The Instruction and Outreach Department manages and coordinates library research instruction for students, faculty and staff through course-related workshops, outreach activities, personal consultations, research guides and other instructional materials.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Inaugural Instructors Forum

Instruction & Outreach is always looking for ways to connect with the 30+ librarians who do instruction across the Perkins library system (Perkins/Bostock, Lilly, Music, RBMSCL and Divinity libraries). We’ve held monthly brown bag programs, annual instruction retreats, and special training events. Now there’s a new way for instruction librarians to come together. Instructors Forum, modeled on the Libraries’ successful Bibliographers Forum, meets bi-monthly in the same time slot as Bib Forum (so folks already have the time blocked out in their busy calendars). Instructors Forum is a venue for announcements, sharing best practices, and learning about new tools and techniques for library instruction.

We were fortunate at our first meeting to have Andrea Novicki talk about using Jing for library instruction tutorials. Andrea is the academic technology consultant for the sciences at our Center for Instructional Technology, and works with science faculty to incorporate technology into their teaching and research. Andrea has helped faculty use Jing for quick explanations of processes and concepts, and she walked us through how to create a five minute (or less) tutorial that could be used as a follow up to library instruction or a visual explanation that can be included in an IM reference interaction. We looked at tutorials that have been done by librarians at Idaho State and UNC-G, and Andrea shared tips for using Jing effectively. There was a lot of energy in the room as participants began to think about how they can use Jing instead of long text-based explanations of using tools and accessing services. A great first program!

We also gathered ideas for future Instructors Forum programs: a LibGuides refresher focusing on advanced and interactive features, instructional improvement/evaluating and documenting your teaching, and an end-of-semester sharing of experiences (good and bad) and best practices.

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