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Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL)

SCIL Works 2020

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SCIL Works 2020

Disaster Planning: Bouncing Back From Instructional Fails

Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL) will be hosting SCIL Works on Friday, January 17, 2020. This annual mini-conference offers librarians the opportunity to share their best practices, innovative pedagogy, and creative solutions with colleagues. SCIL Works 2020 will focus on the many ways in which instruction librarians have adapted and bounced back from lesson plans that didn't quite work as expected.

Friday, January 17, 2020
9:00 am - 1:00 pm
California State University, Long Beach
CSU Long Beach Library - Room 305
1250 Bellflower Boulevard
Long Beach, California 90840
Directions to CSULB

CARL Members $30 | Non-Members $45 | Students $15

Non-members, did you know that it's only $40 to join CARL? SCIL and other CARL interest groups provide great programming and opportunities to work with your fellow librarians.

Parking and Food
Parking on campus is $10 at the parking pay stations. The library is in the south west portion of the campus map. Visitors may park in lots designated as general parking and other structures according to the visitor parking webpage. All parking permits from other CSU campuses will be honored.

Breakfast is provided, lunch is on your own, but the planning committee will provide some local recommendations so you can continue networking.

CARL is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities at all CARL- sponsored events. Please indicate your special needs or dietary requirements when registering or RSVPing to events. Requests for special accommodations must be received at least two weeks prior to the event.


    9:00 - 9:35: Registration, Networking, Breakfast
    9:35 - 9:45: Welcome
    9:45 - 10:15: Research and Practice I
    10:15 - 10:45: Research and Practice II
    10:45 - 11:05: Break
    11:05 - 11:30: Lightning Rounds
    11:30 - 12:00: Research and Practice III
    12:00 - 12:30: Closing remarks and evaluations

SCIL would like to acknowledge California State University, Long Beach for hosting this program.


Research and Practice
(20 minutes followed by 5 minute Q&A)

Faith Bradham & Laura Luiz
(Bakersfield College)
Please, I can assure you that The Onion is not a trustworthy source: What to do when active learning backfires

Join us for a discussion on active learning and the unpredictability of student behavior in one-shot sessions and research skills workshops, especially those without the instructor of record present. When the class is made up of students who have never met each other before, or whose professor isn't present, the atmosphere in the room can be a little different from other instruction sessions. With these types of sessions, you never know what kind of participation you're going to get or how discussing sensitive issues in the classroom will go, particularly when it comes to incorporating active learning strategies.

In this presentation, learn from 2 community college librarians' failures with active learning strategies in the classroom. We will discuss difficult scenarios we've encountered during lessons with active learning components, and will share the techniques we've developed to address these issues. Learn strategies to recover from argumentative and/or de-railing students, lack of participation, self-guided activity failures, and more.

Carolyn Caffrey Gardner
(CSU Dominguez Hills)
Remix the worksheet: Creative ideas for analog instruction

Campus wifi on the fritz? Students don't have computers? What's an instruction librarian to do? Rather than replicate a drab computer-less information literacy session with a boring keyword worksheet this session shares some tried and true analog activities that won't feel like you're missing out on hands-on searching. The presenter will share three types of analog activities (whiteboard walks, conceptual mapping, and source analysis activities) and their applications. These activities aren't elaborate craft projects and allow for deep student engagement with a variety of learning outcomes in mind. Even if you have a working-order computer classroom these activities can be used to mix up your sessions with some tactile activities. Session participants will receive some brief hands-on experience with the activities presented.

Kelli Hines & Ruth Harris
(Western University of Health Sciences)
Blackout: Surviving an instructional apocalypse

Most librarians have had issues with technology: databases changing the day before scheduled instruction, the wifi not working, the PowerPoint not loading... but what happens when it all happens at once? How? A campus-wide blackout! Learn from our successes and failures when we lost power at the beginning of a day-long workshop to pharmacy students.

Librarians teach Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) on the first day of the Foundations of Pharmacy Practice and Self Care Therapeutics II in the Spring semester. EBM includes identifying questions, searching for answers, and appraising articles. During this workshop, librarians guide students through the process in a 6-hour workshop using examples and hands-on practice. During this all-day lecture on the first day of this course, the power went off across campus. Students were told to wait outside until the power was restored. After an hour without power, students began leaving, despite faculty insistence that they stay on campus. Because many students left, the class was canceled, and librarians had to scramble to deliver an entire 6-hour lecture's worth of content asynchronously within two weeks. How does one prioritize a day's worth of content into 20 minutes of screencasts? Join us to find out!

Lightning Rounds
(5 minutes each)

Lucy Bellamy
We don't have that...

As a librarian at a small visual arts college, our collection is geared towards supporting coursework in specific industries (e.g., animation, visual effects, games). For students taking general studies courses, faculty often do not require textbooks. However, they recommend titles for students to reference for assignments. For students on a tight budget, purchasing additional books to complete course assignments can be especially difficult. As a longtime patron of the public library, I wanted to investigate whether a similar connection to the public library was possible for our students. I found the solution when the "Library Extension" tool was launched.

The Library Extension (LE) tool helps users to "instantly see book and e-book availability" from their local public library. LE works when Amazon or Barnes and Noble is used to shop for books. LE search results display the availability of searched for titles at the user's designated libraries. For small, specialized libraries like Gnomon, the "Library Extension" tool has not only helped to create a bridge between our students and the public library, it offered a new, better answer than "we don't have that."

Michelle DeMars
(CSU Long Beach)
Serious fail: How a fail led to a Title IX Talk

This lightning talk describes how my attempt to create an active learning activity for a classroom of 150 students led to a situation that not only failed but also got a bit out of hand. Additionally, I will discuss the presentation by the faculty that followed which included some behavioral guidelines and a discussion about Title IX. I will show attendees the results from the activity and some of the responses from attendees that resulted from the Title IX discussion.

Kelli Hines & Ruth Harris
(Western University of Health Sciences)
Grading déjà vu

Grading assignments is always stressful, and it takes up a lot of instructor time. What happens when you must do it twice because of your own error? Learn how we overcame the struggles of grading "the same" assignments twice.

At Western University of Health Sciences, grades are typically due within two weeks for all assignments. Librarians teach Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) on the first day of the Foundations of Pharmacy Practice and Self Care Therapeutics II in the Spring semester. EBM includes identifying questions, searching for answers, and appraising articles. Students are given an assignment where they generate a PICO question, conduct a search for articles to answer the question, and summarize the results. The assignment takes time to grade, as some of it is subjective, despite the criteria on the rubric. However, librarians successfully graded all assignments within two days. Unfortunately, the assignments graded were those of the previous years' students! Even worse, this was not realized until final grades had been sent to the students! Once the instructor notified the librarians of the issue, there was an immediate scramble to grade the correct assignments within days of the final. Were we successful?

Tessa Withorn
(CSU Dominguez Hills)
Spelling errors, broken links & frantic chats: Fixing library tutorials through feedback

If a student has to take a tutorial for an assignment and encounters an issue, they'll likely ask the library for help, but we don't know always know how library tutorials fail if we don't ask for more feedback. At CSUDH, we offer a suite of interactive tutorials using SpringShare's LibWizard platform to introduce searching in various databases and course-integrated tutorials for signature classes in a major. We've received positive feedback on these tutorials from students and instructors, but they aren't always perfect in their first iteration. In Fall 2019, we piloted a tutorial in a general education class that was taken by 346 students and prompted us to rethink how we design and revise tutorials on a larger scale. We used student feedback on the tutorial itself and reference interactions about the tutorial through our Research Help Desk to make changes to tutorial questions and our design process for future semesters. I'll share common technical and user errors to watch out for with this platform and strategies we've found helpful for closing the feedback loop to improve our tutorials by communicating with students, instructors, SpringShare developers, and other librarians.

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