Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Tuesday, October 20 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Speakers: Greg Skutches, Tina Hertel, Kenzie Bartlett, Deborah Streahle (Lehigh University)
Moderated by Christine Roysdon
The innovative TRAC (Technology, Research and Communication) Writing Fellows Program at Lehigh University is based on the “tried-and-true notion that collaboration among peers is one of our most effective and efficient methods of learning.” Greg Skutches described the evolution of the TRAC concept over his initial year as the Coordinator of Writing Across the Curriculum at Lehigh. He stressed that his rather unique placement within the Library and Technology Services unit, as opposed to the usual WAC placement within an academic college, enabled him to imagine a program that encompassed not only writing, but also the research process, the use of technology, and faculty development.
The program tests the idea that student writing mentors embedded in courses can knowledgeably and empathetically interact with peers on assignment drafts and research progress, and can even help faculty fine-tune assignments. Fellows chosen are talented undergraduate student writers from across the majors, nominated by faculty, and selected through a highly competitive application process. As a group, they are enrolled in a semester-long training course that encompasses not only writing, but also library research and instructional technology.
Tina Hertel has developed the library research aspect of the program. She noted that in the first year she presented the big picture of the information environment, but now has adopted a more practical focus. She has observed that the TRAC students tend to be good researchers who are sometimes surprised by the methods used by fellow students.
The two TRAC fellows, Kenzie Bartlett and Deborah Streahle, have been thinking about how the libraries can be better integrated into the student research process. They emphasized the importance of just-in-time librarian visits to courses with assignments, and the need to simplify and streamline the navigation of library systems.
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
Featuring Kristen Yarmey-Tylutki, Digital Services Librarian, Weinberg Memorial Library, The University of Scranton and moderated by Erin Dorney
Smartphone – phone with computing ability
Over 50 thousand apps for iPhone as of last year
In 2008 smartphone sales in North America grew by 63%
Lost of apps are student-designed
Mobile librarians and libraries – Joe Murphy
How do these impact the research process? Information literacy?
It’s hard for students to find big blocks of time for research – mobile helps them break it up into chunks
Looking at 2000 ACRL standards for information literacy – 5 standards
What did mobile phones look like in 2000? Cell phones called people, stored contacts, could text but many people didn’t. A lot has changed since then!
Standard One: “The information literate student defines and articulates the need for information”
- Free apps vs. authoritative, more costly apps (in terms of reference resources)
- Talk to vendors about providing mobile interfaces
- Think about subsidizing cost of authoritative mobile apps
- Devices can be used to both collect and analyze data
- Can confuse students – new set of formats (print, electronic, mobile, website, app, device specific?), third-party developers w/ somewhat sketchy documentation.
- Cost and benefit – students pick free over pay, website over print, w/smartphones, they will probably choose mobile over computer-based.
- It needs to be affordable and accessible to students in order for them to use it
Standard Two: “The information literate student accesses needed information effectively and efficiently”
- New ways of searching – the ACRL standards assume word-based searching, but now we have different input types – pictures, barcodes, audio keywords, location
- These options can make searching easier for students, but we need to know how to help them and incorporate this into information literacy
- No extra typing – fewest keystrokes possible = no long search strings, Boolean, etc.
- Mobile raises expectations – traditional services won’t be enough
- On a smartphone, we only see the first 3/4 results in a Google search – will students scroll down or click to the next page?
- Extracting information – lots of note taking tools out there and microphones built in (i.e. Margins, tools to convert spoken notes into written notes)
- iPhone can’t run different applications at once – this is a problem but should be fixed (Palm Pre does it)
Standard Three: “The information literate student evaluates information and its sources critically and incorporates selected information into his or her knowledge base and value system.”
- Ebook apps – more time for reading in their lives, but is it “deep reading?”
- All in one devices are fabulous but also distracting
- Students are going to want to use things that are designed well
- Mobile research look at more items but spend less time on/with them
- Discussing research with peers
Standard Four: “The information literate student, individually or as a member of a group, uses information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose.”
- Syncing mobile and computer applications
Standard Five: “The information literate student understands many of the economic, legal and social issues surrounding the use of information and accesses and uses information ethically and legally”
- Privacy issues, personal information – outward flow of information, educate students about what they post to the web and how it can impact their future
- “Collaboration has become a fact of life” – Kristen YT
Standards hold up well, but there are some new themes relating to smartphones
Is dividing literacy between information and technology helping or harming our students?
Continuous partial attention – we need to be informed – education, psychology, sociology
What’s next? Plans to talk with students about how smartphones are being used by students. Looking for collaborators!
Q: Tools for libraries to mobilize? SMS is first step, in terms of resources, haven’t seen it written about yet
Q: Multi-literacies? Kathleen Tyner
Q: What about faculty using smartphones? Mixed bag, some embrace, some still don’t want to talk about Google. New generation of faculty will help with this transition. We don’t have to push it, but some will be interested.