An article, a pop-up cart…Friday updates.

Things have been busy here lately–it’s the second week of our quarter, and we’ve spent it in the usual fall rough-and-tumble.  But in the midst of it all, two projects have come to fruition, or near-fruition.

First, the newest issue of Communications in Information Literacy has an article I co-authored with the fantastic Merinda McLure, at Colorado State University.  Thanks to Chris Hollister and Stewart Brower for all their help in shepherding this piece through–and to our anonymous peer reviewers for their comments.  It’s a study of student and faculty attitudes toward library integration in CMS systems, started back in 2008 when I was still at Berkeley.  It was fascinating to research and write, and the finished product was bigger than either of us had predicted, I think.  So, double thanks to Chris and Stewart for taking it on.

On an entirely different front, our pop-up library project has been chugging along, and we now have some pictures of the cart.

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It’s essentially an IKEA-hacked book truck, designed to be reconfigured in different ways to display large and small books, new issues of journals, posters, inspiration images (these ranked high with the students we interviewed), DVDs, even a laptop ready to show Zotero or a DVD.  The last two weeks have been too nutty to get it into the students’ space yet, but I’m hoping next week we’ll get the chance to try it out.

All props to awesome MLIS student Jennifer Keyser for all her work on the in-depth user interviews we did to zero in on the best functions for the cart, as well as other library services.


Excellent IL instruction article by Eric Frierson: Making it their idea

Learning Model

Thanks to colleague Miriam Rigby for pointing out this article in In the Library With the Lead Pipe, by Eric Frierson.  Frierson discusses learning theory (including Piaget!) in an accessible, realistic, down-to-earth way that’s sadly kind of rare.  And he has good ideas for teaching better IL classes to undergraduates.

Modeling instructional activities after the way people learn is vital for making learning experiences that ‘stick.’ Typical library instruction involves copious amounts of “click here, then click here, and once you’re there, click here.” There’s little discovery or invention of core information literacy concepts. Students are told how to use information resources, told how to use citation styles, and told the consequences of unethical use of information. How can we make discovery of information literacy concepts more… scientific? Can students invent information literacy concepts on their own, given a scenario and a librarian as a guide?

I mostly teach graduate courses, and I’m leery of trying some of the ideas suggested here for working with undergrads (role play, scenario setting, etc.)…but maybe I shouldn’t be?

Online Northwestward ho!

I’m heading to Online Northwest 2010 tomorrow, where I’m looking forward to the keynote address by Brandon Schauer, as well as excellent programs by librarians from all over the West.

I’m also going to take a shot at my first lightning talk, titled “Whither the Book?”  It’s been an interesting couple of weeks for the future of publishing, digital texts, and e-readers, what with the iPad and the Amazon/Macmillan cage match.  I’ve been revising and revising…and it’ll all be over in five minutes.  Hard to believe, but there you go.

I’ll share links later if I can.

EDUCAUSE needs help

EDUCAUSE is seeking examples of the six technologies it will profile in the 2010 Horizon Report.  The Horizon Report annually forecasts the time-to-adoption for half a dozen key educational technologies.  You can see the 2009 Horizon Report here.

This year (or next year, I guess), the forecast is:

Mobile Computing
Open Content

Electronic Books
Simple Augmented Reality

Gesture-Based Computing
Visual Data Analysis

If you have a good local example of any of these technologies being used in higher ed in  your neck of the woods, scamper over to the EDUCAUSE web form and drop them a line.  You’ll have their thanks–and eternal glory in next year’s Horizon Report!


Two new projects at Cornell

Thanks to today’s ELI webinar, a couple of very cool new digital instruction projects at Cornell University…

Copyright in the Digital Age
This is a class page using customized WordPress MU; notice that it pulls in posts by students for other students to comment on, and even vote on.  Student writing actually becomes publication, right off the bat.  Very cool use of WordPress MU.

A community-built database of interior design themes, strategies, and practices, illustrated by images and indexed by folksonomy.  With citations!  I love this and can imagine many, many more applications for the overall template.