I work on the web

September 9, 2007 at 3:57 pm (flickr, library, teaching)

I work on the web
Originally uploaded by webchicken

I jumped in on the “I work on the web” meme on Flickr:

My name is Sara and I work on the web.

I graduated high school in 1995 knowing very little about computers or the Internet. Working as a public library assistant through undergrad exposed me not only to the usefulness of technology, but also to educated women who were not afraid to explore it.

This inspiration led me to earn a master’s degree in library science with a specialization in library technology management. I use the Internet every day to track down answers to a variety of questions.

I teach a Women’s Studies undergraduate course online and am proud to include online research skills as part of my curriculum. I supplement textbook readings with work on the web – text, audio, and video.

More and more people can use the Web to get around, but I like empowering people with the tools to search and evaluate. I feel most proud when helping someone "get it" and overcome their technophobia, if just for a minute.

I’m sometimes disappointed with the lack of vision in embracing technology (from administrators and educators). Unless we start doing a better job of teaching information literacy, this will only get worse.

PS – I love hand-coding HTML. I’m addicted to Flickr.


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August 30, 2007 at 1:31 pm (library, mpow, teaching, work)

I feel like I am getting better at teaching every semester. I learn ways to tweak the assignments for the results I’m looking for, find material that helps illustrate a point, and how to make the class more organized – both for the students and for me! I’ve just agreed to possibly teach through fall 08.

I am also really pleased with the development of my “day job” (regular job? real job?) at the library. I have been fortunate over my tenure here to have bosses who support me, and allow me to develop my positions according to what I think needs to be done. Working with patrons and technology has always been interesting to me, and I’ve been able to utilize my passions for these in each of my positions. My current job is a wonderful fit – great hours (with flexibility), fantastic boss!, varied coworkers, and I get to manage the desk. There are no rules about the department since it’s brand new and I enjoy making things work as smoothly as possible.

I just wish I had more time for one-on-one training day-to-day with my co-workers. Though I will get plenty of that starting in September when we roll out our 2.0 curriculum, I’ll be staffing an open lab twice a week to work with people and answer questions.

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school daze

August 21, 2007 at 3:37 pm (information literacy, teaching, women's studies)

School started yesterday. I never realized as a student that instructors get bummed by the end of summer, too! I am teaching two sections of my class (Introduction to Women’s Studies, 210 level) this semester for the first time.

I was glad to be off work from my “day” job at the library on the first day of class. I was hoping to get a bunch of grading out of the way, but no such luck. Students are trickling in and posting their first assignments slowly but surely. [My classes are both completely online – no face-to-face meetings required.] I did find some great YouTube videos to supplement textbook and Internet reading assignments, though. I love the 2.0 world!

One topic I like to cover in my class is research. Performing college-level research is taught so rarely it’s sad. I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t give my students some direction to help them do research. Library research is much easier than it was “back when I was child” :), but it’s still not very intuitive. I do what I can to help them get started.

“In the nonstop tsunami of global information, librarians provide us with floaties and teach us how to swim.”
~Linton Weeks

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