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Academic SIG Meeting | August 5, 2015

Posted By Kari Siders, Thursday, August 13, 2015

We had a successful meeting at Gateway Community and Technical College of eight librarians.  There was discussion on orientations, chat services, information commons creation, and embedded librarianship.

 

Orientations

Everyone has student orientation of one sort or another.  Some have strictly online orientation for the college, while others the students come into the library for orientation.  The following are some examples of orientations that occur at various institutions:

  • Online orientation.  Students come into the library to get assistance with finding the orientation on Blackboard.  Unsure about mention of the library within that orientation.
  • Orientation split into groups.  As each group comes into the library the basics are shared.
  • New student orientation is built into the first class.  A walkthrough of how to write an APA paper is a primary focus, as well as how to use Grammerly (writing help) and Smarthinking (online tutoring, on-demand). 
  • Part of a multi-day freshman orientation.  Library does a scavenger hunt type game.  Looking into other options.
  • Graduate students.  Tour of library, rare book room, access to UC library resources.  Found that students do better practicing rather than being told.

Two institutions also shared that if a student is struggling or falling behind they were referred to the library for extra assistance.  This has had mixed results at both institutions with those students who found the help useful being forever grateful and the ones

 

Beyond new student orientations there was a small discussion about what, if any, faculty orientation included the library.  Some institutions do not even had new faculty orientation, which was many of the ones meeting, but even those without have found other ways to introduce themselves and the library to new faculty. 

  • One on one faculty orientation/introduction/relationship building.  The institutions who do this had positive feedback about the experience from the library side, including that faculty seemed more receptive to collaborations with the library and library usage in general.
  • One institution is a part of their adjunct faculty orientation and does a presentation during the week before the semester when all faculty work from a single campus for a variety of meetings.
  • Another institution has an entire half day with faculty going through orientation.

 

Chat Service

Two of the institutions represented at the meeting recently purchased Springshare’s LibChat service.  The fall semester should be a good test to see if the chat service is utilized.  There was some trepidation in how to get the word out in a way that would lead students to utilizing the service.  Some of the advice given was to just try different things until you know what works and make sure that you’re marketing to make the service readily accessible to students.  One key component is to ensure that you’re responding to chats ASAP.  This prevents students from getting frustrated when there is a delay.  There was also the suggestion that requiring an email address or other information upfront could help guide the chat discussion and limit abuse of the service.  Update on how this service works through the semester will be discussed at our next meeting.

 Another institution already utilizes SnapEngage as their chat service.  Experience with this service was that it was mostly unused.  Barely a one chat a week sometimes. 

 

Information Commons Creation

Gateway Community and Technical College is embracing a new concept of collaboration for all student services.  This includes the library, financial aid, student support services and admissions.  The change is a large one for the entire college community, but will help serve students through a ticketing system and better direction for students to get information.  This concept creates singular information desks at each campus with a variety of student services representatives.  These representatives will be cross trained to answer basic questions for a variety of departments and will escalate inquires requiring more intense service to the appropriate department.

 

Embedded Librarianship              

Indian Wesleyan as a cohort program with the adult learners had embedded librarian information in each class as they go along.  This has had mixed results, although doesn’t seem to equate to higher library usage.  The questions raised from this were what is the best method of integrating the library into a class?  And although this is targeted to their assignments at the time how many students look at the information?

 

Other Notes

As with all of our meetings we sometimes have tidbits mentioned that don’t fall into a category, but are interesting concepts to think about and consider. 

  • Analogy that could be positive to use with faculty and students “A Library Degree is a degree in research”
  • Idea of a club that would meet weekly at a particular time to review the lesson of the week.  This could be targeted to what students would be learning or general.  Student success skills, time management, organization, improve vocabulary, etc.
  • Return to College group- Idea to create a group for those students who are struggling with the transition of using the digital library of today, when the library of their yesterday was rooted in print materials. 

 

Next Meeting:

Please join us at the next Academic SIG meeting prior to the membership meeting on December 1, 2015 at the Reading Road branch of the Cincinnati Public Library (More information can be found on the event page).  To start off our meeting we would like to discuss updates to what was new for the fall semester and how did it work?  Good, bad, or ugly examples are welcome.  We want to know what your library tried and how it went.  This will hopefully include some update to ongoing conversations from the August meeting including chat services, discovery layer, and the information commons at Gateway.

Tags:  Academics  Meeting Notes  SIG 

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