Thursday, December 21, 2006
Monday, December 18, 2006
We had a very successful study break in Carlson Library
last night. There were about 150 students, which meant the
line snaked around in front of the circulation desk. We gave
out paper bags, so students could easily take the food away and
get back to studying. And in fact, within a half an hour, they were
all back at their seats working.
On the "menu" - clementines, apples, bags of chips, granola
bars, cookies, donuts, soda, water, juice, Hershey kisses, cow
tales, and fire balls.
Friday, December 15, 2006
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Taylor passed away on November 28, 2006. I feel very sad.
She was a lovely women and an excellent reference librarian.
She really loved her work. I can remember laughing with her
about being a "Cougar Doll", which is the name of the University
of Houston Cheerleaders.
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
The Society of Physics Students took the department chair to lunch and raved
about how the Physics-Optics-Astronomy (POA) Library is their second home. That afternoon he came to check out the library and brought a camera. By the next day, there was a very nice write up on the department's homepage. It doesn't get much better than that!
Monday, November 20, 2006
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
It is just crazy in Carlson this semester. There are already students working when I come in at 8:30 a.m. When I left last night at six, every computer on the first floor was in use and every big table was filled with students working. What's going on? I'm guessing it's no single thing, but a combination of a whole bunch of things.
1. They accepted 200 more students than usual this year. Apparently there are lots of freshmen living in triples. I guess I would want to come to the library rather than studying in a crowded dorm room with two other people.
2. We renovated a second group study room that can be reserved for workshops. A whole group of students who normally would never have come to Carlson are "forced" to come here. Once they find us, do they come back to study?
3. Free coffee in Carlson seems to gone through the roof. In particular there is a rush on the coffee between 4 and 6 p.m.. There are workshops scheduled from 6:30 to 8: 30. Blick. I guess they just pump themselves up on caffeine to make it through.
4. Lots of students used to study in the Management Library in Rush Rhees. With that entire area under renovation, those students have been displaced to somewhere. Is it Carlson?
5. We didn't exactly get *new* computers on the third floor, but we moved them out of the scanky computer room right into the middle of a big study area. It seems very public to me, but the students are crazy for them. They're certainly in use every minute of every day.
6. And why are they (someone??) doing jig saw puzzles at such an incredible pace??? We put one out during the summer, just as an experiment. Now we're putting a new one out at least once a week, sometimes more often than that. I have no idea what's up with this but someone is keeping busy at night!
Thursday, November 02, 2006
The Scare Fair was a huge success again this year. The original idea came from student complaints that the stacks were scary, which in fact, they are. We decided to capitalize on the scary issue and hold a "Scare Fair". One of the main activities is to introduce students to the stacks. We do a "stack stalk" where they have to find three books by call number. The reward is a ticket to go up in the tower on the top of Rush Rhees library. The tower of the library is the focal point of campus and it is only open one day a year, so this is a big deal. Every year I think the students won't do it. It's too dorky. But every year, they do it. They run through the stacks and laugh and shriek. They find their books, they get a piece of candy, they go up in the tower. It's all good.
We also had a fortune teller this year. Again, it sounds dorky, but students lined up to have their fortunes told. In addition to a fortune we gave them a "ticket to success". The ticket had the name of their librarian, picture, email, etc. The punch line, "we hope there is a librarian in your future". The idea for this came from our undergraduate research project where we have learned that students have no idea what a librarian can do for them or even that there is such a thing as a subject librarian.
Monday, October 30, 2006
Our talk, "Using Ethnographic Methods to Know Your Users ", went well. I think in particular the list of things we thought were true before we started the project and proved to be true versus the list of things we thought were true about undergraduates before we started the project and proved NOT to be true was quite useful. Turns out we all can learn something by actually talking to students.
I loved the session on Second Life. That Lori Bell makes me laugh and laugh. She's right, sex and gambling do lead the way in technological innovations.
Darlene Fichter and Frank Cervone are a fabulous team. I know that everyone else has seen this pair before, but it was completely new to me. It's really really hard to do a joint presentation and they totally pulled it off. Most of the things they showed were of course over my head, but I still took pages of notes.
Friday, October 27, 2006
I am a huge fan of Liz's call to have more fun in the library (specifically play games) at the closing keynote of Internet Librarian 2006. On that note, we celebrated "10-22-38", the anniversary of Chester Carlson's celebration of xerography. There were balloons and cupcakes. Next year, the anniversary will fall on a week day and we can REALLY do something fun!
Friday, September 08, 2006
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Why didn't we think of this before? Every year, usually around exam time, we have a rash of laptop thefts. It's horrible. We're distraught. The student devastated. Our response has always been to post signs and more signs. As you can imagine, it is not very effective. This year students can check out laptop locks at the circulation desk. Lots of other libraries are doing this, but somehow we had never paid any attention. Geez...
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
For years we've had a little computer room on the third floor. It has never really worked. We replaced the computers, we painted the room, but it still didn't feel right. Students only used the room after ALL the other computers on the other two floors were filled. So we decided to give up. We're going to convert the room into group study with white boards. We *know* that will be wildly popular.
We moved the computers to new workstations right by the big group study tables. Students started to sit at the workstations before we even installed the computers. It's terrific. All eight seats were in use by 10 a.m. yesterday morning. This new arrangement is a huge success! I'm definitely glad we did it.
Here is a link to all our construction photos.
Thursday, August 31, 2006
The libraries hosted a breakfast for the parents yesterday. The idea came from our research project and observations that these kids talk to their parents all the time about their course work. We figured maybe it would be a good idea to talk to the parents as well as talking to the students. It was super fun. The parents are so proud of their kids and so eager to learn anything and everything about being a college student. One of the mothers I talked to kept tearing up. It was so sweet. I loved it!
Thursday, August 17, 2006
They are building a bridge connecting the library to the new BME/Optics building next door. Yikes! We will have THREE entrances, one on every floor. Of course, this creates all kinds of security and staffing problems. But when departments actually *want* to make a connection to the library, how can you say "no"?? We're going to put in security gates and a self check out machine and keep our fingers crossed.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Thursday, July 27, 2006
We all went on a retreat to discuss the results of the Undergraduate Research Project. It was good to bring everybody up to speed on what we had learned. After all these months of happily collecting data, now it's time to actually *do* something with it. That's much harder!
Monday, July 10, 2006
Stephen Nelson, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, at Tulane led the tour.
He even has a web site for the tours.
Other people have written far more eloquently than I about New Orleans. I was shocked to see
how little work had been done. The area of destruction is enormous and it is not a hub-bub of activity. It is not filled with construction crews. There are not FEMA trailers every where. It is quiet. There are ruined houses and businesses as far as the eye can see. I don't think there is a plan. It is very sobering.
Monday, June 19, 2006
Sunday, June 25
10:30 - 12:30
Ile de France II & III.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
Once again, I've struck that we have made the same observations of undergraduates in our Undergraduate Research Project. Parents are heavily involved with their children's studies, they are scheduled from morning to night, they all have cell phones, and they get to library resources online.
Friday, June 09, 2006
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
I'm trying to get my head around all of this. Susan's observation is that " the games are less games than just a virtual environment for socializing. Second Life has no game objective- it is just for socializing, e-commerce, virtual dating".
Monday, May 15, 2006
Well, much to my amazement, I spoke for 15 minutes on Saturday about the "future of academic libraries". Hmmmm. Actually I dodged the bullet when it came to predicting the future and just talked about problems with no obvious solutions. Someone from the audience commented about how much he had gained by browsing the stacks of Stanford, Harvard, and New York Public. I couldn't think of a useful comment, other than to agree with him. Is anyone building a system that has browsability?
Thursday, May 11, 2006
We had such a fun time last Sunday night for the Carlson Library Study Break. There were zillions of students in the library; the line snaked out the door. They love getting a brown paper bag that they can fill with bags of chips and drinks and cookies, etc. It's great.
Thursday, May 04, 2006
We have some of those links and they make people CRAZY!!! Sometimes you get so close to the situation, you forget how completely nutty it is.
Friday, April 28, 2006
- Eastman School of Music has 27 masters thesis and dissertations in dspace. Collectively, they have been downloaded 10,533 times!
- Three computer science undergrad research papers have collectively been downloaded 753 times .
- Two economic phd theses with 590 collective downloads
Monday, April 17, 2006
Friday, April 07, 2006
Here is a very cool, commercial example of user participation. You upload your own pictures into the Kodak commercial. Slick
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
The ELD Awards Committee is pleased to announce that the 2006 Homer I. Bernhardt Distinguished Service Award will be presented to Linda R. Musser, Head of the Fletcher L. Byrom Earth and Mineral Sciences Library at the Pennsylvania State University. All nominations were incredibly strong this year. The committee cited as determining factors Linda's: inspirational, no-nonsense leadership to advance the profession; approachability, generosity, wisdom, and many other mentoring skills; prolific, extensive, significant, and practical collaborative record of scholarship including research, presentations, editorships, and publications; appointments to national and international committees or leadership teams; and last, but not least, lasting, far-reaching, and substantial contributions to ELD, other societies, the field of engineering and science librarianship, and beyond. "Linda is ... one of the people who helped establish the culture of ELD that we see today: a culture that is welcoming, knowledgeable, energetic, respectful of colleagues, and interested in the evolving mission and role of engineering librarians." Linda's nomination received a record number of support letters from ELD colleagues, former co-workers/mentees, Bernhardt honorees, and faculty from Penn State. One quote that best summarizes the views expressed in those letters and the committee's decision: "All of these factors lead to a greater appreciation of the positive impact that Linda has had on engineering librarianship."
Monday, April 03, 2006
We don't have very many faculty or graduate students come ask for help verifying citations any more. Lots of citations just automatically link to the full text; you don't have to figure out the abbreviation, navigate the OPAC, find it on the shelf, etc. And if you really did need the abbreviation, you can type them into Google, and almost always find the full title. Yikes! Maybe people just don't bother when the article is in print; if they can't get it from their desk top - forget it.
And most undergraduate in the sciences only need a few articles to write a paper. They don't have the vocabulary or knowledge to read the scholarly literature. They used to come to us to use the print indexes or the cdrom databases. Now you can find very good stuff on google. So why ask at the reference desk?
Data? Did people ever ask for data? I don't think I can remember the last time I was asked a real data question. And now where are they going? Well obviously - google!
Friday, March 31, 2006
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
by a bunch of science librarians (I think) at Georgia Tech was so fun.
"Creating a BUZZ: Attracting SCI/TECH Students to the Library!"
How many libraries have a restroom newsletter, especially one
with the clever name, T-Paper? I loved it.