Archive for the ‘software’ Category

A colleague of mine at work forwarded information about this to our reference librarians, but I just read about it on Jenny Levine’s blog: the idea of using Meebo’s IM widget in the library catalog to create a user-librarian interaction at the point of need. Our library has gone back and forth about using IM at the reference desk for years, without actually doing anything. We have a student population of mostly residential students, with no distance learning component at all. Never seemed like IM would be necessary in our library.

However, I can see the benefits of using IM or chat in the library catalog, even on a residential campus. Questions about using our library catalog are probably the second most frequent interaction at the reference desk, behind searching for journal articles. If students could chat with a reference librarian while they were having difficulties in the catalog, we could help the students at the point of need, rather than interrupting their research and having them come down to the main floor or over to the reference desk to ask a question. The Meebo widget could be a great solution.


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Good post on Infoblog about best Web 2.0 practices and the library catalog.  The idea of cross-promotion within the library by way of library catalog is a good use of Web 2.0 technologies to manufacture interest in the library and what we are doing.

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Today I am at RRLC, at a presentation by Sara Greenleaf of Hobart & William Smith Colleges.  Sara’s presentation is available on SlideShare and is chock full of good resources on 2.0 technology. 

This makes me think some more about trying to develop some staff and faculty training on 2.0 technologies; maybe with an Information Management twist. 

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EDUCAUSE Centre for Applied Research has just released the latest report in its longitudinal study of undergraduates and their use of information technology. It is called, “The ECAR Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology, 2007” and is,

“…based on quantitative data from a spring 2007 survey and interviews with 27,846 freshman, senior, and community college students at 103 higher education institutions. It focuses on what kinds of information technologies these students use, own, and experience; their technology behaviors, preferences, and skills; how IT impacts their experiences in their courses; and their perceptions of the role of IT in the academic experience.”

There could be some really useful stuff in this report for institutions of higher learning who want to use information technology in a meaningful way for their students’ learning.

 Read what Inside Higher Ed has to say about the report…

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Great compilation of 2.0 tools for students.  The tools are aimed at mostly college students, but I suppose the list could be adapted for elementary and secondary ed students.  Tools like Zoho Office Suite which has a whole cadre of free word processing, spreadsheet and presentation applications.  JotCloud and ShortText for taking notes, Facebook and Stikipad for collaboration on documents, plus many more…

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