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.

Our blog has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 6 seconds.
If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Emerging technologies and library instruction

Public services librarians here at Duke just received a pool of iPads to experiment with (thank you, Library Executive Group!).  Our colleagues in the Center for Instructional Technology have been keeping us posted about faculty interest in using iPads for instruction, and there are at least two projects up and running.  One, giving new masters students in Global Health  iPads to use in their research methods course, has been getting some press.  We knew that we had to get up to speed on the capabilities of the iPad so that we could help faculty and students use library-centric resources on them.  And if you’ve used an iPad, you know that searching a database and getting the full text of materials onto it is not always a straightforward process.  So we’re sharing iPads, and sharing what we learn about them through brown bag lunch meetings and Google Docs. 

Using new technologies for library instruction, or teaching about new technologies, is on my mind these days.  For example, how do you teach with a web-scale discovery interface like Summon?  Does it change the way you explain searching and retrieving?  Should we be presenting mobile interfaces in our instruction sessions?  Last night I met with first year students in one of our FOCUS living-learning programs.  I asked how many students had an iPad (one) or iPhone (many); then I talked about some apps that might be particularly useful for the courses these students are taking.  I’ve never done that before, but there seemed to be a lot of interest in relevant apps.

Photo: Robert Cox (Flickr Creative Commons license)

There seem to be several issues here:  finding out about emerging technologies, identifying the ones that seem promising for teaching and learning, getting our hands on them, and understanding how to use them (or at least talk about them) in library instruction. Many questions, few answers from where I sit.

No comments:

Post a Comment