP gave the landscape of library activity to start the session: from 1998 to now there has been a dramatic decline in print purchasing. A loss of 50,000 units to a publisher is significant. YBP has seen a dramatic increase in records sent for DDA but only tiny amount is purchased and a large percentage of spending is on STL.
  • Rebecca Seger of Oxford University Press then gave an overview of the cost of monograph publishing and stated that the real problem is shrinking monograph budget (which I heard multiple times at the conference). She explained that with journals publishers can estimate revenue because of subscriptions, but publishers have used the print approval plans of libraries historically to estimate revenue for monographs. Each title might sell 400-700 “units” for the lifetime. Publishers can’t sell that amount now and can’t estimate revenue based on approval plans anymore because of all the changes libraries are making relative to DDA/STL. It costs about $10,000 to publish a monograph and printing is only about a third of that cost (or more for a smaller publisher).
  • Lisa Nachtigall from Wiley also described the impact of DDA/STL:

2009 to now: 92% print to 77% print
3rd party sales of e big increase: now 7%
32% less revenue from top 100 titles from 2009 to now; 28% less if take out the top 5 performers
70% of all etransactions from DDA/STL
Only 32% of DDA records went to transaction and 82% of that are STLs
86% less revenue on the e

Lisa is in the editorial part of Wiley and says that because of all of this Wiley is exiting Physics altogether, getting out of higher level research areas and will focus on textbooks. She noted that faculty will not able to disseminate their research in the same ways.

  • Michael Levine-Clark (a frequent speaker on e-books and Associate Dean for Scholarly Communication and Collections Services at the University of Denver) counseled the audience for librarians and publishers to work together on this problem, which was also the attitude at the lively lunch I described above. He said he was willing to pay more for the titles that get used. Various pricing models are needed together right now. He is concerned about the level of risk — future access to the titles not purchased — but he noted that the budget doesn’t allow him to buy all of those titles now anyway. He had a lot of analytical graphs in his presentation, which may be found near the end of the entire presentation. He wondered about having a fee for DDA service to publishers and YBP as part of the solution (but several audience members noted that all libraries already pay a small fee to YBP for the service of managing the bibliographic records). He concluded that we need to pony up to keep all books available for long term. During Q&A with the audience, it came up that if part of the change to using STL includes charges for browses, then it may not work. There was agreement from the audience that we have to work with publishers to keep DDA. The concept of an annual fee, “pay to play,” was raised again.

This was a particularly good conference in terms of content and consistently nice weather.

ILL goes to Asheville

Wednesday, August 6, 2014 11:27 am

On Friday, July 25 the ZSR Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery department headed to Asheville for the annual NC Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery Conference. Tara and I shared the ZSR van with our ILL colleagues, Anna Milholland at Salem College and Angie Hobbs from the WFU Professional Center Library. Our half of the Conference was held at Western Carolina’s facility at Biltmore Park. The other half of the Conference was being held simultaneously at UNC-Wilmington.

Here’s Tara’s report on the morning session:
The morning session was about Best Practices in ILL. Our session was led by James Harper and JoAnn Marvel from Western Carolina. Also presenting was Brooke Andrade, from the National Humanities Center conferencing in from UNC Wilmington, NC. The session was about pros/cons in Interlibrary Loans/Document Delivery Services. We were given a lot of helpful knowledge as they discussed the ALA Interlibrary Loan Code, and the responsibilities of the Borrowing & Lending libraries. Also discussed were the dos and don’ts of how to package Library materials.

Here’s my report of the rest of the day:
After exploring Biltmore Park restaurants and shops during the lunch break we headed back to the Conference. The afternoon session options were based on the ILL system that we use in our library. Anna and Angie attended the OCLC WorldShare session with Tony Melvin of OCLC and Tara and I attended the ILLiad session with Genie Powell, Chief Customer Officer from Atlas Systems, Inc.

Some of the ILLiad updates that may be helpful here at ZSR are custom “flags” and auto mode for Odyssey Helper. I’m familiar with the flags because they’re used in Ares to mark requests that need a particular action. When a request needs attention it will appear in its own flag queue as well as its original queue until you remove the flag. This way you can take care of the action needed without changing the status of the request.

Our current workflow involves having to open a stand-alone version of Odyssey Helper to upload the article scans we’ve made and deliver them to our patrons and borrowing libraries. With the next upgrade of ILLiad, Odyssey Helper will be incorporated into the ILLiad interface and will automatically send documents that are in the proper status. We’re hoping this works as well as it sounds as the stand-alone version requires patience.

The committee for this Conference was headed up by James Harper who did a great job of coordinating all the technology involved in trying to make the Conference geographically accessible to all interested North Carolina libraries. He was one of the presenters in the morning, he coordinated the audio and video from Asheville to Wilmington, the audio and video from Wilmington to Asheville, the guest speakers who were virtually joining us from Ohio and Virginia, and managed to throw in some humor along the way. James’ day reminded me of a plate spinning act on the Ed Sullivan Show.

The Conference was a good opportunity to catch up with friends and share/vent with ILL colleagues. On the way home we encountered this new NC resident on the freeway

and Tara artfully avoided the chicken cage that had apparently fallen off a truck and was in the middle of our lane on I-40.

ALA Annual 2014 Las Vegas – Lauren

Thursday, July 3, 2014 4:08 pm

Three segments to my post: 1) Linked Data and Semantic Web, 2) Introverts at Work, and 3) Vendors and Books and Video — read just the part that interests you!

1. Linked Data and Semantic Web (or, Advances in Search and Discovery)

Steve Kelley sparked my interest in the Semantic Web and Linked Data with reports after conferences over the past few years. Now that I’ve been appointed to the joint ALCTS/LITA Metadata Standards Committee and attended a meeting at this conference, I’ve learned more:

Google Hummingbird is a recent update to how Google searching functions, utilizing all the words in the query to provide more meaningful results instead of just word matches.

Catalogers and Tech Team take note! Work is really happening now with Linked Data. In Jason Clark’s presentation,”Schema.org in Libraries,” see the slide with links to work being done at NCSU and Duke (p. 28 of the posted PDF version).

I’m looking forward to working with Erik Mitchell and other Metadata Standards Committee members in the coming year.

2. Introverts at Work!

The current culture of working in meetings (such as brainstorming) and reaching quick decisions in groups or teams is geared towards extroverts while about 50% of the population are introverts. Introverts can be most productive and provide great solutions when given adequate time for reflection. (Extrovert and introvert were defined in the Jung and MBTI sense of energy gain/drain.) So says Jennifer Kahnweiler, the speaker for the ALCTS President’s Program and author of Quiet Influence. Another book discussing the same topic is Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain. Many ZSRians attended this session!

3.Vendors and Books and Video

I spent a lot of time talking with vendors. Most notable was the meeting that Derrik, Jeff, and I attended with some of the publishers that are raising DDA short term loan prices. This will affect our budget, but our plan is to watch it for a bit, to develop our knowledge and determine appropriate action. It was helpful to learn more from the publishers. Some publishers are able to switch to print on demand, while others cannot because traditional print runs are cheaper than print on demand and their customers still want print. Print-driven publishers have to come up with a sustainable model to cover all of the costs, so they are experimenting with DDA pricing. DDA overall is still an experiment for publishers, while librarians already have come to think of it as being a stable and welcome method of providing resources.

Derrik and I also started conversing with Proquest about how we will manage our existing DDA program in regards to the addition of ebrary Academic Complete to NC LIVE.

“The combined bookshops of Aux Amateurs de Livres and Touzot Librarie Internationale will be called Amalivre effective July 1, 2014.”

Regarding video, Mary Beth, Jeff, Derrik and I attended a presentation by two Australian librarians from different large universities (QUT and La Trobe, with FTE in tens of thousands). They reported on their shift to streaming video with Kanopy and here are a few bullets:

  • Among drivers for change were the flipped classroom and mobile use
  • 60% of the DVD collection had less than 5 views while streaming video titles licensed through Kanopy averaged over 50 views
  • 23% and 15% (two universities) of DVDs have never been viewed once
  • 1.7 and 1.8 (two universities) times is the true cost of DVD ownership
  • They have a keyboard accessibility arrangement for the visually impaired
  • Usage is growing for PDA and non-PDA titles in Kanopy [reminds us of our experience with e-books]
  • Discovery of the streaming videos came largely through faculty embedding videos in the CMS
  • Other discovery is not good for video, so they had Proquest add a radio button option for video to Summon to help promote discovery [can we do this?]
  • They concluded that because of greater use,online video is the greater value for the money spent

 

2014 ILLiad Conference

Thursday, April 3, 2014 6:02 pm

Just to review, ILLiad is the software we use to manage interlibrary loan and ZSR Delivers requests.

Thankfully no speeding ticket this year. It was a cold, rainy trip to Virginia Beach and I opted to listen to a Scandinavian murder mystery, instead rockin’ out. (spoiler…the lady lawyer did it.)

I went to several informative sessions and enjoyed some F2F time with other librarians whom I normally only interact with over email and phone. Sharing a pint with someone makes it easier to ask them for a scan of an obscure 18th century score, or a rush loan of an international economics tome. All in the name of greasing the wheels of interlibrary commerce.

The keynote fell short, which seems to be a trend for these conferences. As you may remember, the highlight of last year’s keynote was a venn diagram. This year was no different.

My apologizes if you start singing Carly Simon (some think she was referring to James Taylor, I suspect Warren Beatty)…but I digress.

 

The best session of interest to those outside the interlibrary loan community was about assessment – how to use ILLiad to show our worth, to tell our story. The presenter compared librarians to ninjas – we swiftly move around helping other campus entities (departments, centers…) succeed. Sound familiar? The Chemistry department will have different institutional goals than the Humanities Institute. But both rely on the library for help meeting these goals. We have to be flexible, strong and everywhere at once.

One of the cool things her library is doing is using hash tags in their social media posts to highlight areas of strength and growth in the library -especially when they support overall university goals. For example:

#ZSRLearns when we contribute to cultivating students through instruction and academic enrichment

#ZSRSpaces when we initiate improvements to the living/learning environment

#ZSRExperts when librarians use their expertise to make a difference at the university level

The way we gather statistics in ILLiad and what we do with them can aid in these pursuits. At the presenter’s library, they ask students what course they will be using the interlibrary loan item for. They ask faculty if the request is for research or teaching, and if teaching for what class. This can more accurately pinpoint the areas of study that interlibrary loan supports and be especially useful for interdisciplinary courses that defy department/major (i.e. Interpreting & Translation Studies.)

This data can be shared with liaisons in the hopes of improved service and support. The presenter mentioned one conversation she had with the liaison to a department that was notorious for placing interlibrary loan article requests for items the library owned electronically. This lead to stronger education effort.

Other conference highlights included a session on creating mobile friendly web pages. This is on my G/O list for 2014. Stay tuned…..

Then there was this session covering the integration of interlibrary loan and course reserves work flows. The presenter’s situation was different but I did learn a few things of a technical nature. I was also able to make brilliant use of social media. The presenter is my counterpart at Yale. He showed this slide to explain how his boss (the head of Access Services) forced the merging of interlibrary loan and reserves staff (notice the picture of Dr. Evil.)

Now it just so happens that the aforementioned boss is a good friend of mine – a friend on Facebook. So I posted this picture to his timeline as the event was happening with the caption “Evil Architecture at Yale! THX Brad.” Lots of virtual hilarity ensued. Trust me. (then I quickly put my phone down and resumed taking notes….whew).

 

 

 

 

 

Rebecca at Archival Discovery & Use Pre-Conference

Monday, March 31, 2014 5:04 pm

Last week, Chelcie Rowell and I traveled to Raleigh for the Code4Lib Pre-conference focused on archival discovery and use. I found this to be a very enjoyable and thought provoking day of discussion and idea sharing. Led by Tim Shearer from UNC Chapel Hill and Will Sexton from Duke, the format of the pre-conference was focused talks rather than presentations. The room was broken up into groups such as digitization, outreach, assessment, description, and access. I joined the description group and saw many familiar faces that I have followed professionally.

The morning session began with the provocative statement “Why I hate finding aids.” Each group discussed the pros and cons of this statement and presented their groups opinions at the end. As you may imagine, my description group *loves* finding aids and found this statement to be an insult to the very core of archival practice and foundation. Although we defended finding aids, there was discussion of lack of uniformity both within institutions as well as across archives. Bibliographic description has such a structured input, but that structure is still not established in archival description. Our group felt that although there are things wrong with finding aids including authority control, archival jargon, and access points, the archival foundation of provenance and respect des fonds leave the finding aid as a concept our only option of description as of now.

Another provocative statement made to prompt our breakout group discussions pertained to digital collections content grouped together in something like an exhibit versus within the context of a finding aid or the original order of the collection. Again, my group made up of mostly “description” archivists emphasized the need for archival context in a digital world. So many times researchers are “dropped” into a digital collection and find something “cool” but they don’t always realize that it is part of a larger, and most times, richer archival collection. We hope that with new archival software such as ArchivesSpace and linked data, digital collections will have the infrastructure and the metadata to be more closely connected with the creator and archival collection.

After Chelcie’s suggestion of a delicious lunch at a place calledBeasley’s Chicken and Honey (Go there. Seriously.) we returned to a more presentation based format. The topics included ArchivesSpace and crowdsourcing. I enjoyed the afternoon sessions with the theoretical implementation of ArchivesSpace juxtaposed with actual crowdsourcing projects, big and small. I must say, I enjoyed this pre-conference very much and found that the format was the best part. It is rare to sit at a table with colleagues you respect and who are doing amazing things in your field and just get to talk, and share stories, and brainstorm. Thank you for the opportunity!

 

Kevin at edUi 2013

Monday, December 2, 2013 10:32 am

The best conferences change you. Even before the closing session, you recognize something different about yourself, a new way of thinking perhaps or a new perspective on a project. This change is more than the catalog of new ideas and new projects that the conference generates; it’s a new way of seeing things, of making sense of your work and the world. After such a conference, you return excited, invigorated. (And, to be honest, apprehensive: how will I sustain this new way of being amid the torrent of the job?).

For me, edUi 2013 was this kind of conference. For three days, it was the realization of a single, simple idea: make small, meaningful improvements. It was an inversion really – of project and process, of productivity and creativity. And it was so familiar – in fact, I had abided by such a concept as a way to approach the glut of project requirements, feature requests, and feedback cycles. But ‘familiar’ was not ‘realized’.

Here was a simple, empowering method that provoked such welcome clarity through its limited scale and its confident optimism. Here was a way to transform glut into abundance. Anyway, that’s the short version. The long version includes much more about opportunities and strategies and tactics, about audiences and usability and prioritization, the context within which ‘small’ and ‘meaningful’ and ‘improvements’ are defined.

Of course, edUi was also about a wealth of other things:

  • content strategy
  • responsive analytics
  • best practices and bogus best practices
  • how (re)designing a screen sometimes feels like convincing an organization to change the way it works
  • how to use mobile as a lens to make everything better, regardless of platform
  • how to use data to make decisions (since data is often the language stakeholders speak)
  • and generally all things UX

Amanda at SCLA/SELA 2013

Thursday, November 14, 2013 5:18 pm

Earlier this week, I co-presented with a former colleague at the South Carolina Library Association/Southeastern Library Association joint conference in Greenville, South Carolina. My presentation was late in the day, so I had the opportunity to sit in on several interesting and relevant presentations.

Keynote Speaker ALA President-Elect Courtney Young: To open the conference, Young spoke about the current ALA presidential theme, Libraries Change Lives, and encouraged librarians to sign the Declaration for the Right to Libraries and libraries to host signing events. Young then spoke about her upcoming presidential theme, which will focus on the value of the ALA to both its members and the community at large.

Services and Spaces for Graduate Students: Data-Driven Decision Making in an Academic Library: Florida State University librarians recently underwent a large-scale ethnographic study of their non-STEM graduate student population. They modeled their study off of the Foster and Gibbons University of Rochester study, which included methods like photo diaries and charrettes. The FSU librarians also GPS tracked 10 students to see where they went throughout the day. They learned that their graduate students wanted multi-use/multi-functional spaces, room to spread out, and double monitors . Some barriers to using the library included working long hours, families, finding parking, and having cheaper/healthier food options at home. As a result of the study, they expanded their campus delivery service to graduate TAs and plan to use the findings when planning future renovations. Also, if you are curious, you can see their current grad student space, the Scholars Commons. I have a lot more notes if you are interested.

Teaching Online Library Workshops: Next, Clemson University librarians spoke about their experiences with two online instruction initiatives. First, they moved their freshman orientation sessions online (previously, they hosted over 200 orientation sessions in the library). They used VideoScribe to make some seriously awesome Youtube videos and embedded them in Blackboard. Go watch, What’s In It For Me?, an alphabetical listing of items in Clemson Libraries and come back. No, seriously, go watch, I’ll wait here. Pretty nifty, right? Second, they used their campus conference software, Adobe Connect, to host synchronous, online workshops on topics like Google searching. Attendance was less-than-stellar, but they found that after the sessions several students asked questions unrelated to the topic at hand — and this brought about interesting conversations on using conferencing software (or even Google Hangout) to host personal research sessions. We also discussed the advantages of quality over quantity in reference/instruction interactions. Sounds like they are trying some exciting things!

The Flipped Classroom: A Real Life Adventure in Engaging Students: this was our session! I co-presented with my former colleague, Margaret Fain, of Coastal Carolina University. We spoke for about 10 minutes about flipping our Information Literacy Lab credit course at Coastal — then we flipped the presentation (because, of course)! Our attendees created a flipped classroom lesson plan and then shared their lessons with the group. I’m having a SlideShare to WordPress embed fail, but if you’d like to see our slides, here they are.

Unfortunately, I had to drive to Greenville and back in a day, so I didn’t get to experience much of Greenville. That being said, from my car window, it looked really great! It seem to have a happening downtown, lots of restaurants, shops and even a park downtown with a waterfall. It has officially hopped onto my weekend-road trip list!

Rebecca at SNCA Tri-State Conference

Friday, October 25, 2013 10:46 am

 

Last week, I traveled to Furman University for the Tri-State Archivists Conference. In addition to attending sessions, I represented SNCA as the Archives Week chair and did quite a bit of promotion of this year’s Archives Week. I must say it was a very worthwhile conference and I will try to hit some highlights for you.

“All Together Now! The Archives as Collaborative Space”

Katie Nash and Patrick Rudd of Elon University discussed their collaboration to work with the Education department at Elon to require the use of primary sources in their classrooms. Kristy Merryman from NC State highlighted her wonderful work with the “Cultivating a Revolution” project and her effort to make this project accessible to K-12 teachers. The project integrated a teacher portal with lesson guides to assist teachers in utilizing the online content. Kristy emphasized that these materials were all web based and the reasoning was that when teachers are preparing and executing lesson plans, they are not traveling to the archives, they are accessing materials online. Finally, Paula Jeanette Mangiafico from Duke spoke about their efforts to make intern experiences more valuable for both the individual as well as the institution. Giving students more context, encouraging discovery and collaboration, and creating a real learning experience allows everyone to “be awesome together.” I found this session extremely helpful and encouraging! I hope to use some strategies and ideas in my work here at ZSR.

“Social Media Archiving in State Government”

Rachel Trent from the State Archives of North Carolina and Kathleen Kenney from the State Library of North Carolina presented on a very timely and interesting topic, web archiving. The efforts of the State Archives and the State Library mirror much of the work we are doing here at ZSR with ArchiveIt. They discussed challenges they have had in terms of privacy, access, and completeness. They discussed using Archive Social to more effectively gather social media content, but also the pitfalls of display. Although Archive Social captures content, the content does not look like it does when hosted by the social media sites. This is an issue to archivists when presenting how something looked to future generations. I hope to further discuss strategies with Rachel and Kathleen to more effectively capture the social media presence at WFU.

“We the People: Creating a More Perfect Archive”

Vicki and I put together this panel (along with Maureen McCormick Harlow) to discuss a variety of diversity programming in N.C. I spent my time discussing the success of SNCA’s 2012 N.C. Archives Week “Journeys to Justice: Civil Rights in NC.” The theme was chosen to allow archives across the state to showcase materials relating to a variety of civil rights issues: integration, women’s rights, LGBTQ community, Amendment One, and many others. SNCA’s role in N.C. Archives week is to help facilitate, promote, and encourage institutions across the state to plan events, hang posters, and generally get the “archival” word out. Beyond heralding the successes of last year’s N.C. Archives Week, I shamelessly promoted this year’s Archives Week “Home Grown! A Celebration of NC Food Culture & History.” I was very pleased with the response I got from archivists seeking promotional materials or sharing events they were planning for Archives Week.

Overall, I found the Tri-State conference to be a success! I enjoyed my time networking, learned a lot from archivists in the region, and promoted Archives Week 2013. Thanks to Lynn, Wanda, and Tanya for the opportunity to attend.

2013 ILLiad Conference

Thursday, April 4, 2013 4:08 pm

My 9th OCLC ILLiad conference got off to a rough start. On my way to Virginia Beach I got a speeding ticket – 76 in a 60 zone. I was NOT running late or in a hurry. I was just in the groove – new Richard Thompson on the stereo, sun roof open, southeastern Virginia lowlands wizzing by….(I don’t suppose I can submit the fine and subsequent increase in insurance premiums on the travel reimbursement form can I?)

ILLiad, in addition to being a misspelling of an epic poem, is the software package we use to handle interlibrary loan and document delivery requests. It also controls the requesting web pages. It is a complex piece of software that allows for copious amounts of customization. The ILLiad conference is a chance for 350+ users of this software to get together and show off, swap ideas and corner the software developers. It is also one of the few national conferences devoted to all things interlibrary loan. (more on that later.)

I enjoy this conference because I always learn something. Most things are very specific to ILLiad use and I won’t bore you with those. But I will share parts of my experience that might be of interest.

First, the conference came with its own smartphone app. Don’t laugh; this is a first for me. The app included my conference schedule, map of the hotel and twitter feed. The conference sponsors would push out announcements through the app to keep everyone informed. This included a message 3 days before the conference reminding me it was time to pack.

I found myself using the app mainly to follow the twitter feed. Tweeting (I think it should be called ‘twittering’) was rampant throughout the conference – a constant running commentary on presentations, poster sessions, restaurant choices, snow flurry sightings….etc. Imagine thought bubbles forming and popping constantly. I found it interesting to read what other people attending the same presentation found worth noting. Did it add to the conference experience? Yes. But it was also a distraction and I could comment on our constant need to be DOING when we should be LISTENING, but I won’t.

The keynote was by Liz Bishoff, longtime librarian turned consultant. Her talk, “Strategies for Sustainability: Resource Sharing in the Digital World” started off with a broad definition of sustainability – the capacity to endure. I like that. She then displayed this sustainability venn diagram.

I’ve never thought about sustainability in this way before. The rest of Ms. Bishoff’s talk consisted of a trip down interlibrary loan memory lane complete with requisite images of a card catalog, the NUC and an OCLC dedicated terminal. I think this was partly an educational exercise for the speaker – she admitted limited experience with interlibrary loan. While I found this part of the talk less useful, I do plan to delve deeper into this model of sustainability as it applies to libraries. Stay tuned…

One of my favorite sessions was on the current state of international interlibrary loan – “Borders without Barriers”. I see this as the last frontier of interlibrary loan. Borrowing and lending within the U.S. has gotten pretty standard and streamlined. But beyond that, it is a wilderness of customs and copyright and time zones and language. The session, while short on answers, did wet my appetite to get more involved with efforts to makes international interlibrary loan better.

The conference ended with something called an Unconference. At this point there were still about 200 people left. An organizer asked the room for topics of interest. These could be related to presentations or things not covered. I proposed privacy policies. Others topics included services to distance learners, cross-training students, database clean-up, statistical reports, scanning, troublesome faculty….about 20 in all.

Each topic was written on a table tent and placed on a table in the conference hall. Then we went to a table of interest and discussed the topic with the others there. Every 20 minutes, the organizer would prompt us to move to a different table if we wanted. This went on for 2 hours.

I learned that no one has an easy answer to the privacy issue; that many libraries of all sizes have combined their access services student work forces, and that no one is happy with their scanning situation.

A final thought on the importance of this conference as a venue for “all things interlibrary loan”. There are 2 pieces of information highlighted on the ILLiad conference name page. One is my institution’s OCLC symbol (EWF in case you were wondering.) The other is my first name. All kinds of cross institutional collaboration goes on in library land, but in interlibrary loan this happens tens of thousands of times a day. The ILLiad conference is a chance to put faces and names to OCLC symbols, hang out with kindred spirits and tell people in person how much you appreciate the support they give you every day. I really, really like that.

 

 

 

 


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