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Library Day in the Life: Wednesday, November 10

November 11, 2010

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

3:30 pm – arrive to start work. Login and begin checking emails

3:45 pm – Asked by a student to help with logging on to one of the library’s computer workstations. She has stopped by in the past and is not sure if she should log in with her email address or just her username. We go over the proper procedure and she’s then able to log in successfully.

3:50 pm – The Head of Access and Technical Services stops by to chat for a few minutes. We talk about the carts of books behind the information desk that I need to review to see if they should be withdrawn from the collection (these are 2nd copies of books in the catalog). We also discuss some of the printing issues at the library and the IT department’s fix for these. It sounds like many of the issues have been taken care of. Printing issues have been an ongoing problem for students throughout the semester.

4:00 pm – I respond by email to a student who is studying abroad. He is looking for help on how to access the library databases offsite. I send him an email with a list of instructions and some sample search terms to try, along with a list of databases to start his search with.

4:20 pm – a student stops by and is having trouble opening a file that was saved on her Mac. It has a .webarchive extension. After trying to open this in several different programs, I find that Safari on Windows may be the only way to open this, since we do not have any file conversion programs installed. Unfortunately, the library workstations also do not have Safari installed. I can install this for the student, but she is in a bit of a rush and says she will instead just try it at home. I’m wondering if we should install Safari on one of the library workstations to prepare for this in the future just in case ?

4:45 pm – someone from the maintenance department stops by the information desk to ask about taking down a setup for a lecture (tables & chairs). We stop by the circulation desk to find out more information about this and he says he will stop back tomorrow morning, since what is on his work order doesn’t match what needs to be taken down.

5:05 pm – a student stops by with a journal citation. She hasn’t been able to find the article online and wants to know if we have it. I show her how to look up the library’s list of journals online to see if it’s a journal we have access to, either in print or electronically. It turns out we do have access to the journal and the article is available online. We go through how to save the article (with this journal, we need to ‘print’ it as a PDF, and then the article downloads). I also showed her the process for filling out an interlibrary loan form online, if in the future she has a citation for an article or book that we don’t have access to.

5:30 pm – my supervisor (who is Head of Reference also is in charge of the information literacy program) has set up an account on Delicious to gather links on information literacy. Going through some of my own links on Delicious to see what I can add to this new account.

5:50 pm – two students stop by regarding journal and newspaper articles. One student mentions that her professor has requested she find “hard copy journals” for her research. We discuss the fact that the journals in the university’s electronic databases are essentially the hard copy, just in electronic format. We go over how to access these remotely. The other student asks about finding historical newspapers in our databases. We then go over the steps of how to access this database from the main library page. Both students ask about citing in APA format and I point them to the Purdue OWL site and also a LibGuide that one of the librarians here created for help in citing different formats.

5:55 pm – a student stops by and is looking for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV TR). I walk with her to the print reference material area and show her where this is kept

6:05 pm – a student asks for a note stating she was here tonight instead of study hall to give to her lacrosse coach as proof she was in the library at this time

6:15 pm – we have a scanning workstation here at the library that works well 99% of the time. But a student has just stopped by to say he scanned in 50 pages of a book and seems to have lost everything. There doesn’t appear to be a way to retrieve what he has scanned unfortunately. I told him he might want to try scanning in sections of 5-10 pages. He says he doesn’t have the time now to do this over but will stop back later.

6:45 pm – emailed one of the professors here at the university to let him know we have just published a LibGuide that focuses on the United States Presidents. This professor is writing a book on the Presidents that is due out in 2011 and asked us for help in locating books and articles on the presidency back in September. The help we provided for him then is the basis for the LibGuide I created and hopefully other students and faculty will also find it useful.

6:50 pm – one of the student workers stops by and asks for help filling out her timesheet

6:55 pm – a university alum stops by and asks to use one of the library workstations. We allow non-students and staff to use the library PCs if they have a valid ID and we record these in a log.

7:15 pm – sent an email to my supervisor asking if we should consider setting up a library blog that features contributions from all staff members, as another way to connect with the university community. We’ve already talked about setting up a Facebook page for the library, but there needs to be a meeting with other departments on how to standardize the look of these pages across the whole university.

7:25 pm – my supervisor emails me and asks me to help a distance student with research on sports rivalries. One of my favorite topics ! I’ll be doing some preliminary research on this tonight and will send the student some starting points to consider.

7:30 pm – 8:00 pm – dinner break

8:25 pm – student is looking for “The Bluebook” to do legal citations. We have a copy of this behind the information desk as it is a reference resource, but student was hoping to take the book out from the library. He said he would stop back when he had his final list of citations for his paper and just borrow the book to use while in the library. I took his email address and let him know I would contact him if I could find a legal citation generator online similar to citationmachine.net or ottobib.com.

8:45 pm – student is having trouble printing from one of the Macs. We go over the correct printer to use and he is able to print his documents

8:55 pm – a student asks about purchasing software such as Microsoft Office 2010 at a discount, as she mentioned she received an email about this but then lost the email. We find the link on the university website that outlines the discount program and I give the link to her so she can access from her home and decide if she’d like to purchase this

9:15 pm – finished sending the instructions to the distance student who is looking for resources on sports rivalries. I sent him instructions on how to search through several of the library databases and also sent him links from Google Books that had nearly full previews of books on sports rivalries. I’ll wait to hear if he needs additional resources as well.

9:25 pm – I emailed the student who stopped in earlier about legal citations. I sent him a couple of links, one is a site at Cornell that is a guide that may help if he cannot get back to the library to use ‘The Bluebook’

10:05 pm – another printing issue…a student without his ID card is trying to print to the library “pool” printer (where guests can also print and the charge is 10 cents a page). It appears as if that printer has been blocked on the library workstations. I placed a work order with the IT department for them to take a look at this.

10:50 pm – the library sounds like a library…unusually quiet, even for this hour

10:57 pm – time to go home…until next time….

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