The new semester starts tomorrow, and one project I wanted to launch was a redesigned electronic resources page on our library website. After reading Anthony McMullen’s article, “Resist the List,” I wanted to make fundamental changes to how our students view our A to Z pages.
McMullen argues that the Database A to Z list is user-unfriendly. Imagining that you’re a freshman who has to conduct research in a library, and presented with a long list of databases, vendors, icons, and descriptions, its really easy to get lost in what you’re looking for. So, instead of using an A to Z page, we launched page that chunks databases into subject categories. This may or may not be intuitive for users, but a future usability test will help determine that. The page draws inspiration from Portland State University’s database page, and Virginia Commonwealth University’s database page.
I think one indicator to see if a database page is usable on a library website is if there doesn’t need to be that much instruction on how to use it. I feel that once info lit librarians/instructors no longer have the burden of teaching students on how to “use” a database page, then they can focus on other important topics.
I just recently returned from San Francisco, where the ALA Annual Conference was held. This is the largest librarian conference that I’ve been to. Its easy to get overwhelmed by the selection of workshops, programs, speakers, exhibits, and vendors.
I just wanted to write a pride post about my mom, Lina Tidal. For the last 29 years, my mom worked as a librarian for the Harry M. Caudill Memorial Library, in our small hometown of Whitesburg, Kentucky. Today, she was recognized by the Kentucky House of Representatives, the Letcher County Fiscal Court, and was even given the key to the city of Whitesburg! Continue reading “My mom the librarian”
Two weeks ago, I attended the ACRL 2015 Conference. It was a wonderful opportunity to network with other librarians, and hear of the various projects that are undertaken within the profession today. The conference also had a number of keynote presenters which were eye-opening and enlightening. Continue reading “#ACRL2015 Report Back”
At ACRL, they had a professional photographer take headshots for the attendees at the conference. I’m writing a longer post about the conference, but here’s a great photo that I had gotten for free. Continue reading “ACRL Headshot Photo”
UPDATE: The Video Roundtable released the notable videos list! More info here.
I attended my first ALA Midwinter Meeting in Chicago this week.
It was a great experience attending the conference and meeting many people I have communicated with in the various committees I participate in. One of the great things about ALA is putting faces to names and connecting IRL. Continue reading “ALA Midwinter 2015”
I’m going to ALA MidWinter in Chicago this week. One of the committees I have volunteered for is the Video Roundtable’s Notable Videos for Adults committee, where we review films to suggest for other libraries. I recently watched this video about Aaron Swartz, called The Internet’s Own Boy. It is highly recommended if you want to learn about the contributions that Swartz had made for the betterment of society. It can be viewed for free on YouTube.
For the last year, I have been working on a manuscript for ALA TechSource. I have received word from my editor, Patrick Hogan, that my manuscript has been approved for production.
This LITA Guide, entitled (for now) Usability and the Mobile Web, examines mobile usability testing for library websites. I firmly believe that usability is necessary for the success of a library’s website. It provides evidence on how well the site works from its most important component: its users.
This LITA Guide will provide an outline of what usability is, the differences between mobile sites, apps, and hybrids, and how to conduct a mobile usability test.
There are some CUNY librarians that have been immensely helpful in writing this guide, based on our informal and formal conversations on mobile library websites and apps. You should take a look at their blogs for some of the amazing work that they do!