August 24, 2016

Tailoring Data Services for Institutional Needs | ALA Annual 2016

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A key point that led off—and was reiterated several times throughout—“Strategies and Partnerships: Tailoring Data Services for Your Institutional Needs,” the ACRL (Association of College and Research Libraries) President’s Program at the recent American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference in Orlando, FL, was the importance of establishing a common understanding of what exactly “data services” means. The term is a catch-all for a diverse set of activities; using it without defining its scope can become problematic for everyone involved.

Academic Libraries and Open Educational Resources: Developing Partnerships | ALA Annual 2016

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A number of higher education–focused sessions at the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference touched on issues surrounding student retention and completion—and with the costs of tuition, housing, and materials constantly rising, saving students money is a major consideration. When the conversation includes state and community colleges, and a student body that may have less access to financial resources, finding strategies to cut costs becomes more important than ever. Open educational resources (OER)—freely accessible texts and media that faculty can assemble, repurpose, and package under open access agreements for teaching and research—are a rapidly growing option.

Cornell University Pops Cork on Wine Library

wine stacks at Cornell's new wine library

The seven foot tall stacks at Cornell University’s newest library are kept cool and dry, perfect for cardigan wearing. But that’s where the sense of familiarity might end for many LJ readers, as the space contains no books, and offers no borrowing privileges. The brainchild of Susan Henry and Kathryn Boor, the former and current deans of the university’s College of Agriculture and Life Science (CALS), Cornell’s wine library was part of a $105 million renovation of the campus’ Stocking Hall. The new space will store wines used for teaching in the school’s Viticulture and Enology program.

Rethinking the Much-Dreaded Employee Evaluation | Leading from the Library

Steven Bell

They may be a bit of a pain, but employee performance assessments have their place in continuous worker improvement. The question for leaders is, is there a better way to manage the process?

Solidarity! Zine Collection Goes to University of Kansas Libraries

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Recently more than 1,000 zines from the countercultural Solidarity! Revolutionary Center and Radical Library were acquired by the University of Kansas (KU) Libraries, where they will become part of the Wilcox Collection of Contemporary Political Movements at KU’s Kenneth Spencer Research Library.

What Do We Need to Stop Doing? A Survey | Not Dead Yet

Cheryl-LaGuardia

As I look at the many areas in which libraries are working, thriving, and expanding (see Where Are We Headed? An Unscientific Survey, Not Dead Yet, October 15, 2015), the question occurs to me: do we need to consider not doing some things so that we can do those things our researchers need us to do?

ProQuest Acquires Alexander Street

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ProQuest subsidiary R.R. Bowker today announced the acquisition of Alexander Street, a leading provider of streaming video and music, as well as primary source collections, to almost 4,000 library customers in over 60 countries. The business will be known as “Alexander Street, a ProQuest Company,” and will continue to be led by Stephen Rhind-Tutt, its current president, and its current management team, including Eileen Lawrence, David Parker and Andrea Eastman-Mullins, from its current headquarters in Alexandria, VA.

Library Field Responds to Orlando Tragedy

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Update: ALA is planning a planning a memorial gathering at the Annual Conference on Saturday, June 25, 8–8:30 a.m. in the OCCC Auditorium, and a special conference Read Out co-sponsored by GLBTRT and OIF. Details on other support activities during the conference can be found here.

In the wake of the shooting in Orlando’s Pulse nightclub on the night of June 12, which killed 49 people and injured 53 others, library administration and staff, organizations and vendors have stepped up with statements of solidarity, offers of help, and opportunities to join forces with the GLBT and Latinx communities—the shooting occurred during Pulse’s Latin night—to mourn those killed and wounded.

Signs of the Times | Product Spotlight

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Digital signage has become a familiar sight in retail stores, restaurants, hotels, and other businesses. With large flat-panel televisions now relatively inexpensive, many libraries have jumped on board with this trend as well, using digital signs to display a rotating series of regularly updated images, such as announcements, book covers, or information about upcoming events.

Library of Congress Drops Illegal Alien Subject Heading, Provokes Backlash Legislation

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Thanks to the joint efforts of a student group and university librarians at Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, with a push from the American Library Association (ALA), the Library of Congress (LC) announced on March 22 that it would remove the term “Illegal alien” from the LC Subject Heading (LCSH) system, replacing it with “Noncitizen” and, to describe the act of residing without authorization, “Unauthorized immigration.” Per LC’s executive summary, the proposed change will be posted on a “Tentative List” for comments “not earlier than May, 2016.” Ultimately the heading “Illegal aliens” will become a “former heading” reference, cross-referenced with the new terminology; other headings that include the phrase will also be revised or canceled. This decision currently stands despite recent backlash: members of the U.S. House of Representatives have voted to attach language to a funding bill which would require LC to switch back to the original term, but the bill is not yet law.

Update: The Library of Congress has posted a survey where the public can share their views on the proposed changes, and will accept comments through July 20.