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Buon Giorno!. Gary Handman Director, Media Resources Center The Teaching Library Moffitt Library UC Berkeley ghandman@library.berkeley.edu http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/MRC. ..talking to you today about: ...comunicando con voi oggi circa :. The Teaching Library -- UC Berkeley

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Buon giorno

Gary Handman


Media Resources Center

The Teaching Library

Moffitt Library

UC Berkeley



Buon giorno

..talking to you today about:

...comunicando con voi oggi circa :

  • The Teaching Library -- UC Berkeley

    • What is it? (Che cosa è esso?)

    • How did it develop? (Come si è sviluppato?)

    • What goes on in it? (Che cosa continua in esso?)

    • Has it succeeded? (È riuscito?)

  • Information Literacy & Media Literacy

    • What are they? (che cosa sono questi )

    • What challenges do they present for librarians and educators? (Che sfide presentano per i bibliotecari e gli educatori? )

Buon giorno

Twenty-nine Years Ago

on a University Campus

in Northern California...


Buon giorno


  • James K. Moffitt Undergraduate Library opens at UCB Berkeley

    • The primary collection and facility serving undergrads: A center for undergrad intellectual life

  • Moffitt collections -- a core collection comprising:

    • 150-160K book volumes

    • 300 serials titles

  • Main (Doe Library) 1 million book volumes and 100K serials in closed stacks

  • Total 24 branch library volumes = 5 million

  • Primary bibliographic access to all libraries: card catalogs and printed indexes

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  • Number of machine-readable databases available to library end-users = 0 (limited, fee-based mediated searching in sciences)

  • Hi tech = Hollerith cards, primitive mainframes for academic computing; Telex (punched tape programming)

  • Number of personal computers owned by students: probably none.

  • Media-equipped classrooms = 10/250

  • Media collections on campus = 0

  • Primary mode of student communication: telephones, coffee houses

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  • Student ownership of pcs = 80% within 1st year of entry

  • Faculty ownership of pcs = 98%

  • Wired classrooms = 248/250

  • Number of course web accounts = 350+

  • Primary mode of student communication: email, coffee houses

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  • Total volumes, all libraries = 8.5 million

  • Primary bibliographic access to library collections = online catalogs (systemwide & local)

  • Number of online databases available to library end-users = scores:

  • Networked and stand-alone CD-ROMS

  • Full-text journals; indexes/abstracts online

  • Other free and licensed web resources: encyclopedias, handbooks, directories

  • UC Digital Library resources (California Digital Library)

  • …The rest of the Great Unwashed Web

The birth of the teaching library


The Birth of The Teaching Library

  • A new program focus dedicated to: teaching information literacy and developing new information access tool

  • A combination of expediency, vision, and fortuitousness

  • An evolutionary move in response to:

    • A decade of fiscal hard times; decreasing staff and materials resources

    • National trends in academic libraries (including UGL deconstruction)

    • New Main Library construction; the opening of the stacks to UG users

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...And perhaps more significantly,

a response to:

  • Exploding complexity and scope of the information universe

  • The rise of the digital/networked library resources & The Net in General

  • Changes in student culture and life

  • Changes in the culture of the classroom

  • Changes in the workplace outside of the university

  • The continuing need for undergraduate services

Mission statement
Mission Statement

“The mission of the Teaching Library is to enable users of the UC Berkeley Library -- from freshman through full professor -- to efficiently and effectively access and evaluate information/knowledge wherever it resides.”

Teaching library organization culture
Teaching Library Organization & Culture

  • TL staff drawn from former ULG, and staff recruited from disparate library units outside of Moffitt

  • A mix of librarians & talented career staff recruited from within the library

    • self-identified as interested in instruction and public service

  • Competencies sought:

    • Motivated to innovate and lead

    • Curious about new technologies

    • Dedicated to facilitating research & learning

    • Willingness to take risks and to learn from experimentation.

    • High tolerance for ambiguity

Teaching library organization culture1
Teaching Library Organization & Culture

  • Head of TL teamEllen Meltzer (former head of UGL)

  • Program Coordinators(3 FTE librarians, 5FTE career staff)

  • Graphic Staff(2 career staff)

  • User Research Coordinator (surveys/focus groups) (.50 FTE librarian)

  • Media Resources Center(1 FTE librarian; 1 FTE career staff; 10-12 student assistants)

  • California Heritage Project (K-12 outreach) (1 FTE coordinator)

Buon giorno


What goes on in this place, anyway?...

Information media literacy r us
Information/Media Literacy R Us

  • Differs from (but may include) teaching tech competency

  • Ideally comprises a number of components:

    • Resource literacy -- understanding the form/format, location and access methods of information resources. Classification and organization of information.

    • Research literacy-- understanding research methodology, including the use of IT tools relevant to the work of today’s scholar. Discipline-specialized resources.

    • Critical Analysis of Information-- in terms of relevance, authority, quality, timeliness, biases….etc.

    • Publishing literacy-- publishing ideas and works electronically; scholarly communication in a digital world.

    • Information & Society-- the socio-cultural nature and role of info and info institutions; the role of scholarly research; scholarly ethics

So what goes on in this place anyway
So... What Goes On In This Place, Anyway?

  • Undergrad Information/Media Literacy Programs:

    • Using online catalog

    • Using web resources (including full-text and other dbs)

    • Critical evaluation of print/online resources

    • Critical evaluation of media (film, TV, video)

Taught in various contexts:

  • Course-integrated instruction

  • Individual research paper consultation

  • Drop-in clinics and classes

So what goes on in this place anyway1
So... What Goes On In This Place, Anyway?

  • Electronic reference: The Information Gateway

    • 60 high-end, broad-bandwidth public access multimedia computers (developed with support from PacBell).

    • Provides access to:

      • library catalogs

      • web (licensed and open-access sources)

      • networked CD-ROM databases

      • Online reserve materials (MusiLan, MRC online audio and video files)

So what goes on in this place anyway2
So... What Goes On In This Place, Anyway?

  • Learning & using HTML/Basic Web pages

  • Web Usability & Design Fundamentals

  • Managing Bibliographies, Footnotes (EndNote)

  • Beginning and Advanced Catalog and Web Searching

  • Full-text Resources

  • Powerpoint and other productivity tools

  • Specialized Media Resources

  • Faculty Seminars and summer institutes: open to all UCB faculty and GSIs (and some staff)

  • Focus groups and surveys of campus users

So what goes on in this place anyway3
So? What Goes On In This Place, Anyway?

  • California Heritage Program (K-12 outreach)http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/CalHeritage/An online archive of over 28,000 images illustrating California's history and culture from the collections of the Bancroft Library. Programs aimed at teacher education in using these and other digital resources.

  • Graphics Office (signage and publication for TL and rest of library; web design support) -- change from reporting to business to integration in teaching program.

  • Media Resources Center

    • One of largest collections of non-theatrical video in US

    • Largest documentary web site in WORLD!

    • Curriculum design and faculty consultation

    • Digital audio and video collections (new territory!)

Have we been successful
Have we been successful ??

  • STATISTICS (at least) are impressive:

    • 1997/98

      • 27,000 participants in instruction librarywide

        • 7,000 taught by Teaching Library staff

        • 5,000 one-on-one research consultations

        • 15,000 taught by other units with Teaching Library support

      • 2/3 of our primary user base (40,000) in one year

  • More teaching valued & done librarywide because of Teaching Library

Where we seem to be headed or want to be headed
…Where we seem to be headed(or want to be headed)

  • More web and print resource development (guides, bibliographies, online tutorials)

  • More involvement in library web design: meta-resources and navigation tools.

  • More involvement in the future of UCB digital library development

  • Broader collaboration in development of course web resources (integration of library resources into course web sites)

  • Support for selected IT/classroom projects: e.g., The Humanities Server Project.

  • Larger general leadership role in campus IT and broader collaboration with other IT units on campus

What we ve learned about our user culture and what we need to do to address its quirks and needs
What We’ve Learned About Our User Culture and What We Need To Do To Address Its Quirks and Needs...

Class of 2015

Undergraduate students today tend to be
Undergraduate students today tend to be...

  • Result-oriented

  • Expect high-tech, expect transferability of experience

  • Want pre-packaged, full-text, convenience

  • Expect their needs to be addressed

  • Accustomed to action, speed, change

  • Annoyed, lose interest if results not expedient and practical

  • Have the attention span of a gnat (thank you, MTV)

Disappointed if required to get up and WALK

“Whatareprint publications?”

It s a culture which
It’s a culture which...

  • Equates finding something worthwhile with expertise


  • Is uniformly PROCRUSTEAN in it’s approach to the information universe

  • Favors ease and/or popularity over authoritativeness (or confuses the two)

  • Isn’t particularly critical of ANYTHING on a screen

  • Circumvents the reference desk and other human mediation if at all possible

And what about faculty
And What About Faculty…?

  • In many instances, still grappling with the basics of tech literacy

  • Frequently hamstrung by institutional IT shortcomings: media convergence vs institutional decentralization

  • Time constraints and institutional pressures often preclude experimentation and change

  • Narrow discipline focus puts blinders on (research vs known items).

  • Often hesitant to admit gaps in knowledge…?

  • Humanities/Social Sciences & Sciences = different worlds

And what about faculty1
And What About Faculty…?

  • Academic culture not particularly amenable to collaboration and partnership

  • Still looking for IT outcomes evidence

  • Still trying to figure how all this fits in with promotion/advancement

  • The library is still a storehouse for books; librarians exist to get those books in the door and on the shelves (if they think about librarians at all)

  • Rely on graduate students for much of the grunt work and for much of the innovations in teaching

The challenges the pitfalls ahead
The Challenges & The Pitfalls Ahead...

None of this stuff is intuitive
None of this stuff is intuitive...


end-user self-sufficiency

might be a myth

Buon giorno
We are “afloat in a growing sea of information, which we must navigate with tools that are far from being up to the task” -- Paul Saffo

  • “Information overload” may not be the primary problem.

  • The biggest problem may be the gap between:

    The ability of technology to facilitate the production and distribution of vast quantities of information and,

its ability to help make sense of all this stuff, in answer to our questions

  • Poor tools, no integration, little standardization, too many formats, too many places to look

Buon giorno

Even with sufficient tools and skills to navigate the information universe...

“The prodigious output of the human mind is a grand and wonderful achievement--but now what do we do with all this stuff?” --Joel Achenbach, Washington Post

“It’s significant that we call it the Information Age. We don’t talk about the Knowledge Age.” --James Billington, Librarian of Congress

Buon giorno

Domande? Osservazioni? information universe...