Friday, February 16, 2018

Make it obvious

Another tragedy happened this week in a K-12 school and the media showed us video of panicked students fleeing from the school.  Thankfully, they knew how to get out of the school.

Each day is a good time to look around your facility and see if it is obvious to someone how to get out in an emergency or even if it is obvious to tell if there is an emergency. I still remember being in graduate school at the University of Maryland and walking into the student union when many people were leaving. Of course, the student union was a busy place, so that didn't seem unusual and I wasn't the only person walking in. Yes, there was a beeping sound, but it didn't sound like an alarm (or at least an alarm I was familiar with). Thankfully, it was only a bomb scare and my mistake was not harmful.   What I learned is that alarms do not all sound the same and that has informed how I react to beeps!

On every floor of the Westin in Westminster, CO is signage with the evacuation plan.  Notice that it contains information on what the fire alarm sounds like ("continuous, loud whooping sound").   That is good information, even if your not quite sure what "whooping" sounds like! 

Map of the 6th Floor at Westin Westminster

In the Denver International Airport (DIA), there are many, many signs pointing towards tornado shelters.  Some are text, while others are text and image.  Denver is a massive airport, so it is good that there are many shelters available and lots of very obvious signage. While you might not want signage this big, does your facility have signage which will help people leave in an emergency?  Is it noticeable?  Is it accurate?

Directional arrow to a tornado shelter

If you find your signage wanting, please take time now to improve it. And then test it with your staff and your community. Make sure that in an emergency, it is obvious what people need to do.

Friday, February 09, 2018

#ALISE2018 : Juried Papers (Friday)

Approach to Harmonization of Entry Requirements for Graduate Program in Information Science at European Higher Institutions EINFOSE Project
Tatjana Aparac-Jelisic

Description: Various aspects of harmonization at European Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) that offer programs in Library and Information Studies (LIS) have been studied since early 1990s. Since 2004-05 – when a project on Curriculum Development was funded through Erasmus program – up to 2016, there were no projects on education in Library and Information Science funded by European Union. The main goal of this paper is to present and discuss the results after the first year of the Erasmus plus project entitled European Information Science Education: Encouraging Mobility and Learning Outcomes Harmonization (EINFOSE).  

Project’s web site is at Http://

Hypothesis:  Common entry might requirements mitigate or eliminate the differences in enrollment procedures at different HEIs that offer programs in IS and might contribute to the higher enrollment of students with different educational background at the graduate level in IS.

The project seeks to investigate how these barriers could be eliminated or lowered.

One goal is to make it easier and more desirable for students to spend time “abroad” in programs in other European countries.

Summary:  This project brought together several schools to develop and test a summer school, which provides basic information on several I.S. topics. The idea is that students learn information and skills which will put them all on a common knowledge level.  Students attend the summer school once (approx. 1 week) on-site.  Feedback from the students was very good.  They made suggestions for additional topics as well as for expanding the length of the summer school.

My thoughts: In the U.S., every MLIS program has an introductory course.  Is there an opportunity to collaborate on a shared introductory course? With many programs now being online, could that shared introductory course be offered in different regions of the country?  It would provide a face to face opportunity, give students a shared experience, allow them to build relationships across institutions which could be helpful after graduation, and give those students the same foundational/core skills.  I could imagine the shared course being cross-listed at each institution.

Building Connections between LIS Graduate Students and Undergraduates: A Case Study in Curricular Engagement 
Eleanor (Nora) Mattern

Flight 93 National Memorial contains over 800 audio interviews.  Some have been transcribed and some have been digitized.  That place became the site of a project for the students:
  • Archival Access, Systems, and Tools - MLIS students - Created a finding aid for the oral historian collection and tested the oral history metadata synchronizer (OHMS).
  • First Experiences in Research - undergraduate students - Engaged in research projects using the oral histories.
Students from the two classes were connected indifferent ways:
  • Social event
  • Visit to the Flight 93 National Memorial to learn about oral history project
  • Day-long workshop on OHMS and collection of undergraduate feedback on tool and documentation.
It was useful for the MLIS students to work with the undergraduate students, because it taught them how the content will be used. It also taught them (practical experience) about working with volunteers.

Undergraduate students gained an insight into terminology (e.g., metadata).  It taught them, for example, how metadata affects them in everyday life. It also taught them about working with an archivist and the skills an archivist needs.

  • She noted that there is literature in STEM on undergraduate and graduate students working together, and the benefits on the undergraduate students.
  • STEM literature notes that graduate students gain experience in mentoring and leadership.  It provides experience in supervising others.
  • Students noted that having more meaningful, sustained and regular interaction between all of the students would have been a benefit.
Does this provide a pipeline to the LIS profession?
  • Finding a faculty collaborator is key for reaching undergraduate students
  • Offices of Undergraduate Research can serve as a conduit to undergraduate students and provide infrastructure 

Edited for types and reformatted: Feb. 11, 2018

#ALISE2018 : Digital Literacy in the Era of Fake News: Key Roles for LIS Educators

Heidi Julien (ALISE president), Michael Seadle (Executive director of the iSchool Consortium), Dietmar Worfram, (moderator) Clara Chu

Digital literacy in the era of fake news: How to respond - Seadle

What is fake news?  The intent to mislead the reader in ways that serve a social or political goal.  It cannot be verified.
How we understand truth is a western concept tied to the ability to create and reproduce scientific results. 
Fake news undermines the foundations of the scientific methods.
Trust comes from the ability to produce reliable tools.  However, governments have made claims that no one could believe and that sowed distrust in our institutions.  
Fake news allows people to find excuses for what we want to believe.
Fake news mean unreliable sources.  Reliability is a scale.  
Lies can give help.
One role information professionals can play is to uphold standards for quality and reliability.
Who will be soldiers against untruth?

News Know-How: How to get news you can trust for study, work, play and community - Clara Chu presented the paper by Barbara Jones, who (at the last minute) was unable to attend

This presentation is an outgrowth of the news literacy project. 
In 2017, Jones worked on a new faked news project in Illinois. 

  • Participants define their news landscape.  
  • Participants encounter examples for fake news.
  • Participants find out why the library is the best place to get news.
  • Engage participants to consult the library and to gain fact-checking skills.
Truth decay: erosion of clear line between fact and fiction,  widespread lack of trust in the news.

News versus editorials/opinions 

What news do you receive close to home?  Where does it come from?  Is it correct?  How do you know?
Look at the local news.  What are the sources?
Look at the state and where you are getting that news.
Where do we get national news?
Where do we get international news?

Chu showed a legitimate article, where the accompanying photo was a mashup/fake.

There are handouts already that can be used in teaching how to discern fake news.

Jones is developing slides that could be used broadly to teach how to discern fake news.

Preparing Information Professionals to Teach Digital Literacy - Heidi Julien

Information professionals have skills and content knowledge.

Where do information professionals learn to teach?  Very few actually learn how to do teaching as part of their MS programs.  

Teaching is a skill set, science and art.  
Subject knowledge is insufficient,
Teaching is not well learned on the job.
Teaching is core to the work that most information professional do.

Teaching to teach requires a host of skills and many elements that go into good teaching. Additionally, they need to understand some specifics around fake news.
There are a range of cognitive challenges that must be overcome, including that impressions once formed will endure, confirmation bias, and resistance to change.  People may selectively avoid new information.  It can be easier to identify weaknesses in the arguments of others, but not in one’s self.

Pre-service preparation is critical for our emerging information professionals.

  • Is there an opportunity to collaborate with journalism faculty? There could be informal and formal collaborations.  An example that has occurred was an unconference. 
  • Noted that there are other people besides journalists with whom we could collaborate.
  • Journalists are reliant on libraries.  
  • Can we help end users understand how news stories are created?  That would be helpful for our students.
  • School librarians can have a role in helpful us tech how to teach.
  • Digital natives are skilled with technology, but not necessarily with understanding the content.
  • We are asking people to be skeptical, which requires more thought.
  • Can we (academics) encourage with the public and uphold our profession?
  • Is trust declining in libraries, which are civil institutions?  We know that trust is declining in civic institutions,  but there is limited data on libraries (outside of Pew data).
  • Fake news is entertaining and is part marketing.  Can we deliver information in a way that is more eye catching?
  • Will our associations and institutions support us in the public sphere if we confront fake news, teach about fake news, etc.?  Will our associations help us make positive social impact?  Will our academic institutions support us, rather than limit our engagement?  There is a social risk to this work.
  • Can we get resources out into our community?  For example, getting students and alumni to go to town halls, etc., to answer questions from participants with verifiable information. An example of this is Radical Reference, which began during the Republican convention under George W. Bush.
  • Can we engage with peoples’ rational minds?  Engagement requires respect and openness.
  • There is a difference between access to information and impact of information.
  • Can we (librarians) be one of the voices on TV as commentators, etc., talking  about sources, etc.?  Can we do that recognizing that the work would be fraught with emotional and social peril for the individual?
  • Can we work with search engine and online social networks to help them filter out fake news?
  • These issues exist outside of the U.S., although sometimes in different ways.
Edited for types and reformatted: Feb. 11, 2018

Thursday, February 08, 2018

#ALISE2018 : Information Literacy and Continuing Education

Give me some slacks Public Librarians LINQ Together for Professional Development
Vanessa Irvin (presenter) and Wiebke Reile - University of Hawaii

LINQ is used on Hawaii
Inquiry-based professional development model for public librarianship
Incorporates online collaboration platforms for discourse 
They use, which is free and easy.  Cloud-based which allows for a variety of different content to be incorporated.  It can be real-time or asynchronous.  Online collaboration platform. Conversations were in different topic channels.
A place to pose questions and have meaningful exchanges.
Librarians were about to share artifacts, including documents and photographs.

LINQ data in LIS 601
Sharing research data in the classroom
Hear what front line librarians are thinking, discussing, and sharing
Brings the wisdom of practitioners into the classroom
Disrupts the controlled environment of the classroom
Shows practitioners are experts
In using this data with their class last spring, LIS students wanted to ask a question in LINQ.  Faculty facilitated the interaction.

 Now some faculty are using Slack to teach their classes.  There are private channels on Slack.  She is using it for submitting assignments.

Faculty insights:
  • Coursework becomes more collaborative
  • Questions seem more welcomes as sites of inquiry and reflection
  • Student output more
Role of LIS Schools in Continuing Education
Valerie Karno, Lauren Mandel, Mary Moen (presenter) - University of Rhodes Island

Background / Problem
CE a necessity as libraries transform
Challenge - identify competencies
Challenge - delivery formats
What is the role of an LIS program?

They did a qualitative study with focus groups

Data collection
1) Competencies gallery walk 
2) Worksheet and consesogram about preferred delivery formats 

Data analysis led to finding common themes on competencies.  


Image of findings related to competencies

Image of findings related to preferred delivery formats

Image of more findings related to preferred delivery formats

Role of LIS programs:
  • One shot workshops or series
  • Faculty expertise
  • Pull from existing content
  • Online courses
  • Post graduate certificate
  • Demand for interactive online learning - CE for faculty
  • Workshops - faculty service or compensation
  • Develop faculty expertise in identified topics or bring in others
  • How do make sustained CE worth their time and money?
  • How to competencies needed and format intersect?
  • Interest in CE
  • Challenges application to all higher Ed
  • Need to explore options
  • As a public university, need to be accountable to the community
Learning by Doing: Using Field Experience to Promote Online Students’ Diversity Engagement and Professional Development
Denice Adkins (presenter), Jenny Bossaller (presenter), Beth Brendler, Sarah Buchanan (presenter), Heather Moulaison Sandy (presenter)  - University of Missouri

  • Lack of professional socialization for online students
  • Lack of student diversity awareness 
  • Experiential learning
  • Field experience
  • Diversity focus 
Kolb experiential learning theory - teaching and learning spiral 

Theory feeds practice and practice feeds theory

Diversity - theories
  • Contact theory - contact between different groups increases acceptance
  • Inclusive excellence 
  • Diversity levers - social justice, human dignity, equity in access to information, equity in information preservation. Where in the LIS curriculum does this occurs naturally?
“Practicum in information agencies” is the one required course where this can occur.

This can also occur as a class assignment.  Adkins and Buchanan walked through an example. Students worked with materials at the Black Archives of Mid-America during a fall course (2016) and then during spring break (2017).

Another way to put students in a diverse setting is through study abroad: South Africa, Ireland/UK, and St. Lucia.  Students wrote reflections everyday on the trips, which helped them learn from the experience.  Also did a service learning trip in Joplin, MO.

They also have a service learning class on community leadership.  

The digital libraries class worked with the Cambio Center on a project.

They noted that they still have challenges. The tools  that measure changes in beliefs about diversity are subjective and imprecise.

Final takeaways from the presenters:
  • These are things that we can do, e.g., teaching with Slack 
  • Bring people of color into online discussions
  • Have students lead in-Service training
  • Good to see people trying new things
Edited for types and reformatted: Feb. 11, 2018

#ALISE2018 : Juried Papers (Thursday)

Teaching the ACRL Framework: Reflections from the field 
Melissa Gross, Don Latham, Heidi Julien

The ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education was adopted January 2016.

They did a national survey of instructional librarians.  622 responses.  Respondents were generally positive about the Framework.  Most had yet to modify their Information literacy instruction in significant ways,

They then did a interview study with 15 instructional librarians.  Semi structured questions.  Conducted through Skype.  Looked for successes, challenges, and evaluation techniques. Asked about pedagogy techniques.

Pedagogical strategies:
  • Framework provides for structure
  • Provides guiding ideology
  • More conversational 
  • More hands on, peer to peer teaching
Most successful strategies:
  • Conversations or training with other librarians on site
  • Ditto with faculty
  • Using the frame to develop learning outcomes
  • Implementing the frames over time
Greatest challenges:
  • Time
  • Concepts are vague
  • Scalability
  • Librarian resistance to the Framework 
  • Requires lots of preparation
  • Buy in from faculty
  • Faculty still want skills-based instruction
Respondents noted a wide variety of ways for assessing student learning, including no assessments yet.

  • The Framework does require a change in thinking.
  • Difficult to fit the Framework into the typical one shot session
  • Harder to assess student assimilation of Framework ideas
  • Librarian attitudes about the Framework vary.
Implications for LIS education:
  • We should encourage our students to engage in critical reflection and debate about the frameworks strengths and weaknesses.
  • We should move away from a strictly skills based approach.
  • Need to help student develop assessments
There is more research that needs to be done on the adoption of the Framework. 

What are best practices in LIS programs for teaching students to then teach using the Framework?

E-Advising: Expanding Advising for Distance LIS Students 
Sue Kimmel, Elizabeth Burns, Jeffrey DiScala, Meredith Parker - Old Dominion Univ.

  • Navigating online systems and technologies
  • Lack of confidence
  • Need for advising and support services
  • Lack of contact with faculty or a designated program coordinator
  • Need for more detailed information about university expectations
  • Access during university business hours
They have:
  • Online office hours
  • Blackboard site that hold info that students will need
  • A lecturer as an overarching advisor from first contact through graduation
Students actually want help 24x7.

Their students are nontraditional with jobs and family. Few access existing resources for help.

Students into program complete coursework during times other than traditional business hours.  After 6 p.m. and on the weekend.

At the time of their survey, they did have a requirement that students come to campus for a three day boot camp (summer institute).

For ODU students, online, asynchronous learning was very important. They would not have been able to enroll otherwise.  Most of their students are from Virginia. All are school media students.

What do their students perceive to be the benefits on online advising?
Why do students seek assistance?
  • Plan of study - most frequent
  • Registration financial aid 
  • Technology 
  • Program advise
  • Navigating the ODU website
  • Conflicts with groups
  • Other requirements
What resources do they used? Most frequent:
  • Email my advisor
  • Online office hours 
  • Classmates
  • Email the instructor
Online advising is seen as being convenient. It allows students to feel a sense of community. 

Improvements and adjustments:
  • More frequent access to the program advisor
  • Promote the resources more frequently 
  • Obtain more advanced notice of deadlines, etc. 
  • Standardize office hours across courses and faculty

(Re)Discovering LIS Education Identity, Image, and Purpose in Engaged Scholarship
Laurie Bonnici, Jinxuan Ma

“...increasing difficulty in maintaining coherence of identity, image, and purpose.” - Cronin, 2002

Their research is using the @BlueZones and their work is not yet finished.

Engaged scholarship: education applied to social problems and issues faced by individuals, local communities, organizations, practitioners, and policymakers.

Community engaged learning is a course, internship, or program in an institution of higher education that includes:
  • Working with the community
  • Addressing societal needs
  • Intentional integration of learning objectives
  • Student preparation, ongoing reflection, and critical analysis
  • Reciprocal benefits
  • Ability to explore one’s civic identity

Community engagement is at the center of research, teaching, and service.

Image of University and Commuity Engagement