Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Library 103 Field Trip to Cal State Northridge Oviatt Library

On Saturday, May 7, 2011, the Library Tech Program's 103 class met at the Cal State North Oviatt Library. Mike Villalobos, Circulation Service Supervisor, gave us a tour of the Circulation Department and an overview of what he and his staff members do on a daily basis. We also got to see the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) in action! It is the first use of an ASRS in the library field. The books, surprisingly, are in bins according to size, not call number.

Here's the ASRS retrieving a bin of books!

The Bin of Books Retrieved by the ASRS

Mike Villalobos Discusses the ASRS

(Thank you to Eva Rios for the pictures!)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Laura Graff's Video on Closing School Libraries

This is a video by librarian Laura Graff on what could happen if the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) is successful on closing all of the school libraries in the district.

The video is open captioned.

By now most folks have heard of the LAUSD's decision to remove library workers and close the school libraries. The focus now changes to the teacher librarians who are duel credential instructors.

The administrative hearing what to determine if those people could be transitioned to a classroom. The sticking point is that the teacher librarian had to be actually teaching within five years.

Over at the Library is Not A Fruit blog there is a detailed account of what the teacher librarians experienced during there two day LAUSD administrative hearing.

You should read as much of it as you can before your anger takes over.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Typical PCC Student?

During my time here on the PCC campus, I have met many students. Recently, I was having a casual conversation with a PCC student who was on the tech crew of a production I was in off-campus. He wondered why he had never seen me on campus in the two years he had been in attendance here. I mentioned that I spent a good portion of my time in the library. Imagine my shock when I heard him say that he had never ventured into the Shatford library the entire two years he has been a student here!

Of course, this made me inquire how he did his research for school. Jokingly, I asked, "I don't suppose you Google everything?" He said, "Yes, and I use Wikipedia." Right away, I started shaking my head and explained that the library has valuable tools and resources to access good sources of information. He still clung to his opinion that he did not need to come to the library.

It is my philosophy that LIB 1, which teaches basic library research skills, should be a requirement for every incoming student but we most likely would not have enough faculty on hand to accommodate all of these students. It does make me wonder how many teachers bring their classes into the Shatford library to introduce their students on how to do proper research.

With recent news of LAUSD teacher librarians having to defend their positions and other school librarians getting pink slips, students will be the ones to suffer. For those that think libraries do not have a place in schools, think again. Without libraries, students will not have access to textbooks or computers they may not be able to afford to purchase, a quiet place to study, and assistance to locating resources whether print or digital.

The typical PCC student probably does not utilize the library as much as he should but it would be nice if we could change this. What do you think could entice the average PCC student to come in to the library or at least access the library's databases at home rather than going straight to Google or Wikipedia? This is the question that I will continue to ponder and leave with you as well.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Prototype Tablet App for Shelf Reading

The iPad gets all of the attention but there really area other tablets in production and there are Apps (application) that are being designed to make shelf reading easier.

This is a prototype of an application designed for the Android system that was presented at the ACRL 2011 Conference in Philadelphia, PA. This application used with a computer tablet or smartphone would make circulation a lot easier.

This is just a prototype. There are issues about spine width, the types of classification system use or perhaps even thinking about using QR codes that could embed the DDC/LC systems instead.

If this is transferred into libraries it might mean there is one less library support person necessary. On the other hand the gizmo can't walk itself and there will be some materials that will not lend themselves to use by the App.

Monday, May 09, 2011

America's WILD READ Book Club

I just tapped into this fabulous national virtual book club! It is meant to engage students, educators, nature lovers, and conservation minded readers. Here is a video about it.

You can participate at http://wildread.blogspot.com/

More info at http://americaswildlife.org/wildread/

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Cory Doctorow on New Vision for Libraries

Cory Doctorow is an author and he writes for the very popular blog, Boing Boing. This is a video of his ALA’s Privacy and Youth Conference talk about a possible change of focus for libraries.

The talk is about 22 minutes long and then there is a question and answer session after his main talk.