Professional Development

In the 'Uncategorized' Category...

Lynn’s version of CNI in St. Louis

Sunday, April 13, 2014 8:24 pm

Chelcie has already reported on her experience at the Coalition for Networked Information in St. Louis, so I will add my version. One of my goals for this series of biannual meetings is to introduce the talents of our librarians to the national community of library and IT people. Last year it was Kyle and ZSRx. This year it was Chelcie and her work with the Digital Public Library of America. She did a splendid job, I can attest. She and her co-presenter had communicated beforehand and coordinated their presentations. People were lined up afterward to talk to both of them, including DPLA founder, Dan Cohen.

The CNI meeting itself started with a conversation between CNI Executive Director Cliff Lynch and his guest, Bryan Alexander, Senior Fellow National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education. They first started talking about MOOCs, always of interest to me, and Alexander said while there are still plenty of challenges, he sees them in the Gartner hype cycle as coming out of the trough of disillusionment and starting up the slope of enlightenment. He also saw a place for them in the world of libraries and museums (yay for ZSRx!), saying they had good content to offer and it would give them good publicity.

I went to a program on “Fostering a graduate research community with digital scholarship programs and services,” because I am always looking for ways to strengthen our support for graduate research. The University of Oregon invented an interdisciplinary New Media and Culture certificate program that counts as a transcripted credential but adds no more to the time of degree completion. Ingenious.

“Four Questions You Should Never Ask in Evaluation/Assessment in Libraries and IT, and a Number of Questions that You Should!” was a fun talk on assessment (or as fun as assessment can be). We were cautioned against ambiguous questions, double-barreled questions, substituting usage for quality, over-emphasis on statistical significance, and both overpowering and underpowering a test.

Another useful session on assessment was “Assessment of e-book strategies.” Claremont College did a study of ebook usage for texts that were on reserve. They found that high usage while on reserve justified their purchase for their entire shelf life (might we try e-book format for our own Textbook Collection??). University of Richmond found that usage was highest in the social sciences. Long-form reading is discouraging in the humanities and law. Their DDA usage led to a drop in firm orders, which would probably happen here if we did not actively seek to prevent it. Lafayette College had policies and practices similar to ours and found that DDA costs were less than print costs.

The one program I wanted to attend but did not was “Transforming Community with Strategic Social Media.” I noticed it because the speakers were from Montana State University, where our own WFU alum Nilam Patel found a job this fall as a social media strategist. I went and introduced myself after their talk and then found their slides on the outstanding Twitter feed that Chelcie mentioned. We should study their success and learn from them.

During my stay, I also toured Washington University St. Louis where my long-time friend and colleague Jeff Trzciak is the University Librarian. It is a beautiful library on a beautiful campus. On Monday night, Chelcie and I attended a dinner for Wake Forest parents and alumni, arranged by one of the regional officers in Advancement. It was a good group and we made several contacts that we will pursue. So, all things considered, it was a very good trip!

 

 

 

 

Spring Training at Duke

Friday, April 4, 2014 10:42 am

Winter is over. It’s time to shake out the kinks: hit a few balls, scoop up a few grounders, run the bases and try to throw the ball from left field to home plate. That kind of thing is what I did this week on a visit to Duke University’s Conservation Services Lab. Thanks to Tanya Zanish-Belcher for encouraging me and to Beth Doyle, the Leona B. Carpenter Senior Conservator and Head, for arranging the training. I was fortunate to have an afternoon with Erin Hammeke, Conservator for Special Collections and the Conservation staff (Tedd Anderson, Rachel Penniman, and Mary Yordy). For me, the afternoon was wonderful and a time to talk turkey with like-minded people.

Erin Hammeke performs magic

Erin began with an overview of the types of leather encountered on books from various regions: sheep and calf for American and English bindings; calf and pig for German; goat for Spanish and Italian bindings. Erin advised us to consider the type of leather before attempting a repair as well as using a leather consolidant,like Klucel G (which is the one I use). She then demonstrated sharpening her lifting knife on a leather strop and proceeded to lift the leather from the spine of a book. We all the a chance to practice on discarded books.

Lifting leather

Erin demonstrated three techniques for joining loose boards to a leather bound book. These methods are the Etherington tissue hinge( Etherington 1995, 2006), which I have been using, and which employs Japanese tissue internally and externally to re-attach loose boards.

The second method, board tacketing (Espinosa and Barrios 1991) is a technique which involves drilling small holes through the shoulder and loose board of a book and joining them with linen thread.

Tackets

The third method is the Brock hinge (Brock 2001, 2006) which uses a piece of cloth, attached at the head and tail of a book to strengthen the board attachment.

Following this, Mary Yordy demonstrated a technique that she developed to reinforce the head or tail of a leather bound book. This technique, which uses L-shaped pieces of Japanese paper glued inside the spine, should be very useful when a book is in tact but has a partially damaged spine.

This was a very enlightening and useful training day. I learned some great techniques, discovered a few new tools and materials, and met new friends. Thank you Duke Conservation!

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.

 

 

 

Sarah at “Data in the Life Sciences: Managing, Protecting, and Complying” Workshop

Monday, March 17, 2014 2:44 pm

On March 6th, I attended a one-day workshop on “Data in the Life Sciences: Managing, Protecting, and Complying” presented by N.C. A&T State University and Indiana University at the Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering. Stacy Konkiel, Science Data Management Librarian, poignantly stated that the data sharing mandate will accelerate the speed of discovery. The Science Data Management Librarian works with library metadata specialists on workflows. She also mentioned that IRB regulations are important to consider regarding the privacy and confidentiality of data, and reuse and distribution are subject to IRB regulation.

Here are some highlighted sites for further reading for those interested:
IUPUI Data Works
IU Scholar Works
IU Research Policies
UITS Scholarly Data Archive
Konkiel’s presentation slides are available here.

Thomas Doak talked about his work at the National Center for Genome Analysis Support. Since I am interested in bioinformatics and will go to NIH in April to participate in a second NLM bioinformatics course, I learned about two sites from Doak’s presentation:
Next Generation Genomics: World Map of High Throughput Sequencers

Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE)

Anurag Shankar spoke from a university IT service perspective about the Federal Information Security Management Act of 2002 (FISMA) on IT compliance. IT compliance requires knowledge of regulations, information security, and risk. His work at Indiana University involves assessing risk, performing gap analysis, filling gaps, and then creating and executing a risk management plan. He recommended performing semi-annual security reviews. This informative workshop increased my awareness of data management issues, and it will enhance my work as a science librarian and liaison.

 

Leslie at MLA 2014

Saturday, March 15, 2014 4:38 pm

This year’s Music Library Association conference was held in Atlanta. It was a very productive meeting for me: I got a lot of continuing education in RDA, the new cataloging standard; and an opportunity to renew contacts in the area of ethnomusicology (music area studies), having learned just before leaving for MLA that our Music Department plans to add an ethnomusicologist to their faculty.

RDA

The impact of RDA, one year after its adoption by the Library of Congress, was apparent in the number of sessions devoted to it during the general conference, not just the catalogers’ sessions sponsored by the Music OCLC Users Group. I learned about revisions made to the music rules in the RDA manual, in MLA’s “Best Practices” document, and in the various music thesauri we use. (So if you see a “Do Not Disturb” sign on my door, you’ll know I have a lot of re-reading to do, all over again!). One sign of the music library community’s clout: MLA’s Best Practices will be incorporated into the official RDA manual, with links integrated into the text alongside LC’s policy statements. In a session on RDA’s impact on public services, I was gratified to find that almost all the talking points presented by the speakers had been covered in my own presentation to our liaisons back in September.

PRESERVATION AND COPYRIGHT

LC gave a report on its National Recordings Preservation Plan (NRPP), which began in February 2013. The group has developed 31 recommendations, which will be presented at hearings scheduled for this year by the US Office of Copyright, covering the entire copyright code, including section 108, orphan works, and pre-1972 sound recordings (the ones not covered by federal law, leaving librarians to navigate a maze of state laws). Also to be presented: a proposed “digital right of first sale,” enabling libraries and archives to perform their roles of providing access and preservation for born-digital works whose licensing currently prohibits us doing so. In the meantime, best-practices documents have been developed for orphan works (by UC Berkeley) and fair use for sound recordings (by the NRPP).

ONLINE LICENSING ISSUES

Perennial, and always interesting, sessions are held at MLA on the ongoing problem of musical works and recordings that are issued only online, with licensing that prohibit libraries and archives from acquiring them. An MLA grant proposal aims to develop alternative licensing language that we can use with recording labels, musicians, etc., allowing us to burn a CD of digital-only files. A lively brainstorming session produced additional potential solutions: an internet radio license, which would stream a label’s catalog to students, at the same time generating revenue for the label; placing links to labels in our catalogs, similar to the Google links that many OPACS feature for books, offering a purchase option; raising awareness among musicians, many of whom are unaware of the threat to their legacies, by speaking at music festivals, and asking the musicians themselves to raise public awareness, perhaps even by writing songs on the topic; capturing websites that aggregate music of specific genres, etc., in the Internet Archive or ArchiveIt; collaborating with JSTOR, PORTICO, and similar projects to expand their archiving activities to media.

DIGITAL HUMANITIES

This hot topic has begun to make its impact on the music library community, and MLA has established a new round table devoted to it. In a panel session, music librarians described the various ways they are providing support for, and collaborating with, their institutions’ DH centers. Many libraries are offering their liaisons workshops and other training opportunities to acquire the technical skills needed to engage with DH initiatives.

OTHER TECHNOLOGICAL PROJECTS

In a panel session on new technologies, we heard from a colleague at the University of Music and Drama in Leipzig, Germany, who led a project to add facets in their VuFind-based discovery layer for different types of music scores (study scores, performance scores, parts, etc.); a colleague at Haverford who used MEI, an XML encoding scheme designed for musical notation, to develop a GUI interface (which they named MerMEId) to produce a digital edition of a 16th-century French songbook, also reconstructing lost parts (we’ve been hearing about MEI for some years — nice to see a concrete example of its application); an app for the Ipad, developed by Touch Press, that offers study aids for selected musical works (such as Beethoven’s 9th symphony) allowing you to compare multiple recordings while following along with a modern score or the original manuscript (which automatically scrolls with the audio), watch a visualization tool that shows who’s playing when in the orchestra, and read textual commentary, some in real time with the audio; a consortium’s use of Amazon’s cloud service to host an instance of Avalon, an audio/video streaming product developed by Indiana U, to support music courses at their respective schools; and ProMusicDB, a project that aims to build an equivalent to IMDB for pop music.

Jeff at LAUNC-CH 2014

Thursday, March 13, 2014 3:47 pm

For my first ZSR-sponsored professional gathering I attended the 2014 LAUNC-CH Conference in Chapel Hill with Steve Kelley and Sarah Jeong on March 10. This was a new experience for me in two ways: 1) It was my first non-law library conference, and 2) It was my first North Carolina librarian gathering. In past years I’ve attended the annual American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) meeting in July – the law equivalent of ALA – as well as a few local/regional conferences.

A main point for me was to begin to get acquainted with the NC library community. I’ve been pleased so far to find that the non-law library world is talking about many of the same things I’d had occasion to consider previously: where the library fits into a 21st-century research university’s mission, how to manage modern collections (and pay for them), etc. My experience at LAUNC-CH mirrored what I’ve experienced in general in my new position, in that it didn’t feel so very foreign or unfamiliar. Thanks to Sarah and Steve, I met some new people.

I attended presentations on integrating library instruction into online courses using Sakai at UNC’s Sloane Art Library; the methodology and findings of a UNCG survey on faculty data-management practices and needs; Emory’s new Center for Digital Scholarship; and a collaborative collection development arrangement between Duke and UNC in the areas of Middle-Eastern and Slavic Studies. There were also several lightning talks of 5 minutes apiece on a variety of fun topics, including hip-hop sampling and the restoration of an 1850′s schoolhouse.

Nancy Fried Foster, Senior Anthropologist at Ithaka S+R, was the keynote speaker. In “Designing Academic Libraries for New Ways of Research” she talked about using ethnographic methods to assess the research practices of students and faculty, emphasizing the importance of looking beyond what people self-report as their needs, and interpreting the underlying meaning. She called for “design beyond precedent”: breaking away from old metaphors and re-conceptualizing our fundamental library systems and services in order to address the real needs of modern researchers. This was the theme of the day.

Rebecca at the Modern Archives Institute

Monday, February 17, 2014 4:28 pm
Archives I

Archives I

Recently, I had the great pleasure of attending the Modern Archives Institute (MAI) at the National Archives and Record Administration (NARA) in Washington, DC. This was a two week intensive archival training course covering all aspects of archival work. Held twice a year (January and June) the MAI session I attended was the 115th. With thirty two attendees from all over the United States, this was a tremendous learning experience for all of us. The format was mostly lectures by professionals in the field as well as some tours, hands-on exercises, and plenty of time for discussion. Although we all had a wonderful time and saw some really cool stuff, priority number one was learning as much as possible.

Reading materials

Reading materials

The first week was spent at “Archives I” which many of you may know as the main NARA building in downtown Washington, DC. We were guided throughout the two week course by the amazing Mary Rephlo and welcomed the first morning by the Archivist of the United States, David Ferriero. We had roughly eight hour days of lectures on topics including: introduction to archives, overview of records management, appraisal & acquisition, arrangement & description, archival management, grants, and archives & law. We were lectured by leaders in the field with years of experience. I cannot express how grateful I am to have been able to sit in on the first week of lectures and would be happy to discuss each and every one further.

Archives II

Archives II

 

Week two appropriately kicked off with two days at “Archives II” in College Park, Maryland. For our class, Archives II was all about non-textual materials. We attended lectures on and took tours of: preservation, conservation, cartographic records, photographic records, A/V media preservation and reformatting, and electronic records.

One of many Preservation labs at Archives II

One of many Preservation labs at Archives II

These sessions were invaluable in addressing the much messier, confusing, and sometimes un-readable materials that lurk in archival collections.

Obsolete media

Obsolete media

 

We continued our week at Archives I with an immersion day into education, access, exhibits, and reference. As you can imagine, like so much of what we learned at NARA, the scale they work on is slightly larger than what we do here. It was inspiring to see, however, how important of a priority they make these aspects of archival management. As well as one arranges, describes, and preserves the records, they mean nothing if no one knows about them, uses them, or sees them.

Archives I Rotunda

Archives I Rotunda

 

We spent our penultimate day at the Library of Congress where the Manuscript Division hosted our visit. We had a very inspiring presentation by Laura Kells and Meg MacAleer, two processing archivists, titled “The Truth Behind Original Order: Or What To Do If A Collection Shows Up In Garbage Cans.” Although the LC Manuscript Division is also working on a scale far larger than ZSR, it was great to hear from two archivists who are working with personal papers and manuscript collections rather than large government record groups.

Original manuscript of Rhapsody in Blue

Original manuscript of Rhapsody in Blue

As you may imagine, we got to go on some pretty cool tours at the Library of Congress. Both the Music Manuscript Division and the Rare Books and Special Collections Division pulled out some treasures to show off to us gawking visitors.

Draft of "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music

Draft of "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music

The Lincoln Bible!!

The Lincoln Bible!!

Woodrow Wilson's Nobel Peace Prize (that's my hand)

Woodrow Wilson's Nobel Peace Prize (that's my hand)

 

After picking ourselves up off of the floor of The Library of Congress, we spent our last day back at Archives I discussing ethics and ongoing professional issues. It was a bittersweet day for our group knowing it was all over but we were excited to get back to our institutions to use the knowledge we had acquired. I am inspired by all of the professionals I met on this trip and equipped with information and a solid network of people to turn to with questions. I am confident that each and every lecture I attended will inform the work I do here at ZSR and will impact the Archives positively. Thank you to everyone here who made it possible and to my teachers and cohort in Washington, DC. This was a once in a lifetime experience! I would be happy to talk anyone’s ear off about the minute details I have written in my notes and floating around in my head.

 

Sarah at the 2014 ALA Midwinter Conference in Philadelphia

Monday, February 3, 2014 4:56 pm

Throughout last fall, I participated in monthly virtual Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA) Executive Board meetings, and it was great to see the planned events come to fruition at the ALA Midwinter Conference in Philadelphia. I spent Friday afternoon at the Asian Arts Initiative, where I heard talks on the South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA) by Samip Mallick and about Philadelphia’s Asian American community by Amanda Bergson-Shilcock of the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians and Mary Yee of Asian Americans United. We had a great turnout and enjoyed a catered lunch from Philadelphia Chutney Company.

On Friday evening, I attended the APALA Executive Board meeting at the convention center, where I provided the APALA Mentoring Committee Report. Early Saturday morning, I participated in the ACRL Science & Technology Section (STS) Continuing Education Committee meeting. I am responsible for maintaining the Guide to Professional Development Resources for Science & Technology Librarians. On Saturday afternoon, I attended the APALA All Committees meeting and discussed plans of the Local Arrangements Task Force for the upcoming ALA Annual Conference.

On Saturday evening, I went to Karma Restaurant for the APALA Midwinter Dinner and listened to an excellent talk by authors Ellen Oh (The Prophecy Series, originally The Dragon King Chronicles), Soman Chainani (New York Times bestseller The School for Good and Evil) and publisher Phoebe Yeh of Crown Books for Young Readers.

Although my ALA Midwinter was busy with APALA and ACRL STS meetings, it was great to catch up with colleagues and meet new people, as well.

NC-LITe at High Point University

Friday, December 20, 2013 2:35 pm

On Wednesday, Amanda, Hu, Joy, and I made the quick drive to High Point University for the winter meeting of NC-LITe, a small (but growing!) group of North Carolina librarians interested in learning and sharing about technology and library instruction. It’s a great opportunity for cross-pollination, and I’m starting to make some great professional relationships with people I’ve met through NC-LITe. I’m always excited for NC-LITe, but this time I think all of us were excited for one reason in particular.

One of the *many* decorated trees. This building smelled like cookies.

One of the *many* decorated trees.

Sharing

The turnout this time was great–there were about 30 librarians from universities all over North Carolina. Each campus shared some updates, then there were a handful of lightning talks, including our own Hu Womack, who talked about the very exciting pilot project of using a class set of Kindle Fire tablets in his LIB210 class. Here are some other highlights:

  • HPU has some beautiful and heavily-used new library instruction spaces. They’re currently partnering with their English department to integrate online information literacy tutorials into first-year writing seminars, and currently five librarians are teaching a one-credit “research in writing” seminar in conjunction with the English department. They’re also doing a lot of support for faculty who want to assign multimedia projects.
  • UNCG just went to a new team-based model for their liaison and instruction folks: the way I understand it, instruction and scholarly communication people work in functional teams that support the work of liaisons in subject teams. For example, there’s a team for instructional design that can work alongside a subject team that wants to do some ID work. They’re also expanding the services and spaces they offer in their Digital Media Commons–they now have a gaming lab, a small makerspace, and lots of support for multimedia assignments (sensing a theme yet?).
  • Duke is continuing their work with MOOCs. Right now, each Duke MOOC (DOOC?) is assigned a subject librarian. It wasn’t mentioned what kind of work they do for the MOOCs, and I didn’t get a chance to ask, but you can read more about it here.
  • NCSU recently opened some new spaces in the new Hunt Library (which we visited last time). Their media spaces are now open, and to get them just right, they brought in a rock musician, who is also developing multimodal courses at NCSU, as a consultant. They seem to be focusing quite a lot on integrating themselves into multimodal courses and multimedia production, so the library has loose support teams that spin up every time an instructor wants students to create, say, podcasts or websites as part of a course.

Useful Tools & Resources

One of my favorite things about NC-LITe is that I always come away from it with a few new toys to play with and resources to explore. Here are some of the best that came out of the breakout sessions:

  • Amanda mentioned Doctopus and gClassFolders, two scripts in Google Drive that make collaborative student work a breeze. I’ve been using Doctopus for a while now, and I think it’s the bee’s knees.
  • Edmodo, which is used heavily in K-12, is more of a social network for learning–quite far removed from our nearest equivalent, Sakai.
  • Socrative is a rapid-feedback response system that seems to be getting a lot of attention lately.
  • Of those libraries that are supporting multimedia projects, nearly all of them mention Penn State University’s Media Commons and the University of Richmond’s Digital Storytelling as those efforts they’re trying to emulate. Samantha Harlow at HPU did a great job modifying the PSU multimedia assignment guide for her faculty.

Campus Tour

HPU’s campus is pretty impressive. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves, but what you can’t see from the photos is that everything smelled like fresh-baked cookies. More photos here and here. Thanks, Joy and Hu, for taking pictures!

Kyle and Hu embarrassing Amanda

Kyle and Hu embarrassing Amanda

We caught up with Anna!

We caught up with Anna!

Joy, in her element.

Joy, in her element.

Kyle, in a moment of thought.

Kyle, in a moment of thought.

Hu: "This is my dream retirement gig."

Hu: "This is my dream retirement gig."


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