I received a pretty good response to my e-mail to the Social Science Department Chairs. Unfortunately, I communicated too late in the semester and was only able to sit in on one dept. meeting – Anthropology – but others responded nontheless.

In the ANTH meeting, professors seemed interested in the idea of teaching students to find required article readings (rather than spoonfeeding them) which would help professors avoid having to manage extranneous files in MyCourses. The new Department Chair, RoseMarie Chierici, later e-mailed me with hopes of getting her fall courses set up before she left for the summer, but unfortunately timing between her schedule and my trip to LOEX and later vacation to Florida didn’t work out. We will get together when she returns from her fieldwork. Barb Welker and Paul Pacheco, other professors at the meeting, also seemed interested and I know that Barb and I will be working together in the fall. I have worked extensively with Kristi Krumrine, and will be working even more closely with her during the summer camp, and I know she’ll be on board with this new method of getting required readings into the hands of her students. The demonstration of SCOPUS also peeked professors’ interest even if their own personal research focuses may not be met (i.e., lots more journal articles than books in SCOPUS). Barb left the meeting wanting to jump into SCOPUS and see what was available on her research topics. Furthermore, Ellen and I discussed an activity that would help familiarize her students this semester ( Spring 2008 ) with SCOPUS. The worksheet to be completed by students and looked over and signed by a librarian ended up counting 50% of ANTH 282 students’ final exam grade. Since I was away on vacation when students ultimately finished the worksheet and had it verified by a Reference Librarian, I’m not sure how the process went over.

For those departments who had already met for the last time of the semester before my e-mail, I heard back from Sociology, Foreign Languages, and Psychology. Each Dept. Chair said that they would pass on my e-mail to their faculty and hopefully as the fall semester gets closer, I can talk to interested professors one-on-one. I didn’t hear from Geography or Political Science, but will follow-up with them, as a whole or on an individual basis, as the fall semester approaches.

Okay, my e-mail to department chairs in the social sciences is out.  I am hoping to sit in on the last of their dept meetings before the semester is over to introduce Scopus and suggest teaching students (beginning in the fall) how to find course readings through the Library’s full-text databases rather than struggle with the copyright issues involved in e-reserves.  Now that E-Res is migrating to MyCourses, professors will be on their own for locating, printing/scanning and uploading articles and e-books to their course pages.  Why not teach students a lifelong skill (being able to find specific resources on their own through the Library’s databases and/or the free web) rather than just handing them the required texts?  We are in a digital age and our actions in the educational process should support this.  Once students access their first and second required readings, the further practice throughout the semester can only enhance and cement the necessary skills.  We may be seeing less questions at the Reference Desk concerning the location of particular resources available in our full-text databases.