Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Back from Hiatus

And I am terribly sorry for the delay. It's been a bit of an interesting summer. I went to Hungary and the Czech Republic for vacation most of July, and then it was pretty much straight to Denver at the beginning of August for the Reference Renaissance conference. (I think i will save some of the presentations and our presentation for a later post).


But there are lots of interesting and cool things to catch up on. Over the summer, we continued to work on our Assessment efforts for our second-semester Freshman English course. Since we only had two classes it gave us a chance to test the Synchroneyes quiz/test tool a little more comfortably. In the contest of Synchroneyes vs. Survey Monkey, my admittedly non-scientific preference at this time is for Survey Monkey, only because when I used Synchroneyes I had to print out every single survey.

I wasn't able to make it to the LOEX of the West conference, but my colleagues did, and they told me about a great presentation from University of Texas Libraries(which is about 30 minutes away up I-35) called "Assessing out Assessment: Failures and Successes at UT-Austin." I think it is proving to be helpful for understanding and planning our assessment effort, and I wanted to give a shout-out to AJ Johnson, who let me ask questions about their presentation/project and generally let me pick his brain.

And, along other lines, we are going to experiment with using "clickers" to do assessment. We have used them in some of our classes as part of our active learning activities. With that in mind I have been reading this article: Clicking your way to library instruction assessment.

Embedding Librarians in TRACS (SAKAI)

I know this is already something that has been happening in other places, but this semester we are going to make an effort to "embed" ourselves in the course software. We have done some things in the past, with a few classes, mostly building wiki pages using the course management software wiki function (as distinct from our wiki) But we'd like to try more classes and do more, like embed a meebo widget in the class site. So stay tuned for that.

I think I will stop for now. :)