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hacklibschool: in defense of online lis education

My first official post as a writer for Hack Library School is up today — check it out!  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic of online LIS education.  The inspiration for the post came from reading naysayers who look down on online programs and the students who attend them.

Also, later this week I plan to have a post reflecting on my experience at this year’s SAA Annual Meeting (sneak preview: I had a great time!).

 
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Posted by on August 31, 2011 in library school, links

 

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joining the hack library school team

I have been a huge fan of Hack Library School since the blog’s launch, so I’m excited to announce that I have officially joined the team as a contributing writer!  While I will still primarily write here, most of my thoughts on library school (and graduate archival education) will most likely be posted over there.  The collaborative atmosphere of the blog is incredibly encouraging, and I really think Hack Library School is a great place for library students to participate in discussions about the profession and LIS education system.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2011 in library school

 

crowdsourcing archival research

While I’ve heard of many crowdsourced archival transcription projects, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Children of the Lodz Ghetto: A Memorial Research Project is the first crowdsourced archival research project I’ve come across.

The Children of the Lodz Ghetto Project aims to find out what happened to over 13,000 students who signed the Lodz ghetto schools album in September 1941.  Volunteers pick a name, research the museum’s digital archives, and submit their findings.  The research results are then posted online after being reviewed by museum staff.

I think crowdsourcing archival research is awesome for many reasons.  First, crowdsourcing in general is a great way for archives to leverage the power of the public.  Another key result of projects like this is that it demonstrates what archival research is like, which can cause people to become more interested in archives as institutions.  Before I was interested in a career in libraries, I had no idea what archives were all about.  Had I known about archives back in college, I definitely would have dived into this field much earlier.  This project is a great way to introduce students to archival research.  A professor at George Washington University has heavily incorporated the Children of the Lodz Ghetto Project into her university writing class.  Archives should be more proactive in teaching students about archival research and not just wait for teachers and professors to use archives in their classes.

I hope to see more projects like this in the future.  If you know of any other projects that crowdsource archival research, please share in the comments!

 
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Posted by on August 3, 2011 in archives, links

 

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library day in the life, round 7 (#libday7)

CC image courtesy of Cat Sidh on Flickr

This week is round seven of the Library Day in the Life Project, so here’s a summary of my day as a Circulation Specialist at the American University Library.

8:30-9:00am:  Arrived at the library and took care of opening Circ duties, which include ensuring the register has the correct amount of money, turning on all 4 desk computers, and logging into 4 Circ clients on each computer (we are part of a consortium, and the programs we use are two Voyagers, Millennium, and Illiad).  Grabbed coffee before the library opened at 9:00am.

9:00-11:00am:  Staffed the Circ Desk.  One of the main opening duties is making sure a part-time student assistant empties the book drops.  I discharged all the items, making sure to backdate the return date to yesterday.  The opening desk shift is generally pretty slow, especially in the summer.  Nothing out of the ordinary occurred during my shift — checked out books, accepted book returns, took some fines, and answered questions about alumni access to the library’s databases.

11:00am-12:00pm:  Spoke with the ILL Coordinator about a patron inquiry I received while at the Circ Desk.  Checked emails and reviewed my schedule for the day.  Organized files for our inventory project and printed out shelf-lists for our student assistants to work on.

12:00-1:00pm:  Ate lunch with our Collection Development Librarian and two visiting librarians from the American University of Nigeria.

1:00-2:00pm:  Shadowed the Reference Desk.  I’m training in reference this summer in preparation for a desk shift starting in the fall semester.

2:00-4:00pm:  Attended the online Lyrasis training “Interpreting and Coding the OCLC MARC Bibliographic Record,” the first of three sessions.  Learned all about the first and second indicators of the 245 and 1XX fields.

 
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Posted by on July 27, 2011 in day in the life

 

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hack library school #ala11 wrap-up

If Hack Library School isn’t already in your RSS reader, it should be!  Check out today’s post for a summary of different sessions written by a variety of contributors (including me).  Reading this post makes me excited for next year!

 
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Posted by on July 13, 2011 in conferences, library school, links