Tag Archives: collaboration

Partnerships between learning, teaching, library, and IT #theta2015

Forging productive partnerships between learning, teaching, library, and IT (abstract)
Caroline Steel and Elizabeth Coulter

Current university context – slow response to rapid tech change, constrained budgets, etc – how can we afford not to collaborate.

CAUDIT top issues survey found “Supporting and enabling teaching and learning” at top of list. So sent out own survey (15 L&T respondents, 7 IT, 2 library)

Asked about

  • perceptions of role of IT in supporting T&L – plurality thought valued business partner (many still thought: IT expert; gatekeeper; administrator).
  • Perception that IT and T&L working collaboratively – “to a moderate extent”
  • Perception that library and T&L working collaboratively – largely “to a moderate extent” but some “to a large extent”

Enablers: need to trust each other; have clear roles; leaders that get along

Barriers: territories; role ambiguities; funding models; lack of shared goals; different perspectives on institutional goals

Strategies: need to “speak more than one language” and translate between different cultures.

Ideal partnership: enabling leadership; shared goals; cross-functional working groups; valued/rewarded partnerships; encourage risk/innovation/experimentation

Panel discussion:
Q: Does a collaboration between these groups really matter?
A: (Mark Gregory) Services we’ve long offered are now being offered in different ways. Need to move on, work together so don’t overlap / get in each other’s ways.
A: (Wendy Abbott) Teaching has IT underpinning, library input; library has IT underpinning. Need to collaborate to avoid wasting effort/time
A: (Caroline Steel) Often not aware of what each is doing. Often doing same things as each other.

Q: What’s gone well?
A: (Wendy) Revamping curriculum – team involving academic lead, IT staff, library staff, T&L staff. Everyone brought expertise in, worked as a team from beginning instead of pulling in people halfway through. Required broad experience so librarian had to know pedagogy/IT skills etc: demonstrated much expertise that impressed the academic on the team. Builds trust and understanding of benefits.
A: (Caroline) A community of practice put together – recognised incredible schools at other universities. Started with teleconference then a get-together. Has grown to all Australasia and across sectors.

Q: (audience) Many library spaces are more collaborative now – where does IT have most impact here?
A: (Wendy) Mostly behind scenes, working with library staff to meet requirements. Also customer service assisting students with basic enquiries. Core skills for all staff whether IT or library to support users.

Q: What are most important aspects of change?
A: (Caroline) Leadership: acknowledge we have different cultures across institution(s). Needs to come from top that we value these all so can set combined goals. Students don’t know who’s behind a service, need fantastic experience regardless.

Q: (audience) Do partnerships help academics create content or confuse them?
A: (Caroline) Very confusing. Get phone calls about how to install TurnItIn and don’t know who to put them onto. Want to make it easy for teachers.
Q: (audience) So need to set role definitions?
A: (Caroline) Work in progress
A: (Mark) If started with blank sheet of paper today wouldn’t create three separate organisations – instead a “blurry sort of service organisation”.

Q: (audience) As leaders how do you motivate a reluctant collaborator?
A: (Wendy) Organisations create silos. Once people see benefits, that’s what encourages them.

Q: What do we need to do next?
A: (Caroline) Encourage risk – need culture and reward system to break free of current system.
A: (Mark) Anything innovative looks like play therefore not serious. Need to push past this. Treat risk as appropriate cost and appropriate action.
A: (Wendy) Need to get senior management to understand that sometimes things will fail.

Take part in the survey

Innovate #vala14 #s13 #s14 #s15

Hue Thi Pham and Kerry Tanner Influences of technology on collaboration between academics and librarians

Interrelationships between collaboration, institutional structure, and technology.
Things like Google Apps tend to be used within departments – less use on smaller campuses because more casual face-to-face interaction. Level of use varies by discipline, faculty, campus.
Social technologies like Twitter used in lectures
Learning management system (eg Moodle) most important technology mentioned in interviews.
Institutional repository common space for depositing resources

Technology facilitating transition from traditional to digital library – more electronic resources, communicating over telephone, email, Skype. But purely online interaction means a reduced mutual understanding of partners’ contributions, and an old perception of librarians’ roles.

Divide between library system and learning management system leads to a divide between the two communities around these. Librarians complain they can’t do a workshop about an assignment without Moodle access to see the assignment. Academics say they think librarians could have a role but they don’t understand why they would need access or what they would do with it. Lack of coordination can be a problem – means LMS people and library people make decisions that each other isn’t aware of. Siloisation.

Library staff need to consider roles of interpersonal interaction with technology – value of tech, value of face-to-face interaction, importance of space design / architecture. Get automatic access to learning management system but avoid resulting workload. Need to find ways to integrate library management system with learning management system.

Audience comment: Involvement of librarian in discussion boards can be useful – some topics the academics are relieved to leave to librarian. But important to have awareness of mutual roles.

Lisa Ogle and Kai Jin Chen Just accept it! Increasing researcher input into the business of research outputs

Implementing Symplectic Elements at UoNewcastle. (37,000 students, 1000 academics plus 1500 professional staff) HERDC is reporting exercise to Australian government to secure funding – sounds similar to New Zealand’s PBRF. Work managed by research division but most data entry done by admin folk. Issues include duplicate data entry, variance in data quality, many publications never reported – funding missed out on. Library asked to assist from 2005 – centralised model addresses many issues.

Various identification mechanisms: scholarly databases, researchers, conference lists, uni website, library orders. All put manually into Endnote library, then manually copy/pasted into Callista database. Labour-intensive and would often be a 2-6 month delay for researchers, very frustrating.

Getting Elements. Loved harvesting from databases (based on search settings: “We think this is your publication, please log in to claim or reject it”). Originally not keen on opening up to researchers, but after demos got convinced researchers could add manual entry without compromising data quality as library/research staff can verify and lock it.

Benefits: database searches can be customised to minimise false positives/negatives. Can delegate others to act on researchers’ behalf. Publications appear on profile within 48 hours. Can upload Endnote libraries. Can include ‘in press’ publications without messing up workflow. Easily generate publication lists. Capture of bibliometric data. Pretty graphs on user’s dashboard.

Have been running 4 months, 2 thirds of publishing academics have logged in and interacted with system. (800 in first two weeks, and a lull over summer). 2900 publications in the system from current collection year (usually 3500).

Challenges: early adopter in Australian market. Development module took longer than expected – learned that everyone does HERDC differently.

Most negative feedback so far is from people who haven’t yet logged into the system. Someone complaining it was too hard – talked her through it over the phone and now fine.

Need to investigate further repository integration.

Malcolm Wolski and Joanna Richardson Terra Nova: a new land for librarians?
Big issues emerging around vast amounts of data and trying to connect it. Global connectedness another impact.

Researchers needing a “dry lab” to work with data instead of hands-on wet-lab. Seeing this in many areas.
Researchers can’t afford to work solo any more. Much infrastructure costs beyond reach of individual researcher or individual centre. Problems are too much for one person.
Can get storage and computing power – but may need to work with data for ten years so need to be able to retain it and keep working on it through changing technology. Lots of outputs are governmental reports not journal articles.
Most large research projects these days involve communities – even incorporated bodies.
80% of papers in the EU are of people collaborating with people outside their institution.

NeCTAR have invested heavily in virtual laboratories because it’s not just about creating data but using it – of course this creates more data.
In theory nothing stops a researcher going to Research Data Storage Infrastructure for storage without their university knowing.
Various community solutions like Tropical Data Hub, Australian National Corpus – slide lists a pile and he points out that for each of these, some institution has put their hand up to take responsibility for maintenance.

Approach of institutions keeping their own data but having to share metadata. Requires lots of discussion around data schemas – what you expect to find in data descriptions. Eg Research Data Australia from 85 participating organisations and growing. Goal to get more data, better connected data, more findable/usable.

Two impacts around:
Research tools: New suite from NeCTAR and ANDS eg virtual laboratories, discipline-specific tools. Need to choose which we’ll support, which data collection schemes we’ll be involved in. May need to develop our own tools for specific disciplines.
Library/research collaboration: Moving more to a partnership model.

Libraries provide support for data management plans and citing data, but there’s huge demand for archiving/preserving data.

Impact on university libraries:

  • New jobs coming out for the “databrarian”.
  • Need research services to help develop common data structures
  • Participation in cross-disciplinary teams bringing librarian skills
  • Development of legal frameworks for acquiring, generating, storing and sharing data
  • Assisting with development of tools – lots of disciplines have different ways of exploring/analysing data so national collections/communities may have specific search (eg maps, chemical structure, vs facets) or visualisation tools.
  • Archiving and preservation services

Librarian support roles

  • Sourcing relevant data sets
  • Consultancy – identify faculty needs, refer back to experts
  • Targeted outreach services re data citation or data repositories
  • New support service tools and processes

Want to be able to offer a service to researchers and them not have to worry about where it’s stored, whether on campus or Amazon Web Services or whatever.

Wrap up #ndf2012

Wrap up
Andy Neale (@andyhkn), NDF Board
Andy Neale is the Manager of DigitalNZ at the National Library of New Zealand and Department of Internal Affairs. He is a current member of the NDF Board, and is most well known as the founding technical lead of DigitalNZ and New Zealand’s Mix and Mash competitions.

Risk with conferences like this is if it’s too inspirational it can seem out of reach, detached from everyday life. Don’t be put off by this, by lack of funding, no designer, whatever limitation.

It’s okay to beg and borrow if necessary – that’s how we all get started. No-one comes along with a bucket of cash and time. All have to find a way.

Don’t need to do everything. Used to come away buzzing and wanting to do it all. Digital envy. We want all these amazing things for our customers and institutions but neither possible nor necessary to do everything.

If you like something and think it’s relevant to you, talk to the people involved and find out if they can share / extend it. None of the stuff seen here was achieved on their own. Everything built on top of the work of others.

Take whatever ideas you’ve got – talk to someone in another organisation – pick up the phone, email, tweet until they respond… and continue the conversation. Turn it into collaboration and new ways of working.

How will you commemorate the First World War centenary? #ndf2012

How will you commemorate the First World War centenary?
Virginia Gow @vexus_nexus and Douglas Campbell, WW100 and Auckland Museum

What is your organisation doing to commemorate the centenary of the First World War?
The First World War (1914–1918) was one of the most significant events of the twentieth century and had a seismic impact on New Zealand society. Ten percent of our then population of one million served overseas, of which more than 18,000 died and over 40,000 were wounded. Nearly every New Zealand family was affected.
In this session, join Virginia Gow and Douglas Campbell to get some pointers on preparing your organisation for WW100 – New Zealand’s First World War centenary commemorations. We’ll cover some of the activities already underway in the digital GLAM sphere, how you might contribute to national initiatives such as the Cenotaph redevelopment, and hold an open discussion on how we can support each other to be ready for WW100.

Virginia: Centenary of WWI coming up in 2014. Why are we commemorating it? Is there anything left to digitise?

Nearly half of NZ’s young men went to war. Events touched every family, community, school, workplace. Aim to tell stories, not sanitised. Create a comprehensive website of the WWI history http://www.firstworldwar.govt.nz. Aims: Public engagement, preservation of our heritage, creation of new interpretations of our history, international connections.

Funding opportunities available – applications close Nov 2012, May 2013. Have created symbol and official name for even (available on website). Programme office no mandate or intention to organise everything. Providing support for things but mostly facilitating activities elsewhere.

What does the centenary mean for us as GLAM institutions?

Of note: photographs taken by NZers before 1944 are probably out of copyright.

Could be good to get together, figure out what we’ve got and what’s out there, then pulling it together in meaningful ways. What story will we tell the future about this centenary? (eg people using Twibbons as people in the first Anzac Day commemoration wore hats?) An opportunity for the GLAM sector to shine especially if we work together / collaborate.

Private mailing list available to discuss plans – contact the programme office for info.

Douglas: working on Cenotaph redevelopment. Cenotaph is a biographical database for NZers who served in war. Records for most of 100,000 NZers who fought overseas and have died. Records may have details and photos, or may only have name rank and serial number.

Will keep a page per soldier but jazz it up a bit and add other entry points – maps, battalions, battles. Could have much more content available out in the GLAM sector. GLAM could contribute; links could go both ways. Users could contribute info/photos about family. Crowdsource research, digitisation, transcriptions, stories both typed and audiovisual, corrections (eg bad machine data matching, mistakes in official records, soldiers giving wrong date of birth). Provide data (vocabularies, authoritative data, international data, linked data) back to institutions. Make databases available to academic research. Will be complicated so hope to partner with DigitalNZ.

Curly questions:

  • scope (which people, which wars?)
  • centralisation – should it all be on Cenotaph or should it link out?
  • ownership
  • provenance – how do we make sure we know which data is curated, which crowdsourced, etc?

Note service numbers aren’t unique but can use Cenotaph number which should (hopefully!) be permanent.

Q: Data going to institutions and academics but back to users who contributed it. Will we see an Open API?
A: Hope so but will be curly as integrate data from various sources.

Q: How do we turn commemoration into something inclusive of all NZers including those whose ancestors fought on other side?
A: We’re just one project among many all around the world. There are other ways into the centenary than Cenotaph eg life a hundred years ago.

Q: Is there an index to conscientious objectors?
–Apparently there’s one in the Gazettes.

Q: Can you commit to the Cenotaph ID being permanent?
A: Yes, so commits.

Links of interest 2/6/11 – collaborating with students

Reading my RSS feeds sometimes a theme emerges from the chaos – this time it was ways in which academic libraries have collaborated with students to enhance both library services and student learning.

Students Studying Students: An Assessment of using Undergraduate Student Researchers in an Ethnographic Study of Library Use “reports on the use of undergraduate students enrolled in an Applied Anthropology course as researchers for a library use study at Brigham Young University’s Harold B. Lee Library”.

Similarly, Brian Mathews writes about Exploring graduate student use patterns of the UCSB Library.

Experimentation in an Academic Library: A Study in Security and Individual Student Engagement
“The Special Collections and Rare Book Department at Western Michigan University collaborated with a student worker to develop a system to improve security and employee performance. The student was taking a course in psychology that required him to develop a workplace behavioral intervention with a client and modify an important behavior for employee performance.”

Library instruction
Building a Participatory Culture: Collaborating with Student Organizations for 21st Century Library Instruction – literature review and summary of some events where the library hooked into student association events, or initiated their own in collaboration with the student association, to teach library skills.

Brian Mathews again: Reframing the Concept of Plagiarism, Or What I Learned From Banksy – on art projects in the library.

A Friendfeed discussion on Our library posts a newsletter called “Stall Times” in our bathrooms. A student using the pseudonyms “Mike Koch” and “Hugh Jass” recently made a parody called “Small Times.” Our creative manager contacted him and invited him to collaborate. The conversation doesn’t go further in depth but does include links to archived bathroom newsletters from this and other libraries.

Back to Brigham Young University – they’re also famous for their parody of the Old Spice commercial, made by the Harold B. Lee Library Multimedia Production Crew, consisting of two full time employees and ten student employees – see their behind the scenes.

There’s lots of scope for collaboration with journalism, media, music and film students. Language students could translate subtitles. History/literature/etc students could work with digitisation projects. Computer science students could work on components for open source library software. The sky’s the limit…

Links of interest 13/1/10

Web collaboration

  • Tinychat lets you instantly set up a temporary chatroom with its own short url you can share with anyone you want to join you. Once everyone has left the chat it disappears.
  • Flockdraw does the same for the virtual whiteboard.

Virtual reference