Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL)

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Volume 15 Number 1, Spring 1998

Instruction Section Newsletter, This Issue:

  1. Instruction Section News
  2. ALA Annual Conference (June 26-30, 1998)
  3. ACRL 9th National Conference (April 8-11, 1999)

   Aloha from the IS Chair: Section Initiatives Experiment, Push Boundaries

This column is my final one as chair of the Section. Yes, it has been an intense but rewarding year--everything previous chairs told me it would be...and much, much more!

The success of the initiative to have each committee of the Section identify one activity they can complete during 1997-98 and one long activity to begin addressing will be embodied in the Section's Annual Report. That report will be available on the Section's website.

Distance learning issues of instruction had been an emphasis for this year. Emerging Technologies in Instruction, Management of Instruction Services, Research & Scholarship, and Teaching Methods have responded. Examine the minutes from their meetings on the Section's website for details.

By the time you receive this column the aforementioned Section website will have been re-designed for greater ease of use and will incorporate some new features. Congratulations are due to the Section's Website/Listserv Administrator, Elizabeth Dupuis, the Communication Committee, and Advisory Council members for much productive work and excellent advice.

Some additional initiatives have also been put into play. During 1998-99, the Section will have a Virtual Task Force whose charge will be to create a continuing education opportunity from the Learning to Teach Preconference content. The task force will accomplish this project with members who will connect as a group using technology and telecommunications. The Section received permission from W. Lee Hisle, ACRL President, to experiment with a group that would not be required to attend ALA Midwinter and Annual conferences. The task force will provide an assessment to the IS Executive Committee about doing business in this manner.

The Section has submitted an ACRL Initiative Grant proposal to fund a Think Tank III which will address the impact of technology on the direction of library instruction. Previous think tanks were sponsored by the Section in 1981 and 1989.

The Section will also sponsor a formal presence at the 1999 ACRL National Conference in Detroit, Michigan. A task force has been formed to organize that activity.

Throughout the year and in addition to these initiatives, the "normal" work of the Section has continued, thanks to the efforts of the members of the Section committees and task forces. The chairs of these various groups have provided excellent leadership. I have appreciated them immensely.

Finally, I want to applaud the Executive Committee of the Section who have survived a year of "Randy at the Helm." Their advice, the execution of their own heavy responsibilities, and their patience with my relentless e-mails, have been much appreciated.

I wish you all an excellent ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. for all those members attending. For those members not attending, I hope that the Section has produced value for your dues and that you continue to look to the Section as a vital component of your professional development.

--Randy Hensley, Chair, IS

   Arp Named Winner of Dudley Award for '98

The Instruction Section is pleased to announce that Lori Arp, Associate Professor and Head of Reference at the University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries, is the winner of the 1998 Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian Award. The honor, which includes a cash award of $1000 contributed by JAI Press, recognizes an individual librarian who has made an especially significant contribution to the advancement of instruction in a college or research library environment.

Arp has been a key player in shaping the issues facing instruction librarians over the past 15 years and has made significant contributions in all four areas of the Dudley award criteria: program development, publication, professional leadership, and education.

Beginning with her leadership role in shaping the Model Statement of Objectives for Academic Bibliographic Instruction into a conceptually-based model, and her co-authorship of the first conceptually-based research guide, Arp's ideas have had a far-reaching impact on instruction programs across the country.

She has published extensively on a wide range of topics, including structures of BI programs, information literacy, technology and instruction, and cooperative learning. Her seminal articles on learning theory and critical thinking have gained national and international recognition. In addition to her own writing, Lori has helped shape the conversation on instructional issues through the provocative and award-winning articles written by the authors she has invited to contribute to her "Library Literacy" column in RQ.

Arp's professional leadership as chair of the Bibliographic Instruction Section in 1993-94, and as chair of many Section committees, have had a lasting impact on the Section. One of the most visible of these was her instrumental work in the changing of this organization's name to the Instruction Section.

Arp has spoken widely at professional conferences and continuing education workshops; and as a practicing instruction librarian, she continues to carry an extensive teaching load. She has also developed outstanding programs that have been emulated widely. An entire issue of Research Strategies was devoted to programmatic innovations based on a cognitive approach to research that she implemented at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

We hope you will join us this summer at the IS program to celebrate the presention of the 1998 Dudley Award to Lori Arp.

--Loanne Snavely, Past-Chair, IS

   Wayne State Outreach Program to High Schools Wins Innovation Award

Nancy E. Adams, Lothar Spang, Nan Blackwell, Juliet Mullenmeister, and LaVentra Ellis have been awarded the 1998 IS Innovation in Instruction Award for their program, Health Sciences Information Tools 2000, at Vera Shiffman Medical Library at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan.

The Health Sciences Information Tools 2000 program is offered to 11th- and 12th-grade high school students at Detroit Public Schools' Crockett Career and Technical Center and the HEART Academy. The students receive instruction in how to find, evaluate, and present health-related information using the tools and resources they will encounter in their future allied health careers.

Adams and her instructional team have developed a model program that enables students to use an academic library as the setting for developing information literacy skills. The program recognizes the critical need to prepare students for the workforce of the 21st century, while encouraging them to develop an appreciation for the wealth of resources to be found in libraries.

The outreach program is funded by the American Honda Foundation of Torrence, California.

--Trudi Jacobson, Chair, Awards Committee

   Wittkopf to Receive Special Recognition

Barbara Wittkopf, editor of Research Strategies: A Journal of Library Concepts and Instruction from 1990 through 1997, will receive a special certificate of recognition and appreciation during the IS Program at the 1998 ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.

The certificate, which will be awarded jointly by the Instruction Section and the ALA Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT), recognizes Barbara's leadership in directing Research Strategies through years of phenomenal growth and development within our discipline.

As the primary journal devoted to library instruction, Research Strategies has fostered the development of our knowledge base by disseminating over one hundred articles and seventy columns on theoretical and applied instruction research. Barbara's vision expressed in her editorials over the years has influenced the thinking of instruction practitioners worldwide.

IS and LIRT hope you will join us at the IS Program during the 1998 ALA Annual Conference to recognize Barbara's contributions through the presentation of this special certificate.

   Wired Classroom Forum Sparks Lively Discussion at Midwinter

Over ninety librarians attended the New Orleans Midwinter discussion forum, "Managing the Wired Classroom: Demands and Expectations," co-sponsored by the IS Management of Instruction Services and Continuing Education committees. Moderator Kari Lukas introduced discussion starters Janet Nichols, Information/Instruction Librarian at Wayne State University, and Judith Pask, Undergraduate Library Director at Purdue University.

Nichols described her library building as having three labs containing 38 Dells, 30 Power Mac clone, and 30 network computers. Each lab has a laser printer, Proxima projection system, and 3M projector. Labs are used by librarians and faculty for teaching and university staff training. Issues surrounding use of the labs include: how to do effective staff training, the need for faculty involvement with instruction, and, the largest issue, maintaining consistency in using the lab.

Pask detailed how her library made an agreement with her institution's computing services division to purchase 22 Gateway computers, a server, MS Office, NT operating system, and a printer for the library. As part of the agreement, the library is allocated at least eight hours a week of use of the classroom. Developing classroom policies and procedures has been important, Pask said.

Discussions following both speakers' remarks covered a variety of topics. Remote computers that reset terminals to a mirror image or having someone assigned to check the computers each day were both suggested as ways to combat student tinkering. In classroom arrangements, the need for at least 3 feet of space between tables and out-of-the-way cables and cords was mentioned.

Classrooms are configured using rows, pods for 3-6, or variously shaped tables with monitors facing the instructor. Two or more students can use one terminal. A roving staff member is desirable, but personnel shortages can make this rare; unfortunately, faculty cannot be relied on for help.

Control measures for restless students that were mentioned include keeping the monitor off and teacher control of the student stations. A repair contract with systems people for breakdownswas also strongly recommended. Money for wired classrooms has come from grants, educational technology fees, private donors, and through sending newsletters with projects to potential donors.

--Naomi Lederer, Member, Communication Committee

   Who Volunteers for IS Committees? The Chair-Elect Knows!

As an avid reader of American Demographics, I've often thought it would be interesting to analyze our volunteer pool over time to see what trends and patterns might emerge. After filling seven unexpected vacancies, appointing members to new and existing committees, and recruiting additional volunteers, I decided to do a formal profile to see if our appointments reflected geographical and institutional diversity.

What I found was a bit surprising: we had very few volunteers from liberal arts colleges and community colleges and fewer volunteers from the West relative to other parts of the country. Institutionally, 46% of our volunteers hail from ARL (research) libraries.

During the current appointment cycle (July 1997-March 1998), we received 87 volunteer forms, mostly via the Section web site. Many thanks to Elizabeth Dupuis, our new web administrator, for making this possible despite a site migration which temporarily disabled the volunteer form. I recruited an additional 23 volunteers for a grand total of 110. Of the 111 appointments offered to date, 86 are official, 13 accepted but not official, 7 are pending ACRL funding and elections results, and 7 were declined. Appointments don't equal volunteers because one person was offered two appointments.

Continuing members represent 49% of the pool, suggesting that many members find their Section involvement meaningful enough to extend their commitment. New volunteers (no prior Section involvement) represent 44% of the appointments, and returning members (those with a break in service) total 7%. A gender analysis shows that 18% of our volunteers are men and 82% women.

This year's pool represents 34 states with the 33% of our volunteers coming from the Midwest, 24% from the South, 23% from the Northeast, and 19% from the West (including Hawaii). States with the highest number of volunteers include Illinois (12), New York (8), Pennsylvania (8) and California (7).

Our volunteers represent 83 academic libraries, including 33 Research University I institutions (50+ doctoral degrees and more than $40 million in federal support); 6 Research University II institutions (same as I with federal support ranging between $15.5-$40 million); 5 Doctoral University I institutions (40 doctoral degrees annually in 5+ disciplines); and 3 Doctoral University II institutions (10-20 doctoral degrees annually). Five selective liberal arts colleges are represented along with 2 community colleges. Thirty-eight ARL research libraries are represented.

Which committees were most popular? Emerging Technology was the runaway favorite, followed closely by Teaching Methods, Instruction for Diverse Populations, Continuing Education, and Education for Library Instructors. New task forces include the Learning to Teach Virtual Task Force, the 9th ACRL Conference Task Force, and a Think Tank III Planning Task Force, pending ACRL approval.

How representative of overall Section membership is our committee membership? We don't know, so I'll be asking next year's Membership Committee to take a look. In the meantime, it's been a pleasure appointing so many enthusiastic and talented individuals to the Section. I look forward to working with all of you next year!

--Mary Jane Petrowski, Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, IS

   No-Shows to IS Meetings Subject to New Guidelines

Watch the IS web page for new guidelines on requirements for attendance at IS committee meetings. Currently, ACRL policy states that a committee member may be removed from a committee if the member misses two consecutive meetings or groups of meetings (all meetings of a committee that take place at Midwinter or Annual) without an explanation acceptable to the committee chair. The new guidelines being developed by the Policy Committee will provide more guidance to committee chairs on what exactly constitutes acceptable reasons for absence.

--Kristin Jacobsen, Chair, Policy Committee

   Design of NILI Immersion Programs Underway

At the ALA midwinter meeting in New Orleans, the advisory group for the National Information Literacy Institute (NILI) held three information gathering forums. The first was an invited planning day, with a broad representation of university administrators, library administrators, and teaching librarians (both those new to the field and those with significant experience) from a range of library types present. The other gatherings were open discussion forums sponsored by LIRT and IS.

The advisory group received an enormous amount of enthusiastic input through these discussions, much of which encouraged us to target our goals as quickly as possible. In response to this, the planning group has expanded its first initiative, an immersion program designed for librarians new to teaching, to include a second track for more seasoned librarians.

Mary Jane Petrowski has been named lead faculty member for the immersion program; an additional five faculty members will be selected shortly. The first NILI immersion program will be held in the summer of 1999.

Cerise Oberman will be presenting an in-depth update at the annual conference on Monday, June 29, from 9:30 to 11 a.m. The NILI web site is located at

--Loanne Snavely, Past-Chair, IS

   Distance Ed Forum Examines Issues

On Saturday afternoon at the New Orleans midwinter meeting, the IS Teaching Methods Committee held a brainstorming session on distance education and library instruction.

A total of 33 participants attended the session. Many of the librarians present had involvement in a variety distance education programs using a range of technologies, including interactive television, cable television, videotape, and the Internet.

The session was opened by Nancy Dewald who commented on a discussion of distance education she attended the previous day. Among the broad range of topics discussed were: using 800-telephone-numbers to provide reference service, sending field librarians to local libraries, and the use of computer technology (e.g., e-mail, chat lines, WWW) to deliver library service and instruction.

A participant from Western Michigan University indicated that she is involved in distance education. In that program, a librarian goes to satellite sites to provide instruction. A Web library instruction tutorial is being developed.

The discussion also included the issue of gaining support of faculty by collaborating on the use of technology, especially the WWW, to deliver instruction. Librarians can offer the benefit of their experience with technology to faculty members that are developing new resources. Faculty members can also link to library Web pages to support distance learning programs.

Librarians also participate in team teaching in virtual classrooms. It was the consensus that technology provided an opportunity for librarians to make linkages with faculty. The comment was made that in distance education programs, librarians might find themselves working with part-time and adjunct faculty that would benefit from library support.

--Ross Christensen, Member, Teaching Methods Committee

   E-Tech Committee, CNI Seek Best of the Web

Together with the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI), the IS Emerging Technologies in Instruction Committee is sponsoring a WWW site to identify exemplary user education and training materials related to the Internet and networked information resources. Instructional materials would include computer/Web-based instruction sites, digital texts, course materials, syllabi, workbooks, and bibliographies. Digital submissions are strongly encouraged. If the submission is available on the Internet, it is sufficient to send the URL.

The intention of this project is to provide a screening mechanism to encourage the wide distribution of exemplary instructional materials concerning networked information resources and the Internet itself and to improve access to those materials by bringing them together on the network.

For more information, visit our Web site at

To submit materials to be considered, send e-mail to Include the following information with your submission:

  1. Title.
  2. Author(s).
  3. Objective(s) of the materials.
  4. Intended audience of the materials
  5. Your name and complete contact information including mailing address, e-mail, fax, and URL.
  6. Permission statement from the author(s) for use on this site.
  7. Any necessary copyright clearances.
  8. Any necessary disclaimers.

--Ann Scholz-Crane, Chair, Emerging Technologies Committee

   Cal State - Fresno Librarian Chosen as Newsletter Editor

On behalf of the Communication and Executive Committees of the Instruction Section, I am delighted to announce the appointment of Ross T. LaBaugh as the new IS Newsletter Editor, for the term of 1998-2000.

As Library Instruction Coordinator at California State University-Fresno, LaBaugh possesses extensive experience both in the field of instruction and in writing, editing, and publishing. In addition to his library degree, he also holds a Master of Arts in Professional Writing.

LaBaugh will be working with the current editor, Keith Gresham, to produce the spring newsletter and will then assume responsibility for subsequent issues and join the Communication Committee as a regular member following the annual conference.

We very much look forward to working with Ross and know you all will too. And of course, we note with enormous appreciation the wonderful job that Keith has done over the last two years!

--Barbara Beaton, Chair, Communication

   News Briefs...

   Archival Guide for Web Site Documents Available

Committee Chairs should check a new document on the IS website for information on what parts of the IS website your committee is responsible for archiving. The Policy Committee, in conjunction with the Executive Committee, has developed "Responsibility for Archiving Contents of IS Web Site" to provide guidance on archiving of web documents. If you make changes to a document your committee is responsible for, print it out so that all versions of documents can be saved and sent to the ALA archives at University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign. If you have questions, contact Kristin Jacobsen, chair of the Policy Committee at

   Model Statement Task Force Recommendation Due

The Model Statement of Objectives Task Force met at Midwinter to review and gather suggestions for updating the Model Statement. The task force will be submitting a final list of recommendations to the Executive Committee at Annual in Washington. Thanks to Carla List, Betsy Park and Nancy Reinhold for all of their hard work in such a short time.

--Debbie Tenofsky, Chair, Model Statement Task Force

   Strategic Planning Document Available on ALA Web Site

ALA's strategic planning document, New Visions: Beyond ALA Goal 2000, is now available on the web at IS members are encouraged to read the document if they have not yet done so. There are some modest but important revisions to the version distributed at Midwinter; these are the result of member input at that meeting. This item is a working document in constant revision; it is distributed not only for information but also for comment.

   Imagining the Learning Library Videotape Available

Complete and abridged versions of the 1997 ACRL President's Program in San Francisco are now available for borrowing by ACRL chapters wishing to use these as part of local programming, as well as by libraries and individuals.

The program, "Imagining the Learning Library," features presentations by Betsy Baker of Northwestern University and by several members of the Disney "Imagineers". The full program runs 2.5 hours on two half-inch tapes; the abridged version runs 72 minutes on one half-inch tape. ACRL encourages state and regional chapters to bring this program to those members who may not have been able to travel to ALA last summer.

To borrow the tape for a 3-week period, send an ALA-approved interlibrary loan form to the ALA Headquarters Library, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611-2795. A nominal fee may be charged to cover postage. Advance reservations for the tapes will be honored by calling 312-280-3277 or via e-mail at

Questions regarding the program contents should be addressed to Elisa Topper in the ACRL Office, 312-280-2523 or

1998 ala annual conference logo

Successful Workshop, Learning to Teach, to be Presented at D.C.

Are you drowning in a sea of bibliographic instruction? Do you need swimming lessons? If so, the Learning to Teach Workshops on Instruction Preconference offered by the ACRL Instruction Section is for you!

Based on the ACRL publication Learning to Teach, the preconference will give you both theoretical and practical tips for teaching. You are encouraged to adapt the workshops to your own environment and train your colleagues in these important fundamentals.

These workshops are relevant for both librarians new to instruction and for experienced instruction librarians who wish to review key concepts--especially in the content of an ever-changing information world.

The Preconference will be held in Washington, DC at an ALA conference site. Participants will be able to attend four of the following six workshops:

  • The One-Shot Lecture, Esther Grassian, UCLA
  • Selecting a Teaching Technique, Trudi Jacobson, SUNY Albany
  • Presentation Skills & Classroom Management, Mary Pagliero Popp, Indiana Univ.
  • Developing Effective Library Assignments, Cristina Woo, UC Irvine
  • Instruction in a Multicultural/ Multiracial Environment, Karen Downing, Univ. of Michigan
  • Evaluation, Lynn Westbrook, Texas Woman's Univ.

The registration fee is: $105 for ACRL members; $155 for ALA members; $95 for full-time library school students; and $220 for non-ALA, non-ACRL members.

The cost includes the all-day conference, workshop support materials, and refreshments during the morning and afternoon. Lunch can be purchased near the Preconference site.

To obtain a registration form and to keep up with the latest preconference information, visit the preconference web site at

For more information, contact Doris Jui, University of Miami, by phone at (305) 284-3937 or by e-mail at

   Research with a Small r: Approaches for the Instruction-Practitioner

is logo

ACRL Instruction Section Program
Sunday, June 28, 1998
Washington, DC
2-5 pm

Keynote Speaker: Diane Nahl
School of Library and Information Studies, University of Hawaii

Moderator: Barbara MacAdam
Chair, IS Research and Scholarship Committee

Panelist: Trudi E. Jacobson
Coordinator of User Education Programs, University of Albany, SUNY

Panelist: Rachael Naismith
Senior Reference Librarian, Springfield College

Panelist: Gail M. Staines
Coordinator of Library Instruction, Niagara County Community College

Explore methods for practical research
& timely inquiry for problem-solving,
planning, and decision-making.

   Instruction Section Dinner

ALA 1998 ~ Washington, D.C.

Join your fellow instruction librarians--old friends and new--at the IS Dinner. Just a quick trip on the Metro for an evening of good food, thoughtful conversation, and an opportunity to honor our award winners. See you there!

Friday, June 26, 1998

6:00-7:00pm Cash Bar and Reception
7:00-7:30pm Announcements
7:00-9:00pm Dinner

1800 M Street, NW
Washington, D.C.

$30.00, tax and gratuity included

Sarah Sheehan-Harris

Link to and print out the 1998 IS Dinner registration form.

   Attend MARS Social Prior to IS Dinner

A "Meet MARtians" happy hour will take place on Friday, June 26th from 5-7pm at the D.C. conference. Stop by before attending the IS dinner! Non-MARS members are welcome to attend (location to be announced; inquire in June to

   Presenters Needed!

1999 acrl national conference logo

ACRL 9th National Conference

April 8-11, 1999
Cobo Convention Center
Detroit, Michigan

Academic libraries are on the fast track toward change. The focus on a learning-centered curriculum that measures outcomes, the new learning communities, the importance of creating an information-literate citizenry able to cope with the burgeoning amount of information, the exponential increase in the use of technology including the digitization of resources, cooperative collections, licensing agreements, and access issues are just a few of the changes in higher education that are confronting academic librarians. To keep pace and to stay on course, we need the best ideas of our profession and of related professions on how to create and channel change. At this conference, we plan to explore the revolutions in the financial, technological, sociological, and political environment for higher education.

ACRL invites you to explore these topics and articulate how academic librarians can put their chosen future into action at its 9th National Conference in Detroit. You are invited to submit a proposal for a presentation and to join in the discussion about the challenges and opportunities facing academic libraries in "Racing Toward Tomorrow." ACRL particularly encourages proposals that demonstrate how the audience will be actively engaged in the session.

Six program tracks will explore how academic librarians must shift gears as they are "Racing Toward Tomorrow":

  • Shifting Gears: Environment in Flux
  • Shifting Gears: Multiple Roles
  • Shifting Gears: Alternate Resources
  • Shifting Gears: Different Players
  • Shifting Gears: A New Kind of Learner
  • Shifting Gears: Expanding Knowledge Base

June 15 is the deadline for submitting proposals for papers and panel sessions. For instructions on how to submit a proposal, visit ACRL's web site at or see the "Call for Participation" insert that appeared in the January 1998 issue of College and Research Libraries News.

The Instruction Section Newsletter is published semi-annually by the Instruction Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago IL 60611, 312/280-2519. Editor, Keith E. Gresham, Norlin Library, Campus Box 184, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder CO 80309-0184, 303/492-6722, Fax: 303/492-1881, email: The Instruction Section Newsletter is sent to all IS members. Claims and address changes should be sent to the ALA address above. © 1998 ALA.

Please note that this electronic version of the Instruction Section Newsletter is currently under development and that the format of future issues is subject to revision and change.
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