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Developing an Online Presence. Liaison/Subject Librarians’ Workshop 2009. Why develop our online presence? . Increase student access to library resources Increase the profile of librarians Strengthen connections b/w librarians and teaching staff Contribute to student success.

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Developing an Online Presence

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Developing an online presence

Developing an Online Presence

Liaison/Subject Librarians’ Workshop 2009

Why develop our online presence

Why develop our online presence?

Increase student access to library resources

Increase the profile of librarians

Strengthen connections b/w librarians and teaching staff

Contribute to student success

Students as researchers

Students as researchers

Students are comfortable in online environment

Feel proficient in exploring confidently across a range of resources

Finding scholarly, authoritative information is still a challenge

Have favourite, but limited sources of information

Implications or the rise and fall and rise of the library website

Implications – or the rise…and fall and rise of the library website

Librarians see the library website as pivotal

But the Library website is often not used as a starting point for research

Tide is changing as libraries improve their websites, and some research is now indicating that students and staff place great value on the library website

3 ways to increase our online profile

3 ways to Increase our online Profile

  • Improve our websites

  • Become embedded librarians

  • Take Subject Guides to a higher plane

Improve our websites

Improve our Websites

Usability principles


Connect users to content - and to do it with minimum barriers and maximum speed and ease

Web 2.0 applications – some examples:

The embedded librarian

  • is where the students are

  • becomes an integral part of the class

  • experiences the needs of students and observes expectations of faculty (Dewey as cited in Bozeman, 2008, p. 57).

  • is in the right place to guide students to the best resources

The Embedded Librarian

How to become embedded

  • Become a ‘participant’ in online classes that use courseware such as Moodle

  • Establish a hyper link to the library website from the course page

  • Set up a Library discussion forum on the course page

  • Access class emails and respond promptly to library and information related requests

  • Provide a link to existing Information Literacy modules

  • Provide full contact details

How to become ‘embedded’

How to get embedded contd

How to get embedded contd?

  • Use courseware tools, such as Web templates to create a new subject guide or link an existing guide to the appropriate course.

Success factors

  • Think strategically!

    • Link to library and/or institutional plans

  • Ensure sufficient ongoing resources

  • Buy in from the top

  • Library rep on courseware committee

  • Familiarity with course management software

  • Accept responsibility

  • Sell it to faculty –it will make their lives easier and save them time

Success Factors

Subject guides

Subject Guides

  • Aka Research guides, research tools, pathfinders, e-guides, resource lists…etc.

  • Provide a starting point for researcher

  • But do we really need them?

  • Time consuming to create and maintain

  • Duplication across the Internet

Subject guides1

Subject Guides

  • Potentially offer a unique tool to students

  • Bring content closer

  • The creator becomes more familiar with subject area

Subject guides2

Subject Guides

  • Wikis – collaborative, easy to use, need to get people to participate, high levels of maintenance


Successful subject guides

Successful Subject Guides

  • Student prefer customised course and assessment guides over broad subject guides

  • Link from course pages or integrate into course

Fraction of a whole

Fraction of a Whole

  • Still reaching only a limited number of students

  • Level and style of engagement with online environment differs

  • Need a variety of other methods to provide access to information and help with research skills.

Planning planning planning

Planning, planning, planning

Web 2.0 tools—such as Meebo chat widgets,, subject guides, and Facebook pages—are tools like any other, requiring planning and dedicated staff time as much as anything else in a library's service arsenal.

Reference list

Reference List

  • Bell, S. (2009 , February 17). The library web site of the future. Inside Higher Ed, Retrieved 8 April 2009, from

  • Bozeman, D. (2008). Providing services to online students: Embedded librarians and access to resources. Mississippi Libraries 72 (3), 57-9.

  • Corrado, E. M. & Frededrick, K. A. (2008). Free and open source options for creating database-driven subject guides. The Code4Lib Journal (2), Retrieved 8 April 2009, from

  • Kroski, E. (2007). A Librarian’s Guide to Creating 2.0 Subject Guides. Retrieved 14 April 2009, from

  • Shank, J. & Bell, S. (2009). A-FLIP to Courseware: A strategic alliance for improving student learning outcomes. nnovate2 (4). Retrieved 8 May 2009, from

  • Tchangalova, N., & Feigley, A. (2008). Subject guides: Putting a new spin on an old concept. Electronic Journal of Academic and Special Librarianship9 (3).

  • Retrieved 8 April 2009, from

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