Monday, December 31, 2012

My Gallery and My Wishes to you!

My gallery journals my life through the camera. This is my last post for 2012 and I wish my readers healthy, happy, peaceful, and joyful in the year of the snake!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Happy New Year!

Thankful to have a good busy year! The most rewardable project was the Embedded Librarian Pilot for the College of Nursing. I couldn't be more happy to get the support to do what I love to do.
Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Healthy and happy 2013!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Embedded Librarian Challenge Three: Understanding the Context

As the course progressed, my role as an embedded librarian seemed to evolve into something unexpected. After the students and faculty came to me with some questions, I realized I had to spend time understanding the context, such as:

  • what instructor expected students to accomplish 
  • instructor's criteria to grade students' papers 
  • how to write a scholarly paper 
  • how to cite and reference in APA format
  • what students were required to read
  • what supplemental materials students had access to
  • what resources students were expected to use for their papers
This is more than an one-time-shot lecture or presentation! More than just helping students searching for and retrieving information. To embrace these challenges, I spent time doing the homework: 
  • went through course syllabus carefully
  • read and understand instructor's grading rubric for course papers
  • reviewed instructor's class presentation slides by modules
  • requested an access code from the college to review supplemental online materials (e.g. quizes and assignments) associated with the course required textbook
  • learned about chapters of the course required textbook
  • contacted the instructor when I had questions
  • got myself familiar with APA book 6th edition 
The homework really injected me with confidence providing assistance to students and the instructor. Now students' grades were distributed and my work was done, and as commented from the course instructor, done beautifully! 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Embedded Librarian Challenge Two: Librarians' Role in the Course Syllabus

I do believe to be successful in any project, the goal or objectives have to be defined and made clear the same as you plan to drive long distance. You have to know what your destination is. So does the Embedded Librarian Pilot Project. A written proposal is not enough, librarians' specific roles have to be reflected or described in the course syllabus. After some looking and asking around, I was not able to find what I needed. Most embedded librarians were listed either as co-instructors or research assistants with contact information in the course syllabi without detailing their roles. I turned to Mr. David Shumaker for help. His pointer was very helpful:

"The course-embedded librarian can take many different roles, such as presenting in-class information literacy instruction, meeting with students individually or in teams to counsel them on research projects, collaborating with the instructor to specify assignments, grading assignments, posting help and comments to the course website, etc.  So the first task is to define your role in consultation with the instructor. Then you will know how to describe your role in the syllabus."

After discussing with the course instructor and program coordinator, embedded librarian services were officially included in the course syllabus:

"The embedded librarian works with the course faculty to achieve the goal of improving each student’s scholarly writing, library, and research skills by providing the following services: 
  • Assisting with and providing training on locating, retrieving, and evaluating information for course assignments and/or research projects.
  • Providing help with using information management tools such as EndNote for course assignments and to organize references.
  • Answering questions posted on course discussion board, Embedded Librarian FAQ.
  • Linking library resources to the course by creating a course research guide using LibGuides.
  • Maintaining the course blog related to writing and research such as Tip of the Week related to library research."
As the course progresses, am I doing what were expected in the syllabus? More challenges are on the way...

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Embedded Librarian Challenge One: A Workable Proposal

It took several months for me to start a new project: the Embedded Librarian Pilot Project: a pilot program between the library and the College of Nursing. I will be officially embedded in a nursing distance course this summer.  Being given this excellent opportunity was not happening overnight. Getting to this point met with lots of challenges. I will be using this blog to post my thoughts, hopefully, helpful for the-to-be embedded librarian.
Is there a perfect match?

The first challenge was to come up with a workable proposal for both parties involved in the project. When gaps appear between expectations and reality, passion and feasibility, needs and priority, the best way was to set back, rethink, and take a different approach or take another strategy. It will be more likely to be successful if the proposal comes directly from the customer group rather than the librarian himself/herself. The proposal has to state the librarian's primary role in the course focusing on utilizing their expertise such as enhancing student information literacy competencies, library researching skills, information searching, information retrieval, and information management. When you can get to this point, way to go!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Not Impressive Photos

Take a look at the photos I took using the new iPad. I'm not impressed at all. The camera can't even do a better job than that in an iPhone. Without quality photos high quality screen is not worth the money, though!

Friday, February 3, 2012

E-Book Exploration--What's My Choice?

McGraw Hill's Connect
Son asked me to pay for this textbook he needed for his school: Business Driven Information System 3rd edition by Paige Baltzan. He gave me the link and login information to access the e-book trial version from  Like any parents, I started to think if there were any ways I could save some money. My first  thought was to check the book availability from his school's library, but no luck. I started looking around, here are my options:

1) Purchase from McGraw-Hill that provides two choices
  • Connect Plus: $96
  • Connect: $39.99
No matter which version I choose, the online access to the book will expire on July 30, 2012. I won't own the book. 

2) Purchase paper copy from
  • Used: $101.38
  • New: $143.85
I will get 50% cash back when the books are returned to the site by June 30, 2012.

3) Purchase from
4) Purchase from, accessible only on iPad
  • Entire book: $139.99
  • One chapter: $21.99
Later I found out. I really didn't have any choice but pay for the Connect Plus from McGraw Hill. Why? Because it's a required textbook version from the instructor. Look at McGraw Hill's ads about its Connect, which has so many attractive build-in features and tools that any instructor, I'm afraid, can resist taking it.  It ties coursework closely with the e-book content and saves instructor lots of time. I can see this really as a publisher driven model that has nothing to do with the library. They aim directly to the instructor. I guess, the publisher might even provide a free copy for the instructor to use for the course. In return the instructor might require the entire class to buy a Connect ebook. When the instructor wants it, the student won't have any choices, will they?

Looking at this model, questions swept through my mind: What's the library future for electronic books? Who are the driven force for electronic books? What can or should libraries do about this, ignore, accept, or do something? What's the best for students?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Rough or Peaceful?

Happy New Year! Wishing my readers a healthy, happy, and excellent 2012.

  Wave of Life

How did you feel about your life, rough or peaceful? You can be the driver of your life. I love this saying "attitude is everything!"

 Quite & Peace