LIRT Conference Program -- 2010

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Capitalizing on Technology:
A Teaching Technology Fair
Sunday, June 27, 2010
10:30 to Noon
Washington Convention Center, Room 144 A-C

Using technology in teaching is an ever changing process and keeping aware of new technologies can be daunting. Please join us to discover how using free or open source software can enhance instruction. Presenters will briefly introduce various technologies such as Animoto & Prezi, iTalic, Wallwisher, WASSAIL, Google Forms, and Ning and explain how these technologies have enhanced instruction. After the short presentations, attendees will be given the opportunity to meet each of the presenters in smaller breakout sessions. If you want to learn more about how free or open source software is being used in instruction, this session will help you capitalize on technology!

I Made it Online!
Rebeca Befus, Wayne State University

Translating instruction typically done in the classroom to the screen can be extremely difficult. In order to be creative and keep attention of millennial students simply using screencasting software like Camtasia or Jing is not always a viable solution. This presentation describes the use of three websites to create online video learning objects:,, and Instruction librarians have a wealth of knowledge and material – sometimes the material just needs to be “jazzed-up” to appeal to our current student population.

Rebeca Befus is a First Year Experience and Science Librarian at Wayne State University. She is an active member of the Wayne State Library Instruction Team. Her interests include creating exciting library courses for students, using new teaching technologies, and integrating library information in online courses.

Using Google Forms for Interactive Lessons and Formative Assessment
William Breitbach, California State University, Fullerton

Audience response systems (clickers) have great potential for developing engaging and interactive lessons, activating cognitive processes, and are useful for both summative and formative assessments. However, there are financial, logistical, and technological costs associated. Google Forms can be used as a free alternative to clickers and eliminate the technological and logistical barriers. In this session, librarians will learn how to harness the power of Google Forms to add interaction, activate cognitive processes, and gather data that can be used for immediate feedback to students and thereby create "assessments for learning" rather than "assessments of learning."

Will Breitbach is library instruction coordinator and the subject liaison to the Departments of Nursing and Social Work and chair of the IM/Text Reference Team at California State University, Fullerton. He has recently written articles for Reference Services Review and Internet Librarian Quarterly on the use of free and inexpensive technologies in library services.

iTalc: Free & Effective Classroom Management
Amelia Brunskill, Dickinson College

Computers are an invaluable asset for an instruction classroom, but they can also prove to be an irresistible distraction from a session’s intended content. In order to address this problem, we installed a program called iTalc in our main instruction classroom. iTalc is an open source classroom management tool that allows control of a classroom of computers from an instructor’s station. The instructor can use this tool to monitor computer activity, project content onto students’ screens, freeze screens or allow designated students to control the projected screen. I will discuss my experiences using this tool during instruction sessions.

Amelia Brunskill is the Liaison Librarian for the Sciences at Dickinson College. She does collection development, instruction and reference in service of her departments.

Power to the People!
Jennifer Ditkoff, Keene State College

Give students the power to guide their own education. Using Wallwisher an instructor gains insight on student needs and opens up a classroom discussion. After library instruction short tutorials are posted on Voicethread. Students experiment with the concepts, actively participating in assessing their own research efforts, as well as their classmates. Students have control over their own learning experience and can revisit the course materials throughout the semester to add content, ask questions, and receive feedback. Diigo is used rather than a static handout. Students provide links to helpful materials for their peers, highlighting the community aspect of ongoing education.

Jennifer Ditkoff has worked in academic, public and medical libraries, learning every type of classification system, including the elusive Cutter system. When she is not troubleshooting electronic resources, she teaches information literacy, staffs the reference desk, and shows up early to committee meetings. She enjoys learning about new technologies.

One from Column A…
Judith A. Downie, California State University San Marcos

The librarians at CSUSM have adopted Library a la Carte open source software to generate subject course guides. The exciting aspect of this software developed by Oregon State University is the use of modules which can be reused and shared, saving time, effort, and cost. The presentation will focus on how the Humanities Librarian creates customized guides each semester for nearly three dozen sections of first year writing courses from a menu of modules, now taking as little as 15 minutes to create and load. Tips on planning and design will be shared.

Judith A. Downie is the Humanities & Government Document Librarian California State University San Marcos. She explores new instructional technologies for improvement of student instruction and learning and provision of collaborative opportunities and labor savings.

Open Source Information Literacy Assessment Software: WASSAIL
Nancy Goebel, University of Alberta (Canada)

Addressing the complex needs of an information society, specifically to support the curricular endeavors of their respective college/university, presents significant challenges to academic libraries. In response to these challenges, the Augustana Campus Library of the University of Alberta has developed an open source assessment platform used to collect, collate and analyze Information Literacy related data. In the hands of the librarian/instructor, this platform, called WASSAIL, offers an opportunity to assess student learning and evaluate Information Literacy instruction effectiveness and learning outcomes. WASSAIL was developed to assist in the assessment of student learning through processes such as pre-/post-test, surveys, and online quizzes. It is open source software so available for free download and use or adaption to anyone.

Nancy Goebel is Head Librarian of the Augustana Campus Library of the University of Alberta (Canada). Nancy’s strong interest in Information Literacy has lead her to spearhead: nine annual "Information Literacy in Academic Libraries" workshops featuring high-profile international speakers; Information Literacy awards for students and faculty; the DVD It Changed the Way I Do Research Period: Augustana Talks Information Literacy; credit-bearing discipline-specific Information Literacy courses, the augustana human library, and the open source Information Literacy assessment software WASSAIL -- winner of the 2010 ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award. Nancy is an ACRL Information Literacy Consultant leading the creation of psychology-specific Information Literacy Standards.

Go Explore!: Discovering, Selecting, and Appraising the Jewels of the Trade
Susan Nelson, Lycoming College

A wiki holds explorers’ keys to instructions for discovering sources, recording progress in field guides, and earning rewards. Students find four “jewels” used by researchers in their disciplines: a style guide; a book; a print journal; and a database, and complete an assessment. Going beyond identifying and accessing resources, they evaluate their purpose, authority, accuracy, scope, and coverage in exploratory essays. They experience writing, publishing and sharing with other scholars through contributions to discipline-specific pages. In a follow-up assignment, they compile annotated bibliographies of twelve sources about a topic of interest in their field. Wetpaint open-source software is used.

Susan Nelson has been a Reference and Instruction Librarian at Snowden Library, Lycoming College, for the past four years. Before earning her M.L.S. from Clarion University and entering the library profession, she taught middle school German for fifteen years. Her instructional responsibilities include classes in art, business, economics, psychology, and mathematics, and one English Freshman Composition class.

Merging Social Networks and Course Management Systems
Katie Gibson, Eric Resnis & Amy Thornley, Miami University

How do you engage students with Information Literacy content throughout a semester course? Six librarians teaching different sections of a course in the Interactive Media Studies department bypassed institution-supported course management software. Instructors chose Ning, a free site that allows individuals to create public or private social networks. Each network was customized to meet the section's individual learning outcomes. We will discuss how instructors engaged students utilizing tools such as Twitter, RSS feeds, blogs and podcasts via Ning, specific examples of how the tools enhanced student learning throughout the semester, as well as lessons learned from challenges faced along the way.

Katie Gibson is a Humanities Librarian at Miami University and is adjunct faculty in the Department of Interactive Media Studies. Eric Resnis is the Instruction Coordinator at Miami University Libraries and is adjunct faculty in the Department of Interactive Media Studies. Amy Thornley is the Education Librarian at Miami University and is adjunct faculty in the Department of Interactive Media Studies.