Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Computers in Libraries: March 23

Conference: last day
I could only attend one session on Friday, but it was so well worth it! The presenters are doing some pretty cool stuff! It also doesn't hurt that I don't really like reference shifts....

Redesigning Reference Models
This was one of my favorite sessions! The tag for the session was #undesk. The Millersville University librarians who presented this session had to find new ways to reach students. Their library building is undergoing renovations, and the new, smaller space the library was moved to does not have offices or room for a reference desk. There solutions were innovative. Most of the librarians are now physically embedded in their academic subject building, and they hold office hours. They make use of chat, phone/SMS (Google Voice), Jing (screen captures answer reference questions), digital signs, iPads, and being a visible presence at campus events and organization meetings. The librarians realized that forming relationships with faculty and students inside and outside the library is essential. Questions they feel they’ve had to address:
  • How do we connect with students?
  • How do we encourage and support experimentation?
  • What does it mean to be a librarian?
They’ve had to really rethink their definition of librarians though, and I liked their summation: “We provide the building, but the building does not provide us.”


  1. So cool! Millersville is right near where I grew up...

  2. Thanks for these posts, Sara! Computers in Libraries is definitely on my "to-attend" list of conferences, but I knew I wouldn't be able to get away from work this month. It's good to know you found it valuable.