History, information literacy, and advocacy (among other things)

cc Optical Illusion

The beginning of a new year for me means closing the last year and planning for a new semester. Last semester was my first in my new position as library instruction coordinator. It was exciting and successful. Also had my first book review published in Theological Librarianship.  I’m compiling my self evaluation and also statistics and meaningful feedback on our information literacy program. Thanks to the many contributors on the IL-I Listserv I have a couple of new ideas for sparking up our end of term report. One suggestion that I am using is reporting on the number of students who seek help after a library session. One of our student learning outcomes is that students will know where to go to get help, so this type of reporting addresses that learning outcome.  I’m still looking for more and better measurements.

Looking ahead I’ve taken on reference collection responsibility for United States and local history in addition to Religion. So I have some work ahead of me. I need to get better acquainted with the materials we already have, instruction for our history program, and new initiatives in that area. This will be one of my goals for this year.

Finally there are two big initiatives that I’m excited to be involved with. First, UWM has a task force examining the General Education Requirements in light of the AACU‘s LEAP. As a librarian, I am glad to see that LEAP has included Information Literacy as an Essential Learning Outcome for undergraduate students. I’m working with a small task force to submit a proposal for how information literacy outcomes might be incorporated into GE courses.

Second, the libraries is working on an advocacy plan. What’s advocacy? Basically, it is bringing all library staff together to disseminate information to our students, faculty, and staff in support of our goals and mission. Our mission it to support the campus mission, which is access, student success, and research growth. We can best support those goals through our collections and staff. I’m hopeful that this advocacy action plan will be successful. If nothing else it will make our staff and users better informed.

There’s already a lot on my plate this year. A couple of regional conferences (WAAL and CATLA) and possibly a national one. Continue to work towards publishing a research article that Ruth Gaba and I have been working on. Make the Digital Literacy Contest a success this semester. And much more! 2010 will be busy, no doubt.

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