Posted in AALL, Professional Development

AALL Annual Meeting, Day Four

The Annual Meeting always seems to fly by!  I began today’s programming by attending G2: Meeting the Needs of Students and Their Future Employers: Discussions on Legal Research Instruction and Student Services Inspired by Practitioner Feedback.  Based on a recent ALL-SIS Task Force survey, Shawn Nevers of Brigham Young briefly surveyed the results of the survey for attendees and Maureen Cahill of the University of Georgia discussed how student services librarians could use these results to improve upon services to students.  The entire results of the task force survey can be found on the ALL-SIS website on AALLnet.  As with much of this year’s programming, the panelists spoke briefly and the remainder of the time was attendee group discussions.  What was neat about these breakout sessions, however, was that moderators at each table wrote down the table’s ideas, and the program coordinators will now gather all of these ideas and share them with the rest of us.

In the afternoon I attended H4: Emerging Technologies and Teaching for the 21st Century Librarian.  Discussing tools to use when presenting with your iPad and how to use now-familiar screencasting programs like Adobe Captivate and Camtasia to record lectures and tutorials for your patrons, presenters Stephanie Noble of the U.S. Courts 10th Circuit library and Jennifer Wondracek of the University of Florida left attendees with many great tools to try out when we get home.  

It’s always a little sad to see the Annual Meeting end, and it’s hard to leave such a lovely city, but it has been a great conference, I learned a lot, and I feel I’m headed back to Indiana armed with an arsenal of tools, tips, and tricks to better my teaching and service to our patrons.

I hope to see many of you again next year in San Antonio!

Posted in AALL, Professional Development

AALL Annual Meeting, Day Three

Another busy day at a conference that continues to offer enriching content to educate me to be a better librarian!

My day began early with the RIPS-SIS breakfast.  I want to thank RIPS-SIS again for awarding me a travel grant to aid with the expense of attending this year.  With one day still to go, this year has been very rewarding for me and I believe I will return to my library with a host of new tools and tricks to help me enhance my services to our patrons.

I hope many of you were able to attend – or at least get your hands on materials from – the Recharge session Own the Room: Presentations that Captivate and Win Over Any Audience.  Led by Steve Hughes (Twitter handle: @stevehughes) of Hit Your Stride, LLC, this presentation lived up to its name.  I left with copious notes and ideas for how I could improve my presentation style with any audience – faculty, colleagues, students.  Presenting us with simple, yet effective, strategies, Hughes really does convince you that anyone can become a better presenter, no matter their personality, no matter their fears of public speaking, no matter the subject they’re speaking on.  This was such a worthwhile program – just the kind I look for at conferences.  So thank you so much to Janet Hedin of Michigan State University College of Law for coordinating this fantastic program!

In the afternoon I attended E2: It’s 2013: Do You Know Where Your iPad Is?  Presented by a panel consisting of two court librarians (Julie Jones and Adriana Mark), two academic librarians (Debbie Ginsburg and June Liebert), and a firm librarian (Karen Helde), this program looked at how different types of law libraries (and their patrons) are using iPads today.  Since I work at a law school library that has a couple of iPads, I’ll admit that initially I was only looking to hear from academic librarians on their perspective, but in truth, even listening to this from an academic perspective, it was great to hear how iPads are being used in courthouses and law firms.  Because let’s face it: I may work mostly with faculty and students, but as those students graduate, they’re entering a legal world that is clearly using iPads; if I know how their future employers are using these devices, I, as an academic librarian, can help prepare them for what to expect.  It was great to hear from a diverse panel their unique experiences with the same device, and the program offered many ideas, tips, and cautionary tales to take away.

2013-07-15 17.22.28

As so often happens with Monday evenings at AALL, it was packed!  I began by giddily attending the Knowledge Mosaic/Lexis event at the Seattle Aquarium.  As always, this was a very classy event at a great location.  On behalf of aquarium enthusiasts everywhere, thank you so much, Knowledge Mosaic, for a great event!  I then attended the author reception at the conference center and the IU Alumni dinner at the Sheraton’s Daily Grill, two great opportunities to network and catch up with colleagues and old friends.  My evening ended with the Thomson Reuters/AALL-sponsored party at the EMP Museum.  As always, this party was loud!  But, another great location (and who doesn’t love live ’80s music?).  So thank you, Thomson Reuters/AALL, for throwing your event at another Seattle highlight that was fun to tour.From the program it looks like a lot of great events are still lined up for tomorrow, so Tuesday’s shaping up to be another busy one!  (Plus I still have to get my Westlaw caricature done!)  Enjoy the remainder of the conference!



(P.S. The photo is of the octopus at the aquarium – he seems to really like an audience!)

Posted in AALL, Government, Presentations

AALL Annual Meeting, Day Two

With the conference officially in full swing today, there was quite a lot going on.  This morning I attended program A-4: Social Media and Your Library: Strategies to Lead the Way.  This was a great panel discussion on the types of social media law libraries are using, both internally and externally, and it also identified some tools that can aid in social media management.  The panelists, Jennifer Murray of Maricopa County Superior Court’s Law Library, Kathleen Brown, of Oklahoma City University’s Law Library, and Steven Lastres of Debevoise & Plimpton LLP discussed their experiences with social media, providing a great look at how different types of law libraries use and manage social media in different ways.  (Ex: Twitter as a competitive intelligence tool?!?  Fascinating!)

A great takeaway from this program was the importance of putting in place a social media policy and strategy (and making sure the two are aligned).  While myriad emerging technologies exist that libraries could be playing with, you don’t want to dive into something just because it’s there: as with any library service, there should be a purpose behind the technologies you choose, and having a social media policy and strategy in place will help you determine what tools are best for your library.  As the resident “tweeter” and Facebook manager for our library, I can tell you how time-consuming social media can be.  You have to remember that it’s a service of your library; once it’s established, you need to maintain it, and this will take time.  This program was excellent for anyone thinking of diving into social media or even for those of us already in the thick of it.  If you didn’t have a chance to go, I would recommend accessing the slides from AALL2Go.

The other major programming event I “attended” today was our own!  B-8: State Constitutions: Current Historical, and How They Change was held at 2 o’clock today in front of a fairly crowded room.  I want to thank everyone who attended our program this afternoon, as well as my co-presenters, Jennifer Morgan and Cindy Dabney, and our moderator, Michelle Cosby.  I was so pleased with the turnout for our program; we have worked on it for quite a long time and were so glad to share it with our colleagues today.  I would also like to thank the GD-SIS for sponsoring our program.

For those of you who were unable to attend, our program discussed the challenges of state constitutional research.  While there are many finding aids on researching the U.S. Constitution, state constitutions can be more challenging, especially if you’re asked to research a state with which you are unfamiliar: there is no uniform method of state constitutional amendment, and different states produce and preserve different documentation along the way, which can be a struggle for researchers.  Our program, therefore, identified tools and documents to look for when researching the current or historical texts of state constitutions, or when researching amendment and revision processes within a state.  The program culminated by us revealing a 50-State research guide Jennifer created from research she and I compiled on state constitutions.

If you would like materials from our program, the handout is presently available on AALL2GO and at the print stations at the conference; our slides will be posted shortly.

With our program complete, I am looking forward to a restful sleep before a very busy day tomorrow.  I hope you’re all enjoying the conference!

Posted in AALL

AALL Annual Meeting, Day One

As promised, here’s my first post from day one of this year’s annual meeting of the American Association of Law Libraries.

While regular programming doesn’t begin until tomorrow, I began this year’s meeting by attending one of the day-long workshops: W2: Classroom Makeover – Renovate Your Class with Technology that Promotes Hands-On Learning.

Principally, we were talking about the flipped classroom approach to legal instruction.  I’ll be honest, I’ve attended several programs and read several articles this year on the flipped classroom, so I was less enthusiastic about this workshop than I had initially been when I signed up.  HOWEVER: This was a great workshop!  Yes, some of the material – such as the history of this method, the pros and cons, the ideal law school classes for using this method – I had already heard before.  But what’s great about workshops is the practical aspect.  The instructors – Jane Larrington and Judith Lihosit  of the University of San Diego – had us break into groups periodically throughout the day to plan our own flipped classroom.  (Anna Russell (who was also slated to lead this), you were missed, but they showed us a picture of your baby – adorable!  Congratulations!)  We were asked to bring along our own syllabi for a class we were going to be teaching so that we could work with our own curricula to see how we could apply this method to our teaching.

I especially appreciated the progressive nature of these exercises.  We began by picking one of our planned lessons and identifying a learning objective that we could better teach through a flipped approach.  In another breakout session we then identified what material from that lesson would be out of class and what would be in class.  We later designed exercises that we could do in class with this lecture.  And later attendees learned how to narrate PowerPoint slides in order to create the pre-class lecture portion of a flipped lesson.  (I missed this last portion, having to leave early for a committee meeting.)

While I had been feeling “flipped-out” before attending this workshop, I am so grateful for having been able to attend – the exercises and discussion made the idea of flipping my own teaching seem much more tangible.

As with many conference attendees, I next attended the Exhibit Hall opening.  I always enjoy the vastness of the Exhibit Hall the first time I walk in each year – it’s hard to imagine we have that many vendors to choose from, and I love seeing what’s new or in development each year.  (Will Westlaw have a caricaturist again this year?  I guess we’ll see…)  🙂

In addition, our library (at IU’s Maurer School of Law) received an award this year for Excellence in Marketing – Best Use of Technology; award recipients had a photo-op at the Exhibit Hall this evening, and it was nice to see my colleagues commemorated for their hard work.  The award was based on a video, “Law Library Infomercial,” that Cindy Dabney, our Outreach Services Librarian, created last year:

It’s shaping up to be a great conference this year.  My calendar has certainly filled up.  Though I do hope to see a little of the city before I leave – what I’ve seen so far is just beautiful.  See you around!

Posted in AALL, Government, Presentations, Research

AALL bound

As with so many of my colleagues across the country, I am Seattle bound today to attend the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL). As one of those people who actually loves professional development, I always look forward to this conference (and it doesn’t hurt that it’s always held in a major city, often one I’ve never been to!).

This year is especially exciting for our library, as many of us are actively involved with the conference in some way. Our library is receiving an award for Excellence in Marketing – Best Use of Technology for a video Cindy Dabney, our Outreach Services Librarian, created marketing the reference office. In addition, two of us – Mike Maben and Michelle Botek – have posters to show in the exhibit hall. I believe Mike’s is at position #1 and Michelle’s is at position #15.

Finally, Jennifer Morgan, Cindy, and I are co-presenting on Sunday – we’d love to see you there! Our session is B8: State Constitutions – Current, Historical, and How They Change. It is slotted for Sunday at 2. We will be discussing the challenges of researching state constitutions and amendments, and a tool Jennifer created as a research aid in this area. This program has a long history, beginning with a guest lecture Jennifer gave for the Indiana Solicitor General’s course at Maurer Law on State Constitutional Law. He asked her to give this as a presentation to the Indiana Deputy Attorneys General as well, a presentation that was turned into a CLE. At this point, Jennifer and I began compiling research on the constitutional processes of the fifty states and the documentation available in each state to aid this research. Jennifer compiled this research into a research guide on our library website, available to all. Jennifer, Cindy, and I have given this presentation to Indiana librarians a couple of times this year, and we are thrilled to share it with our colleagues from across the country this weekend.

I hope to see many of you at the conference. I would like to thank RIPS-SIS, the Research, Instruction, and Patron Services Special Interest Section of AALL, for awarding me a travel grant to assist me in attending this conference this year. I truly appreciate it.

I will be blogging throughout the conference, so look for more posts to come!