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OSU Undergraduate Research and Writing Studio wins ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award

Undergrad Research and Writing Studio Awardees

The Oregon State University Libraries and Press (OSULP) has been awarded the ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award for 2019 for their Undergraduate Research and Writing Studio. Opened in 2017, the Studio provides a place for undergraduate students to work on writing projects and receive assistance with writing and research from trained peers. The Studio is a collaboration between the Writing Center and the OSULP. The implementation and ongoing steering team includes Writing Center and OSULP staff, including: Dennis Bennett, Chris Ervin, and Vanessa Petroj from the Writing Center and Anne-Marie Deitering, Beth Filar Williams, Uta Hussong-Christian, Hannah Gascho Rempel and Jane Nichols from the library.

The award includes recognition in the C&RL News, a plaque, and $3000.

ACRL-OR was able to ask a few questions of the team. Their answers are provided below (ACRL also published a short interview).

Our heartiest congratulations to OSULP and to the implementation team on this prestigious award. Read on for some of their comments.

Who or what was the driving force behind creating the Studio?

Jane: There was a pressing need for more space for the writing center because they were outgrowing their space. At the same time there was a rising idea of reclaiming and re-invigorating the space where tutoring was happening in the library, the Collaborative Learning Center (CLC). The library had been aware of the trend of library – writing center partnerships and locating the campus writing center in the library. The Associate University Librarian for Learning Spaces, Anne-Marie Deitering, and the Writing Center Director, Dennis Bennett, began talking about partnering with an eye towards addressing respective service goals centered on student learning and success. As discussions progressed, the idea to move into the library gained traction and was approved by senior leadership by both the library and the writing center. Following this, a team was tasked with carrying out the project.

An important foundation to the relationship is the creation of a Memorandum of Understanding which outlines various aspects of the terms of agreement and includes substantive calls for the partners to collaborate on issues such as learning outcomes, service design, assessment, and training.

What was the collaboration process like between librarians, writing center staff, and media specialists?

Beth Filar Williams and Uta Hussong-Christian: The nine months we all worked together on the implementation team was truly a collaborative process. Over the duration of our well-organized and facilitated bi-weekly meetings, we used a service design process to develop a shared holistic student-focused framework for the project. In the process of working through space and service concepts and eventually plans, we learned a lot about each other as individuals and about what our respective units did. This helped us compromise in ways that worked for everyone. By the time the space opened, we had laid the groundwork for our partnership as we went through the ups and downs of the first year (and beyond) of Research & Writing Studio operations.

What did writing center folks learn about the library/librarians that was new to them and what did librarians learn about writing center folks that was new to them?

Jane Nichols: As librarians we were unfamiliar with the extensive training, much of it focused on theory and pedagogical concepts, that the student writing consultants received. We appreciated seeing the consultants be open to learning about the theoretical foundations to their work.

Chris Ervin: Something I already knew as an experienced academic is that there is more happening within other disciplines than those of us who are disciplinary outsiders understand. Working alongside librarians and in the physical space of the library has shown me some of the inner workings of the discipline of librarianship, in particular where those inner workings come into contact with the Studio. For example, we in writing centers and writing studies don’t tend to think of the work we do as “service,” but rather as teaching and mentoring. There’s even a debate within our discipline about whether to consider first-year writing as a “service course” (in service to the other disciplines) or as an introduction to the discipline of writing studies. Librarians, however, often use language like that—service points, service models, etc., but I understand better what that means now. The “information seeking process” that’s iterative is very much like our studio pedagogy approach, also iterative. Librarians must suffer a fundamental misunderstanding (from the public, students, faculty) of the work they do, just like writing center professionals. One place that misunderstanding comes into the Studio is in what students think of the role of our research consultants. Students, I believe, want to see the research consultant’s role as serving their information needs rather than teaching them skills that will help them meet their own information needs. As a writing center professional whose priority is facilitating student learning through teaching (classroom or one-to-one), I see the potential for research consultants to practice the studio pedagogy we associate with writing consultations—the process-focused, metacognitive kinds of conversations that would encourage research writers to investigate their own research processes and to advance their information literacy skills.

What do you see as the next steps for the Studio?

Beth: I would like to continue to grow the partnership and iterate as we learn more from assessment. I hope we can integrate Student Mulitmedia Services better maybe in an adjacent space? And I hope we get a better referral process to library liaisons and to other resources.

What are you all going to use the $3000 for?

Chris: The four members of the Studio Steering Committee have agreed that the funds will be used mostly or fully to support the Studio’s food pantry. Because Oregon State University’s students, like college students around the country, wrestle with food indsecurity, we created a pantry in the Studio for our student staff. The $3000 will be used to stock the pantry for at least a year, possibly more.

Hannah, this comes on the heels of you being selected as the ACRL IS Featured Teaching Librarian in 2018. Is it safe to say you’re now a library rock star?

Hannah: Hannah who? In other news, tickets are on sale now for my upcoming world-wide tour “Curiouser and Curiouser.”

Anything else you want the Oregon academic library community to know about this award or about the Studio?

Beth: We welcome visitors and conversation as we grow our knowledge, our services, and learn about best practices.

It’s not too late! ACRL-OR professional development scholarship

Applications for ACRL-OR’s professional development scholarship will be accepted through July 31. Don’t delay; get your application in now!

ACRL-OR is pleased to offer a scholarship up to $250 to cover expenses related to an eligible professional development activity. Applications will be reviewed within two weeks after the application deadline.

How can the scholarship be used?  

The ACRL-Oregon Professional Development Scholarship may be used toward conferences, workshops, courses, seminars, or other learning opportunities (including e-learning opportunities) appropriate to the applicant. The funding priority is registration and transportation costs incurred by the applicant.

For examples of how past recipients have used their awards, see these posts on the ACRL-Oregon blog:

  • Serenity Ibsen, Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) annual conference as a director representing the Association of Independent Colleges of Art
  • Kim Olson-Charles, Personal Librarian and First-Year Experience conference
  • Maureen Flanagan Battistella, American Association for State and Local History conference, presentation on digital collections of local history
  • Kate Rubick, ACRL national conference, panel presentation on library-faculty teaching collaboration using BEAM
  • Darci Adolf, e-course on copyright

Professional Development Scholarships will not be awarded for ACRL-OR/WA Fall Conference attendance as this annual event has its own scholarships.

Who is eligible?

  • All ACRL-Oregon members in good standing.
  • Preference will be given to applicants who have not previously received a Professional Development Scholarship from ACRL-Oregon.

Who is not eligible?

Non ACRL-Oregon members.

How will applications be evaluated?

Please visit our FAQ page, which contains our evaluation rubrics and answers to frequently asked questions.

How do I apply?

Apply for the scholarship using this online form.

For more information, contact the ACRL-OR Board President:

Meredith Farkas
acrlor@olaweb.org

 

Garrett Trott: ACRL-OR Professional Development Scholarship Reflection

I just finished up John Maxwell’s online course entitled “Developing the Leader Within You.” I really wanted to take this course for several reasons, one of them having to do with some of the changes that Corban University is going through. There has been discussion of the library moving to a new building.  I was hoping that this course might enable me to lead better through that process.  While the discussion really has not developed since I applied for the scholarship (that is, there really is no more or no less certainty that moving will actually take place), I can say that this online course really developed me in several facets.

If I had to point out two particular areas where I feel I learned the most they would be as follows:

  • Attitude really makes a huge difference in many facets of life, including leadership.  In this particular context of potentially moving to a new building, seeing it as an opportunity to expand and develop the services which the library offers and not simply focusing on the work it will take to get there (and it does have potential to be a lot of work) or what can go wrong, really helps the scenario tremendously.  The VPs who are in charge of this transition see my attitude and their eagerness to provide us with what we need is in large part reflective of the attitude I carry through this scenario.
  • Personal/professional development needs to be planned out with a goal of where I want to be.  I have always enjoyed many facets of both professional and personal development, but they have often been only for the sake of the development itself, not necessarily for the sake of developing as a leader.  If I can focus on developing skills that will aid me in this particular scenario, it can be a great asset.  For example, one area that I am working on developing is my skills in conflict resolution.  I do not do this simply so I can learn, but because of the likeliness that these skills can be utilized as we discuss moving the library.

Thanks to ACRL-OR for the professional development scholarship that allowed me to take this excellent online course.

Garrett Trott
Library director, Corban University

Reflections on Libraries – Pierina (Perri) Parise

Photo of Perri Parise

Perri Parise, Director, Emporia State University Library and Information Management, Portland Program

When people find out I am retiring after almost 50 years in the library profession, they often remark that I must have seen a lot of changes over the years. But as I reflect back, I have to admit that although on the surface libraries today indeed appear very different, I think that the foundation I was lucky enough to have received has supported me through the seeming changes.

The formats of the materials we provide have certainly evolved, although newer formats do not necessarily replace older formats. The challenge of access is an enormous issue as technologies change, but I think that access was also an issue when libraries were buildings fixed in place and not necessarily available to all segments of a community, or they housed materials that were not relevant or accessible to the needs of all in a community.

I entered the profession at a time when most libraries probably functioned in the traditional, stereotypical sense of libraries – quiet places, full of books, usually supporting a white middle-class American value system. However, I was very fortunate to have been part of a federally funded program in library school that was called, “Cross-cultural Training in Librarianship: The Librarian in a Pluralistic Society,” which focused on underserved populations.

Through that library school program and a stint in the Peace Corps in Fiji where their public library system was *the* center of the community and an integral part of everything that went on in that town, I began my career understanding what a dynamic library can mean to a community. I took those experiences with me as a core value, no matter where I worked or what type of position I held.

Now more than ever, we need to justify our existence everyday by the proactive work we do to make sure there is no doubt how important we are to those we serve.  What I appreciate so much today is the call for advocacy and social action within the profession.  But I do worry about how polarized our society has become, and I see this sometimes within the library field, also.  How can we advocate without alienating the “other side?”  How do encourage engagement and empathy?  How do we assert our ideals, but at the same time truly listen?

Call for Proposals: ACRL-Oregon Webinar Series

ACRL-Oregon has begun offering free webinars on topics relevant to academic library workers. These are usually hour-long online sessions (presentations and facilitated discussions) that are moderated and supported by ACRL-Oregon Board members and are presented via Zoom Web Conferencing.

We are currently seeking webinar presenters to share their knowledge, ideas, and experiences between September 2019 and May 2020. If you are interested in presenting as part of the webinar series, please fill out our call for proposals form. Please note that you do not need to be a member of ACRL-Oregon in order to present.

Sessions will be recorded and made available via YouTube and on our website.

You can view the archived webinars from our pilot on our website: https://acrloregon.org/acrl-or-webinars/

Thank you for considering sharing your knowledge and experiences with library workers in the Pacific Northwest!

Best wishes,

Meredith Farkas
ACRL-Oregon President

Professional Development Scholarship Announcement:

ACRL-Oregon is delighted to announce a new round of Professional Development Scholarship awards. We are currently soliciting applications for the July 31 deadline for a scholarship up to $250. Applications will be reviewed within two weeks after the application deadline.

How can the scholarship be used?  

The ACRL-Oregon Professional Development Scholarship may be used toward conferences, workshops, courses, seminars, or other learning opportunities (including e-learning opportunities) appropriate to the applicant. The funding priority is registration and transportation costs incurred by the applicant.

For examples of how past recipients have used their awards, see these posts on the ACRL-Oregon blog:

  • Serenity Ibsen, Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) annual conference as a director representing the Association of Independent Colleges of Art
  • Kim Olson-Charles, Personal Librarian and First-Year Experience conference
  • Maureen Flanagan Battistella, American Association for State and Local History conference, presentation on digital collections of local history
  • Kate Rubick, ACRL national conference, panel presentation on library-faculty teaching collaboration using BEAM
  • Darci Adolf, e-course on copyright

Professional Development Scholarships will not be awarded for ACRL-OR/WA Fall Conference attendance as this annual event has its own scholarships.

Who is eligible?

  • All ACRL-Oregon members in good standing.
  • Preference will be given to applicants who have not previously received a Professional Development Scholarship from ACRL-Oregon.

Who is not eligible?

Non ACRL-Oregon members.

How will applications be evaluated?

Please visit our FAQ page, which contains our evaluation rubrics and answers to frequently asked questions.

How do I apply?

Apply for the scholarship using this online form.

For more information, contact the ACRL-OR Board President:

Meredith Farkas
acrlor@olaweb.org

Academic Libraries: Providing Shelter

Academic Libraries: A Cool Place

Warm weather is fast approaching! For those of you at libraries who have student populations which stay on/near campus during the summer months, consider reaching out to student groups and on-campus housing associations to advertise Summer and Intersession hours. I don’t know about other campuses, but our on-site dorms don’t have any air conditioning in them and many new or international students arrive on campus well before the term officially begins. Advertising the library as a place of respite from the weather could be an easy way to boost summer attendance and introduce new students to the library as a space. For more information, I wrote about libraries helping patrons ‘beat the heat’ for the blog last summer.

“The Public” and Library Services to Homeless and in-need Patrons

Movie poster for The PublicOn April 5th, Emilio Estavez’s film, ‘The Public’ had its official theatrical release –although at this time the only listing I can find is for the Bijou in Lincoln City. The film was originally screened multiple times last year, including at the June 2018 ALA meeting, and again at ALA Midwinter in Seattle this year. If you’re one of the few in the library sphere who hasn’t at least heard of the film, ‘The Public’ is a dramatic story centered around a group of homeless patrons who, in an act of civil disobedience, refuse to leave the public library at closing time during a brutal Winter storm because it is their only place of refuge. From my understanding, the film had a mostly positive reception in 2018; especially among those in the library profession. Estavez also did a PSA on the importance of libraries to modern societies and communities, which you can currently find on the ALA site.

If you’re interest in learning more about providing services to homeless, or in-need patrons, I recommend ‘The Librarian’s Guide to Homelessness’. Many academic libraries are also community-serving and it helps to be familiar with local and state resources in the immediate area. For example, Polk County has put together a Community Resource Guide which is quite comprehensive and I have used on multiple occasions to direct individual toward necessity resources such as food bank and access to clothing. Your county or city likely has one as well; we keep a physical copy on hand at the main desk and print out a new copy when we give it away.

Time-sensitive Advocacy by Tues, 3/26

Dear members,

On Wednesday, March 27, the House Education Committee will vote to send HB 2213 and HB 2214 to the Joint Ways & Means Committee. These bills support open education and affordable textbooks in higher ed.

The committee members need to know that their constituents care about this issue. If you are represented by one of the committee members listed below, will you please email, call, or visit with this message (sample included)?

Find out who represents you: https://bit.ly/1zqJ5pm

HB 2213 would require each of Oregon’s 24 public colleges and universities to create a textbook affordability plan.

HB 2214 continues to fund Oregon’s textbook affordability and open education program, which includes offering grants to faculty who redesign their courses to include open educational resources.

Thank you, and please feel free to share this message!

*****

Chair: Rep Doherty, Democrat – District 35 – Tigard

Vice Chair: Rep Alonso León, Democrat – District 22 – Woodburn

Vice Chair: Cheri Helt, Republican – District 54 – Bend

Rep Hernandez, Democrat – District 47 – Portland

Rep Neron, Democrat – District 26 – Aloha, Beaverton, Hillsboro, King City, Sherwood, Tigard, Wilsonville

Rep Reardon, Democrat – District 48 – Happy Valley

Rep Reschke, Republican – District 56 – Klamath Falls

Rep Sollman, Democrat – District 30 – Hillsboro

Rep Wallan, Republican – District 6 – Medford

*****

Dear Representative _______,

The high cost of textbooks is a barrier to Oregon students completing their college or university degree. HB 2214 continues to fund textbook affordability and open education in Oregon through a program that has a track record of helping students save millions of dollars on textbooks. Can I count on your support for HB 2214 when it is scheduled for a work session?

Please let me know if there are any questions I can answer about this bill.

Thank you,

[constituent name]

Advocacy around proposed changes to the NWCCU Standards for Accreditation

Some of you may be following the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) accreditation standards revision process. They published a First Draft of the revised accreditation standards in which the standards overall have been pared down considerably. The library community is concerned that in the revised draft, the library is only mentioned in relation to collections, and information literacy is only mentioned as one of several examples of potential core competencies set at the institution level. We want to make sure that information literacy instruction and a requirement to employ qualified personnel remain in the standards. We are also concerned about the removal of any language about Academic Freedom, a critical element of intellectual freedom in higher education. The current NWCCU Standards are available for comparison.

The ACRL-Oregon Board has shared our concerns and suggestions with NWCCU. You can read our letter here and also at the bottom of this post. Please feel free to share it with others and you are welcome to use our suggestions in your own advocacy.

Nearly this exact same thing happened in New England several years ago with the NEASC accreditation standards and librarians had to mount a significant advocacy campaign to keep information literacy and libraries in the standards. Here are a few ways that you can help support library presence and values in the revised standards.

  1. Ask your institution’s Accreditation Liaison Officer (ALO) to advocate for libraries and academic freedom. The ALO is the individual at your college or university who is responsible for working with NWCCU on accreditation. It’s often a Provost or Vice President of Academic Affairs, but the institution can designate who they wish. Advocacy from an ALO will be very influential. Please feel free to share our letter with your ALO.
  2. Comment on the current draft. There is a form you can use to provide feedback or you can send your comments to standards@nwccu.org.
  3. Spread the word! Get others — librarians, non-librarians, and organizations that have an interest in this — involved in advocacy. Librarians are not the only ones who should be concerned by these proposed changes.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Best wishes,

Meredith Farkas
ACRL-Oregon President

______________________________________

Dear Drs. Huftalin and Powell and members of the NWCCU Bylaws, Standards, and Policies Committee:

The Association of College and Research Libraries, Oregon Chapter (ACRL-Oregon) Board is pleased to provide feedback on the current draft of NWCCU’s Accreditation Standards. Accreditation standards provide critical guidance to colleges and universities about what a successful institution should provide to students. Library resources, services, and personnel are critical components of institutional quality. By evaluating academic libraries merely on the adequacy of their information resources, NWCCU sends a message that libraries’ instructional work in support of student and faculty information literacy is not critical to maintaining a high quality institution of higher education.

We assert that collections, information resources, and information literacy instruction require the expertise of library and information professionals for both instruction and resource development and management. It is because of the dedicated work and teaching of qualified library faculty and staff that academic libraries are at the heart of their campuses. Librarians are frequent information literacy teaching partners with disciplinary faculty and are often embedded in courses, curricula, and campus initiatives. Library instruction is not only critical to improving student information literacy and mitigating achievement gaps, but also helps institutions maximize the value of those collections in which they’ve invested.

ACRL-Oregon suggests the following addition to section 2G, focused on Library and Information Resources:

2.G.2 Consistent with its mission, programs, services, and characteristics, the institution employs sufficient appropriately qualified library and information resources personnel to provide information literacy instruction in support of institutional student learning outcomes.

If standards around library instruction are softened, we will very likely see a decline in institutional support for these services. The removal of any mention of qualified library personnel or library instruction from the Standards could have a tremendously negative impact on library staffing and student information literacy.

We also believe that librarians should continue to serve on NWCCU accreditation review teams. Librarians are best positioned to evaluate the adequacy of library resources, personnel, and instruction, and also often have a unique birds-eye view of academic curricula as a consequence of their support of college or university disciplines.

The ACRL-Oregon Board is also deeply concerned about the proposed removal of the entire section of the current standards focused on academic freedom. Academic freedom is a bedrock principle for higher education. This principle is under attack on many fronts in the U.S today. The removal of any reference to academic freedom in the NWCCU accreditation standards removes an important and vital defense of this core principle. As such, ACRL-OR suggests the following addition to the draft standards:

2.B.5 Within the context of its mission, the institution defines and actively promotes an environment that supports academic freedom in the pursuit, dissemination, and teaching of knowledge. The institution adopts and adheres to policies and procedures that affirm the freedom of faculty, staff, administrators, and students to share their scholarship and reasoned conclusions with others, and protects its constituencies from inappropriate internal and external influences, pressures, and harassment.

Thank you for considering our suggestions.

Sincerely,

The Association of College and Research Libraries, Oregon Board

Meredith Farkas, ACRL-Oregon President, Portland Community College
Candise Branum, ACRL-Oregon Vice-President, Oregon College of Oriental Medicine
Steve Silver, ACRL-Oregon Past-President, Northwest Christian University
Angie Beiriger, Reed College
Kim Olson-Charles, Concordia University
Arlene Weible, State Library of Oregon
Rick Ball, Klamath Community College
Christopher Mansayon, Western Oregon University
Patrick Wohlmut, Linfield College
Katherine Donaldson, University of Oregon
Sarah Rowland, Eastern Oregon University
Janet Tapper, University of Western States
Aja Bettencourt-McCarthy, Oregon Institute of Technology

Congratulations to ACRL-OR Professional Development Scholarship Winner

Garrett Trott headshot

Garrett Trott, Library Director , Corban University

ACRL-OR is happy to announce the awarding of a professional development scholarship to Garrett Trott, library director at Corban University in Salem. Garrett was recently promoted to library director and will use the scholarship funds to partially offset the cost of an online course on “Developing the Leader Within You.” Garrett will be taking this course to improve his “relational intelligence” and to help him transition from “an individual focused on production … to an individual focused on people development,” as he makes the transition from a front line librarian to library director. Garrett will apply what he learns in this course to more effectively lead the library through some university-wide changes under discussion. Look for a future ACRL-OR blog post from Garrett sharing his experiences and insight gained following completion of this course.

Our congratulations to Garrett!