By Jennifer Wilhelm
Assistant Professor, Texas A&M University University Libraries
and Jessica Jones
Branch Manager, Bryan + College Station Public Library System
In 2016, the Bryan + College Station Public Library System received a $1,000 grant to conduct informal STEM programs for adults. The library’s stated goals were to encourage lifelong learning and civic engagement through informal STEM programs, increase and diversify adult program attendance, and strengthen ties to both the local university and the community. In addition, we wished to promote the idea of libraries as safe spaces for controversial topics; in this case, climate change. This article will examine the experience of developing, promoting, and executing an informal STEM program for adults. The resulting three-part program was divided into book club and science café portions, and was partially facilitated by a science partner. The goals were reached and surpassed, with the resulting increase in adult attendance and positive reaction to a climate change program encouraging the system to increase its STEM-based offerings for adults.
Continue reading Adults Need STEM, Too: An Assessment of One Public Library’s Experiment With STEM Programming for Adults
By Jill E. Anderson, Humanities Instruction Librarian
and Kevin Fleming, Popular Music & Culture Archivist
Georgia State University Library
This case study focuses on how Kevin Fleming, Popular Music and Culture Archivist, and Jill Anderson, Humanities Instruction Librarian, have developed a series of “Teaching with Primary Sources” library workshops at Georgia State University, an R1 public university. We designed these workshops to introduce faculty and graduate-student instructors to creative strategies for incorporating primary sources into their instruction. Drawing on historical comic books in the archivist’s collections, the active-learning exercises we devised for these workshops are meant to encourage attendees to consider and share their own ideas about instruction with archival and other primary source types. Rather than presenting ourselves as all-knowing “experts,” we aim to make ourselves available as possible partners for this kind of instruction. With these workshops, we hope to foster attendees’ own imaginative ideas about teaching with primary sources, while at the same time encouraging instructors to consider including us as partners in their classrooms. We received a 2019 Georgia Historical Records Advisory Council (GHRAC) Award for Excellence in the Educational Use of Historical Records for these workshops. In this article, we will describe our collaborative processes in the context of the evolution of our workshops. We will begin by discussing our initial collaboration in support of the librarian’s Honors freshman seminar, describe the evolution of our instructor workshops, and close with a discussion of our embedment in a College of Education and Human Development graduate course on Children’s and Adolescent Literature as a direct result of these workshops.
Continue reading Trading Eights: Teaching Collaboratively with Primary Sources
By M. Nathalie Hristov, Associate Professor & Music Librarian
and Allison L. Sharp, Associate Professor & International Education Liaison Librarian
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
The international student population in the United States has risen by over 72% over the last twenty years; however, a review of the literature seems to suggest that the LIS field would continue to benefit from greater research in this particular area of librarianship (Click, Wiley, and Houlihan, 2017, p. 328). Furthermore, the overwhelming majority of articles published in the library literature focus on services and activities that promote the international education of domestic students rather than the library needs of international students. Future efforts call for academic librarians to define their role in the information seeking activities of their international constituents (Click et al, 2017, p. 344). It is the contention of this article that a solid platform for the engagement of international students by librarians must first be established.
Continue reading Making Stone Soup: Integrating Academic Libraries into International Outreach Programs and Initiatives
By Haruko Yamauchi
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College
The United States is a vibrant and diverse country, made up of people with roots in many nations. While immigrant communities are now caught within political disputes that lie beyond the scope of this article to address, a few statistics about the current population of our country, our cities, and our colleges will indicate why teaching information literacy to English Language Learners in post-secondary education is and will continue to be of pressing concern, whatever may be the outcome of current battles over immigration policy.
Continue reading Language Learners in the Library: Developing a Partnership with Pre-College ESL at a Community College
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