Yearly Archives: 2023

Together in the Same (Zoom) Room: Building Campus Community Around First-Year Writing and Information Literacy Through a Collaborative Online Forum

By Carl Hess
First Year Experience Librarian
Assistant Professor
University of Memphis

Ashley Roach-Freiman
Library Instruction Curriculum Coordinator
Assistant Librarian
University of Memphis

Abstract

Collaboration between academic libraries and multiple academic and non-academic campus units can be complex—even when different units are all working to solve similar issues, such as supporting the first-year writer. Breaking down the silos inherent to higher education institutions is essential to providing students with the support they need. This paper describes how one academic library sought to improve connections with multiple campus units to support first-year student writing and research skills during the COVID-19 pandemic through an online roundtable designed to brainstorm relevant collaborative projects. The authors share details on the creation of the roundtable, how participants felt about the nature of the collaboration through a feedback survey, and ongoing progress on the projects that were developed as a result of the event.

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An Area Studies Pilot: Faculty Engagement, Public Space and Reference Service

By Charmaine Henriques
International Studies Librarian
Indiana University
Herman B Wells Library
Bloomington, Indiana

Introduction

Indiana University Bloomington (IUB) Libraries noticed a decrease in student (predominantly undergraduates) usage of its services and resources. This ongoing concern had been noted in the library literature and library panels/presentations. Administrators throughout the nation repeatedly surveyed students, put together focus groups and convened committees to discuss and find solutions to this phenomenon. These investigations unearthed recurring issues: students didn’t know how to navigate the
library or where and from who to get help. There was a segment of this population that either grew up without access to or did not make use of the library during primary and secondary school. For certain post secondary students, a college or university library will be the first library they ever encounter which can be an overwhelming experience, while to others that have already been enrolled for a few years the library is an unknown, unwelcoming place that they do not understand. Even so, where many saw a problem, a group of Area Studies librarians at IUB Libraries saw an opportunity.

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