O VERVIEW Librarians are “embedded” inside online classes Geared towards: Online classes On-campus/hybrid classes with online components Lends itself to one- on-one interactions
P ROS & C ONS OF E MBEDDED L IBRARIANS Possibly more effective than live instruction Tailored to class/individual assignments Time appropriate Reaches out to students not at the library No face-to-face contact Students may not use Students may feel overloaded with TMI Not every learning style can be accommodated PROSCONS
B EFORE S OMEONE WAS “REALLY” IN C HARGE Began in Summer 2007 Hap-hazard approach Not formalized Started in WebCT as a “hey, should we try this?” idea Used a “wait and see” approach
O UR D ISCOVERY – W AIT & S EE D OESN ’ T W ORK Students are not always aware of resources offered don’t always realize that a particular resource will work for them are uncomfortable asking for help… they don’t want to bother you Instructors don’t see the impact of librarian/student interaction sometimes won’t ask you back Librarians are out of sight, out of mind feel frustrated think their efforts are wasted
F ORMALIZING THE P ROGRAM Fall 2007 - New Librarian dedicated to instruction and distance services arrives 1 st Semester – Getting a Feel for Things Spring 2008 – Started playing around with more proactive approaches and formalized methodology Offering Tips Keeping Stats Better Advertizing Word of Mouth Improves
W HAT IS O UR M ODEL ? Proactive approach – Information delivered Over time at appropriate moments Before students get frustrated Before students need to ask questions Information is course / assignment specific Use of a variety of vehicles and methods to deliver information
W HY U SE O UR M ODEL ? Increases usage of library resources Limits the “mass chaos” of repetitive questions Is more effective due to timeliness of information Saves student frustration Builds rapport with students and faculty Increases value of librarians as resources
B EFORE Y OU G ET S TARTED Advertizing Email Newsletters Word of Mouth Matching Faculty to Librarian Subject areas Personal interests Relationships
P REPARATION Contact the Instructor Ask about Assignments Type of Research Done Level of Depth Roles & Expectations for the Librarian Level of Librarian Involvement Make sure instructor adds you into the class with the proper access rights. Review the Syllabus Ask for clarification Keep an eye out for appropriate moments to mention “niche” library resources Get Organized List assignments with due dates and possible library resources Decide when and how early to post tips… TIMING IS EVERYTHING!
K NOW Y OUR A UDIENCE B EFORE W RITING T IPS Are… Usually on-campus In need of extra attention Need… Information literacy basics Overviews of basic resources Keyword lists More information about the big picture More encouragement to contact librarians and visit the library Want… To finish their assignments ASAP. Are… More likely to be non- traditional Mostly off-campus Skilled in basic research strategies Need… Help closing the technology gap More controlled vocabulary skills Subject specific resources Fine details more than the big picture Want… A more personal relationship UndergraduatesGraduates* * Some upper level UG too
M AKING D ECISIONS Decide Where You Will Put Things Messages Forum/Discussion Board Chat Email Double-Check That You are IN the class Introduce Yourself
H OW TO C REATE T IPS Two Types Those made ahead of time See your schedule Those made “on the fly” In response to questions Individualized To be Shared Two Formats Text-Based Video-Based
T RACKING Y OUR I NFO It is handy and helpful to know what you do from semester to semester and from class to class Try Tracking What classes you have What tips you posted When you posted Major assignments Student Stumbling Blocks
D ON ’ T R EINVENT THE W HEEL Storage – keep copies of your tips for the future Jing/Screencast Project Sites Word Documents Plan to make adjustments from semester to semester as class requirements change and as you find newer ways to address issues
O N T HE R IGHT T RACK I liked how she had short video clips to watch. She also sent them to us ahead of time so we were able to watch them before we started our assignment which was helpful. Every time I had questions I just had to check out the forums page for my class and the embedded librarian had the answers I was searching for ! … lowered my anxiety and made me feel much more confident in turning in my work. Made me aware of the help that is available. … and if I need help in the future, I most definitely won't hesitate to ask !
T HINGS TO T WEAK I don't think the embedded librarian was necessary for this specific class because it wasn't an online class and we rarely ever need to get on to Sakai I wonder if using Sakai e-mail rather than forums would better get students' attention? I never used it and I found the notifications annoying. Come to the initial online class meeting to stress important tips then. I had no clue there was one.
I NSTRUCTORS R ESPOND I am also excited about including the embedded Librarian in my face to face classes for fall... I am looking for a way to make it part of an assignment that students will have to use the tips... I realize that we take for granted that our students know how to conduct a search... but even more importantly that they know how to go deeper and evaluate information and perhaps find better resources... many rely on the first thing they come across. The Librarian's help is always great and greatly appreciated. It's a problem getting students to use the forums and their suggestions, however. I felt empowered... the screen shots helped to follow... I realize that I probably learned as much as my students if not more... made me realize that I can streamline my research strategies... help me be more efficient in prep for my classes.