ellie <3 libraries

sooooo much!

ALA 2009 – Bringing the Immersion Program Back Home July 11, 2009

Filed under: ALA 2009,Conferences — ellie @ 5:00 pm

Bringing the Immersion Program Back Home
Find out what the ACRL Immersion program can do for you and your institution! Immersion Program alumni will describe significant learning experiences gained from the program, and how they applied this experience to transform their teaching and their IL programs. Discover the benefits and outcomes of the Immersion Program and gain insight into the application process through the panel discussion and poster sessions. This program is sponsored by the ACRL Immersion Program Committee.
Speakers: Amy Mark, Coordinator of Library Instruction and Associate Professor, University of Mississippi; Jim Hahn, Orientation Services Librarian, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Monica Fusich, Head of Instruction and Outreach Services, California State University, Fresno; Merinda Kaye Hensley, Visiting Assistant Librarian for Instructional Services, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

I was excited about this program because we’ll be doing a 2 day teaching boot camp kind of thing at my work.

The speakers all agreed that Immersion is an intense experience – both theoretical and practical.

Merinda went to both teaching and program track. She had three big concepts she wanted to share:

1. A learning community

  • learning that allows questioning underlying assumptions
  • ex: are we pushing our own agendas too hard on students, faculty, etc.?
  • she asked students where they struggle in the research process

2. Learning outcomes and assessment

  • decided pre and post test weren’t feasible
  • use the 1 minute essay

3. Inspiring a shared vision

Monica focused on the program track. She already had a lot of teaching experience. A change she made – she switched all basic instruction to online tutorials. She created an assignment research calculator. She shared her goals for attending – she wanted to learn latest instructional developments, see the big picture and learn tips and tricks from IL leaders and colleagues.

learn latest instructional developments

  • lots of readings as prep
  • had to write history of your institution and SWOT of your program

She also emphasized what a bonding experience it was, but she ran short on time and didn’t get to finish up.

Jim changed his library’s tour. Now, in the FYE class everyone has to grab a book that is authentic to them (their major, whatever) and then do a show and tell. He talked about the video of re-engineering the shopping cart and how that inspired him to be a leader in overthrowing the tyranny of “it’s been done before.” He also said that a good way to avoid burnout is to try different things and that you get a great cohort and look at the library in a new way.


ALA 2009 – Librarian/Scholar: From Research Question to Results

Filed under: ALA 2009,Conferences — ellie @ 3:00 pm

Librarian/Scholar: From Research Question to Results
Have an idea for a research project, but don’t know where to start? Our learned panel will inspire you to think critically about your research question, methodology, research process and publishing/presenting your results. Insight on best practices and common missteps in the process will be provided, while active researchers in our field will share their experiences with qualitative and quantitative research. Join us as we explore how to become skillful and motivated researchers. This program will be followed by the EBSS Research Forum.
Speakers: Peter Hernon, Professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, Simmons College; Robert V. Labaree, Head, Von-KleinSmid Center Library, University of Southern California; Penny Beile, Head, Curriculum Materials Center, University of Central Florida

I walked in to this one late from lunch with a new friend. The speaker was talking about choosing a method appropriate for your research question. He chose content analysis since the data was already present in his case. He gave an overview of qualitative methodology and cautioned that you have to be careful not to assume causal relationships.

The next speaker discussed quantitive methodology. This was a prerecorded narrated powerpoint. Overall this presentation was a little too basic for me to pull much from. Except when it jumped into methods without explinations, then it was over my head. Very odd combination.


ALA 2009 – Library Research Round Table – Research to Understand Users; Issues and Approaches

Filed under: ALA 2009,Conferences — ellie @ 12:00 pm

Library Research Round Table – Research to Understand Users; Issues and Approaches
This session will feature three library-related research papers investigating users and their use of libraries and information. An LRRT committee will select the winning papers based on quality of study design, significance of the research topic, and potential for significant contribution to librarianship. Topics include: Community public-access computers, Online Community of Individuals in Crisis, Recreational Reading in Academic Libraries.

Note to all presenters – the slide just hanging out on the scree before the presentation starts should be the name of the program as written on the schedule to assure people they’re in the right place. This one was showing the title slide of the first presenter – “Insights from the Under-Served in Rural Washington” – S. Patricia Rempel PhD

This session is one of 4 on research from LRRT.

All three of the studies were very interesting. The first had a very finely delimited research question: What are the perceived reasons for access and usage of public-access computers among Spanish-speaking adults in agricultural communities of the Yakima Valley?

One of her study findings was that a mastery of email provided a personal sense of having crossed the digital divide, of empowerment. Yet another reason I feel that my library should start offering introductory computer classes for our students.

The second was my graduate adviser – Lynn Westbrook – Silent Crises: Understanding the Information Landscape in an Online Community of Individuals in Crisis. It focuses on intimate partner violence. Lynn stressed that this is an ongoing project. She gave an overview of her research, stressing the places that libraries have expertise that is applicable, in particular, helping women find local resources (books, people, websites, etc.) and connecting them with online support communities.  Her presentation is available on her website.

The final presentation was – Reading Matters: Examining the Role of Recreational Reading in Academic Libraries. I particularly liked how the researchers debunked some of the “reading is declining” studies that have been circulating. They addressed barriers to student leisure reading. Time was the biggest one, but they also found that students loved lists and challenges/competitions. They’ll be creating a separate fiction area pulled out from LC, setting up reading nooks, creating reading lists and starting a book blog.


ALA 2009 – Closing the Gap: Making Information Literacy Seamless Across K-16

Filed under: ALA 2009,Conferences — ellie @ 10:00 am

Closing the Gap: Making Information Literacy Seamless Across K-16
The alignment between ACRL’s Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education and AASL’s Standards for the 21st-Century Learner will be presented. Short presentations will follow highlighting effective collaboration between K-12 and higher education library personnel to bridge the information gap. The session will close by sharing resources to facilitate similar collaborative efforts, including a resentation about the Committee’s toolkit.
Speakers: Judi Repman, Professor

IMG_3866Closing the Gaps is a big initiative in Texas right now, so I was interested in see what others were doing with this initiative. The shuttle ride was longer than I expected, so I wound up missing the first presenter. When I arrived Jane Prestebak was sharing her personal background, then moved on to sharing her project – a Research Project Calculator – based on student standards for Minnesota. They had the goal of breaking the research process into meaningful steps. It was based on an Assignment Calculator developed by another university. That original calculator had 12 steps, they took it down to 5 steps (with subsets). They felt it was important to start with a question, then ask the student to make a value judgment.  Asking students to write “about cats” invited copying. Whereas ‘Cats make better pets than dogs’ invites debate.

A couple of other takeaways that I really enjoyed:

  • The suggestion to perform research aloud – model the process. Don’t focus on here’s the print button, etc. Instead talk about what the results are, what you think of them, which articles you might be interested in and why.
  • Dribbling analogy – when you teach kids to play basketball you have a lot of dribbling practice. Translate that into information literacy practice exercises. For example – have the students summarize an article every Friday. This one fit well with the story about math as mental weightlifting that I read about in Made to Stick.

There was a fair amount of time spent on discussion standards, core collections, etc. which is not what I came for, but the last presenter had some very engaging and inspiring stories of collaborations he was able to facilitate in his incredibly rural area. He pulled groups of people (students, librarians, etc.) together on Wimba and let them set their own agendas, some of  which just included talking about what it was like in the country vs. the city, but also moved on to citation software. He also shared a story of working with what you have – example of guy with no budget for books, magazines, etc. But he can catalog, lead to donations.

All the links will be on the ALA Connect Site – K-16 Information Literacy Group.