Professional Development

In the 'LAUNC-CH' Category...

Steve at 2014 LAUNC-CH Conference

Friday, March 21, 2014 2:52 pm

Last week I attended the 2014 LAUNC-CH Conference in Chapel Hill, with Sarah and Jeff. This year’s theme was “Every Step of the Way: Supporting Student and Faculty Research,” and there was a lot of talk about data sets and making research publically available. Jeff has already admirably covered Nancy Fried Foster’s keynote address, so I’ll talk a bit about the concurrent sessions. The most interesting one to me was a session by Michael Crumpton and Kathryn Crowe of UNC-G called “Defining the Libraries’ Role in Research: A Needs Assessment Case Study.” They talked about how the UNC-G libraries surveyed researchers in 2013 to find out how they store and manage data. The survey (which had a 13% response rate) found out that only 16% of researchers automatically generate back-ups. Furthermore, 75% of the researchers surveyed reported that they did not anticipate sharing their research data. The reasons were a mix of that they didn’t want to share their data and that they didn’t expect to share their data (so either data hoarding or thinking that nobody else would even want to see it). Analyzing the survey they found a number of barriers to researchers sharing their data, including the large size of data sets, copyright concerns about sharing data, and simply not knowing how to share data. They found that faculty weren’t using best practices in managing their data, and they need much more help in backing up their data. The survey found that many faculty were not even aware of the data management requirements of their university and of their funding agencies. To deal with these problems, the libraries at UNC-G have decided to initiate new education efforts, including expanding the time departmental liaisons have to work with their departments on data management issues. They had planned on hiring a new librarian to specialize in managing research data, but budget concerns killed the plan and forced them to re-direct their efforts into their existing liaison program.

Several of the other programs I attended discussed similar matters, but I found Kathy’s and Mike’s discussion to be the most fully developed. One interesting note, was that Debbie Curry and Mohan Ramaswamy of NCSU discussed how their library recruited data ambassadors, who are either members of or liaisons to departments. These data ambassadors take a hands-on role on teaching faculty about how to properly back-up, store and manage their data. One other interesting item I picked up at the conference came from one of their afternoon lightning talks, where Ann Cooper of UNC-Chapel Hill talked about efforts at UNC’s Wilson archives to preserve born-digital legacy media by converting material in outdated media formats to current formats. As a big music collector, I’m very interested in the process of converting material from outdated formats to usable formats.

Sarah at the LAUNC-CH Conference

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 8:54 am

On March 10th, I attended the LAUNC-CH Conference with Steve Kelley and Jeff Eller. In the keynote address, Nancy Foster spoke about participatory design in academic libraries. Jeff wrote a great summary of her talk. Another aspect of Foster’s research was asking researchers how they learned of the items they used for their research. Interestingly, Google was not the researchers’ first place to search.

Further reading for those interested:
Participatory Design in Academic Libraries: Methods, Findings, and Implementations
(2012)
Participatory Design in Academic Libraries: New Reports and Findings
(2014)

I attended a couple breakout sessions on instruction. The session on how art librarians used Sakai information literacy quizzes to replace or to augment in-person library instruction sessions could be applied to my LIB 220 course and library instruction at ZSR Library. In the second breakout session, UNC librarians talked about their participation in NCAA compliance training and consultation of the UNC Student-Athlete Handbook in order to do information literacy outreach to student-athlete tutors. Because I am currently collaborating with Tanya Zanish-Belcher on an oral history of women scientists project, I also attended a breakout session on Duke University’s Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture. It was also great to meet new people including a bioinformatics librarian and catch up with colleagues. I’d be happy to discuss the sessions if anyone would like to hear more about it.

 

 

 

Steve at 2013 LAUNC-CH Conference

Friday, April 5, 2013 5:17 pm

I attended the 2013 LAUNC-CH Conference in Chapel Hill on March 11. This year’s theme was “True Collaborations: Creating New Structures, Services and Breakthroughs.” The session that most interested me the most was the keynote address by Rick Anderson, Interim Dean of the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah.
As is typical of Rick, his speech had a provocative approach, which was apparent in its title, “The Purpose of Collaboration Is Not to Collaborate.” By this, he means that there may be plenty of benefits to be gained by collaborating, but that you should never collaborate on something merely to collaborate. Here are his major points:

Ground Rules and First Principles:
- Humility
- Patrons come first (a guiding concern here at ZSR)
- Waste nothing
- Fail often, fail early, write an article, move on
- Know what is sacred and what is instrumental
- Keep means and ends in proper relation

Means and Ends:
- The purpose of innovation is not to innovate…but to improve.
- The purpose of committees is not to meet…but to solve problems.
- The purpose of risk-taking is not to take risks…but to do new and better things.
- The purpose of collaboration is not to collaborate.

Reasons to Collaborate:
- To create leverage
• Economies of scale
• Increased impact
- To improve services
• Draw on more brains
• Include multiple perspective
- To build relationships
• On campus
• External to campus
- To bring complexity indoors

Bringing Complexity Indoors
- Good complexity and bad complexity (AKA Richness vs. Confusion). You want to bring bad complexity indoors, not make patrons have to suffer with whatever is problematic.
- Who is paying and who is paid?
• Patrons as “customers”
- What is our goal?
• Education vs. frustration
Opportunities to Collaborate
- Osmotic (by osmosis, Anderson means, if you have open library space, it will be filled. Make sure your library is filled with stuff you want in it.)
- Serendipitous
- Strategic (Institutional)
• To advance university goals
• To advance library goals
- Strategic (Political)
• To bank political capital
• To strengthen library’s brand

Collaborating Better
- Think outside the ghetto. Don’t just focus on the library world, other fields may have fruitful areas for collaboration. Anderson gave a wonderful example of this, describing the Pumps and Pipes Conference, an annual conference in Houston that brings together heart doctors and people from the oil industry. Both fields are concerned with pumping viscous fluid through tubes, and have much to teach each other.
- Work from ends to means (not vice versa).
- Listen promiscuously
- Ask this question up front: “How will we know when the task is accomplished?”
- If project is open-ended, assess regularly
- Evaluate outcomes, not processes.

LAUNCH-CH Research Forum

Thursday, May 12, 2011 1:33 pm

Inside the Box Poster Session

By Craig and Audra

On Tuesday, March 10, Audra and I journeyed to Chapel Hill to present our poster at the Librarians’ Association of UNC-CH Research Forum held in the Sonja Haynes Stone Center. The forum is a combination of poster sessions and paper presentations: there were 10 posters and 3 papers presented. Poster Sessions were held outside the assembly room where papers were presented which allowed visitors to view and talk about posters with each presenter. Audra and I got lots of great comments and met a number of people interested in using archival material for information literacy. Our poster, entitled: Inside the Box: Incorporating Archival Material into Undergraduate Information Literacy Instruction described our LIB100 class last fall where we used materials from the Dolmen Press Collection for group research and exhibit projects.
Inside the Box poster

Interestingly, it seemed like the subtext of the Research Forum was library instruction and information literacy because most of the presenters dealt with the is subject in some way.

After our first hour of presenting our poster, we had an hour of paper presentations with the anchor leg of the presentation delivered expertly by Roz Tedford!

The first paper was given by Genya O’Gara from the NC State University Special Collections Research Center regarding the Student Leadership Initiative, a project to document student leadership in NCSU history through oral interviews and videos. Through a partnership with the Public History program at NCSU, their department was able to train students using the workshop method to create a cohort of students. This cohort could then connect to NCSU history through oral history interviews with past student leaders. Genya found that alums preferred to speak to current student students instead of librarians. Some of the benefits of the program have been new oral histories, collaboration with other departments, new collections donated by interviewed alumni, enhancing the University Archives’ web portal, creation of physical and digital exhibits, and new programs and events.

The second paper was presented by Lynda Kellam and Jenny Dale from UNCG and was entitled: “Living and Learning with the Library: Outreach to Campus Learning Communities.” At UNCG, they are attempting to give every freshman the opportunity to participate in a “learning community.” A learning community is described as a group who lives and learns together- so many (like the Warren Ashby Residential College) focus on certain issues-like social justice. Lynda and Ginny have been given the assignment of implementing this program by actually being ‘in residence’ at each learning community for several hours each week. This is really being ‘embedded.’ This is a great concept to bring a librarian directly to the students and make them available in a significant way.

The final paper of the day, presented by ZSR’s Roz Tedford was entitled: “How to Build it, so They Will Come: Designing and Implementing a Successful For-Credit Information Literacy Program.” Roz described Wake Forest and ZSR as well as the foundations of LIB100 as a team taught course initially. She went on to say that the first LIB100 efforts were quickly revamped into individually taught courses, which give each instructor the freedom to teach the course as they see fit. This freedom is part of the success of LIB100at ZSR. Roz said LIB100 at ZSR is so very successful because it is marketed by our students. When students tell other students a course is great, Roz says, “you’re done” and marketing really isn’t necessary. I was proud to sit there and listen to one of ZSR’s leaders tell of our success in information literacy. When the question session started, it was apparent that Roz had interested the crowd because most of the questions were directed to her.
Following the papers, Audra and I spent another hour talking to people about our project and visiting the other posters. All in all, this was a great day of swapping stories, sharing our experience in information literacy and knowing that our efforts are appreciated not only at ZSR, but in the library world at large.

Change is What Keeps it Interesting: My First LAUNC-CH

Tuesday, March 8, 2011 10:00 pm

On Monday I went to my first LAUNC-CH. It’s a conference put on by the librarians’ association at UNC-CH, and it’s a really good local, one-day conference. They keynote was Lee Rainie, who I have followed from afar for years. He’s at the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life project, which as he emphasized, is a fact tank not a think tank. His talk ran through really interesting statistics as you might guess, and really focused on the changing information environment and what is happening with our users. He’s a really engaging speaker.

It was fascinating, but as it turns out was a lot about what I was talking about next on the agenda.

Change is What Keeps it Interesting

I gave a modified and longer version of my Thursdays at Starling talk if you happened to see that one. I spent less time on the evolving information environment (especially because we’d already had such an engaging speaker cover that) and more time on new types of jobs that are evolving and what librarians can do to gain the skills necessary for these new jobs that didn’t exist when most of us were in library school. As part of this I looked at the directories for all the UNC system and NCICU schools to get a sense of trends. Fascinating stuff! If you’re interested, here are the updated slides:

I got really good questions ranging from an administrator who wanted to know more about how to go about finding information to write these job descriptions to someone asking about the necessity of a library degree in the future to someone asking about the bleeding at the edges of librarianship and when does someone quit being a librarian. I really enjoyed the questions and it made me realize that I’m interested in exploring these issues further and would like to write more on it… so hopefully more will come on the the topic in the future. I love conferences that have a lasting impact!

Steve at 2010 LAUNC-CH Conference

Friday, March 12, 2010 6:09 pm

Ellen has already written an admirably thorough posting on the LAUNC-CH Conference we attended on Monday, but now that my week has finally settled down to merely busy instead of insanely packed as it draws to a close, I can add a few comments.

I’ll begin by talking about the most interesting session I attended, which was called “Models for Library Data Services.” Barrie Hayes, Michelle Hayslett and Erin O’Meara, all librarians at UNC-CH, discussed UNC’s Data Management Working Group, and their work in providing data-related services to the university. Now, your first question may be what are data services? It has to do with managing large sets of research data and making it available. Why is this important? There are quite a few reasons:

  • Research may be duplicated if original data is lost.
  • Computing capabilities are increasing the speed with which data is produced and the size of data files kept.
  • More researchers are collaborating across institutional, state and national lines which means they have to share data.
  • The NIH requires grant-recipients to provide a data management plan.
  • Many journals are requiring the submission of data when articles are submitted for publication.
  • Publishers are starting to realize that data is a valuable commodity.

Because of these factors, libraries are establishing data archives, providing analysis support and methodology consulting, and educating faculty and students in how to manage and access these data sets. Many libraries are using institutional repositories (such as our own WakeSpace) to manage these data sets, but there are number of difficult issues involved with this, relating to the security of the data, the problems of storing huge quantities of data, and the network space needed for managing and manipulating enormous data sets.

In the morning, I attended a two-part session that discussed the re-design of two library portal websites, the African American Documentary Resources Portal at UNC-CH and Historical State at NCSU. Both sites were more than ten years old and in desperate need of serious re-working. Several general rules emerged from the two presentations.

  • Educate users (faculty, students, staff) about the portal.
  • Promote the new version of a portal.
  • Provide means for feedback and promotion using Web 2.0 tools (blogs, Facebook, etc.).
  • Make sure the site is interactive and allows for movement back and forth between different applications, rather than dumping the user out of the portal site and into another app.
  • Trying to harvest data from catalog records to use for other purposes can be difficult because of the amount of massaging the data requires.

One particularly thorny problem faced at UNC, was that the Patron Services librarians wanted to harvest user data so they could push information to researchers based on their previous uses of the site, but they found that their privacy policies did not allow this. The librarians have proposed changing the registration form used to grant usage of the Southern Historical Collection, to include questions about use of the Portal and to request permission to send the user tailored information about the Portal.

The conference ended with a panel discussion with library users from the UNC-CH community, including a professor, two grad students, and two undergrads, about their use of the library. The session was often quite amusing and clearly demonstrated the vital need for libraries to constantly educate and inform their users about the services they offer (because, frankly, some of the gaps in the panelists’ knowledge were appalling). We have to tell ‘em what we’ve got and how to use it. And then we’ve got to tell ‘em again.

MB @LAUNC-CH March 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009 11:20 am

Erik Mitchell, Kevin Gilbertson, Cristina Yu, Mary Scanlon, Ellen Daugman, Steve Kelley and I all attended the LAUNC-CH conference at Chapel Hill on March 9, 2009.
I attended the Next Generation Library Systems session from 12:45 to 2:15. That presentation, not surprisingly, focused on the
OLE Project, (Jean Ferguson and John Little were presenters) and had a presentation about Endeca, with Derek Rodriguez.

John Little, From Duke, began to discuss OLE (which stands for Open Library Environment) by asking the conference attendees the following questions to frame the logic for the development of OLE, and to wake us up since his presentation was right after lunch:

Do you believe that business processes at libraries are more similar than they are different?

Do you agree that in 10 years anything that is not digital will be invisible?

Do you agree that in 5 years your consortial arrangements will be just as important as work at your home institution?

Do you believe that any backlog longer than 6 months is irrelevant?

Do you believe that in 5 years all library work will be done on the network?

Among the attendees, the first question was resoundingly agreed to. The second, third and fourth questions much less so. The last question was pretty much 50/50 with many people responding to the “I don’t know” third option. He challenged librarians who believed his questions were false. One challenge to the “backlog” question came from a librarian who worked in special collections who maintained that when handling rare and special collections, no backlog is irrelevant. Another librarian maintained that “to the serious researcher, whether or not something is digitized is not important, so nothing is invisible” and John conceded that point.

He then moved onto an overview of the OLE project and described how the SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) would define the project’s development.The first part of the project is to be completed by July, per the terms of the grant from the Mellon Foundation.The second phase of the project, the “writing” the software phase, will then presumably be funded, and completed over the next few years.

The next speaker was Derek Rodriguez from TRLN, Triangle Research Library Network whose job is to assess metadata fitness for next generation library systems.He spoke about and then demonstrated Endeca.Endeca is a discovery and request layer that works with an ILS to allow a user to search and request from several library systems at one time.The request, if not being fulfilled through the user’s home library automatically creates an ILL request.It allows for easy sharing of materials among all of the libraries of the TRLN which includes UNC, Duke, NC State, and NCCU.

Erik@Launc-ch

Monday, March 16, 2009 11:17 am

On Monday, March 9th a whole group of ZSR librarians traveled down to Chapel Hill for the Launc-ch conference. It was my first time going and I was very impressed with how well run the conference was. While Kevin and I did a presentation on digital forsyth, I would much rather spend my time commenting on the opening keynote presented by Richard Luce, University Librarian from Emory University. Richard talked about the changing responsibility of librarians and how external factors are pushing the profession. While he spoke about a number of examples, on quote in particular really described his position. Towards the end of his talk he said that “Libraries are where our social networks and technological networks overlap.” Intriguing if only because there is no mention of many of our traditional roles of resource stewardship, or research advisor.

In other Launc-CH news, the lunch was fabu & I can’t wait to hear about the sessions that I did not have a chance to attend. .

2009 LAUNC-CH Conference

Monday, March 16, 2009 11:07 am

Mary Beth drove us to Chapel Hilll for the Conference on March 9. We arrived in time to sample a nice breakfast and met up with several colleagues from ZSR.

Rethink, Redefine, Reinvent: the Research Library in the Digital Age was this year’s theme for the LAUNC-CH Conference. It was just as well planned and organized as I had remembered. The conference is packed with exciting topics, including our own Kevin and Erik’s Digital Projects panel discussion. The one I will report on is “Outreach and Personalization.”

First Jacqueline Solis and Kim Vassiliadis presented their Course pages, which includes seventy-five courses ranging from American History to Biology to French. Each course page includes databases, reference resources, newspaper or media resources whenever appropriate, and of course, the contact information. They want to give students easy access and help them complete their assignments. They work closely with faculty to identify course goals and create a course page specific to that course. They will then have a library session to introduce the course page. They found out they are not able to do all of the classes and that not all classes need a course page. The pages that were not introduced were not used much. I was impressed, but then I heard our own Reference department is already doing it. Not being biased or anything, I liked our pages better, it is not as cluttered and it has links to all the important pages, including the Interlibrary Loan department! Thank You

After UNC library’s presentation, Richard Cox and Lynda Kellam from UNCG presented their even more aggressive approach that targets each student. They download information from Banner at the beginning of each semester to find out what each student takes and push relevant pages to them that way. It is integrated into Blackboard, so there is no reauthentisization when using databases off campus. They believe by spending less time on teaching them how to find the appropriate databes for their research, they can spend more time teaching them higher level thinking, like how to conduct a research paper. However, there is a slight problem with pulling information from Banner, since it may not be 100% accurate.

Megan von Isenburg, an Associate Director of Information Services at Duke Medical School talked about the use of Kindle for reading E-books. Kindle is an e-reader developed by Amazon.com. Over 90,000 books were available for download in 2007 and that list is growing. Megan was charged to explore and exploit new technologies to benefit their students. She got a grant to buy six Kindle E-book readers. Their text books are expensive and heavy. She likes the fact the Kindle is light weight, with no monthly fee and wireless connection, and it can also hold personal information. She gives those six Kindles to three rotation sites, so they can bring it with them to record information they gather onsite. One of the questions was raised about the possible damage or loss of the reader. She said they circulate IPod and the Kindle is about the same price. Her conclusion was that the project was successful and that getting faculty invovement is an important element.

This was a very informational session and I encourage people to experience it at least one time. The LAUNC-CH conference is always on the cutting edge. Friday Cener is easy to get to with ample parking and it is very affordable. Oh, and I can’t say enough about the food! I will stop right now before I start drooling!

Cristina

2009 LAUNC-CH Conference

Friday, March 13, 2009 4:15 pm

Rethink, Redefine, Reinvent: the Research Library in the Digital Age was the theme of this year’s Launch conference. Since so many of us attended this conference, each of will blog one presentation to avoid repetition.

In the afternoon I attended the break-out session “Changing Workforce” which I thought from the title would be about diversity in the workplace.Instead, I heard three presentations about changes in the types of work librarian perform.The first two presentations were about creating digital collections while the third was about evaluating and introducing new technology to the library.All three represented roles for librarians never contemplated by Melvil Dewey.

The first talk was jointly presented by two metadata librarians from the Duke Digital Collection.Rich Murray is the Spanish/Portuguese Cataloguer for whom metadata was added to his responsibilities.The other, Noah Huffman, joined Duke last year as Archivist for Metadata and Encoding with metadata management as a primary responsibility in his job description.They are part of a larger digital collections team that works on a distributed model; there is no digital collections department.

Together, they act in two ways: first, they establish the metadata format for a collection before the digitizing begins.They determine which elements to capture such as types of information to be catalogued and the metadata scheme to be used (Dublin Core, other). Then, they catalog the pieces by entering the appropriate information in the designated fields.

Their work differs from traditional cataloguing in that they establish a metadata template for each collection rather than following an established standard, such as AACR2.Next, they have several different digital metadata schemes on which to model their template, rather than one.Lastly, they apply tags to the images rather than the LC subject headings.Still, there are some similarities to print cataloguing: they use LC to standardize place names and they try to standardize the language in captions and tags. This process applies whether they’re beginning to digitize a new collection or migrating an existing digital collection to a new platform.

John Blyth also works to create digital collections, but he deals with the scanning, processing and saving of items born digital; these may include images, e-mails, documents or other items. He works with the Southern Historical Collection at the Wilson Library at UNC and has processed more than a hundred CDs worth of items.

Chad Haefele is the Reference Librarian for Emerging Technologies at UNC Davis Library; he evaluates new technologies to determine their appropriateness for use in the library.When he deems that they might be useful and are sufficiently well developed to be stable, he introduces them to the library staff through technology classes.In addition, he serves on a campus-wide committee that’s developed a suite of iPhone applications for Duke. One of the most interesting projects on which he has been working is to create a “my library” page for patrons.It resembles an iGoogle page with boxes that include RSS feeds for new books or films in certain subject areas, hours of operation and other items.He’s hoping to add a box that would show the patron’s account of checked out items.

These three presentations highlighted the role of technology in our work as librarians.Computer-based tools allow us to work in new ways, but at a conceptual level the work is remarkably similar to what it was in Dewey’s day.


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