I'm officially going to be starting my three-year term as an elected member of the Council of the Society of American Archivists in August BUT the organization brought the newly-elected folks out to headquarters in Chicago earlier this month for orientation and observation of the May Council meeting. These trips are funded by SAA itself, so, aside from my time away from work, there is no burden on UNCG.
One thing that SAA hears frequently - particularly from newer members - is that members wish they knew more about the inner workings of the organization. SAA itself is pretty transparent when it comes to releasing agendas, minutes, budget reports, etc. But it's also a large organization, with membership and leadership spread across lots of different types of archives all across the country.
In an effort to provide yet another venue to provide information about organizational action and to help newer members learn more about how the organization operates, I started a blog to give insight into the work I'm doing as a new Council member. If anyone is interested in how a large professional organization's main governance body works, you can follow along here: https://barkivistoncouncil.wordpress.com/. Our next Council meetings will take place at the SAA Annual Meeting in early August -- one at the start of the meeting and one at the close.
Tim Bucknall and I attended the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) Conference April 4-5 in San Antonio. Tim presented a breakout session on the Slavery Database and I did a very informal presentation on our OER initiatives at a roundtable discussion.
I came away feeling very good about our work here. We are providing many of the services that large ARL libraries do with far fewer resources. So bravo! If there was one theme it was about seeking partnership both on campus and externally. I think we've done a good job with that, too, and we'll continue to grow.
Our efforts on OER are on par with many other libraries as well. Some libraries have worked more closely with student groups which is a great idea.
Dr. Itifat Husain, founder of iMedicalApps.com, discussed free medical apps and other info in medical education. He reported heavy use of smartphones among the medical community, with over 75% of medical students and physicians using iOS devices. His advice could have come from our own information literacy sessions "They key is to use Google and Wikipedia appropriately. Look at the references and summaries to get you into PubMed."
Free Medical App - Legit or Not?
Last updated? If more than 18 months, it might be an orphan app
App developer - is it a medical society or well known health care provider? what other apps have they developed?
Clear, detailed descriptions available before download?
Is there a landing page? not just a download page in iTunes or other app store or facebook page
References included so that you can verify the content?
iTunes and Google Play ratings are useless
The #FOAM movement Free Open Access MEducation
free resources with open commentary: blogs, tweets, online videos, etc.
coin was termed by emergency physicians
advantages: free, appealing, rapid dissemination (authors don't want to wait months to years for traditional publication process)
disadvantage: at this point a lot of the content is unusual/attention gathering rather than core foundational topics
concerns: sustainable? (MDs doing this in spare time); students shouldn't try to use FOAM w/out solid foundational knowledge
I attended this conference November 16-17 in Atlanta. It was very useful. Below are some of the highlights for me. All of the presentations are here (or will be soon).
Two librarians from UNC Charlotte presented on assessing e-resources. They focused on Political Science but had a good protocol that could be applied to other subject areas. The liaison to that area worked w/ their E-Resources Librarian. They collaborated closely with teaching faculty to gain their input and used the data to cancel or promote underused resources. See "Give e-resources a chance" on the program.
Librarians from MIT presented on "Design Thinking." They worked with teams of students for a marathon over 2.5 days to gain input on library space design. It was somewhat similar to our Idea-Thon and working with the IARC students a few years ago but with a different twist.
One of the most valuable presentations was from Grand Valley State. The Information Literacy librarian conducted a study to examine the impact of library instruction on student retention. She found a definite correlation. Interestingly, she used a method similar to what we've started here by recording the Genie course code for each instruction session. She then worked with a statistician to compare it to retention rates. Because she is working toward a publication she didn't post her PPT on the conference web site but will send it to individuals. I've requested it and will share.
I presented with Crystal Baird from SACSCOC about how libraries can use assessment to prepare for accreditation.