RTL Shares: Fair Use Week Edition

February 26, 2015

Presenters: Kyle Courtney, Emily Bell, Carol Kentner, Scott Lapinski, Carli Spina

What do you get when you mix Fair Use Week with the Copyright First Responders (CFRs)? An afternoon of always compelling, sometimes amusing anecdotes of the state of fair use at Harvard Library.

The first cohort of CFRs rolled out for active duty in the fall of 2014. Since then, they have been serving as the first line of defense for faculty, students, and staff with copyright and fair use questions.

In honor of Fair Use Week, which runs from February 23rd to the 27th, the CFRs shared some of their experiences thus far and held an open discussion with the community about their training, their CFR work, and opportunities they see to serve the community at large.

RTL Shares: Explore Scopus!

March 26, 2015

Scopus is a prominent abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature that includes scientific journals, books and conference proceedings, plus social science and arts and humanities content. Harvard had considered purchasing Scopus several years ago but had passed. After considerable changes to the database and the purchase of it over Web of Science by some peer institutions, we are reconsidering it. This event is a chance for staff to give feedback toward the decision. Members of the working group tasked with evaluating Scopus for purchase led attendees in exploring the database.

RTL Shares: Introduction to LibGuides 2

April 23, 2015

Presenters: the LibGuides 2.0 Project Team

The LibGuides 2.0 Project Team gave an introduction to the LibGuides 2 system, ahead of the summer 2015 migration from LibGuides 1. The session covered the following topics:

  • What's new in LibGuides 2
  • Overview of the LibGuides 2 migration timeline
  • Live demo of LibGuides 2
  • Plenty of time for Q&A

Session recording

RTL Shares: ACRL in the House!

May 21, 2015

Presenters: Nick Dials, Emily Bell, Susan Fliss, Odile Harter, Jessica Evans Brady, Mark Shelton, Reed Lowrie, Laura Farwell Blake

Presenters gave short talks about conference sessions and poster presentations from  the 2015 ACRL conference, on the following topics:    

    •    Open access
    •    Library instruction using high, low, & no technology
    •    Ethnographic study of graduate students
    •    Visual curriculum mapping
    •    Race and gender bias in Google searching
    •    and more!

RTL Shares the Wealth: Open Access, the Office for Scholarly Communication, and the Harvard Library

June 25, 2015

Presenter: Peter Suber

Peter Suber, from the Office for Scholarly Communication, gave a short presentation and held an extensive Q&A on open access, including:

  • Review of open access policies at Harvard: benefits for authors, measures of success
  • Discoverability of DASH materials
  • How embargoes work in DASH

The OSC spearheads campus-wide initiatives to open, share, and preserve scholarship, and implements the open-access policies at all Harvard schools. It also manages Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard (DASH), the University’s open-access repository, and supports programs to help authors understand the rapidly changing landscape of open access and scholarly communication.

Peter Suber is the Director of the Harvard Office for Scholarly Communication, Director of the Harvard Open Access Project, a Faculty Fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, and Senior Researcher at the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC). He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and a J.D., both from Northwestern University, sits on the boards of many groups devoted to open access and scholarly communication, and has been active in promoting open access for more than a decade through his research, speaking, and writing. His most recent book is Open Access (MIT Press 2012), which Choice named an Outstanding Academic Title for 2013. The book is also freely available in DASH.

RTL Shares Best Practices for Web Accessibility

July 16, 2015

Presenter: Carli Spina

Carli Spina, Emerging Technologies and Research Librarian for the Harvard Law School Library, gave a short presentation with Q&A on best practices for web accessibility – including Libguides 2.0!

As the Emerging Technologies and Research Librarian, Carli Spina teaches classes on legal research and technology topics, conducts research consultations, develops guides to both substantive law and technological topics, and works on a wide range of web projects for the Harvard Law School Library.

Carli's presentation slides can be found on the Tips & Best Practices part of Carli's Accessibility Tools guide.

Session recording

RTL Shares: Teaching with Objects at the Harvard Art Museums

August 11 & 12, 2015

Presenter: Jessica Martinez, Harvard Art Museums

We held a special RTL Shares field trip session on teaching with objects! Jessica Martinez, Head of the Division of Academic and Public Programs at Harvard Art Museums, led a discussion on teaching with objects at the museum’s Arts Study Center.

RTL Shares Visits the Research Confession Booth

August 20, 2015

Presenters: Odile Harter, Emily Singley and  Amy Deschenes 

How Students Really Do Research: Preliminary Findings from the Research Confession Booth

The Research Confession Booth study has
been collecting screencasts of Harvard library patrons completing research tasks- ”show us your favorite feature of a resource you use for research”; “walk us through a recent research snag”; “show us how you would get started on a topic.” In this presentation, we reviewed some of our preliminary findings and showed a selection of the videos we’ve collected, with lots of time at the end for questions. We’re especially interested in hearing how this study can help colleagues in their work: bring your ideas for future research tasks we could investigate!

The Research Confession Booth study originated out of the Search & Discovery Initiative's Education Working Group. The research team now includes Amy Deschenes, Odile Harter, Ramona Islam, Lisa Junghahn, and Emily Singley.

RTL Shares: Thinking Cartographically

September 17, 2015

Presenters: Bonnie Burns and Scott Walker

In this hands-on demo to mapping, Bonnie Burns and Scott Walker from the Harvard Map Collection introduced us to some unexpected sources of geographic information, and software tools that enable us to turn that information into simple but effective maps. A web browser and Excel provide a launching point into the world of cartography and even spatial analysis, including determining distances and calculating areas. Bonnie and Scott also demonstrated some of the library’s subscription e-resources for displaying and extracting a variety of contemporary and historical demographic information, including PolicyMap, SimplyMap and SocialExplorer. We expanded our concept of what constitutes a map, and dispeled the notion that thinking, and creating, cartographically is something that only specialists can do!

Session recording

Websites used in session:


RTL Shares On Location: Visiting Special Collections

October 15, 2015

Following up on the successful visit to the teaching spaces of the Harvard Art Museums in August, we featured tours of four different Special Collections on the afternoon of Thursday, October 15. This was a great opportunity to visit and find out what teaching and research activities are happening with primary sources and special collections in libraries you may not know a lot about. Locations included are listed below:
Special Collections - Ernst Mayr Library of the Museum of Comparative Zoology

The Library’s Special Collections are comprised of approximately 15,000 rare and valuable volumes, art works and objects as well as the Archives of the Museum of Comparative Zoology.  The majority of the volumes in Special Collections date from before 1850. The collection includes older serials, publications by the Museum staff, microforms, sound recordings, and videocassettes.
October 15, 2:00 - 3:00 pm
Historical & Special Collections - Harvard Law School
With over 8,000 linear feet of manuscripts, over 300,000 rare books, and more than 70,000 visual images – photographs, prints, paintings, and objects – HSC houses one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of research materials for the study of legal history.
October 15, 3:00 - 4:00 pm
Isham Memorial Library - Loeb Music Library

Isham is dedicated to research with primary sources and serves as a major resource for scholarly research in music. Collections housed in Isham include microforms, published facsimiles, rare books and manuscripts, and Harvard dissertations in music. Also housed in Isham are the archival collections of the Loeb Music Library, including the Nadia Boulanger collection, and special collections such as the Sir Georg Solti Archive and the Biblioteca Mozartiana Eric Offenbacher.
October 15, 3:00 - 4:00 pm

Harvard Map Collection (Pusey)
Since its inception almost two centuries ago, the Harvard Map Collection has grown to encompass 400,000 maps, 6,000 atlases, and 5,000 reference books. The library's collections include rare editions of Mercator, Ortelius, and Ptolemaic atlases, as well as large-scale current topographic maps for geographic areas throughout the world.
October 15, 3:00 - 4:00 pm

RTL Shares: Learning from the Collections

November 19. 2015

Participating collections: Loeb Music Library, University Archives, and Tozzer Library

While many of us have experience teaching with our own library's materials, the opportunities we have to act as students are far less frequent. Following RTL Shares’ site visits to museum and library collections and this fall’s Strategic Conversation on The Teaching Library, we held a session focused on hands-on learning from objects in our collections.
For the first half of the gathering, attendees were invited to see what they could surmise from the objects themselves, and to consider what questions they might ask as part of further research. During the second half, we had a chance to discuss our insights, both about the items in front of us, and about how the experience of asking these kinds of questions might inform (or has already informed) our teaching practice.

RTL Shares: Library House Outreach Program

Monday, December 14, 2015

Presenters: Ramona Islam, Vegas Longlois, Alexis Gomez, Anna Esty

Harvard College Library launched a pilot Library House Outreach Program (LHOP) in Fall 2014. The program employs undergraduate Peer Research Fellows (PRFs) to engage with students in a more holistic way and to employ the valuable technique of peer instruction. As part of the pilot phase, we hired PRFs in 2 of the 12 undergraduate Houses, Adams and Currier, and matched each of them with a dedicated mentor librarian. We talked about the program’s genesis, the training curriculum, services that PRFs offer, assessment data, and how this has been a rewarding experience for both the Mentor Librarians and the current PRFs. We also heard from the current PRFs about their experiences. In addition, we talked about the future of the program and how you can join us!