Friday, 31 July 2009

Handheld Librarian Online Conference

This is my day off but last night I attended my first remote Conference and it was truly memorable. This is a holding post as I hope to post in more detail some time next week. I beleieve this was a historic conference not only because of the content but the means by which it was conducted.

With 477 attendees and so many twittering it featured as a trend on twitter!! The recent ALA Conference with thousands of attendees never managed that!! There were technical problems. I and some others couldn,t get a connection at the start of Gerry McKiernan's keynote. Half an hour of frustration! I sent a tweet about it and through this got the new URL and got in! All power to twitter again! As for following the Conference the discussion via twitter was awesome (not a word I usually employ!) and Tweetdeck was wonderful to follow it with. If you want to get samples of the discussion it is #hhlib on twitter.

It's hard to know where to start as there were so many interesting ideas and possible pointers to the future. When I post again I must remember that my focus is with IL and that may keep my enthusiasm under control!

I come away with a sense that mobiles are going to be essential for libraries to become involved with. Public libraries have a huge opportunity with e-books abd connecting with their users, but academia cannot ignore texting services.

Informal communication via mobiles has fuelled their mass adoption - question is how do libraries muscle in on this?

Tom Peters' main thrust was that we may be about to rethink our concept of place. We won't need to move around so much anymore (or "lug our guts around" as he calls it!)-which is just as well in the economic gloom. Ironically as we become less nomadic and cosmopolitan in our physical movements our local information and experience will be still global through the power of mobile devices.

I need some time out to think all this through and to catch up on the other presentations which I missed - that was another lesson - 6.5 hours of presentations with only tiny gaps in between is not good for anyone - staring at a screen, tweeting etc. - what about food and drink??

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Pivots for change in School Libraries

Pivots for change and Libraries (Unquiet Librarian) carries a powerful post about change. She is very aware of the need for school libraries to rebrand and therefore applies some 'pivots for change' derived from the work of Seth Godin :
  • Keep the machines in your factory, but change what they make.
  • Keep your customers, but change what you sell to them.
  • Keep your providers, but change the profit structure.
  • Keep your industry but change where the money comes from.
  • Keep your staff, but change what you do.
  • Keep your mission, but change your scale.
  • Keep your products, but change the way you market them.
  • Keep your customers, but change how much you sell each one.
  • Keep your technology, but use it to do something else.
  • Keep your reputation, but apply it to a different industry or problem.
and applies these to school libraries...

Among the results are :
  • Keep teaching evaluation of online resources, but teach students (and teachers) to apply those same principles of information to traditional sources of information—they are not immune from bias or inaccurate information, either.
  • Keep teaching information literacy skills, but focus on the bigger picture of helping students devise personal learning networks that they can apply to any learning situation instead of a topic specific research task.
  • Keep teaching students Internet safety principles, but also shift your focus on the concept of digital footprints and teaching students how to create and maintain a positive online identity.
  • Keep school rules in mind, but explore ways to tap into the power of devices like cell phones and iPods for student learning and present a plan for using these tools to your administrator so that you can provide service where your students are.
  • Keep positing literacy as a primary focal point of your library program, but expand that definition of literacy to include new media literacy and information literacy as mainstream literacies equal in importance to traditional literacy.
  • Keep adding Web 2.0 tools for information delivery and access, but market your library in places where your parents may be more so than students (such as Twitter or Facebook) to share news about your library program and to network with your parent community.
For the full list go here

How is Web 2.0 being used?

The JISC SIS Landscape Study is collecting case studies of users of Web 2.0. They are done as transcripts of short interviews.At present there are nine -4 from academic staff, 2 from librarians, 1 from a Learning Developer, 1 researcher and 1 Web advisor. Very useful for getting ideas and finding out how practitioners are using Web 2.o.

Here's an excerpt from one with the Web advisor (Brian Kelly) :

"How do you judge what’s good and what’s not in the Web 2.0 world?

Trying things out. Seeing what others have to say. Deciding if it works for me and evaluating the risks of what I’d lose if the service wasn’t sustainable. And then making judgements based on that risk assessment."

Here's an excerpt from one with a librarian (Lyn Parker - Sheffield University)

"What about self-help materials and FAQs?

We have produced a number of screencasts, not strictly video but play like video, for tours of the libraries, freqently asked questions, walk-throughs of how to find journals, etc. These were created with Captivate and made available through our Web pages.

We are also investigating how we might use Delicious bookmarks with our subject guides. Digg has been recommended as having more features than Delicious, particularly for student notes, highlighting text, etc. We’ll need to evaluate both before moving forward.

I have an account on Slideshare and post most of my presentations there. We are working on embedding them into our Information Skills Showcase and into our library liaison team pages."

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Wikis : knowledge is only a click away

Following on from the last post I came across this interesting post from make it known blog (a Canadian MLIOS student from Alberta) giving some pungent observations about her experiences using wikis.
She notes :
Wikis can be used by libraries as content and knowledge management tools for:
She concludes "I think wikis are a wonderful and infinitely useful web 2.0 technology. They are relatively easy to create (once you learn the mark up language!) and can greatly benefit a user population. I would not hesitate to contribute to or establish a wiki for my library."

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

To wiki or to blog?

To wiki or to blog is the title of this interesting article by Natasha Hrutzuk on Virtual Libraries blog.
She considers why we should use wikis in schools, in a classroom or the library; potential limitations and her own experiences.
Well worth reading if you are a school librarian wondering which way to go.

View of our LRC -wish it was sunny today like that!

Monday, 27 July 2009

Induction from the plinth in Trafalgar Square

One of the latest tourist attractions in Trafalgar Square is the plinth designed by Antony Gormley where people are signing up for an hour to perform or whatever they want to do for an hour. Some are finding that an hour is a very long time.
I happened to pass this on Friday and was struck by the poor guy up there who was completely making no communication at all. He was reading from notes, no microphone and no presence. Somehow it reminded me of how library induction s used to be (I hope!!) with a librarian burbling away - no-one listening - no eye contact- no hope!And as you see it was a dark dark day - jusy like some say it is for libraries these days. Let's hope the new Web 2.0 tools make all the difference!

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Thriving in the 21st century JISC LLiDA project

This is an important study (click here)and the summary (click here)is well worth reading (I haven't had time to read the whole report in detail yet!) It set out to :
-review the evidence of change in the contexts of learning, including the nature of work, knowledge, social life and citizenship, communications media and other technologies
-review current responses to these challenges from the further and higher education sectors, in terms of the kinds of capabilities valued, taught for and assessed (especially as revealed through competence frameworks); the ways in which capabilities are supported ('provision')the value placed on staff and student 'literacies of the digital'
-collect original data concerning current practice in literacies provision in UK FE and HE, including 15 institutional audits and over 40 examples of forward thinking practice
-offer conclusions and recommendations, in terms of the same issues reviewed in 2

This is a mine of information about current UK HE practice in supporting literacies - the literacy frameworks, recent reports on digital learning, the innovative part played by librarians with digital technologies and the need for this to spread much wider to other staff. The complacency of students about their IL skills is noted : my own University of Bedfordshire is quoted here "it was a little depressing to discover that many students even at level 2 are still relying on Google for their information and that many of them do not see the relevance of information literacy to their studies".
Another point : "Many literacies are so deeply and tacitly embedded in subject teaching that academic staff do not identify their practice as literacy-based at all. " (Librarians could work with them to ensure that the necessary literacies are covered).

The report confirmed and expanded upon the challenges identified in the literature review:
- institutional silos, so learners often have several places to seek help with their learning, and cultural differences can make cross-service/dept collaboration difficult
-(often) poor embedding of literacies into the curriculum, particularly at the level of feedback and assessment
- (often) poor integration of information/digital literacies with academic/learning literacies
- curriculum provision tends to be one-off and cohort-based, rather than based on an ethos of personal development: central provision is more personal and developmental but rarely reaches learners when they are actually engaged in authentic tasks
-Academic staff perceive students as being more digitally capable than is really the case
- poor self-evaluation by learners, particularly in relation to their information skills, so voluntary services are not reaching those in most need, and skills modules are not perceived as relevant or important
Student expectations, student diversity and employability were the main agendas driving change in provision for learning and digital literacy.

They believe that information literacy should be widened to include or be supplemented by communication and media literacies. In their work they found that digital literacy was often applied to Web 2.0 tools while information literacy was almost always referring to digital content literacies.

They say :
"The agenda needs to be clearly formulated around informed and critical use of technology for learning. SCONUL's fifth pillar, 'the ability to compare and evaluate information obtained from different sources' seems in Moira Bent's recent review to overlap considerably with what we have called critical or media literacy: 'knowledge about the way the media operate, and certain processes which are particularly important in the academic context, such as peer review of scholarly articles'. Different disciplines demand proficiency in different (combinations of) media, and create/share meaning in different ways: learners need to both inhabit and critique these modes. Current information literacy models also tend to assume that academic ideas will be expressed (predominantly) in text. All the background research points to the need for learners to become proficient at creative self expression, and critical argumentation, in a range of media. This presents many challenges, not least in relation to assessment. In relation to digital technology itself, the point is not to encourage more technology use but to encourage more insightful, more reflective and more critical choices about technology and its role in learning. "

This is the key paragraph to me because it is the SCONUL pillar 5 which is most critical rigfht now. Libraries should not think only in text (and of course many do not : I used to be a video librarian once) and we need to start recognising that our role is to assist in the creation of and learning from material of all kinds.

Please let's have some comments!!

Students' use of research content in Teaching and Learning

When I saw in the executive summary of this JISC report from University of Central Lancashire (made from surveys and focus groups at 4 institutions Jan-April 2009 -UCL plus one Russell group, one large post-92 metropolitan and one small former university-college)I had to post about it.

Below is the exec. summary (the italics are mine)

Identifying Research
• Students are aware of the qualitative distinction between published research and general internet sites (I was quite surpised by this)
• Students are not generally sophisticated in their understanding of things like peer-review or currency, there is a common view that if something is published it must be reliable (what a shock)
• There is a growing diversity in the kinds of content identified as research but journal articles and books still dominate students’ perceptions of what research is
• Students are very reliant on library catalogues, databases and staff advice
• Research content is seen primarily as a source for assignments and students’ perception of research is very much led by the context of their assignments (suggests that the assignment is all important and where our IL interventions should be)
• Students are reluctant to approach their tutor directly in the first instance for advice on what research content to access
Very few students identify undergraduate or postgraduate dissertations as research content
(very much what this report wanted to know about)

Accessing Research
• The vast majority of students use either a home computer or a university computer to access research
Most students will go to their library catalogue first, then Google (amazing...)
Although Google, Google Books and Google Scholar are heavily used, the library catalogue is still the preferred first choice for most students (still amazing)
• A lot of students use Google but are bewildered by the amount of responses and will rarely look beyond the first couple of pages of search terms (backed up by previous research)
An increasing number of students are using the limited preview facility in Google Books to either read books not in their library or to save themselves the trouble of actually going to the library (Interesting)
• Although the trend is towards electronic access for students of all age groups, there is still a significant proportion of students who will use library visits in conjunction with or instead of the internet (so we still have place...)
• The internet is used but also distrusted, many students are aware that sites such as Wikipedia are not respected by their tutors (the debate is still on about Wikipedia?)
• Some students will use a discipline-specific database to access research. These students have had a better experience of accessing research and some use these databases almost exclusively. However, this means they are dependent on the holdings of the database
Students at all universities expressed dissatisfaction with their library holdings and level of service (this would be confirmed by LibQual findings - no group is satisfied with the library however big the holdings because their expectations alter acc. the library)
There is limited evidence of students using social networking and other Web 2.0 technologies to identify and access research (this is important, but not too surprising as these tools have likely not been promoted or accepted yet as information sources)

Using Research
• Most students use research to support their assignments, so use of research is primarily ‘assessment led’
• Some students demonstrate a sophisticated engagement with research which they use to develop arguments rather than simply support a point
• A significant and encouraging minority also use research to gain a wider knowledge of their field
• Students tend to be very selective, using research content which is immediately relevant to their needs. For example, they are happy to use the limited preview pages in Google Books without seeing the wider context of the material in the rest of their books (Interesting)
• Many quote or paraphrase research content in their assignments
• Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs) identify themselves with academics rather than students and demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of the research environment

This was a report I had to read, and amazingly they had also cited my first article from 2006 on Web 2.0 and IL. That was before anyone was making the connection and Web 2.0 wasnt mainstream and I suppose I was "an early enthusiast for the potential of social networking"!!

There is a useful literature review chapter which draws together trends like the way that students research is largely shapped by conventions within the discipline, and the importance of their being able to understand the framework of their discipline first. The importance of being able to access at home because many are "homebirds" (a new label I've not seen before). I liked
"According to the research that we’ve surveyed, students tend to encounter research content in a much more fragmentary way than in the past, developing chains of meaning from a variety of sources rather than investigating one source in-depth." There was concern about varying abilities among academics with new technologies (Web 2.0)
"This does not mean that students are necessarily more information literate or better able to use ICT, but it does mean that more and more students are bypassing traditional university systems when searching for and accessing research content".

Perhaps the most important point, which I would echo, is that " students’ critical thinking skills are not being adequately supported and that the ‘fast surfing, broad scanning and deep
diving’ habits of internet users, young and old, is detrimental to their critical use of research."

There are some interesting case studies of individual students in chapter 4.
In the section on social networking
"Our survey found very little evidence of students actually using social networking.
Moreover, the survey found no evidence of a trend amongst younger students. On the contrary, the few students who do use social networking to find research content tend to be 22-50 years old. Typical means of social networking include Facebook (which is dominant), discussion boards, wikis and Twitter. We did not speak to any students who used Second Life or podcasts, and in the survey no student mentioned Second Life and less than2% used podcasts. This is a revealing absence given the amount of research, investment and discussion that there has been in HEIs over the last two years in these products. "
In the focus groups they found "Left to their own devices, students are very wary of using social networking and wikis because they think that their tutors will disapprove."
There is other evidence that their lack of use of Web 2.0 is connected to academic lack of engagement or disapproval.
However I regret that in their conclusion the authors cite this lack of use as a reason for JISC to review any planned investments in this area and re-evaluate the risk and likely benefit. Rather we should all be working toward making our education more social and partipatory, fit for the 21st century.

Monday, 20 July 2009

7 Things you should know about Microblogging

Educause have produced another one of their 7 things guides, This time it's about microblogging and is an excellent summary which could be used with staff 0r some student groups to justify why this channel is so important for education - and the library.

20 tips to arrange and manage your social networks

"The more I started using social networking sites, the more I began feeling disoriented. After a while, I lost count of how many ‘Web 2.0’ services I had signed up with." This rang a bell with me so take a look at this post by Mahendra Palsule 20 tips to arrange and manage your social networks.
He recommends mind-mapping what you do , define your audience, use a password manager and lots of other possible time-savers.

A Layar for the Future

Layar is claims to be the first augmented reality browser for mobiles. This seems to be a glimpse of the future, and a tecdhnology to watch out for.

Layar is a free application on your mobile phone which shows what is around you by displaying real time digital information on top of reality through the camera of your mobile phone.
Layar is available for the T-Mobile G1, HTC Magic and other Android phones in Android Market for the Netherlands. Other countries will be added later. Planned roll-out dates for other countries are not known yet.
How do you use Layar? By holding the phone in front of you like a camera, information is displayed on top of the camera display view.
For all points of interest which are displayed on the screen, information is shown at the bottom of the screen.
What do you see in the screen?On top of the camera image (displaying reality) Layar adds content layers. Layers are the equivalent of webpages in normal browsers. Just like there are thousands of websites there will be thousands of layers. One can easily switch between layers by selecting another via the menu button, pressing the logobar or by swiping your finger across the screen.

Experimenting with Web 2.0 at University of Leicester

The latest Journal of Information Literacy contains "Experimenting with Web 2.0 to cultivate information literacy within a medical ethics, law and human rights course" by Sarah Whittaker and Joanne Dunham. Interesting to read how they have tried out various Web 2.0 technologies.
"The resources developed were popular with the students and the course tutor reported an improvement in the range of their reading. However, there was no perceptible change in the way the students worked nor did they use the Web 2.0 communication tools provided to enhance their learning. For the Library’s information skills training to be effective and to go beyond just providing search tools, information literacy and the Web 2.0 technologies need to be written into the course itself rather than as an adjunct. "

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Twitter collaboration stories

Are you in schools and yet to be convinced by Twitter? Take a look at the Twitter collaboration stories wiki for some ideas and good examples of how it can be used. Examples include asa real-time database ; suggestions for answering a problem ; serendipitous discovery.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Communicating the value of libraries and librarians

Denise Pan (Auroria Library, University of Colorado, Denver) has written a gem of an article in the Library Connect Newsletter. Its only short but I love her enthusiasm :
"Librarians need to take a leadership role in the academic enterprise, to collaborate with faculty and administrators in learning partnerships, and to develop comprehensive information literacy programs that permeate the curriculum and produce measurable outcomes".
To me the article is a great little summary of what we are about!

10 ways library schools should be teaching social media

I came across this post -10 ways library schools should be teaching social media from Socialibrarian via iLibrarian blog.
It starts :
"A few days ago I came across a wonderful article on Mashable entitled “10 Ways Journalism Schools are teaching social media.” The thought struck me about 30 seconds in: all these concepts should apply to library school, but why aren’t they being pushed and taught in the same way?"
Includes topics : promoting content ; interviewing; news gathering and research ; crowdsourcing ; publishing wit social tools ; blog and website integration ; building community and rich content ; personal brand ; ethics.

So this is a really thoughtful post and then I realised that the writer was Daniel Hooker
whom I had met only a few weeks ago in Vancouver when I met Dean Giustini, who has an interview on his Search Principle blog with Dan! It is a small world!

Thursday, 9 July 2009

M-Libraries : information use on the move project

Keren Mills (Open University) has produced a report, M-Libraries, information use on the move, funded by the Arcadia Fund, which looks at the information needs of information users on the move. Staff and students at Open University and Cambridge University were surveyed, using a short online survey asking about current use of mobile information services like text alerts, SMS reference, and the mobile internet. In both libraries mobile services are very new.The data collected was used to suggest trends which indicate likely takeup if services were offered in other libraries.
27% said they had used an SMS Reference service and 26% more said they might if they had known about it.
Staff at ULC had noticed students taking piuctures of OPAC result screens rather than noting classmarks on paper and 50% at both libraries said they take photos of signs, books etc. to save for later reference. Also 55% were in favour of being able to access the OPAC by mobile phone.
The use of mobiles for reading an e-book, journal article was very low. The report notes that the iPhone is having an influence on use of the mobile web, but I suspect that the survey was done before this was having much impact. "Given the low percentage of iPhone owners in the UK and the proprietory, device-specific nature of iPhone applications, there seems to be little value currently in providing library applications.It would be more cost effective to either provide the same functionality throug a website, or develop applications in Java, which will run on most other mobile handsets."
Stephen Abram on Stephen's Lighthouse was very disappointed by the conclusion of the report concerning the "results suggest it is not worth libraries putting development resource into delivering content such as e-books and e-journals to mobile devices at present".
In fact I find the report rather negative, It shows how difficult it is to do an up to date survey in such a volatile area.Neither OU or ULC could be described as typical HE libraries. Other libraries who are wondering what to do about mobiles should look at this with interest, but form their own conclusions based on their own user population.

Information literacy and Web 2.0 at Liverpool University

A case study with Business students at University of Liverpool where H20 Playlists were used to record bibliographic details of readings for their first assignment and their reflections on these sources is worth looking at. It is by E.J.Thompson, S. Snowden and N.Bunyan "Promoting academic reading with Web 2.0 : using social bookmarking to facilitate literature searching and critical analysis".
Has anyone else any experience of using H20 Playlist rather than delicious?

Monday, 6 July 2009

M-Libraries Conference, Vancouver, 23-24 June 2009

Many congratulations to the organisers of this second m-Libraries Conference. It was in many ways the best Conference I have ever attended. Over 120 delegates from all over the world in a stunning venue at University of British Columbia were treated to fine keynotes, a large array of parallel sessions, and excellent social events.
The opening keynote session (Lorcan Dempsey) and following plenaries on the first morning were held in the First Nation Hall with long tables - good for laptops, munching cookies and socialising. I am not going to give a long summary of these but only draw attention to points which interested me and I trust may interest you!

Lorcan Dempsey Vice-President and OCLC Research andChief Strategist, USA"Concentration, Connection, Diffusion:Mobilizing Library Services"

There will be greater investment in the economy in consumer space than in education which will mean users will be used to sophisticated services there and this will challenge us.
There will be a tension between personal learning environments and University VLEs.
Formerly we could expect student work to be around the library, because of our physical materials ; with an abundance of material online how do our sources fit into their learning and communication?
He thinks mobile communbication is more about communicxation than about mobility.
Mentioned the Nokia strapline "Our promise is to help people feel close to what is important to them".
Mobiles can be a good fit for Web generation ways of communication. They provide a sfaety net, and allow incremental social contact (e.g.husband ringing from supermarket for instructions...)
The idea of the institutional web site being prime model of delivery and browser as primary consumption environment is increasingly partial.
Content is being atomised - able to be cut up, tailored and consumed. (eg BBC has invested much into this with RSS feeds to parts of its output.)
Atomisation also means use of snippets, ringtones, tags, ratings, feeds and abstracts.
To get the attention of groups a site needs to rate, relate, recommend. He thinks people are action-oriented and want to vote and give opinions.
Importance of time-shifting - in a survey at University of Bristol great support for ability to timeshift lectures so could use later.
On the use of space he mentioned a recent Economist article that said there was a "rise in demand for semi-public spaces that can be informally appropriated to ad hoc work spaces" (Take note libraries)
Challenge to libraries is to make themselves invisible, by delivering services into user workflows in a networked environment. Yet we need to be more visible. FBk and Twitter show importance of people to follow.
Libraries and persons working there need to have a signed network presence and not hide people. Libraries dont advertise their expertise enough! Our network presence is too anonymous. Put pics on Twitter, have Top Recommendations as part of a site.

Ken Banks Founder of, UK, "Where Books Are Few: The Role of Mobile Phones in the Developing World"

An inspirational speaker who drew attention to the potential role of mobiles in the 3rd World. Users here need short bursts of actionable information, rather than the Web to browse.

Carie Page Programme Coordinator forthe EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative, USA "Anytime, Anywhere: Reaching the Always-On Generation through Mobility"

This was a high energy presentation which I struggled to keep up with. E-mail is for old people apparently(!!) She believed students want to create their own information environments - do we help them or let them get on with it?
Great supporter of Twitter - idea of using timed tweets - same time each week.
Rent out Kindles.
Use vokis on your site - this was a new one for me - which I must follow up.
It is good to help convergence of tools like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube if we want to keep the attention of our users.
She mentioned some myths
"If you ban our technology, we'll simply stop using it" (they'll get round it)
"If we build it, we will come" (need to bring them in)
"We're a bunch of techno-geeks" (much more mixed)
"We want to be your friend on Facebook" (try and see)

Paul Nelson NHS Choices, Department ofHealth, UK - "Partnerships for Community Health Improvement Through MobileDevices"

NHS Choices has the ability to inform, signpost and empower individually.Most who use it come via Google rather than the front door of the site. It is a strong and trusted brand. Mobile usage is desirable because mobiles are ubiquitous. They want to change behaviour, improve knowledge and self perception.
NHS Choices drnk less is an example of an iPhone app.

Joan Lippincott Associate Executive Director of the Coalition for Networked Information, USA - "Why m-Libraries? Making the Case for Innovation"

To make the case in our libraries we have to make mobiles a higher priority. We have to :

1.Respond to our user community's work style. See mobiles as information devices ; many Univs now on iTunesU ; researchers use mobiles for data collection ; Nielsen shows 52% increase in mobile subscribers using video on a mobile 2008-9 ; ECAR 66% of students have internet capable phones, but most dont use it yet for this.THis will change and depends on the pay structure.

2. Extend what we've always done into new areas for mobiles :
Google Bk Search, OCLC Cat search
Duke University image collection
IL podcasts ; QR codes for IL tutorials ; West Illinois University University Text me services on YouTube.

3. Get a seat at the table re. policy in the University.
In decisions like which platform, who decides, who does technical support, who selects licences.

The m-Libraries Conference site will soon have all the presentations for these and the parallel sessions.

Mobiles are everywhere

While going round the remarkable Banksy exhibition which is on at the Bristol Museum this weekend I came upon this wonderful spoof! I shall have to use it in presentations. For those who haven't come across the work of this anonymous iconoclastic grafitti artist : he may come from Bristol, has travelled all over the world and produced street art and much else. The exhibition at Bristol, which is free contains paintings, drawings, sculpture (some of which are mobile!)
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More student views on searching

There is another video from the Head and Eisenberg (University of Washington) study on US student searching habits. My original post about this is here.
Called the PIL InfoLit Dialog no 3. : Frustrations - the new video covers a number of common problems students have with searching for the right information in the digital age.

The first two videos from the series can be seen here.

Twitter Search in Plain English

Here is the latest little video in the admirable Commoncraft series, giving advice on how to search on Twitter. Lasts only just over 3 minutes.

Friday, 3 July 2009

Information Literacy sans frontieres at JISC

I presented at the JISC Digital Content Conference at Cotswold Water Park Hotel this week. It was an interesting short conference which attracted a large range of experts and enthusiasts discussing the digital future. It seemed to me to be both a celebration of JISC's work and clarion call to further action, despite the storm clouds of recession. Catherine Grout, Programme Director e Content gave aan excellent overview of JISC's work which was recorded here.
Later we heard a mind-blowing account of the work of the Internet Archive by Robert Miller from California. Can you imagine a snapshot of the Web being stored in a huge cupboard, years of tv off-air recording including BBC and Al Jazeera? His short talk is here.

I presented in a session concerning Libraries of the Future , under the title "Information
Literacy sans frontieres", which is on Slideshare here. I wanted to draw attention to the importance of Information Literacy in 2009, how it sits at the centre of all the literacies, and the part that librarians can play working academics embedding their contributions. No-one had seen the uNESCO Information Literacy logo!! As it was about the hottest day of the year I was so lucky that the room was air-conditioned and the discussion afterwards did not get too heated!! The abstract for my talk is here, and the whole conference is here.

Back from Vancouver

June has been a lean month on his blog as I have been gadding around more than usual. Highlight and lifetime ambition was a visit to Vancouver for the Second International M-Libraries Conference. What a place with 2.3m living in Greater Vancouver in a stunning setting.I shall be posting fully about this Conference shortly. I gave a session on "Information Literacy gets mobile" and the slides are on Slideshare here.
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Thursday, 2 July 2009

Twitter versus Second Life

After reading Sheila Webber's post about What Librarians think about Second Life, I can't resist mentioning a rather mischievous post I was reading this morning about Twitter and Second Life by Chris Abraham "Twitter Is What Second Life Wasn't: Light, Cheap and Open And That's Why It'll Outlive the Hype Cycle". (I hope she will forgive me!)

He starts with admitting there's a lot of hype about Twitter at the moment and this may be reminiscent how it was with Second Life. But it's different
"Twitter is light, cheap, open and permanent, whereas Second Life is heavy, expensive, closed and ephemeral. Twitter does things right where Second Life failed."
There's some discussion at the end and I guess it's not a fair comparison, but it's a good read.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

What Information Specialists say about Second Life

What Information Specialists say about Second Life: is a presentation to be given in the virtual world, Second Life, on Thursday 2 July at 12 noon SL time (8pm UK time; time elsewhere )
Marshall Dozier and Fiona Brown of Edinburgh University, Scotland, (Pancha Enzyme and Zeno Silvercloud in SL) will report back on findings from their survey and focus group discussions* on SL for for networking, collaboration and CPD. This will be based on their conference presentation at the EAHIL conference in June 2009 and includes time for discussion
Location is Infolit iSchool
You need a SL avatar and the SL browser installed on your computer to participate.
This is part of the University of Sheffield Center for Information Literacy Research discussion series.