Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Video series aims to help instructors help first-generation students @insidehighered

This has situated cognition and cognitive apprenticeship all over it. 
  • Good ideas for improving learning and success for at-risk and other students
  • Nice strategy for spreading knowledge through an online collection of short videos
  • With the bonus that such a strategy could be used for students and not just faculty


When a U.S. Senate committee sought to highlight successful practices in educating minority and other underserved students at a hearing last month, it turned to officials at an urban two-year institution (Long Beach City College); a historically black university (Fayetteville State University); and Heritage University, a private institution that is located on tribal land in Washington State and where about three-quarters of students are the first in their families to attend college.   Congress i...

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Friday, May 16, 2014

Don't evaluate scholarly research on public impact alone (essay) @insidehighered

This op-ed on how to evaluate and explain the impact of research on the public good relies on a communities of practice model for expertise and makes some clear explanations about how students become members and practitioners of a discipline.  The ideas here align closely with the new ACRL Framework for information literacy and our Question-Discover-Use conceptual framework.


Recently, the value of academic research, especially in the humanities and social sciences, has been questioned. The current majority party in the House of Representatives has proposed cutting science funding for social science research,  and eliminating all funding,  for the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof accused faculty,  of engaging in specialized research disconnected from the interests of the reading p...

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Friday, April 25, 2014

As Researchers Turn to Google, Libraries Navigate the Messy World of Discovery Tools


"Librarians want to make their content searchable, but they're wary of commercial software that may skew the results."

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We are introducing Ebsco Discovery this summer.  I am struggling with the impact  that a discovery layer might have on the research behavior of our students and faculty, and how we might use it to promote information literacy.

One of our goals is to help students explore and understand the information landscapes for their disciplines.  Can EDS help us highlight the features of conversations in the various disciplines?  Or will it make it even easier to think that Ebscohost is a database, that Gale Virtual Reference Library is an encyclopedia and that knowledge is just a pile of identical grains of truth?

One of my colleagues has noted that EDS is meant to be intuitive for a novice researcher.  Our expert researchers currently prefer to go straight to their favorite databases.   Can EDS help us nudge the novices toward the behaviors of the experts?

Well those are my first thoughts and worries.