Not Studying for an Exam is a Crime…

| By Traci Cothran |

Two University of Kentucky students were arrested last week and charged with third-degree burglary for allegedly breaking into a professor’s office in the dead of night to steal an exam. The pair told police they entered the office via ceiling air ducts, and their teacher caught them upon returning to the office from a food break around 2 am.

While this does conjure up some cool images from Mission: Impossible, let’s not forget that these students now not only face a failing test grade, but college disciplinary action as well as legal proceedings . . . not to mention having to explain their actions to their parents.  And I have to wonder, dear reader, wouldn’t it have been just as easy (and less perilous) to study for the final?

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Pellissippi State Community College Librarian Shares Why Gale Resources are Successful

|  By Jennifer Mezick, Acquisitions and Collection Development Librarian Pellissippi State Community College |

At Pellissippi State Community College (PSCC), our users have access to many Gale resources through the Tennessee Electronic Library (TEL). Through our TEL setup we are able to track only statistics for PSCC users. From our statistics, we know that Gale resources are heavily used by PSCC patrons and there are a few reasons behind this success:

In Class Instruction
Our students primarily use the resources shown to them during class. PSCC librarians provided research instruction to 137 classes this past fall semester. PSCC librarians and teaching faculty find that students who receive in-class research instruction achieve higher grades on their research assignments. One of the lessons we present to students is the importance of finding background information before searching for journal articles. Opposing Viewpoints In Context is our go-to database for demonstrating background research. All the “In Context” databases contain Topic Pages for select topics, which provide histories and explain the different viewpoints of those topics or issues.

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Faculty Outreach
Because not all of our faculty can find the time in a 5 to 16 week semester to have us in their classes, educating our faculty about our resources is the next best way to reach our students. Our faculty learn about Gale databases at our New Faculty Academy, where we introduce library resources, and at Faculty In-Service, where we demonstrate new databases or changes and new features to current databases. Librarians at PSCC are faculty and serve as subject liaisons. With this designation comes the responsibility to serve on campus academic committees and attend academic department meetings (and sometimes share after-work beers). Relationships with faculty are formed through these committees. I find that these relationships make faculty more comfortable talking with librarians about research assignments and available resources, which provides us the opportunity to recommend the most appropriate resources for their upcoming assignments (or their own research).

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Library Media Specialist Points Fellow Librarians to Opposing Viewpoints In Context

Originally posted on School Library Journal, February 15, 2017 Fake news is everywhere, and many Americans in this digital age struggle to sort fact from fiction. As the concern for fake news and what to to with it grows, students and researchers are turning to the library for reliable, authoritative tools to aid proper research. … Read more…

Using Gale for College and High School Instruction

By Lori Warren Another plus for using Gale databases for library and research instruction is the integration of Google and Microsoft Tools. The STEM school on our campus uses the Google tools and our college students and faculty use the Microsoft tools.  As our high school students move into college classes, they transition naturally to … Read more…

Alternative Facts, Fake News, and Digital Literacy

By Traci Cothran

There was a time when we didn’t need to define what a fact was – or rather, we all understood that it meant the same thing. It was a fact – it was the truth; the rest was fiction or opinion. There were clear, credible sources, and there were those that weren’t. Now students, teachers, and librarians (as well as the rest of the American populous) must grapple with distinguishing fact, fake news, and “alternative facts” on a near-constant basis. While the Internet gives us a plethora of easy-to-access information, it’s up to us to discern what is factual and what is not.

To do that, we need to start asking hard questions of everything we read and hear – such as:

  • Where did that Facebook “news” post originate?
  • Is this news or a “newsvertisement?”
  • Are these statistics or this sound bite taken out of context to distort their meaning?
  • Who penned this article? Do they have a specific agenda that influences their writing?
  • Who created this website and how are they getting paid for their content?
  • When you reverse-search the image used in the article, do you find different source content?

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The Biking Librarian Promotes Resources Throughout the Community

By Sally Robertson, Librarian, Nashville State Community College

I am a bike commuting librarian at Nashville State Community College in Nashville, TN.  My passion job is what I do. I love helping people find the information they need. I am a member of the Tennessee Library Association and a part of the Sustain Round Table of ALA. A bike is sustainable transportation and also a great way to tell Tennessee citizens about TEL. I commute to my job by train and bike. Sometimes when I ride through neighborhoods I will stop and chat with people, always telling them about all the great free resources Tennesseans have access to in TEL, and handing out TEL and database bookmarks!

Some of the reasons I like to promote the Tennessee Electronic Library (TEL) resources so much are that they are:

  • Free to everyone on the state.
  • They are very easy to use.
  • There is a database for all ages and abilities.

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Librarian on a Mission Increases Access and Awareness of Library Digital Resources

Mark Gottschalk is a librarian on a  mission. His mission is to increase the value that the library provides to the South Plains College campus, located in Levelland, Texas. “My personal mission is to find ways to make the library a more used and integrated part of the college community,” Gottschalk said. By increasing usage … Read more…

Why We Choose Gale

By Jenny Wirtz, Teacher Librarian, Ankeny High School

In Iowa, we are fortunate to have the support of Area Education Agencies (AEA) that assist the local K-12 school districts. One of the services that our AEA provides to us is access to many high-quality resources at no cost to our district, including several Gale products. However, I still choose to spend a portion of my shrinking budget on three specific Gale Databases because I believe they offer the best experiences for our high school students. What puts Gale above the competition? I believe it is their quality content, appealing layout and design, and above all the seamless integration between the Gale products and other tools we use such as Google Drive, Google Classroom, and EasyBib.

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Enhance Research with Opposing Viewpoints In Context

By Holly Hibner If there’s one source I love during a presidential election year, it is the Opposing Viewpoints In Context database! This is a librarian’s dream because our patrons are looking for information on all kinds of controversial topics, and matching their own stance to that of the candidates. Opposing Viewpoints presents all sides … Read more…

Celebrate the Freedom to Read

By Traci Cothran

Reading is central to everything we do here at Gale—and whatbbw you do at your library every day—so it’s a good bet the majority of us use Banned Books Week to rally around the works that cause a little controversy.  This year’s Banned Books Week focuses on celebrating Diversity, and runs September 25 – October 1.

I’m an avid reader of middle grade and young adult fiction, so it drives me a little batty when parents ban amazing novels that speak to youth. Some authors are even dis-invited from appearing at schools to talk about their books and the issues affecting kids today.  For instance, the graphic novel Drama, by Raina Telgemeier, has caused grumblings for two gay characters kissing, but I’ve yet to meet a middle school girl who doesn’t love this series.  Author Meg Medina faced scrutiny with her novel about high school bullying, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass, because the title has a swear word in it—and you know such language is never spoken in school hallways!  Kate Messner was dis-invited from a school speaking engagement while on tour for her book, The Seventh Wish, because the main character’s sister struggles with a heroin addiction, affecting the whole family.  But there’s no reason to talk about the real-life heroin epidemic affecting kids in high schools and middle schools across the U.S., is there?

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