By Ashley Roach-Freiman
Research and Instruction Librarian
University of Memphis
Strategic planning is an important issue in academic libraries, and a practice that doesn’t often come easily. Recent literature shows that academic libraries suffer the consequences of poor planning by struggling with low morale, personnel turnover, and burnout (Kendrick, 2017). In an effort to combat and prevent such situations, one Instructional Services department at a large Southern urban graduate-degree granting university library sought ways to plan for the future. As a department, we were in a unique position, having recently acquired several new faculty members, replacing others who had retired or otherwise left. The incoming librarians included a hire new to the university, a Department Head who had served recently as Interim Dean of Libraries, the former Dean of Libraries returning to the faculty, and myself, a librarian formerly in a visiting position with this department who had left the university for a period of months before being rehired in a tenure-track position. We needed an opportunity to both get to know one another as colleagues and determine the department’s vision at a crucial stage of growth. To help the department heal from the effects of high turnover, we planned for a two-day departmental retreat to take place during the university’s Fall Break. Inspired by recent trends in library planning, we decided to incorporate design thinking methods into the retreat’s structure. After discovering the open-access IDEO toolkit Design Thinking for Libraries, we created an agenda that led us through brainstorming, ideation, and goal-creation.
Continue reading Square Peg, Round Hole: Big Picture Planning and the Opportunities and Limits of Design Thinking
By Michelle Bishop
Acting Coordinator of Reference
Penfield Library, State University of New York, Oswego
It was 7:30 p.m. and the student actors were beginning to arrive to review their roles for the “Experience World Libraries” workshop that would start in 30 minutes. As a live-in Faculty Resident Mentor in Hart Hall at SUNY Oswego, I had designed the workshop as an experiential learning activity meant to illustrate the critical role libraries around the world play in facilitating access to information. It was rewarding to see that after going through the three scenarios, students were actively discussing the impact that limited access to information has on societies. Two years later, I can still say this has been one of the most exciting teaching experiences I have had as an instructional librarian. It is important to point out that this experience occurred in a residence hall and not a traditional classroom. This workshop and other residential outreach experiences I have designed are as a result of the educational mission of Residence Life and Housing on the SUNY Oswego campus. Like Oswego, an educational focus is a key element of residential life missions on other campuses. As such, there is exciting potential for wide-ranging instructional outreach opportunities for librarians in campus residential settings.
Continue reading Teach Where They Live: New Opportunities for Library Instruction and Outreach in Residence Halls
By Derek Malone
Assistant Professor, Instructional Services
& Interlibrary Loan, Scanning & Delivery Librarian
University of North Alabama
At the University of North Alabama, our first-year library instruction has developed over time into a three-part sequence. The sequence is embedded in three required general education courses: FYE 101 (First Year Experience Seminar), EN 111 (First-Year Composition I), and EN 112 (First-Year Composition II). All students, unless they have tested out of one of the requirements, will attend all three instruction sessions.
Continue reading Escaping Library Orientation: The Introduction of Escape Rooms Into First-Year Experience Courses for Library Orientation and Familiarization
by Emily Thompson
Studio Librarian, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Library
Assistant Professor of Psychology, State University of New York at Oswego
Current students are very familiar with their handheld devices, but they are often thrown into productivity applications with very little instruction due to the assumption that digital natives are already proficient. This study focused on students’ abilities using PowerPoint to create and execute a presentation. We conducted an A-B comparison with a “one-shot” instruction session by a librarian in between. After analysis by a group of objective observers, we saw a statistically significant improvement in the post-intervention slides. This implies that it is helpful to give students lessons in common productivity applications, with a possible new direction for library instruction.
Continue reading Difficulties with “Digital Natives”: Bridging the Skills Gap Via One-Shot Library Instruction
By Olivia Castello, Social Sciences Librarian
Alex Pfundt, Research & Instruction Librarian, & Coordinator of Information Literacy Library & Information Technology Services (LITS)
Bryn Mawr College
With the help of a Curricular Development Seed Grant, funded by the Mellon Foundation, librarians from Bryn Mawr College’s Library & Information Technology Services redesigned our model for one-shot information literacy instruction. We created self-guided, interactive online tutorials that allowed us to flip traditional demonstrations of skills, such as searching the library catalog, requesting books and articles, and finding empirical research. As a result, we were able to revise our in-class lesson plans to focus on active learning activities. We also conducted a research study in three academic courses to assess the efficacy of our flipped classroom model. This paper highlights the development of the online tutorials and instructional model, the assessment study, and ideas for future directions.
Continue reading Engaging Learners Through Self-Guided Tutorials: Implementing and Assessing a Flipped Classroom Model for Information Literacy Instruction