Copyright solutions for institutional repositories: A collaboration with subject librarians

Blaylock, Solomon


CO, IL


Leary, H., Lundstrom, K., & Martin, P. (2012). Copyright solutions for institutional repositories: A collaboration with subject librarians. Journal Of Library Innovation, 3(1), 101-110. Accessed 27 September 2014 from EBSCOhost.


Summary
The authors discuss the recently implemented practice at Utah State University’s
Merrill-Cazier Library of librarians performing copyright clearance on behalf of faculty submitting to the institutional repository. The article deals frankly with the opportunities and challenges posed by the new arrangement.


Evaluation

I have both positive and negative feelings about this article. On the one hand, I think the spirit of it is right on, and very timely. By addressing a process-related need, subject librarians at Utah State are creating opportunities for interdepartmental and library-faculty collaboration as well as expanding their individual capacities in the currently vital areas of copyright, metadata, scholarly publishing, and open access. On the other hand, the continued relevance of the homegrown institutional repository can hardly be taken for granted, and the opportunities for capacity building in this area are not especially broad or deep. I do like the way the authors are thinking though, and those of us in academic libraries cannot afford to neglect this kind of thinking at this pivotal time.

Good IDEA: Instructional design model for integrating Information Literacy

Blaylock, Solomon


ET, CO, IL


Mullins, K. (2014). Good IDEA: Instructional design model for integrating Information Literacy. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 40(3-4), 339-349. doi: 10.1016/j.acalib.2014.04.012


Summary
A presentation of IDEA (interview, design, embed, assess) – an instructional design model created specifically for librarians, with a theoretical foundation in cognitive and behavioral learning. The model is explained in detail from theoretical foundations to practical implementation. The article features several explanatory flowcharts and even templates and rubrics, providing a suite of tools enabling the reader to make use of IDEA out of the box.


Evaluation

Although the theoretical underpinnings of Mullins’ model are in some conflict with those being championed by this course, it seems to me that the author has something of great value to impart, and has gone to pains to ensure that this is done so with a thoroughness clearly aimed at results-oriented praxis. The behaviorist underpinning of the model, particularly in the area of assessment, might actually make it particularly valuable to academic librarians who so frequently these days find themselves the direct and immediate necessity of providing quantitative data to back up any claims to continued relevance against a rapidly shifting backdrop of upsets in scholarly publishing and information retrieval.

Integrating information literacy into blackboard

Blaylock, Solomon


CO, IL


Xiao, J. (2010). Integrating information literacy into blackboard. Library Management, 31(8), 654-668. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/01435121011093423


Summary
The article discusses the case of a librarian at the College of Staten Island who, finding traditional Information Literacy instruction sessions to be of little evident value to students, worked to develop an in-depth, online resource for nursing students. After seeing positive results, she reached out to faculty members to see about having professors integrate her instructional materials into the very classes they were teaching, through Blackboard. A thorough program of assessment was also devised, and the project has met with success.


Evaluation
The author (the librarian in question) demonstrates a practical and proactive approach to her work that serves as a model for 21st century academic librarians. Rather than being a passive information gatekeeper, she demonstrates her unique value as a librarian to students and faculty by engaging directly with both in curricular/instructional design and assessment, offering a unique contribution to her institution’s teaching and learning objectives. This is the blueprint that successful modern librarians will follow in terms of departmental embedding, capacity building, and role definition in the academy. A very useful, encouraging, and well documented article.

Show, Don’t Tell: A Common Core Tenet Applies to Our Roles


Amy Woods

CO- collaboration

Ellis, Leanne. (2014). School Library Journal. Retrieved from http://www.slj.com/2014/06/opinion/on-common-core/show-dont-tell-a-common-core-tenet-applies-to-our-roles-on-common-core/


Summary
Leanne Ellis, coordinator for the New York City School Library System, asserts that in order to move past stereotypes, school librarians must capitalize on the tenets of the Common Core and demonstrate their importance as curriculum leaders and “linchpins of student success.” The role of today’s librarian is multifaceted. She a marketer of library resources, a “go-to-techie” and an instrumental instructional partner, collaborating with teachers to create rich units that promote critical thinking and information literacy. Effective librarians have expanded their roles, becoming “staff developers, collaborators, grant-writers, resource experts, community partners, and instructional leaders.” In an environment where so few people understand what exactly teacher librarians do, it is the duty of teacher librarians to “show, and keep showing” their impact on student achievement.


Evaluation

Ellis clearly defines the role of the 21st Century librarian. Unfortunately, few people, educators and administrators included, recognize the value of the teacher librarian as a cornerstone in an effective instructional program. As a result, teacher librarians are often the first ones on the chopping block during a budget crisis. This article is a good reminder that teacher librarians must continually evolve and promote their services and worth to the school community.

Creating Lifelong Readers

Amy Jessica McMillan
IL

Gardiner, S. (2005). Chapter 1: Creating lifelong readers.  In Building student literacy through sustained silent reading. Retrieved from  http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/105027/chapters/Creating-Lifelong-Readers.aspx

Summary
In the first chapter from his book Building Student Literacy Through Sustained Silent Reading, author Steve Gardiner outlines the various forms of sustained silent reading (SSR) as they currently exist in schools. Variations of SSR include free voluntary reading (FVR), drop everything and read (DEAR), love to read (LTR), independent reading time (IRT), and many others. Gardiner gives a brief history of the origins of SSR and discusses why its popularity has ebbed and flowed over the past few decades. Next, Gardiner outlines some research in support of SSR, most importantly from Steve Krashen and his 1993 book The Power of Reading. In addition, Gardiner cites Caught in the Middle author and educator Nancy Atwell as a strong proponent of SSR, and he details Atwell’s suggestions for what to do and what not to do when running a reading workshop. Finally, Gardiner makes the case for encouraging independent reading because when students build reading stamina and learn to enjoy reading, it becomes a “flow activity”and this is what is necessary to build lifelong readers.

Evaluation
As a classroom English teacher for the past fifteen years I have personally witnessed how the popularity of independent reading as receded over the past decade. In 2000 I taught at a school which mandated twenty-five minutes of independent reading time daily. Fast forward to 2008 and new district administrators actively discouraged independent reading at school, citing “lack of research.” The perceived lack of research for independent reading comes from the National Reading Panel Report (2000) in which report authors claim there isn’t significant evidence to support independent reading as a strategy to improve overall student reading proficiency. However, I am happy to say that this trend seems to be reversing itself. As Gardiner states in the first chapter of his book, there is research supporting independent reading programs. No one is advocating that independent reading is the only type of instruction that should happen in schools. In fact, classroom teachers still have a curriculum to teach. Gardiner is simply arguing that a robust independent reading program is necessary for students to practice the skill, to gain new vocabulary, and to become avid and engaged lifetime readers. I agree with Stephen Krashen, as quoted in Gardiner’s article: “[Independent reading] will not, by itself, produce the highest levels of competence; rather, it provides a foundation so that higher levels of proficiency may be reached. When FVR [free voluntary reading] is missing, these advanced levels are extremely difficult to attain” (“What Researchers Say” section).



Two Things You Can Do to Increase Communication with Parents

Amy Jessica McMillan

CO

Byrne, R. (2013). Two things you can do to increase communication with parents. Free tech for teachers. from http://www.freetech4teachers.com/2013/04/two-things-you-can-do-to-increase.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+freetech4teachers%2FcGEY+%28Free+Technology+for+Teachers%29#.VBwzYC5dWQh

Summary
Education blogger Richard Byrne gives two technology-related strategies for improving communication with families. One idea is to create a classroom blog and to consistently add important, relevant content. He explains that many teachers quit blogging based on the initial low response, but Byrne argues that parents will start checking classroom blogs frequently once they realize important information is stored there. Another idea is to allow and even encourage text messages from students and parents. He argues that for the “under-30” generation, texting is the easiest way to communicate. If teachers don’t want to provide personal cell phone numbers, services like Google Voice and Remind 101 allow messages to come to the user’s computer, no cell phone number required.

Evaluation:
Keeping a consistent, useful, and relevant blog is a challenging task for many teachers. Byrne is probably correct that blogging is the most effective way to communicate with most 21st century parents, but many teachers—if they are telling parents about classwork at all—are still sending out newsletters on paper. For the blogging idea to work, teachers need professional development on how to blog and create websites. They also need to believe it will work before they devote the significant amount of time required by keeping an up-to-date blog. Finally, most parents are online, but not all. How can we communicate with the parents who do not have computer literacy skills and / or do not have an internet connection?

The idea about text messaging is very helpful. Google Voice, in particular, is easier to use than most school voice mail systems. It alerts your email when you have a message and keeps an automatic record of all messages received. Google Voice even transcribes voice mails, saving the teacher time when he or she looks over messages. Remind 101 is another useful app that provides a simple communication path for parents and schools. I prefer Google Voice since it integrates with Gmail, but both apps work well. The only downside to encouraging text messages is that teachers could potentially be overwhelmed by the quantity of messages received. However, the pros outweigh this concern because our overarching goal should be to improve communication and to make it as easy as possible for all stakeholders.

How to Foster a Growth Mindset

Amy Jessica McMillan
IL

Schwartz, K. What’s your learning disposition? How to foster students’ mindsets. (2014). MindShift. Retrieved from http://blogs.kqed.org/mindshift/2014/03/whats-your-learning-disposition-how-to-foster-students-mindsets/ utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+kqed%2FnHAK+%28MindShift%29

Summary
Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck has developed a compelling theory for how students learn. According to Dweck, students who have what she terms a “growth mindset” outperform those who don’t. This article, published in Mindshift, adds to Dweck’s theory by outlining a few other motivational mindsets. According to blog author Karen Scwartz, some important mindsets for students include feeling like they belong to an academic community, the belief that the work is valuable and that they can be successful, and the belief that their intelligence can grow with effort. Finally, Schwartz gives examples of several schools who focus on developing these mindsets with students.

Evaluation
This article gives several practical tips for encouraging students to stay motivated to learn. Most educators have worked with kids who have simply given up because they’ve decided they can’t succeed. Schwartz proposes some tools for reinvigorating those students and for keeping the rest as motivated as possible. I wonder why Schwartz differentiates the mindsets listed in her article from the ones Carol Dweck proposes in her research and in her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. In another Mindshift article titled “Beyond Talent and Smarts,” blogger Annie Murphy Paul (2012) explains Dweck’s research “has shown that children and adults who believe in the power of effort to overcome challenges [what she calls growth mindset] are more resilient and ultimately more successful than those who are convinced that ability is innate.” Regardless, Schwartz’s ideas about improving student learning outcomes are certainly thoughtful and intuitively compelling. She reminds us that our abilities and intelligences can grow based on the effort we put into our work. We teachers need to have that in the forefront of our minds every time we step in front of our students.