Thursday, May 31, 2007

Library Tutorials

We're creating tutorials to help people use our resources and have recently added them to our website:

For now, we're also linking them out to YouTube, where we're getting quite a few hits (thanks to those of you who have viewed or linked to our tutorials there). We've learned quite a bit from what other libraries are doing and will continue to experiment, revise, and hopefully teach a few people how to do research along the way.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Second Life Best Practices in Education 2007

Last Friday I attended a session of the Second Life Best Practices in Education conference in world. I had just sat my avatar down 5 minutes before the start time when the dreaded mandatory log-off in 5 minutes message came through. Once that little hiccup was resolved, and my avatar was re-seated, the presentation started. It was very interesting in that the speaker's voice was piped through as well, adding to the unearthly experience. It was also my first time seeing a whiteboard in action, and I was taking notes. One little quirk was the fact that it took a couple of seconds to for each new screen to rez. It wasn't terribly bad, just a bit odd--I wonder how a real student would react to that.

The gist of the session was profiling a professor's experiences with her three class sections using SL assignments and also meeting them in world with online office hours. Her classes are more like systems engineering and such, but I can see where it could go with information literacy classes. I had wanted to "go" to the action learning session, but the timing was weird.

I also had a chance to check out the poster sessions and also the exhibitors, which was pretty cool. Still haven't gone through my virtual swag though.

So far I can see a few ways of adding IL into a virtual class.
  • have a librarian embedded in with a class taking place in SL (and the librarian would embed library resources as much as possible)
  • have a "game" like that one sim (I can't remember the name just now) that is set up like myst (scattered clues and very self directed discovery type game)
  • have real life IL sessions in a second life classroom.
I've read in other places that people are discussing what IL means in second life--it strikes me that this ties in with maybe expanding IL instruction in libraries to include teaching students how to use Second Life (and other software).

Friday, May 25, 2007

More Multicultural Transformation........and Second life

This last Wednesday our head of Reference Dr. Clara Ogbaa did another session for the Multicultural Curriculum Transformation faculty members, and yours truly did a short segment on wiki editing. Dr. Ogbaa presented on advanced searching--who knew that you could do so much with google? (see the wiki pages here). Something very interesting came up--some of the faculty were interested in the wiki features in TRACS, which is our institution's course management system. Which leads us to wonder if perhaps migrating part of our wiki pages into a TRACS site wiki might be a good vector for integrating information literacy into courses. (one of the glories of TRACS is that it has a wiki feature built into course sites)

Today there's a Second Life conference in Best Practices in Education in world. I will probably attend a few sessions. I am curious how this will work out, as this is my first SL conference. I've been to various meetings before in large groups, which is an interesting time keeping up with what's getting least there's a transcript to go over later.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

2007 Multicultural Curriculum Transformation Institute

Yesterday our Reference department head Dr. Clara Ogbaa presented "Multicultural Resources: Research Strategies" to faculty attending the Multicultural Curriculum Transformation Institute. It may sound like a run-of-the-mill presentation, but if you examine the presentation slides, it is not the usual library presentation at all.

The other interesting aspect is the fact that we've created wiki pages (see wiki pages) for each faculty member's class, and participating faculty are allowed to post and edit in our wiki.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

nice vid on making youtube videos better looking

This is old, but it had nice information that i found useful. And props to our friend in IT, Reb Thomas for sending it to me. (it's probably easier than trying to explain it to me on the phone)

Friday, May 4, 2007

RSS + Information Fluency = Multimedia producers?

constantly and forever. And actually that reminds me, our Using RSS feeds and blogs for Research
class wiki page is up--I think it would be grand to convert it into a youtube tutorial, but it's extremely useful for keeping up with new developments. In fact that's how I am passing along some choice nuggets for you.

The fabulous Sheila Webber of Information Literacy Weblog has a cool post on the Web 2.0 meets Information Fluency wiki. I have yet to read the article fully, but it sounds very promising. I'd like to also suggest something that's been swishing around in the brainpan lately--probably a side effect of the conferences I've been too, but namely that we should include other skills under the IL banner, like recording audio, video, other media skills. The article references blogs, but I think it should go further into production skills like vlogging, podcasting, vidcasting, making feeds, etc. It's not as tenuous as it sounds.......if you are importing all this info like a huge funnel into your head and processing it like you are supposed to (i'm referencing the 5 IL standards here), what about the output? How do you take the information you learned and spit it out again and launch it into the social web ether?