Thursday, June 24, 2010

ASEE 2011 - Vancouver, BC, Canada

Save the date: June 26 - 29, 2011 
Start thinking of papers, topics, or workshops for next year. Michael White will be sending out a survey soon for your input on future ASEE Engineering Library Division conference topics.

Join the American Society for Engineering Education in Vancouver, BC, Canada
for the 118th Annual Conference & Exposition!

Faculty/Librarian Liaison Relationships (your librarian is your friend, or the double-L value-add)

James Bradley Clarke, Miami University of Ohio – A Case of Vague Identities
At this point, I feel like I should be writing a mystery story. Clarke supports 1000 engineering students. The MU library provides 100% of first year engineering students with information literacy training. Academic librarians can have a vague identity on campus. He feels students and faculty may be confused by our roles on campus so he’s working to clarify the role and elucidate the vague identities. Some time way back in 1971, ACRL stated that academic librarians and professors are equal, should be paid the same, treated the same. So Clarke feels the role of liaison librarian is to have an aggressive outreach approach. Offering course guides, attending events, providing workshops, offering many communication venues for users. To get past the routine things librarians do Clarke writes articles about ABET and how the librarians can support the accreditation process. He also attends senior capstone events and informally comments about the projects and how they can be improved, which faculty welcome. The liaison relationship extends beyond the library. His outreach extends to attending campus ballgames and bringing his colleagues along.

Megan Sapp Nelson, Purdue University -  Question to Find Gaps and Concerns
Three librarians support thousands of engineering students. One of her goals is to extend the boundaries of the physical library with “outreach reference” locations along with other initiatives to get librarians more embedded on campus. She started with traditional meetings with faculty but quickly moved beyond to embed herself into Purdue’s teaching environment through involvement with engineering projects and community service. As a teaching faculty, she grades students work. Involvement in this way has helped develop rapport with other faculty and students. Nelson helped develop new curriculum for this program including early conceptual design for EPICs. Right now one of her value-added services is creation of a structured process for students when they come to her “with the best idea ever for an engineering project that no one in the world has ever thought of before.” Sound familiar? The research process she’s developing will guide students through literature searches for their design ideas. Nelson feels successful faculty relationships can be developed by asking them what problems they face. This approach can bring forward opportunities for librarians or integration of information skills into the curriculum. This led to teaching ethics to students and for another detailed example, see her ASEE 2010 paper on tying creativity with IL.

Karen Vagts, Tufts University - Infiltration with a marketing mindset
Vagts supports around a thousand School of Engineering students and faculty. Tufts program has many interdisciplinary aspects, with some faculty straddling management and engineering. Affiliated with Tisch Library and she also supports math and business. Tufts librarians are not tenure track. Faculty are not always aware of what librarians do. With a business background, she views her outreach efforts as a marketing issue and decided to penetrate the market by segmentation of her audience.  Due to interdisciplinary nature of the programs she target sub-groups based on interest areas (water, etc.) vs. by department. She has some success asking faculty to visit class for 10 minute to market the library and the assistance she can provide. There is no required information literacy instruction for engineering students at Tufts at this time. Focused areas for IL instruction are first year and capstone courses where research intensive courses are offered. She targets campus efforts for improving educational research and tries to become involve with development of new programs. Centers and research institutes including career development are other areas she has outreached to. Her communications range from emails, newsletters, and pushing resources out to target groups but “serendipitous meetings with faculty lead to great things.” Develop of individual relationships are most important in addition to successfully navigating the range of attitudes of faculty members.

Najwa Hanel, USC Libraries - Get out there and meet & greet
Hanel supports such a large number of students, faculty and research centers/institutes can be challenging but rewarding. She suggests going to faculty “to offer something, not ask for something.” They target department heads, all new faculty, and collaborate with other librarians to support across disciplines. One incentive for new faculty is a $500 for collection development (not serials). Hanel described in detail her methods of encountering faculty outside of the library. Participation on curriculum committees and new faculty orientation are essential activities for liaison librarians. Partnerships with faculty to support student learning is our reason for being there.

What do we do when requests for instruction surpass our ability to support them?  At Purdue there’s a move towards embedded librarians where instruction is delivered over multiple course sessions esp. in business school. Cross training with other librarians to help support instruction across disciplines. Develop supplemental workshops. Use online tutorials. Tap into local library school students. Hire graduate students from the discipline to teach orientations and do RefWorks sessions. At Queens they are discussing writing memorandum of understanding with departments to formalize the liaison program. At WPI, we have begun shifting staff roles in order to support our 50% increase in instruction sessions over the past 5 years.
Outreach to parents & students: some librarians are involved with summer orientation activities and have come up with creative ways to outreach to parents and students.

At MIT the librarians create a “new faculty toolkit” that helps library liaisons approach new faculty, talke with Angie Locknar for further details.

How do we reach senior faculty? Some mention through assistant in dealing with data sets and management of information. Another idea is to work with development and/or grants offices. 

Distinguished Lecture: Problem Solving in Engineering Education

David Jonassen, Missouri University
Problem solving ability is more important then ability to write an exam in a blue book. If you want student to learn take the numbers away. What kind of problems do engineering students learn to solve? Story problems taught by worked examples where they learn to mimic process not meaning. Students are not learning what the equations mean and they need to understand the problems qualitatively. Jonassen’s feels there are issues with conceptual understanding due to over reliance of instructors on quantitative processes.

To help students he suggests instructors represent problems as structure maps, asking students to relate concepts together. Understanding nature of the problem is often superfluous for students who are focused on the answer and the grade. Ask them to step back and look at problems conceptually. Use analogies. Help them understand causal relationships using animations, simulations, causal diagrams, asking causal questions. Get them to transfer concepts to solve everyday problems. Simulations alone are not enough for learning so build in reflective and causal modeling. Causal diagrams or chains can illustrate problems for students. Follow up with causal reasoning questions such as prediction and argumentation.

They use ASK systems, TeachNET: A Resource for Engineering Teachers, real world examples and case studies.  Structure a dialog with reflection in action.

Now for an example. Within a radiation protection technical curriculum instructor’s created a series of questions about the daily work, common tasks and knowledge required of a technician. Responses are provided with videos of professionals. A standard learning outcome for any course is to get students to ask meaningful questions.

Another strategy is to get students to build models or model problems with concept maps. Students can be charged with building expert systems where a demonstrated need to articulate questions and rules is needed. Serious conceptual brain work for students and but can be time consuming! Systems modeling is also difficult but meaningful for students.

Argumentation another method to try, one example he used is code enforcement for learning engineering ethics. Instructor’s presented different perspectives and theoretical approaches and gave students a task to review and develop meaningful argumentation. This is a remedial strategy for correcting misconceptions on well-structured problems (see his recent paper on this topic for more detail).  Help students create counterargument and rebuttal.

Questioning students for metacognition forces students to reflect and regulate their own understanding. Have you solved similar problems, what strategies, or steps are needed to solve, and so on. Ask students to classify problems/questions. Text editing problems can be useful and provide impactful learning. Add extra or remove information from a question or specific problem then ask students if there’s sufficient information to respond. He suggests giving students practice first at “text editing” problems. These are very challenging for students.

Problem posing seems like a fun way to reinforce learning. Show picture and ask students to develop problem around it (for instance, soccer player on field in play and what physics concepts are also at play).
Problems engineering face don’t have right answers. Types of problems include design, dilemmas, troubleshooting, planning, and most come down to decision making. Most real problems are ill-structured. Use problem-based learning, real work problems from engineers and case studies. Stories allow case based reasoning and are meaningful, allow for transferability. For assessment consider having students construct story or scenario. Stories, Jonassen stresses are a key component of student learning. The difference between novices and experts are that experts have a story bank to withdraw from and make decisions based upon. This conference, Jonassen tells  us, is all stories. Every presenter is telling a story about how s/he are personally working to improve engineering education. 

Librarians out there, take heed. In reflecting upon this distinguished lecture I concluded that our realm is really all about the “ill-constructed problem.” We help people come up with creative ideas, keywords, phrases, search strategies to solve them. How have people dealt with the problem in the past? What can we learn from them? In helping our users find these stories of the past, new ones are being written. Stories that actually make people think. 

LibGuides, Open Access Publications in 3 Engineering Disciplines, Digitization Project Management, Citation Analysis for IL Assessment

Using LibGuides as a Web 2.0 Content Management System and a Collaboration Tool for Engineering Librarians - Richard Bernier
Bernier gave an overview of Rose Hulman library’s use of LibGuides. Many libraries use the LibGuides content management system (CMS) which provides a simple web platform for library research guides. Informational boxes and tabs can be shared and quickly updated across the guides and it’s easy to borrow information from other libraries (if permission is granted).  Bernier found that with the embedded chat 30% of their reference questions come in this way.    
Managing a Digitization Project: Issues for State Agency Publications with Folded Maps - Karen Andrews and Carol LaRussa
One fine day a grant funding opportunity was presented that was too good to be true. Even though time constraints where part of the package, this was an opportunity to provide a goldmine of unique digitized content for researchers worldwide. Karen Andrews stepped forward and shared her digitization wish list.

University of California Davis librarians worked with Internet Archive to digitize old sets of state publications. These government documents are in the public domain, are still in demand and have broad interest. The Internet Archive provided grant funding so they were able to partner to digitize more than 1000 volumes:

1. California Division of Mines and Geology Series – dating back to 19th century includes guidebooks, information on mines and geologic history
2. CA Division of Water Resources - 780 volumes published from 1922-2004

The water resources series had large foldout maps and this was a first attempt at this type of project. The maps varied in size, creased, or even cracks in some cases and pose an obvious digitization challenge.

·         description issues: volumes with different titles, series title changes over time, agency name changes
·         sub-series and some errors in existing library catalog records
·         tight deadline
·         involved staff in 4 units with conflicted project demands
·         staff utilization: involved a few key staff to do the bulk of the work
·         missing volumes (obtained from UC Berkley to provide as complete a set as possible)
·         OCLC catalog records were sometimes hard to find, sometimes they had a draft, office copy of some of these government documents, so they wanted to include all versions/revisions as they may be of future use to researchers
·         Preservation staff were brought in to evaluate book condition
Metadata Issues
·         Project Inventory: spreadsheet for each item, stages of processing and notes; ended up keeping two spreadsheets; evening Access Services staff member worked on this project  
·         Internet Archive staff did the production. If binding was too tight they could unbind, with the large maps they did overview and overlapping quadrants.
·         IA metadata fields not set up to accommodate monographic serials and they made accommodations but this could still be an issue with future projects
·         Wonderfetch – hoping this tool will allow update of needed metadata
·         UC Davis staff helped with quality control for IA. Staff developed a procedure for QA, a few problems with digitization were identified (pages had to be replaced in some cases, some maps had quality issues but UC Davis will retain original documents).
One thousand volumes were digitized and they tracked 600 uses within days of being posted in the Internet Archive. “There’s gold in them hills!” Check this collection out at  

Lesson to all: generate a digitization wish list. You never know when an opportunity may pop up for mass digitization.
Open Access Availability of Publications of Faculty in Three Engineering Disciplines - Virginia (Ginny) Baldwin
Looked at Mechanical, Civil and Environmental, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering selected recent faculty publications. University of Nebraska uses Bepress (branded as Digital Commons). She looked at journal article availability and recorded locations (on their own web site, institutional repository (IR), pubmedcentral, and so on). Baldwin did all searching from outside of the UNL IP range, and defined open access as “complete full text of an article or manuscript in some state in the publication cycle that can be downloaded from the internet.”

She compared with other academic institutions and found the University of Nebraska Chemical Engineering department has the greatest deposition by far. Why? This department hired graduate students to put their publications in the IR. She encourages we suggest this approach to our own campus departments.

Baldwin discussed with faculty why deposits into IRs are so low overall, some issues with equations, graphs, and so on and generating a pre-pub that could be posted. Timing, publisher restrictions, and other issues are at play. When analyzing by journal title, she searched Sherpa/Romeo to determine archiving policies.  
Roles of Librarians
·         Promote Google Scholar and ROAR
·         Advise faculty on copyright & publisher archiving policies
·         Provide alternate and assistance with publisher negotiation for retaining rights
·         Encourage deposition into institutional repositories
·         Warn about publisher restrictions and suggest open access journals
·         Folllow up with similar research projects in other disciplines
Citation Analysis of Engineering Design Reports for Information Literacy Assessment - Dana Denick, Jay Bhatt, and Bradley Layton
Drexel librarians assessed first year design projects for information literacy outcomes. Course sequence: ENGR 101-103 includes projects on reverse engineering (they use a $2 camera which they take apart then put back together & use CAD), green house design, and nanoenlightenment (simulating a nanorobot). In ENG103 student teams design anything but need to start with research. Nine hundred students take course. Students need to find books, articles, technical handbooks, patents, and how to cite information. Self-guided tutorials seem to be included in the research education.

Citation Analysis
Student deliverables include a team project report. Bhatt and Denick reviewed a sample of the bibliographies and used a categorization scheme to analyze types of resources and the context of their use.  Sample included 135 students or around 15 papers or so and they analyzed 234 citations.

Findings: 38% websites, 28% journals, 14% technical papers, 12% books, 4% conference papers. Students had some problems citing technical handbooks and websites and have a preference for citing websites.

Librarians aligned results of the citation analysis and data from a student self-assessment with performance indicators (based on ACRL IL standards). Mapping with outcomes helped them determine whether they are meeting initial IL goals. Only 78% of students could create an appropriate search so they found another area for instruction reform. This past spring they solicited a sample of draft papers before the students due date. Librarians then provided feedback which students could incorporate into their final reports. Data on whether or more labor intensive approach worked is forthcoming. Drexel librarians will continue with an outgoing multiple assessment strategy but this citation analysis is one facet they found useful. 

Challenges, Vision, and the Role of Academic Libraries in Building Institutional Repositories

Moderator: Scott Warren, Syracuse University Library
Jay Bhatt, Drexel University;
Mel DeSart, University of Washington;
Maliaca Oxnam, University of Arizona;
Peter Zuber, Brigham Young University

Goals of Institutional Repositories (IRs) include providing scholars with method of global access and preservation of research.
·         Time investment for staff, only one (BYU) mentioned they have dedicated state for their IR
·         Utilize student staffing is possible
·         Initial discussions with faculty extremely important
·         Focus on specific campus collections:
o   Drexel: student posters
o   ASU: Tree ring research
o   BYU: Herbarium, Historical clothing, student work (portals for each collection)
·         Policy decisions for consideration:
o   Types of materials collected (student work or not?)
o   Unmediated depositions or not? ASU mentioned faculty want to be empowered to add their own collections, but the librarians set up the structure for them; most support and recommend unmediated user submission
o   Length of time items will be collected
o   When faculty deposit then leave an institution
o   “closed” collections – for institutional only or embargoes for specialized research
·         Infrastructure & support varies. Some librarians partner with IT to build/support
·         Develop campus partnerships: copyright office, departments (note also that Ginny Baldwin found at her institution ChemEng department hired students to add their scholarly output)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Space Planning and Changing Library Landscapes & a bit about the 4 ELD posters too

Student users get their say: Library space redesign with students in mind - Mary Strife, West Virginia University

Surveys, focus groups and interviews of students were used to help redesign the library space. Dr. Cindy Beacham helped with Mary with the design process. Also they were able to enlist faculty to help. One faculty brought her entire class for a focus group.

During focus groups they used color coded index cards as well with focus group questions such as “what would you suggest to improve” and then gave cards back to students and asked them to work together to categorize the cards. Then the facilitators used the categories as the focus for discussions. Dr. Beacham recommended also bringing some “jumpstart” questions in case they are needed. Another question they used to solicit information and discussion from students was: “what characteristics would you like to see in a facility that would become the heart of the campus?” To capture student input they recorded and video recorded the students in order to create a report on their findings.

Students asked for many things. They were actually able to add: study rooms, color, individual spaces, more comfortable seating, more desktop and laptop computers, wireless connection extended outside of the building, and so forth. Students wanted design/display space to share their work with the entire campus. They shrank down their journal and reference shelving, improved furnishings, and now that have one service desk.

Stanford Engineering Library —Envisioning an Evolving Facility - Sarah Lester, Stanford University

In 2005, Stanford School of Engineering started fundraising for new student-focused, technologically-advanced showcase center. In addition, they will be focusing on innovation through cross-disciplinary collaboration. In parallel, the University Librarian began a visioning process for the library. The vision for the future library included: digital focus, less space with more staff, innovation and more technology. The library is moving into the Huang Engineering Center which in addition the library will include a café, lab spaces for students, and breakout rooms with flexible furnishings. They'll be moving into this new space later this summer.

Within the library, they have designated zones, quiet area & stacks, group study & brainstorming islands, and front entrance zone with offices and circulation. The library is moving from 16,000 sq ft to 6000 and they will maintain a collection of 20,000 print books and supplemented with 40K+ ebooks. They have no bound print serials and only have 100 print browsing. The overall plan includes: ejournals, ebooks, and moving fully to electronic theses and dissertations. Many of their print serials were sent to off-site storage which has 24 hr paging service. The Stanford Physics Library is closing, so librarian supporting Physics will move into this new engineering library space.

A few cool things: RFID tags for all books, self-checkout system, librarians no longer have offices, they will be in cubicles in the open area of the library, all furniture movable, they are lowering stacks to optimize lighting. They retained a special collection of the history of science and technology.

New Library technology: digital bulletin board, ereader checkouts (Kindle/Sony are very popular with students and they may buy and add content to them, but deleted upon return), touch screen info kiosk, iPhone for reference questions, iPad for content experimentation.

They are rolling out a new service & outreach model, being more embedded and going where the students are. Offering more classes and workshops. All librarians have laptops so ability to go “mobile” and to the users. They are now helping faculty and students on management of unique collections and digital content and data management. See their web site for more details.

Spaces, Relocation and Subject Synergies When a Subject Libraries Change - Jill Powell, Cornell University

The library that is the fastest growing on campus is the Annex Library. At Cornell, libraries are in transition due to financial issues, library budget reductions, and serials inflation among other factors. The strategic plan focused on collections and selectors.

The Physical Sciences librarian was cutting journals that got more than 300 uses per year, so was fine with consolidation with another campus library. They could then have funds to provide journals faculty/students need. Arts, Architecture and Visual library was identified as important to maintain as a browse-able collection. Management, Entomology, Engineering, Ornithology, Hotel, Physical Sciences, and Industrial & Labor Relations libraries are merging with others.

The vision for the engineering library was to keep services in place, but to move books and journals and staff. Moves will not happen until next summer, although the Physical Sciences Library has already relocated staff and collections. The Engineering Library has 500 reserve books and 350,000 gate count per year. More ways of generating revenue or saving money are in place. They sold their duplicates to a sister university in China for instance. Also, Cornell implemented Amazon print on demand. A new revenue model for ArXiv was devised to help support this global site.

In the engineering library, the librarians remain for the most part, but there will be some layoffs. Also, the study hall and computer lab will remain open and they are moving many books to Annex. For collections, like Stanford, there’s a shift to online content. They implemented MyiLibrary for purchase-on-demand which seems fairly seamless for users to view an ebook they are interested in.

Should libraries that are consolidating remove and/or also consolidate their web sites? At Cornell they haven’t removed the libraries from their web site it seems.

For journals that come with online equivalents, they will display for 6 months and then discard them. Make, Oil & Gas Journal are a few that Cornell has figured out how to “script” into these for their users online (some are one user at a time).

The good news is that cost-savings due to library consolidation will allow librarians (and users) to buy research materials needed as budgets shift and transitions take place. With the relocation of books there are many possibilities for creating new spaces for group study and collaboration areas.

It was recognized at the highest level that the librarians provide a lot of value and more instruction opportunities have out of this process.
ELD Poster Sessions:

Seeking and Finding the Aerospace Literature from 1996-2010: And, the Winner Is . . . Google - Larry Thompson
Thompson looked at STAR items (mostly tech reports and memoranda) and found google to be the most useful in sleuthing out the full text.
The Engineering Index: The Past and the Present - Nestor OsorioA timeline was presented, the history of this index.

AVS: Science and Technology Virtual Museum – Susan Burkett, Cameron Patterson, and Nicholas A. Kraft A student project involving development of a web site for a museum.

An Analysis of ASEE-ELD Conference Proceedings: 2000-2009 - David Hubbard
New Knovel Interface - Sasha Gurke

Panel on ASME Vision 2030 Task Force Future of Engineering Education

Robert Warrington, Michigan Tech. & ASME Center for Education
Future of mechanical engineering and building on Grand Challenges and Opportunities – 21st Century Needs. 3 Phases, they are in phase 1 now. Goal: Develop case for change

Survey and personal interviews with mechanical engineering department heads and industry professional at a management level to match between education and industry in the United States.

Jim Plummer at Stanford wants kids who have “wider world view.” We need to attract them to the engineering profession. Students are creative and inventive but not innovative, which takes leadership. – Dan Mote at U of Maryland

A few resources (& there are many more from NEA, etc to build upon)

• grand challenges.

• Sustainable future institute

• Engineering workforce has failed in certain areas

Case for Change

• Increase expertise & communication, leadership skills

• New knowledge blurring disciplinary boundaries

Survey/Interview Findings so Far

At entry-level identified areas of weakness. Work is needed in communication, practical experience (how devices are made/work) for instance. Product creation 34% in industry feel skills are weak in this area. They can compare industry and department head responses which seem to vary widely.

Post BMSE coursework, is it needed? The majority of industry and department heads feel this type of post bachelor of science education is needed. When looking at years of formal education, ASCE looked at years of formal education for various professional degrees. Is an another 30+ semester hours needed? Only 20% of mechanical engineers feel this is necessary. 45% of academic ME departments heads feel this additional coursework is needed.

Making Room in the Curriculum for Leadership, entrepreneurship, active & discovery based learning.

Seering study at MIT looked at 30 year old graduates and found half the material they learned used, half forgotten. High frequency use showed up for higher order thinking skills such as independent thinking, communication, teamwork, personal skills and attributes, professional skills and practice. Beyond the university, where are the 30 years learning what they need to know: grad school, on-the-job, and self-directed learning. MIT is developing a more flexible curriculum that has more professional skills embedded into their curriculum to produce leaders of the future.

Faculty availability (time) was high on this list of barriers to change. Options being formulated include the possibility of a 5 year professional degree beyond the BS. The task force is still working on developing recommendations but integration professional skills throughout the curriculum and grand challenges in the design spine seem obvious from the results thus far.

Outreach and Beyond: New Roles/Relationships for Librarians

Summer Engineering Experience for Girls (SEE): An Evolving Hands-On Role for the Engineering Librarian - Donna Beck, G. Berard, Bo Baker, and Nancy George

Lesley Farmer, a librarian, wrote Teen Girls and Technology: What’s the Problem and Where’s the Solution, a book highly recommended by Donna Beck. All parents, teachers, librarians have a role in changing the stereotypes that are created about engineers and scientists. Gender Inclusive Engineering Education is another recently published book that is recommended.

Beck shared her experiences and involvement with SEE (Summer Engineering Experience) a 2-week program provided for ~22 middle school girls at Carnegie Mellon University each year. A research component is provided by CMU librarians. Topics cover a broad range of energy research. Librarians used AccessScience and their energy quiz. Compared a library research databases to FBI fingerprint database and steps to library research, but their teaching with the young woman has evolved over the past few years. The following year they worked more on defining a lesson plan and hands-on activities. Third year librarians were included in planning activities for SEE and librarians were participating in 3 sessions and helped to mentor the students. They provided citation help (bibme/knightcite), creating their PowerPoint slides, and it was an enhanced experience for all.


• Purchase women and engineering books

• Express willingness to contribute to outreach programs

• Be compatible with program and its evolution

• Help inspire middle schools to consider engineering as a career choice

Academic Librarians' Roles in Attracting & Recruiting Students to Their University - Nevenka Zdravkovska, Jim Miller, and Bob Kackley

Jim Miller, from University of Maryland Libraries described how librarians work with K-12 students and the potential for librarian involvement in university recruitment efforts. Over the past year ~22 sessions were offered to area high school and home schooled students, so they have a lot of interaction with HS students. He found there is not much research on libraries playing role on recruitment. UM recruitment efforts include:

• Maryland day

• Special collections state-wide history day

• Performing Arts Library assists home schooled students and music lessons

• Academic Achievement (TRIO) involvement – UM Librarians assist provisionally accepted minorities

• Various summer activities with special groups

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Library partners with many of UM outreach programs such as ESTEEM, Project Lead the Way, among others. They instruct PLTW Inventor’s campers on patent searching. Student teams find hovercraft patents (good example for getting students to use classification searches). See ASEE First Bell for daily examples on how universities are doing K-12 outreach.

Creating an Outreach Event with e-Resource Providers - Pauline Melgoza

Science/Engineering Library held an event in fall 2009. They held an outreach fair in their engineering building lobby. Over 500 researchers and students attended.

Melgoza suggested we partner with database vendors to market the event, train and also provide financial support. Texas A&M requested items from vendors posters, training guides, giveaways for students and raffle prizes to draw people in and ask vendors to come and staff a table. Some vendors sponsored competition or drawing (Knovel Challenge & IEEE regional student paper contest are two examples). Some vendors will help fund food or provide financial support. Melgoza selected top use database vendors as well as some that have low use but should have higher use. This fall they are considering doing web-conferencing. With curtains around the IEEE section, Melgoza felt this created a mystique that enticed students to check the area out (they could also smell food).

Planning Tips

• contact vendors a couple months in advance

• talk with peers for ideas

• consider location, location, location (captive audience in engineering building but took more coordination)

• check university policies and keep administration in the loop (some university’s cannot do vendors fairs due to conflict of interest)

• If you get materials from vendor, but no vendor, train library assistants to staff tables

• prizes are a big draw for students, also food; incorporate survey with raffle entry

• if you cannot plan a larger event, one librarian mentioned success with inviting one vendor and setting up demo’s in different locations on campus

• Count attendees & take photos to share

• Tie in with faculty: one librarian mentioned that a faculty member asked students to attend with specific questions

2141 - Standards for Future Engineering Practitioners

Standards for New Educators: Guide to ABET Outcomes and Standards Availability in Libraries - Charlotte Erdmann

See ABET: 3b, 3c, 3e, 3f, 3i, 3h, 3k

• Libraries buy standards that best meet needs of their customers

• Prior surveys indicate libraries are providing codes and standards in print, online, or some buy-on-demand; smaller libraries cannot provide as much as larger libraries due to publisher pricing issues

• Useful overview of standards, see chapter of Scientific & Technical Information Sources (1981)

o Current book: Hunter (2009) Standards Conformity Assessment and Accreditation for Engineer (See paper for additional background sources)

• Professionals continuously revise old & develop new standards

• Teaching idea: use current projects happening at your university (boiler install, concrete pavers, etc.) to illustrate standards and their applications

• Standards education considerations:

o Identify course(s) – subject, outcomes

o Work with librarian to develop collection and research education sessions

o Case Study example: Hose connections to fire hydrants (Boston in 1870s hose couplings didn’t match up)

What Do Employers Want in Terms of Employee Knowledge of Technical Standards and the Process of Standardization? - Bruce Harding and Paul McPherson

Global impact of standards: why & how does your cell phone work? Important to prepare future workforce and keep up with changes.

McPherson and Harding surveyed engineering professionals at the manager level to determine their use of standards and perceptions of skills of entry-level engineers. Over 50% use very often or quite often (a few times a week). They feel it’s important for students to learn about standards but not all were interested in working with local educational institutions to set up a standards education curriculum. Other world regions have course including standards within the curriculum but McPherson found only 4 universities n U.S. offer these types of courses so McPherson feels that U.S is far behind in this area. However, this doesn’t show how many universities are integrating standards education within the curriculum.


• cost of databases

• fitting course into existing curriculum

• lack of industry support.

Ideas to overcome these challenges

• two term multidisciplinary introductory course

• long term design-type project where students develop products and applicability to the product

• Independent study projects

• Internships & post-internship – students working with industry to become more familiar

McPherson followed up with a survey of Purdue alumni Spring 2010. Findings include that 89% felt standards are extremely important for overall growth and success of their company. 84% feel students entering the workforce need to understand how to find and apply standards. June 2010 ASME survey found that 40% of mechanical engineering department heads feel that curriculum coverage in this area is week. 50% of ME practitioners feel entry-level skills in this area are weak, and more than 80% feel that short case studies could be a way to introduce exposure to codes and standards.

Leveraging the Internet and Limited On-Campus Resources to Teach Information Literacy Skills to Future Engineering Practitioners - Charlotte Erdmann and Bruce Harding

Need: to fill students’ standards knowledge gap
Treasure Hunt Case study: Harding teaches a required Production Design and Specifications course. This activity is integrated into the end of the course. One half of the questions initially came from Machinery’s Handbook but now students must seek out other standards sources and technical handbooks. Students get assigned random questions from a bank of over 1000 to complete or teams of 2 get around 20 questions. Teamwork became mandatory in the past year and librarians found students were working on the assignment earlier. A conference attendee questioned the activity, whether or not it’s just finding the standards and less about interpretation of the actual standard found and how they should apply it to their problem. Some questions do have component where they students need to apply a calculation to come up with the answer, so it does go beyond just “finding” them.

Since 1986 librarians have worked with Harding to provide students with baseline information and a bibliography of suggested sources, not there’s an online standards subject guide which Erdmann created.

Around 1999 librarians created question framework: what, why, who would create this information, etc. to assist students and later developed an expert system used by students to determine appropriate databases or sources (see past ASEE conference proceedings).

The standards treasure hunt has received positive ABET commentary. The Purdue librarians continue to focus on continuous improvement.

Monday, June 21, 2010

New Collaborations in Engineering Libraries

Journey to the Center of a CV (Curricula Vitae) 
Judy Hoesly and Anne Rauch

At University of Wisconsin Madison librarians developed an institutional bibliography within Bibapp which compliments their institutional repository.  The software has five majors connected parts: works, groups, people, publications, and publishers. This tool seems similar to VIVO, which was developed at Cornell, and allows development of individual researcher profiles. Also allows listed of faculty by department, which links to higher level, College of Engineering for instance. Could be useful for departments when creating annual reports. They started with engineering physics which has 27 faculty members. They mapped workflow and relied on student employees and library liaisons, they tapped into technical services staff for quality control. The students searched Google Scholar and engineering databases to find items on each CV. Google scholar didn’t offer great citations, but the links into the native publishers obviously offered. Goal: to find 80% but only found around 70%. They used citation managers.

The librarians developed the departmental structure and established authorities. They are hoping that liaisons will set up citation alerts and update the database going forward, as well they can grant access to researchers or their assistants for updates.

Benefits: librarians aware of current research and publishing trends within the departments they support. They can extract and repackage reuse data. Next up: Health Sciences Library has been collecting information to add to this tool. The initial goal was to allow library staff to feed current publications into their IR, they founda bout 30% were unfindable so the IR can allow them to make the research papers, PowerPoints, publications findabilty.

BLOGGERS NOTE: is a web-based tool developed by Thomson Reuters which allows researchers to develop their own researcher profile.  ResearcherID ties in with ISI, EndNoteWeb and cited references, if institutions subscribe to ISI Web of Science, may provide an alternate to local development of similar software or adopting an open source version. Community of Scholars is another subscription-based database that provides researcher profiles. See also Cornell’s VIVO at I also think that Faculty 1000 in Biology and other tools are allowing more researchers to develop and share personal profiles with publications. All told, there’s a perceived benefit in having more compete  picture of our faculty research within our institutional repositories.

Engineering Librarian Participation in Technology Curricular Design
Megan Sapp Nelson and Michael Fosmire
At a meeting with the ECET department chair in Fall 2009 Purdue librarians learned students had a gap in their learning. Specifically, the chair felt they were lacking creativity skills. This turned into a conceptual design for a “total curriculum overhaul.” Nelson joined a small curriculum committee where ongoing discussions of information literacy and its relation to creativity and lifelong learning ensued. At first faculty were unsure why Megan was there but her broad perspective on the Purdue curriculum and information literacy allowed her to infiltrate. The goal was to look at existing role of classes and broader outcomes and infuse “creatively” throughout.

Nelson helped the faculty understand what “lifelong learning” means and espoused the virtues of IL and how they relate to creativity. She pointed them to Shuman et al’s definition and ACRL’s the developed a comparison chart of ACRL IL for Science and Engineering/Technology performance standards and ABET. For those related to creativity see ACRL: 3.3 & 3.7, 4.4. The ACRL standards provided concrete, measureable outcomes which faculty could use as examples when redesigning their curricula.

An ECET faculty (aka “IL convert “) presented these ideas to the department and helped to develop IL outcomes throughout the curriculum. Concepts of IL and creativity are often too abstract for faculty and can be challenging to teach. The team discussed lab notebook expectations, prescribed citation formats, and also use of citation organization in senior design. In the proposed redesigned curriculum, IL is spiraled throughout however it’s been put on hold due to department head staffing changes. Stay tuned, we hope for future updates from Megan Sapp Nelson. During Q&A she mentioned that student portfolios may be one method of accessing student’s development over time of creativity skills.

Lesson: librarians need to be part of curriculum redesign teams. Also, need to review those standards and this new “creativity” spin to figure out how we can use this at our own institutions.

Librarian Learns with the Students: LibGuides, Video Tutorials for Instruction
Mary Strife at West Virginia University Library
Strife discussed how WVU Chemical Engineering students helped design and shape the delivery of research instruction. She initially used libguides and video tutorials for senior seminar. You can view her videos at During Q&A librarians suggest linking this tutorial in many ways: other libguides, a specific guide on “using the library catalog,” perhaps chunking up more, posting on YouTube. They are worth the investment and we have an information literacy wiki for ELD where we can share these tutorials. Larry mentioned at Vtech they have a 1 credit online course and these tutorials are all online, which other libraries may link to. He argues that we can just do them extemporaneously and then send them along to the professionals for editing and smoothing out. Another librarian suggested more modularization is better, since interfaces change so much and the tutorials need continual updates. At ASU they use ScreenR but you can upload to Twitter and YouTube with a simple click.

ELD Get Acquainted Session: Library Lightning Rounds

Jill Powell from Cornell – myiLibrary patron driven ebook purchasing.
Advantage: save money, price ceiling, selection criteria which disallows purchasing of popular books. They tap certain publishers.

Libguides Page for Senior Capstone Design Classes, Tom Volkening at Michigan State Libraries gets wide use by the students. May be using this with students/classes who don’t have library research sessions.

Ginny Baldwin talked about their extensive material deselection at her engineering library. Obtained load estimate in order to squeeze books in one area. They created a process by which they evaluated books and criteria for retention (see her handout) but they include: usage, historical use, local interest, value as  work, and classics. Consulted Books for College Libraries, and also brought in faculty to review decisions. For serials: duplicates with other libraries, online access vs. print.

Tutorials made easy with screencasting – Sheila Young from Arizona State shared insights on the library staff work to create online videos for students using Screenr. Demos, online courses, to support specific homework  assignment. They are also used for on-the-fly reference. See ASU libraries web site. It’s tied in with twitter.  See their article in online.

Kevin Drees from Oklahoma State teaches students about standards and specifications. Big picture: standards are as important as design is to the curriculum. See James Olshefsky article from 2010 ASEE on Standards Education Bridging the Gap Between Classroom Learning and Real World Applications.
A few useful links:
·         ASTM – standards on campus, etc. check with Kevin for more.
Librarians’ role? Facilitate access to what we have in our own collections.

Jill Dixon from Binghamton University Libraries ponders the one search box ,which really isn’t always a one search and offers too many options for students. She looked at various web sites of libraries and fould 60% offer discovery tools. Four libraries using only discovery tool, all the others use multiple search boxes. What’s best for libraries? You decide.

Nancy Linden from University of Houston PowerPoint is your friend. She starts with evocative images to get students to discuss. She used PPT for small quiz type questions that are engaging, like a contest. She also has giveaways (1 GB drive) which gets students excited and into the activities. She uses a visual for high risk/low risk sources and the quadrants related. She also uses real life scenarios about being an engineering, which can illustrate why they do lit reviews. She tells students they shouldn’t reinvent the wheel.

Maliaca Oxnam updated us all on TRAIL the tech report archive. Over 772,000 hits over the past year. 993 reports were downloaded 89,600 times. This material is still heavily used by researchers. Coming soon and winning an ALA Govdocs award this coming week! Congrats

Linette Koren Rochester Institute of Technology discussed their use of scvngr for their library. They purchased a license & a couple iTouch which students  can checkout. It’s an app from itunes which users can download onto their phone and they have set up challenges for touring through the library. BTW- There is an active hunt for ASEE in Louisville.  

MIT reorganization: Angie Locknar shared the new org chart for the MIT Libraries which is a new function based structure vs. by library. Research & instructional services (includes user experiences librarians, specialized content including GIS, etc.), information resources, information tech strategy, Administrative Services each with little bubbles which you can read all about later. See Angie for more details.

See Spot Run! Grand Valley State University, Debbie Morrow and the staff at the library in Grand Rapids, MI are celebrating a 10 year birthday party for their automated storage retrieval system (ASRS) named Spot. How cute. It’s been successful despite lack of browsability.  So successful, they are putting another one in their new library. Cool. Libraries. Robotics.

Najwa Hanel discussed another 10 year anniversary for their student written, peer reviewed magazine and her work mentoring and advising them.

I also talked briefly about our use of Twitter for outreach (see PDF of PPT): try it  & oddly, people will follow. Get students to help generate content (we have a Student  Social Media Content Developer). See

Well, Can We Accelerate the Rate of Change in Engineering Education?

Karan Watson, Interim Provost & Executive VP of Texas A&M University
She has a plum ’56 Chevy Truck, which she thinks is beautiful but she tells us “I don’t expect it to take me where it can’t take me any longer.” We cannot accelerate change unless we reframe what we are doing. We can deal with how students need to deal with challenges versus topics. She references Nalib Tassem’s  book Black Swan. Black Swan events are outliers and unpredictable. Our representation of reality ceases to apply but we don’t know it. Watson feels our process in engineering education is not rapid enough. Faculty behavior change is needed for educational reform. Throughout history science has progressed in non-rational ways but these ideas never get funded and rarely get praised. Don Tapscott in his article on the Impending Demise of the University suggests that the lecture at the podium will not work for these students. Tapscott doesn’t agree that Google is dumbing down this generation but argues that they can handle information overload better than we can. They are active and demanding as inquirers. They find out what they need to know on their own with Google and Wikipedia. 

Engineers are pushing society with technology at an ever accelerating rate. “We are failing society if we are not leading the way with the educational transformations that need to take place.” Engineering educators need to move from “tinkering phase” or “trial and error” with education innovations to wider adoption of these new ideas surfacing in the engineering education literature.

Use your resources:

Managing strategic change literature suggests we need to avoid quick fixes. Also individuals must disengage from the past to move forward. “A tempered radical” wants to stay in the boat but rock it  (and not go so far as to blow it up). Malcolm Gladwell in Tipping Point tells us that change is like a virus. It is contagious, takes energy, enthusiasm and personality.  There has to be stickiness in change (bloggers note: see also new book Made to Stick). Nothing sticky about working harder than you ever, but you have to see a small incremental benefit, so there needs to be an appropriate reward system.

She refers to Edward Schein, author of Organizational Culture and Leadership. You can tell culture of organization by artifacts and espoused values. Underlying assumptions disconnected with values.
Unfortunately there is deeply embedded resistance in some cultures. Find the “bell cows” in your cultures who should be followed.  The way to make the changes we need is to continue experiments with students and provide research data, pay attention to it, but real change will be in the efforts we put into the change of faculty. Change your own behavior.  

Watson believes that ABET will not hinder change if you get them on board with your initiatives.
·         Disciplines frame discourse in different ways but we can learn a great deal from sociologists, and others.
·        Academic reward structure limits change (education reform). There has to be incentives and people have to believe there’s a safe place to land if they go through this behavior change.
Bringing discussion of change into classroom: some of our best students are resistant to change because they can work alone well and take tests well. Students change fast, help students learn about learning. We have to find ways to weave into our courses about learning and change, as well we need to teach our students ethics so when they face situations in the future they know how to react.
·        You don’t have to be bad to get better – “whether change or improvement, starting out by insulting everyone who needs to change is not a very good strategy”
·        Advice for new untenured faculty: refers to Art of War. Think about the terrain you are in, if you are in a dying terrain then fight quickly. If your enthusiasm doesn’t match your institution you may be better off somewhere else.

·        Changing funding paradigms: slowly, Watson believes in shared governments, you can lead but not in a way that no one will follow, ask the right questions. Dynamic discussion with faculty about how we can evaluate their teaching is the first step. Set aside $2M in base funding for high-impact experiences such as service or international learning, could be research-based. These should result in deep learning for the students.
·        Engineers as educators: there’s a difference between being researcher of education and a great teacher. Positive deviance is the idea that some people get great results from some resources while others don’t.
All engineering educators need not become researchers of education.
·        Engineering world = have your data or dead on arrival. We have to tell good stories, people don’t change because of data but good stories.

And yes, in case you were wondering and are still reading, Watson does own a second vehicle. Is it a learjet?

ASEE 2010 Louisville Underway

Essential Links: