October 25, 2014

From the Bell Tower

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?

Resolving the Link Resolver Problem | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Students appreciate having access to a vast selection of full-text content, but when our link resolver takes them to an intermediary screen—between the database and content—they find it extremely confusing, presenting them with too many unclear options. Academic librarians have researched the effectiveness of link resolvers since 2004. One not-so-surprising finding is that a high percentage of users never make it past that screen.

Taylorism Comes to Campus | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Just because technology allows us to do something, should we? That’s a big question being asked in higher education when it comes to student performance tracking analytics and predictive analytics.

Higher Ed Pays Attention to Design Thinking | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Using methods familiar to designers as an approach to problem solving in organizations is not a particularly new development, but now higher education may be looking at it as a way to reform how education is delivered.

Common Core 101 for Academic Librarians | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

The Common Core is said to be the most radical innovation to public education in a generation. The average academic librarian has paid little attention. What exactly do academic librarians need to know and does it matter to us?

Where the Opportunity Is | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

According to some research I came across, there are few academic library positions devoted to distance learning. You wouldn’t know that by the crowd that showed up for the 16th Annual Distance Library Services Conference. Trends in higher education suggest that distance library services may be where the opportunity lies.