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Survey Opportunity: Effective Meetings in Libraries

February 28, 2020

We go to a lot of meetings as academic librarians. Please consider taking this survey from fellow academic librarians about effective meetings. 

Researchers at the University of North Texas are looking for survey respondents in order to study meetings in academic libraries. Meeting science is a relatively new phenomenon with growing empirical research.  There is nothing relating to libraries in this literature.  Researchers hope to determine:

  • What are the predictors of success for productive meetings in academic libraries?
  • What are academic librarian perceptions of effective meeting leadership?
  • What are “best practices” for meeting participation and leadership?

You may participate if you work for an academic library.  The survey is expected to take less than 15 minutes to complete. Participation is voluntary and you may stop at any time without penalty. By completing the survey you are giving consent to participate and confirming that you are at least 18 years old.

If you have any questions regarding this study, please contact Julie Leuzinger (principal investigator), University of North Texas Libraries, or 940-891-6750.

This project has been reviewed and approved by the University of North Texas Institutional Review Board (940) 565-3940. Please contact the UNT IRB with any questions regarding your rights as a research subject.

To take the survey (click link or copy/paste into your browser):


Affordable Learning PA Central PA Regional Open Textbook Workshop

February 28, 2020

Affordable Learning PA is offering the Central PA Regional Open Textbook Workshop on Wednesday, March 11th at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA.

The workshop will feature speakers from community colleges, liberal arts colleges, and a state system university, who will share their experiences–what worked, what didn’t work, where they are now, and where they’re going next–implementing open textbook initiatives on their campuses.

It will also offer opportunities for networking and round table discussion, and an activity designed to help you move your own open textbook initiative forward.

The preliminary agenda is attached.

Registration is free and light refreshments and lunch will be provided.

Please register at by March 4th.

AND PLEASE SHARE with your colleagues who may be interested in attending!

Looking forward to seeing you at Bucknell!

Questions may be sent to Jill Hallam-Miller at

This event is hosted by Bucknell University’s Bertrand Library with support from the Affordable Learning PA project.

The Affordable Learning PA project is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services as administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, Governor.

Call for Proposals: CRD Spring Workshop Breakout Sessions

February 26, 2020

Workshop Theme: Pennsylvania Academic Libraries: Powering Progress with Essential Literacies

Description: Academic libraries are known as champions of information literacy. Though information literacy is vital to the critical thinking development of college students, it is not the only literacy needed to be successful. Additionally, many libraries are interpreting information literacy beyond its traditional definition to increase their scope and services to their campus communities. On Tuesday, May 19 at Penn State Harrisburg in Middletown, PA, the College and Research Division of the Pennsylvania Library Association will explore how we engage with many literacies in an academic library context. 

To facilitate this exploration, we are seeking innovative and interactive proposals for one-hour breakout sessions that showcase scholarship in or academic library efforts to engage their campus communities in the five essential literacies that empower our students to become critical thinkers and engaged citizens as identified by the PA Forward Star Library Program (

  • Information Literacy
  • Health Literacy
  • Civic and Social Literacy 
  • Financial Literacy 
  • Basic Literacy 

You do not need to be a Star Library in order to submit a proposal. Proposals should broadly fit the theme of at least one literacy category, and may relate to instruction, programming, collection development, or any other area your library supports through literacy efforts. 

Proposal Requirements: Proposals must include a title, an abstract of no more than 250 words, the literacy/literacies addressed, a brief plan for audience engagement, and 2-3 learning objectives. Please refrain from including identifiable information in your abstract and other materials to help ensure a blind evaluation. PaLA CRD members will be given preference in session evaluation and selection. 

Submissions are due by March 16.

Submit your proposal here:

Workshop registration and more information is available here:

Questions? Contact us at

This project is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services as administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, Governor.

Support is also provided by the College and Research Division of the Pennsylvania Library Association,

Registration now open for ACRL Roadshow and CRD Spring Workshop

February 25, 2020
Register now to join the Pennsylvania Library Association College and Research Division for two excellent days of professional development on May 18 and 19 at Penn State Harrisburg in Middletown, PA.
ON MAY 18, we will welcome the ACRL Roadshow Engaging with the ACRL Framework to Pennsylvania. This all-day workshop is limited to 100 attendees! The Framework’s vision of information literacy education as a shared responsibility of all educators suggests both opportunities and challenges for teaching librarians, as we expand pedagogical approaches and partnerships. This workshop supports librarians in engaging more deeply with the Framework and exploring ways that it may help to enrich their individual teaching practices, as well as their local instruction programs and institutions.
ON MAY 19, join us for the annual CRD Spring Workshop. This year’s theme is Pennsylvania Academic Libraries: Powering Progress with Essential Literacies. The day-long program will include two keynote speakers on student civic engagement and libraries: Ilana Stonebraker of Indiana University, and Abby Kiesa of CIRCLE, The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning & Engagement, at Tufts University. PA Forward Gold Star Academic libraries will share their journeys to gold, and other Pennsylvania academic library colleagues will present breakout sessions on essential literacy programming and resources.
The two-day workshop is valued at more than $175, but is available for PaLA members at an early-bird rate of just $77 and for non-members at $107 through LSTA Grant Funding. This early-bird rate expires March 6! 
Single-day registrations are also available for members at $47 and for non-members at $77. After March 6, all registrants must register for each day at the one-day rate.
Registration will close May 8.
Please register now!
Have a great program that focuses on any aspect of literacy? Submit a breakout session for the CRD Workshop!:
For more information, see the CRD Professional Development 2020 brochure (PDF) or ACRL Roadshow and CRD Workshop Plain Text document (DOCX).
This project is made possible, in part, by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services as administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, Governor.
Support is also provided by the College and Research Division of the Pennsylvania Library Association,

Affordable Learning Pennsylvania Eastern Regional OER Workshop Day

February 24, 2020

This is a reminder that there is still time to register for next Friday’s AL (Affordable Learning) Pa Eastern Regional OER Workshop Day for those of you on this side of the state! I am sharing with you an email from Bill Hemmig, the Dean of Learning Resources and Online Learning at Bucks County Community College:

Affordable Learning PA invites you to attend an Eastern Pennsylvania Regional OER Workshop Day hosted by Bucks County Community College in Newtown, Pennsylvania, on Friday, March 6 (the last day of Open Education Week!).  Organized by the Affordable Learning PA OER Specialists from Bucks County Community College and Kutztown University, the Workshop Day is free, including registration, beverages and lunch, and features speakers from the Eastern PA region and beyond. If you cannot make the trip to Bucks, attendance via Zoom will be available.

Please register for either in-person or virtual attendance here:  The registration deadline is Friday, February 28.

Please feel free to forward this message to anyone at your institution who may be interested in attending.

Bill Hemmig and Dan Stafford

Workshop Day organizers

Here is Bill’s contact information:

Bill Hemmig
Dean, Learning Resources and Online Learning
Bucks County Community College
275 Swamp Road
Newtown, PA 18940

Here is the schedule. Anyone planning on going?

9:30 AM: Check-in. Beverages to be served.

10:00 AM: Welcome

10:10 AM: Andrew Mashintonio, Regina Hierholzer & Judi Lehrhaupt |
Kutztown University, Bucks County Community College
OER Adoption: Three Faculty Perspectives
Using OER in an Introductory Biology Course for Non-Majors
Dr. Mashintonio will discuss the benefits and challenges experienced when adopting the OpenStax Biology textbook.
Adopting Multiple Open Resources
Our session is about the challenges of creating an OER course when adopting resources from several different sources. Come and listen to the viewpoint of a faculty OER course developer and an instructional designer when working together to develop an AESL course. You’ll learn that there are several different supporting roles that you need to reach out to in your institution to make the course a success.

10:40 AM: Shanna Hollich | Wilson College
A Deep Dive into CC Licensing
You’ve worked with open resources, you’ve created some of your own, and you’ve read a bit about the different CC licenses and probably even used some of them on your own work. Here we provide a forum to get answers to your more advanced questions about open licensing, adaptations and remixes, and license compatibility, from someone who teaches the Creative Commons Certificate courses.

11:20 AM: Break

11:30 AM: Emma Horst-Martz | PennPIRG
Mobilizing Students on Your Campus
A campus organizer at UC Santa Barbara last year, Emma will speak about her experiences working with students on OER advocacy in depth.

12:00 PM: Lunch

1:00 PM: Free group discussions

1:30 PM: Dan Stafford, Bill Hemmig & Steven Bell, Moderated by Kate Cummings |
Kutztown University, Bucks County Community College, Temple University,
Luzerne County Community College
Panel on Sustainability and Strategic Planning
Dan Stafford will speak about tactics used to go from the question “Excuse me, but what does OER stand for?” to having a core and growing group of OER enthusiasts and supporters. Engagement techniques for specific audiences, the timing of those engagements, and successes and challenges along the way will be discussed.

In 2018 Bucks completed its first OER initiative, a grant-funded program that redesigned sections of high-enrollment courses to use only resources that are free to students. Following this successful initiative, a three-part plan was implemented to sustain and grow the momentum that includes intensive professional development, a budget and process for continuing to select and fund course redesigns, and a process for the continued curation of OER course templates.

Steven Bell will describe how he and his colleagues used a ‘Textbook Listening Tour’ to better understand their faculty textbook behavior where the emphasis was on listening rather than selling faculty on OER. The resulting report enabled librarians to obtain the Provost’s support in establishing an institution-wide textbook affordability taskforce designed to support a sustainable campus-wide approach to affordable learning materials.

2:20 PM: Break

2:30 PM: Jill Hallam-Miller | Bucknell University
Open Pedagogy: A Primer
Learn techniques of Open Pedagogy to empower student learning through the act of creation. Let the students play an active role.

3:00 PM: Farewell

Let’s get literal.

February 21, 2020

As academic librarians, we deal most frequently with information literacy — in instruction, collection development, and reference. But what about the other important literacies our students and campus communities are working to develop?

At Penn State Harrisburg, we are working to address the five literacies deemed essential for informed citizens by PA Forward(TM) to help our students, faculty, and staff feel educated and empowered in their lives.

We aren’t the only academic library to join PA Forward(TM) — but one of a growing number. It seems like some academic libraries don’t realize that PA Forward(TM) is for ALL Pennsylvania libraries, not just academic ones. You’re probably already doing PA Forward(TM) programming at your library or on your campus — you might just not realize it.

So what does PA Forward(TM) look like in the life of an academic library? Here is a rundown of one year of literacy events at Penn State Harrisburg, coordinated by our librarians. Some programs are created and delivered entirely by our librarians, and some are done in partnership with a campus unit or a local organization.

February: Health Literacy

Screening of Period. End of Sentence.: This is an Oscar-winning short documentary about the quest to make and sell affordable menstrual products in rural India. The documentary is available for free educational screenings as long as you have a Netflix account. We followed our screening with a discussion about the documentary, provided resources on where to get free menstrual products on campus, and collected donations of menstrual products for our campus food pantry.

March: Information Literacy and Basic Literacy

Online Privacy Workshop: Who’s doing what with your personal information online? In a one-hour, hands-on workshop (developed by our colleagues at Penn State Berks and used under a CC license) we will help students explore what information they are sharing, who is collecting it, and what they can do about it. Students will leave with a personal data plan for protecting their information online.

Penn State Harrisburg Reads closing event. This year, we read Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson as a Common Read. This semester, we hosted Sarah Koenig, creator and host of the podcast Serial, which deals with topics similar to  the book. We also hosted a short writing contest, and the winners will be honored at our closing event, where we will also reveal next year’s book selection. Events promoting reading and writing are perfect for the Basic Literacy category.

April: Civic and Social Literacy and Financial Literacy 

There are many important literacy dates in April! April 1 is Census Day; April 4-11 is Money Smart Week, and the Pennsylvania Presidential Primary is April 28. So many opportunities for programming and outreach!

Census: We are working with the Pennsylvania State Data Center to promote the Census and will have open computer lab days for students to complete their census forms online. At these events, we will also have resources so students understand why the census is important, and what will be done with their information.

Voter Information Workshop: Prior to the end of the voter registration period for the presidential primary, we will host a workshop for students that covers voter registration information, and how to prepare to vote. Many of our students may be voting for the first time, and would like to know how to verify their registration status, how to look up their polling place and their ballot, how to find unbiased resources about candidates and their platforms, and what their rights are as voters.

Financial Literacy for Adulting: We will host a financial educator from PSECU for this workshop where we will cover how credit affects your ability to get a an apartment, apply for a mortgage or car loan; strategies for student loan and other debt repayment; questions to ask before consolidating or refinancing student loans, and the basics of retirement and health accounts you might encounter in your first “real” job.

Sharing the Load

Beyond programming, we will also provide handouts, create displays, and share information on our social media accounts related to these literacies. It may seem like a lot of work, but many of the programs can be run repeatedly after they are developed with minor tweaks. Using existing programs or bringing in a programming partner helps decrease the burden as well.

Turn out for these events is typically between 10-20 students, which is a successful number for us. We also hear a lot of positive feedback from students — they aren’t getting this kind of information from other sources. Overall, PA Forward(TM) has been a great success for us! I encourage you to try out a new program and see what happens.

Award-winning authors to speak at conference

February 17, 2020

Now for something a little different…do you or educators you work with have an interest (research or otherwise) in early literacy and children’s literature? Did you know that Pitt-Greensburg’s library holds an annual conference on this topic?

The 24th annual Children’s Literature Conference is set for Friday, May 1, 2020 on the campus in Greensburg, PA.

Registration is open, and two award-winning authors will be featured speakers:

Sharon G. Flake
A.S. King
A.S. King

A.S. King, whose novel Dig recently won the 2020 Michael L. Printz Award

Sharon G. Flake, Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award Winner

Breakout sessions, lunch and a book signing are also planned for the day.

Attendees typically include K-12 and college educators, librarians, and others engaged with literacy among children and young adults.

Visit the conference website for more information and the registration form.