Professional Development

In the 'workshops' Category...

Stephanie at NEDCC Digital Directions

Thursday, August 6, 2015 5:05 pm

Along with Chelcie, I just spent three days in Raleigh at the Northeast Document Conservation Center’s Digital Directions workshop, learning about “best practices and practical strategies for the creation, curation, and use of digital collections” – the quote is from the conference write-up and is spot on.

The conference was a good mix of high-level thinking and nitty-gritty details. I was especially happy to have the opportunity to talk with experts; a challenge with special collections is that our holdings encompass a variety of formats, including artifacts, books, papers, and various forms of audiovisual cassette, reel, and disk. I attended three sessions that discussed various aspects of audiovisual materials handling and vendor management, since these materials types are fragile and the bulk of ours are not yet digitized. As anyone who has used cassette tapes knows, AV materials have unique quirks; since digitization is the only way to preserve that content, vendors are often used to ensure quality products. In another practice-based session, the former Library Fellow for digital Special Collections at NC State University, Jason Evans Groth, described NCSU’s workflow for processing digital materials, which covers files on physical media as well as network file transfers. Archivists are responsible for preserving original records, and digital files are more difficult to keep in original condition than folders from a desk drawer.

The 30,000-foot view sessions covered a variety of topics, including copyright issues for (digital) collections, given by archivist and Berkman Center fellow Peter Hirtle, who has been a leading voice in copyright; selecting collections for digitization; and conducting risk management assessment for digital collections. Greg Colati, who leads UConn’s University Archives, Special Collections and Digital Curation unit, gave a pair of thought-provoking talks about managing digital collections for preservation and access. Those concepts are central to archives work, so I think about them a lot, but digital access and use can be very different from analog counterparts. Chelcie and I were able to have a quick probing discussion with Greg about the LSTA-funded digitization that will be taking off here soon, too, which was useful. On Wednesday afternoon, we wrapped up our Digital Directions experience with a quick visit to see NC State’s digital processing workstation, get a demo of their workflow in action, and meet the library developer who worked with Jason.

All in all, this conference provided a well-timed opportunity for me to think more deeply about how my role as Collections Archivist intersects with digital collections and digital preservation efforts. It would have been valuable had I attended solo, but being able to compare notes with Chelcie and share expertise across the days was an added bonus!

Stephanie to attend Image Permanence Institute workshop

Friday, June 26, 2015 10:57 am

Special Collections and Archives would like to announce that Collections Archivist Stephanie Bennett has been selected to attend an Image Permanence Institute (IPI) workshop, Preservation of Digitally Printed Materials in Libraries, Archives and Museums. Bennett was one of 15 participants selected from a pool of more than 50 applicants. The workshop, for which tuition of waived due to generous support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will be held October 20-22, 20115, at IPI’s facilities at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY. IPI is a nonprofit, university-based laboratory and recognized world leader in the development and deployment of sustainable practices for the preservation of images and cultural property.

Keeping Our Cool!

Thursday, April 16, 2015 1:56 pm

Let me start with having you listen to this TED talk entitled The Danger of a Single Story. It sets the tone for much of what was shared during the Winter Institute for Intercultural Communication (WIIC). During Spring Break, thanks to a scholarship from the WFU Office of Diversity and Inclusion, I was able to attend the WIIC which was held here in Winston Salem at the Embassy Suites Hotel. I enrolled in the 3-day course entitled, “Keeping Our Cool! Managing Cross Cultural Conflicts,” and taught by Donna Stringer. The primary objective of the workshop was to lead attendees through a process of understanding how our own culturally learned behaviors and perceptions can create cross-cultural misunderstandings and conflict.

During the session we took the Intercultural Conflict Style Inventory (ICSI) assessment to identify our preferred approach or style for resolving conflict. Knowing more about ourselves, our own preferred conflict style, aids in resolving disagreements, managing stress levels, more accurately interpreting the statements and actions of others, and more effectively communicating our interest to others. The institute was chunked full of high energy and thoroughly engaging conversations coupled with numerous opportunities for role playing, scenario writing and reviewing of case studies.

Of particular interest was the discussion around the two primary ways of handling conflict which was categorized as “direct” vs “indirect”. It was no real surprise to me that the assessment results indicated that I was direct. I want to get right at it. However my other indicator was right down the middle with “engagement” but like one hatch mark away from being “discussion.” I would love to have our leadership team and any interested others take this assessment. It was really eye opening to me. I have the ICSI pamphlet which describes the results, but not the actual assessment questionnaire used. Below is the chart that explains in greater detail.

A couple of statements that really resonated with me were; intent does not minimize impact. Because you didn’t mean anything by your words or actions, doesn’t mean that what the receiver felt was any less real. The second was; conflict is an opportunity for greater intimacy. I truly welcome the opportunity for more discussion. A brown bag lunch time would be super. Would you be up for this?

Ellen M. at OCLC Member Forum

Thursday, October 9, 2014 5:14 pm

Along with Monesha, I attended the first regional OCLC Member Forum at UNCG on Tuesday, October 9. The forum is a new idea for OCLC and this was only their 3rd in the country. At this time they hope to hold these forums annually.

The forum began with a short history lesson on OCLC (16,857 member institutions and 72,035 library collections with 321 million records) and an update on WorldCat Discovery and the “sunset” of FirstSearch (December 2015).

Next there were Breakout Sessions. The sessions were divided into groups discussing resource sharing, discovery and cataloging. I attended the session on resource sharing with Alisa Whitt, an OCLC Product & Services Consultant. She said her job is to sell iLLiad to libraries so she was familiar with the inter-workings of iLLiad and WorldCat. Several people in my session use OCLC’s WorldShare ILL to process their interlibrary loans so it was helpful for her to be familiar with both. While most of the enhancements that were discussed were in WorldShare ILL, she also introduced a British Library add-on that will be available in iLLiad to make those requests easier. My session had approximately 10 people so we were able to share our ideas/concerns/gripes and it certainly seemed as though the OCLC representatives there were taking notes and considering the comments made. In the past, most of my contact with OCLC has been on the receiving end of a sales pitch so it was a good change of perspective. One enhancement that was mentioned often was OCLC’s Knowledge Base which, among other things, would enable library e-journal holdings to be displayed when another library is requesting an article (thereby cutting down on time spent on cancelled requests).

I’d recommend a future Member Forum to anyone in the library who uses an OCLC product who would like to network with fellow users and have the opportunity to meet with a specialized OCLC representative.

OCLC Member Forum – UNCG

Thursday, October 9, 2014 9:55 am

I recently attended the first regional OCLC member forum held at UNCG. The meeting focused on the many changes happening with OCLC products and a better understanding of how the products work together. I went to the break out session pertaining to Cataloging and Metadata. Within this session, members were able to give feedback on issues that we have been having particularly with Connexion and make request for features that don’t exist. OCLC has a web page dedicated to the forums which include pictures, questions and feedback from the attendees. Feel free to explore at the following link

NCLA GRS Annual Meeting & Workshop

Monday, June 23, 2014 11:42 am

Recently, I attended the NCLA Government Resources Section Annual Meeting & Workshop. This event was held on the campus of Elon University and was sponsored by the Carol Grotnes Belk Library. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet with colleagues, and discuss current issues and upcoming changes within the Federal Depository Library Program and the NC statewide depository program.

Here are some of the highlights:

Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) Update
David Durant, GRS Chair & Federal Documents Librarian @ ECU
Beth Rowe, Federal Regional Depository Library Representative & Documents Librarian @ UNC-CH
During the 2014 FDLP Conference proceedings this past April, GPO unveiled a new strategic direction for the FDLP . Developed from external reports and feedback from library users and contributing institutions, the National Plan for the Future of the FDLPproposes some changes to the current program, while maintaining it’s original mission and core values. The plan has not yet been enacted, as GPO wanted to give member libraries and invested users an opportunity to provide input and feedback about what the program will become. The proposed changes include:

– a partnership with the Digital Public Library, which would serve as a host for collecting and housing materials.

– Rebranding efforts: (seems to be a trend, as GPO has adopted a new motto/slogan–Official. Digital. Secure.) FDLP (Federal Depository Library Program) will become FIALP (Federal Information Access Library Program). FIALP member libraries will become “Regional Federal Access Libraries” (currently Regional Depository Libraries) & “Federal Access Libraries” (currently Selective Depository Libraries). The possibility of changing GPO: Government Printing Office to GPO: Government Publishing Office was also mentioned (although there has already been a lot of back and forth discussion about this change with the increase of born-digital GovDocs).

– a collaborative network called the Government Information Access and Preservation Network, and a partnership program (the Federal Information Access Assurance Partners) to manage legacy print collections, promote investment in the preservation & digitization efforts, and to provide continued access to partnering government collections.

Because it is still in the planning phase, the plan is purposefully vague, presented without many details as to how the program will operate. During our discussion, concerns were expressed about how the proposed plan would impact current collaborative efforts by regional GovDocs consortia (such as ASERL). Additionally, some of my colleagues expressed their concerns over the varying tracks of focus that exist within Government Documents programs– one focused on access, and one focused on preservation, and how some depository programs may have to choose to prioritize one over the other. If you would like more information about the plan and current discussion about the proposed changes, please see GPO’s National Plan for the Future of the FDLP& ASERL Deans’ Letter to GPO re: “National Plan for the Future of FDLP”.

NC State Documents Update
Jennifer Davison, State Library of NC
Denise Jones, State Library of NC
The NC Government Publications Clearinghouseis currently focused on NC state digital publications and collections, and recent digitization efforts. The Clearinghouse manages more than 16,000 born-digital items, and 4,000 digitized items.

Jennifer shared some recent digitization projects that are available through the NC State Government Publications Collection, and some very useful Research Guides that pull together associated documents for themed NC research (such as ‘Agricultural Stats in NC‘ & ‘Native American History in NC‘). I am glad to know these exist!

Jennifer & Denise also discussed the challenges associated with managing digital state documents, such as collecting “Fugitive Documents“. These are online publications that meet all of the requirements for distribution through the government depository program, but were never submitted to the clearinghouse & therefore are not directly accessible to contributing libraries or agencies through the depository program. Apparently, it is estimated that about 50% of Federal documents are fugitive, and apparently, the percentage is even higher in NC state documents (!!).

Online Mapping Made Easy: Create a Map in 10 Minutes
Phil McDaniel, GIS Librarian @ UNC-Chapel Hill
Having a background in Geography, and an interest in datamapping and geocoding, I was admittedly jazzed for this presentation. Phil shared two mapping applications that are *free* and relatively easy for GIS beginners to create maps from their data– ArcGIS & Google Fusion Tables. Phil demonstrated uploading tabular data (that includes geographic values) with both programs, and how to modify the design and focus of your data map. Here is an example of a map that I created through the ArcGIS system, with data available from the Winston-Salem Metropolitan Planning Organization.

Winston-Salem Annual Average Daily Traffic (1981 vs 2013)

You may not believe me, but I’ve had three unique map requests from faculty members in the past year–not the typical reference request. Knowing what these programs are & the opportunities for data visualization that they provide is a good trick to have up my sleeve.
*sidebar: if you also geek-out over maps & all things GIS-related, drop me a line and let’s schedule a map-a-thon!

NC Open Government Coalition & Issues in Open Government
Jonathan Jones, Director of the NC Open Government Coalition
The North Carolina Open Government Coalitionis a nonpartisan organization that advocates for transparency in government, and the public’s access to government activity, records, and meetings. Jonathan shared with us the Coalition’s Mission and guiding principles, both of which are focused on ensuring and enhancing the public’s access to government activity, records, and meetings.

Jonathan also shared with us some common access issues that the NCOGC face, and exemptions to public record access laws (such as information related to criminal investigations, trial preparation materials, emergency response plans, autopsy photos, & email listservs).

There are some very useful resources available from the Sunshine Center’s website, aaand they have an app (NC Sunshine Center) that delightfully summarizes Public Record Laws, Open Meeting Laws, AND has a button to the NCOGC hotline (should you ever need clarification on your rights as a seeker of government information or a holder of government information).

All in all, a great meeting and workshop! I am looking forward to becoming more involved with the NCLA Government Resources Section in the future.

NCBIG Camp 2013

Friday, May 31, 2013 4:59 pm

On Friday, May 31st, Joy Gambill, Kyle Denlinger, and I attended the NCBIG Camp 2013 at UNCG’s Jackson Library. The North Carolina Bibliographic Instruction Group (NCBIG) is an NCLA discussion group, and this “unconference” was designed to be a participant-driven event, with facilitators for each of the twelve session (three breakout sessions with four facilitated discussions in each session). Joy, Kyle and I all agreed to facilitate a session. I attended a discussion on “Assessing Student Learning Outcomes“, where I got some great ideas for embedding some assessment tools in my LibGuides and learned about an excellent LibGuide on assessment from Portland State University on “Assessing Library Instruction“. Next, I attended Kyle’s session on “Technology for Teaching and Learning“, where we discussed a variety of useful tools including (yes, it is spelled that way!) “Mozilla Thimble” just to name a couple. After lunch, I facilitated a discussion on “Outreach to Students“. I was glad I had prepared a structure for the discussion, developing an icebreaker and bring flip chart paper and pens for participants to use to list their successful outreach programs and their challenges.

After everyone wrote their ideas on the flip charts, we discussed the results and found interesting differences and similarities between the K-12 and public libraries and the academic libraries. There was some interest in Humans v. Zombies and it looks like I made a connection that will get us a contingency from Winston Salem State University for the next event in October! All in all, we agreed it was a very productive day with some new and interesting ideas and some great networking with other librarians! Thanks to Joy and Kyle for a great day!

Audra presents at C2C Intro to Digitization Projects workshops

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 4:18 pm

I recently volunteered to help teach a workshop entitled “Preparing for a Digitization Project” through NC Connecting to Collections (C2C), an LSTA-funded grant project administered by the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This came about as part of an informal group of archivists, special collections librarians, and digital projects librarians interested in the future of NC ECHO and its efforts to educate staff and volunteers in the cultural heritage institutions across the state about digitization. The group is loosely connected through the now-defunct North Carolina Digital Collections Collaboratory.

Late last year, Nick Graham of the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center was contacted by LeRae Umfleet of NC C2C about teaching a few regional workshops about planning digitization projects. The workshops were created as a way to teach smaller archives, libraries, and museums about planning, implementing, and sustaining digitization efforts. I volunteered to help with the workshops, which were held in January 2011 in Hickory as well as this past Monday in Wilson.

The workshops were promoted through multiple listservs and were open to staff, board members, and volunteers across the state. Each workshop cost $10 and included lunch for participants. Many of the participants reminded me of the folks at our workshops for Preserving Forsyth’s Past! The crowd was enthusiastic and curious, asking lots of questions and taking notes. Nick Graham and Maggie Dickson covered project preparation, metadata, and the NC Digital Heritage Center (and how to get involved); I discussed the project process and digital production as well as free resources for digital publishing; and Lisa Gregory from the State Archives discussed metadata and digital preservation.

I must confess that the information was so helpful, I found myself taking notes! When Nick stepped up to describe the efforts of the Digital Heritage Center, which at this time is digitizing and hosting materials from across the state at no cost, I learned that they will be seeking nominations for North Carolina historical newspapers to digitize in the near future, and that they are also interested in accepting digitized video formats. Lisa also introduced the group to NC PMDO, Preservation Metadata for Digital Objects, which includes a free preservation metadata tool.It is always a joy to help educate repositories across the state in digitization standards and processes!

ArchiveIT 4.0 training

Friday, December 17, 2010 3:18 pm

Today Erik and Audra attended a webex session from the Internet Archive on new features in ArchiveIT 4.0. They had me from the first few minutes when they announced that this year had been named the ‘year of metadata’ at the Internet Archive!

They focused on new features including metadata searching, crawl date limiting, and improved video crawling and streaming.

They also have enhanced their reporting features, specifically introducing a URL report that shows exactly what URLs got archived during a given crawl. They also introduced a number of automatic metadata harvesting features during the seed assignment process and some new features to scope-it that helps you set constraints on specific hosts.

One interesting metadata feature they introduced was the ability to export metadata records for archived items to both MARC and MODS. I thought this was an interesting concept as a way to leverage archived content in local indexes or webservices. They also introduced a third party tool called ProxyToggle, a Firefox plug-in that helps do quality control testing on archived content.

PDC Workshop: Managing Upward

Wednesday, April 14, 2010 9:48 pm

When I saw the PDC posting for a seminar on “Managing Upward” I was attracted by the possibilities! In my position as Director of RITS, one of my most important responsibilities is to act as an advocate for my 14 team members and do my best to secure the resources they need to advance the mission of the library and to implement new ideas and programs. Often it is not only a question of “selling” to the Library Dean (AKA Lynn), but to influence other departments (for instance, IS) that an idea or proposal is desirable. The objectives of the workshop touched on some of the skills that are important to success in this area: identifying my influence style, finding how to leverage different types of “power”, how to build trust, and identifying tactics to align with my boss and enhance our working relationship.

I was joined at the workshop by others from ZSR Library (Leslie, Steve and Chris) who had their own objectives for the morning, so you may hear a different take on some of the ideas presented and discussed.

The first part of the day was spent exploring the idea of influence. Influence was defined as “the power and ability to effect the actions, behavior and/or the opinions of others.” It is important to recognize your “natural” influencing style, but just as important to understand the type of style is preferred by those you need to influence! Four different types of influencing techniques were identified, each with different “buckets”:

  • Reasoning (buckets: Rational Persuasion, Legitimizing). Using logical arguments and evidence or using your authority can be useful when there is not a lot of time and there is need for quick decision making.
  • Participating (buckets: Collaboration, Consultation Building, Alliance Building). This is a technique that we use often in the library where we seek buy-in to move an initiative forward. It also is a viable approach when you don’t know the answer and need input, or when you have an idea but can’t pull it off alone!
  • Reciprocating (buckets: Exchange, Pressure). This one was described by a participant as the “carrot or stick” approach. You can exchange support for your needs by promising support for theirs. This approach is also the only where you can put pressure on through such techniques as persistent reminders.
  • Relating (buckets: Personal Appeal, Inspirational Appeal, Ingratiating). This the the type of influence where you appeal to loyalty, values and ideals, or use compliments to gain support.

Next, we talked briefly about bases of power that each person may have: Reward (Do you have the power to reward the person who you are trying to influence?), Coercive ( Do you have the ability to withhold from or punish the person?), Referent (Do you have the ability to influence based on your personal attributes?), Expert (Are you the subject expert?), and Legitimate (Is your ability to influence due to your formal role and responsibilities?). When talking about having personal power to influence, we are talking about referent power and it is based totally on trust.

How do we become trusted? The discussion of trust was broken down into two major components: personal capacity for trust and transactional trust. All of us have some kind of foundation for how we think about trust. It is usually shaped at an early age by such things as family stability, loss and feeling trusted by others. I might be a person who presumes trust until someone proves they don’t deserve it. Or I may be a skeptic who requires a person to prove they are trustworthy. This shapes how we think about trust but it’s helpful to understand how the people we want to influence feel personally about trust as well. Additionally, we build trust through transactions and every one of these transactions either builds or erodes trust. Transactional trust is broken into three areas and each of us has one that is our “trust” strength: communication, contractual and competence.

  • Communication Trust is fostered by openly sharing information, not surprising people at the last minute, being candid about your own feelings and asking or and being receptive to feedback without defensiveness.
  • Contractual Trust is fostered by making and keeping agreements, doing what you say you are going to do, not over-promising/under-delivering, making it right when you’re wrong, holding others accountable for their agreements and being willing to make a commitment.
  • Competence Trust is fostered by demonstrating respect for people’s skills, supporting acquisition of new skills, providing a safe place for people to learn from mistakes, not micro0managing, providing whole projects (not just tasks), and giving challenging assignments outside a person’s safe zone.

We were asked to pick which one of these was our natural tendency. Most of us chose “contractual” but I must report Steve’s strength was “communication” and Chris was the lone person to self-select “competence.” The interesting part of this exercise was the instructor’s premise that whichever of these is your primary strength is probably the one for which you set the highest standards for others. So if I am contractual and my boss isn’t, I will have difficulty if she doesn’t value meeting deadlines (no worries there!). Again, understanding how the people you want to influence value the different transactional trusts can help inform how you approach them.

Finally, we quickly covered the ways to align with your boss. These were all things that (in my opinion) are basic common sense things (but important):

  • Know what your boss cares about
  • Make the most of time with your boss
  • Help your boss be successful
  • Don’t surprise your boss (I can vouch for that one!)
  • Don’t approach your boss with only problems
  • Clarify mutual expectations early and often
  • Admit mistakes
  • Take 100% responsibility for the relationship with your boss

I found the workshop to be useful in that it validated many things I intrinsically know, but it was good reinforcement to hear it articulated in a formal presentation!

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