February 1, 2015

From the Bell Tower

Design Thinking for Flexible Solutions | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

As academic librarians become more design influenced there are some lessons to be learned from what’s happening in the world of digital gadgetry. Success is less about easy fixes or fancy features and more about flexibility.

Partnering to Advance Openness | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

The year just ended left a lot to desire. For academic librarians it was a mixed bag of the good and bad, giving us cause for optimism while simultaneously leaving us, on occasion, wondering if we were making much progress in bringing change to higher education.

Serendipitous Discovery: Is it Getting Harder? | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Few would argue against the value of serendipitous discovery, especially when it happens in the library. Is it possible that the evolution of libraries and related technology is making it less likely?

MLD: Masters in Library Design, Not Science | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

How many LIS program graduates would identify as scientists, ready to conduct experiments and make new discoveries in information theory, practice, and behavior? Probably far fewer than those who get a library job where they practice design.

Looking for Clues: How Faculty Use and Think About Technology | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Gaining insights into how faculty use different technologies in the classroom and for their own research, as well as how they view new modes of higher education, could help academic librarians discover new opportunities to support and collaborate with their faculty.

Seeing More Gray in the College Classroom | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Higher education faces a serious decline in its traditional 18-22 population. Having fewer potential students from the traditional demographic segment could have serious implications for funding. One part of the solution—open the doors to a new demographic segment.

Higher Ed’s Enrollment Blues | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

No one is panicking—just yet—but the demographic trends point to colleges and universities facing serious challenges in meeting their enrollment targets. Eventually the impact may trickle down to the library.

Keeping Library Content Secure | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Illegally breaking into licensed library content doesn’t require sophisticated hacking skills—just a legitimate network account. Higher education recently discovered such accounts for sale on the Internet. Do we have good options for preventing thefts?

Tapping into the Trust Culture | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

After decades of people trusting authority figures instead of each other, an American revolution is underway. The trust economy signals a reversal. Academic librarians should be thinking more about their trust quotient.

If Confusion Helps Students Learn, Shouldn’t They Be Information Literate By Now? | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

When students have trouble grasping the subject matter, intuitively we work to make it as clear as possible. New research suggests actually promoting some confusion may work better. If that’s true, how would it change library instruction?