Panel Discussions

The CATLA Study: Reading, Researching, and Writing Habits of MDiv Students and the Role of the Library
Thursday, June 9, 2:00-5:30pm

Ruth Gaba, Information Literacy Instruction/Reference Librarian, Concordia University Wisconsin; Kate L. Ganski, Library Instruction Coordinator, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Most library research on student study habits and research methods looks at one type of student at one school. This study, sponsored by the Chicago Area Theological Library Association (CATLA), is a foundational study that explores the reading, researching, and writing habits of Master of Divinity students across institutional and denominational lines. The goal of the study is to analyze and report the findings to the seminary library community so that librarians and administrators gain a better understanding of how students utilize library resources and tools. The presentation will give an overview of the project and will focus on similarities and differences in the results of the focus groups and the more recent survey that was distributed to CATLA schools.

International Collaboration Panel
Friday, June 10, 10:30am-12pm

Paul Stuehrenberg, Divinity Librarian, Yale Divinity School

The International Collaboration Committee has invited RLIT, ForATL, and BETH to send representatives to participate in a panel discussion of international collaboration from their perspectives. We often regard collaboration as something initiated by North American institutions. This is an opportunity for those from other countries to present their sides of the story.

Libraries Teaching Technology

Friday, June 10, 10:30am-12:00pm

Tracy Powell Iwaskow, Head of Public Services and Periodicals Librarian, Pitts Theology Library, Emory University

Pitts Theology Library has offered Technology for Ministry, a one-credit course to students in the Candler School of Theology, since the fall semester of 2008. In the course, students, librarians, and presenters reflect together on the practices that engage technology in ministry contexts from both practical and theological perspectives. This session will discuss the origins of this course, its permutations, audience, and the theological and practical matters considered throughout the semester. We will also discuss how this approach differs from that taken in a workshop that focuses on a specific software program. This session aims to arm librarians with the knowledge and resources needed to engage students interested in working with technology in ministry and thinking through the implications of technology’s use. The library’s role in information literacy supports library involvement in teaching about technologies and considerations in using them.

Racial Diversity Among Library Staff: Experiences and What We Learned Along the Way

Friday, June 10, 1:30-3:00pm

Diana L. Brice, Serials and Acquisitions Librarian, JKM Library; Daniel Flores, Library Assistant/Faculty, Westwood College; Tammy L. Johnson, Technical Services Librarian, Columbia Theological Seminary

A panel of racially and ethnically diverse librarians will discuss their experiences as librarians of color and its impact on their career development as theological librarians.

Redefining Reference: Doing More With Less

Friday, June 10, 1:30-3:00pm

Michelle Spomer, Head of Reference, Azusa Pacific University; Amy Limpitlaw, Research & Electronic Services Librarian , Yale University; Kris Veldheer, Head of Public Services, Graduate Theological Union

As the economy limps along, libraries still find themselves in the position of having to cut back while offering the same or more services. This panel will be focusing on library reference programs and how librarians can offer as much or more with the same staffing and budget. Panelists will cover how to offer reference services to distance learning students, how to implement the READ Scale in statistics in order to make more efficient reference staffing decisions, and will highlight free online reference resources. The goal of this panel presentation is to provide tangible ways to be more economical with resources in library reference programs.

Restorative Conservation of Rare Books: Approaches to the Care and Handling of Original Bindings
Thursday, June 9, 4:00-5:30pm

John B. Weaver, Library Director and Vasare Rastonis, Conservator for Special Collections, The Burke Library, Columbia University

Since the Columbia University Libraries Conservation Lab began caring for Burke Library’s Collections in 2007, conservation projects have included a wide range of treatments of rare books, pamphlets, and archival items. By striving to stabilize and conserve these fragile materials with minimal alteration, treatment choices become complex, but the evidence which connects these works to their significant creators and historical context can be better preserved. A professional conservator will discuss and illustrate the principles and practices underlying this approach to rare book conservation, and a theological librarian will discuss the implications for use of these materials for research, instruction, and digitization.

Security and Sensibility: RFID in a Theological Library
Friday, June 10, 1:30-3:00pm

Beth M. Sheppard, Director, Jaeyeon "Lucy" Chung, Portia Kapraun, and Elizabeth Neal, Garrett-Evangelical Theolgoical Seminary

In depth discussion focused on all aspects of an RFID implementation project, from project planning to soliciting vendor bids to tagging, set-up, policy development, training, and patron reactions. Details will be given about the conversion process, patron counts, necessary preliminary steps, and even the mysteries of SIP. Audience experiences with their own RFID projects will be welcome.

Twenty-First Century Reference Collections—Issues and Strategies
Thursday, June 9, 4-5:30pm

Moderator: Nancy Falciani-White, Reference & Instruction Librarian, Wheaton College; Gregory Morrison, Head of Reference, Wheaton College; Alan Krieger, Bibliographer for Theology, Philosophy, History, and Jewish Studies, Notre Dame; Paul Tippey, Director of Library Services, Asbury Theological Seminary; Amy Limpitlaw, Research & Electronic Services Librarian, Yale University Divinity School

On a recent tour of the Golda Meir library at the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee (UW-M), CATLA librarians heard some shocking news. As part of a renovation, the library discarded nearly 80 percent of its print reference collection, and subscribed to an online reference resource. A singular case? Apparently not. We want to take a closer look at this trend, and consider the issues at stake. The moderator will set up the discussion by offering the audience a more detailed story behind the UW-M’s decision to do this, and set this case up against current best (academic) practices as represented in the professional literature. Panelists will then briefly share their approaches to developing and maintaining their reference collections before opening the presenation up to questions and comments from the audience. The composition of the panel will aim to represent the various sizes and types of ATLA member institutions (e.g., seminaries, divinity schools, and four-year institutions, etc.) The moderator will also facilitate discussion among panelists and the audience.

Where Any Two are Gathered: The Idea of Conferencing in Theological Librarianship
Friday, June 10, 1:30-3:00pm

Luba Zakharov, Reference and Serials Librarian, Duke University Divinity School; Leeland Deeds, Librarian for Academic Computing Support, Morton Library, Union Presbyterian Seminary; Anthony Elia, Public Services Librarian, Burke Library, Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University

The idea of a conference or “conferencing” has taken on new definitions in the last five to ten years. One definition is the “open conference” or “un-conference,” where all programming is driven by the participants. Another is the “hybrid conference” often associated with “lightening rounds” that are frequently based on “Pecha Kucha," a Japanese methodology to organize a presentation. The “virtual conference” format is used by large organizations like ALA, where participants engage with the content through a video conference or other technology. Particularly among IT professions, the “camp” model (presentations, training, and spontaneous group work) has also become popular. Theological librarians have experienced their own style of conferencing through local, regional, and national association meetings. Looking at interdisciplinary and cross-industry definitions and applications of “the conference,” we will examine new structures for the conference format and ask how theological librarians can begin to shape new conference structures that match the content of a rapidly changing religious and seminary landscape.