August 27, 2015

Being Present with Learners in the Library | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

One drawback of being an academic librarian is that we are less connected with students than we would like. We relish our role as educators. Let’s be more intentional about being present in their college experience.

Top 10 Academic Library Issues for 2015 | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

The beginning of the year brings many “top” lists for what to look for in 2015. So far there’s not much predicting for what looks big for the academic library world. Here’s a shot at it.

Trying Too Hard For Relevance | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Academic librarians would agree that keeping themselves front and center in the minds of their community members is a high priority. Staying relevant is a good thing. But is it possible to go too far?

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.