2016 Conference Abstracts

 

Please make a note of the session numbers you would like to attend (first and second choices) for each set of parallel sessions as these will be required when booking.

 

PARALLEL SESSIONS 1-4, 11am:

Session 1

Title: Head Start – Library-led innovation and collaboration enhancing the student experience

Presenter(s): Nadine Sunderland, University of Cumbria

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Head Start is a free, online, non-credit bearing programme offered to all University of Cumbria, FT, undergraduate applicants between May and September. It aims to bridge the gap into university study, giving pre-entry students an early insight into information and digital literacies, referencing and writing skills needed for HE study.

Developed by Library and Academic Advisers in Library and Student Services, Head Start is an example of strong collaboration between library services, academic departments and other professional services including IT services, student administration and admission.

Since its inception in 2013, the initiative has grown in success with over 1000 students registering on the programme in 2015. Head Start is now fully embedded into the transition process and is evaluated annually with reports presented at university committees.  Head Start has been shown to impact on student learning behaviours, their retention and their level of engagement beyond the duration of the programme.

The presentation will outline the content of the Head Start programme, how it is delivered to students pre-entry and how the collaboration between the library and key stakeholders was initiated and maintained.  It will then focus on the model of evaluation used to measure impact and how it has helped demonstrate the role of the library in supporting learning and teaching and a successful student experience. Finally, issues around staff capacity, role definition, technology and gaining buy-in across the institution will be raised with an opportunity for participants to ask questions and share their own experiences of delivering library-led initiatives.

 

Session 2

Title: White Rose Libraries: Developing a regional shared-print collection

Presenter(s): Michael Fake, White Rose Libraries & Liz Waller, University of York

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Changing student behaviour and learning preferences are placing increased need on universities to rethink the physical library space. How will libraries balance space requirements without compromising the value of local collections or user experience, and how can we ensure that valuable real estate is freed up to provide much-needed student space?

The White Rose Libraries (WRL) – consisting of the libraries of the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York - are looking to address some of these challenges as a partnership, leveraging our long history of working together to develop a regional collaborative print management model. WRL are working with OCLC Sustainable Collection Services (SCS) to make informed group-level decisions around the libraries’ physical collections.

In this presentation, WRL will discuss the project and how the three partner libraries have worked together to protect scarcely-held materials while identifying opportunities for better management of monographs based on usage and holdings of other group members. They will look at some of the challenges and opportunities of working collaboratively around collection management, and the impact they’re hoping it will have on their students.

 

Session 3

Title: Research the researcher: informing the development of effective library research support in a modern university

Presenter(s): Eddy Verbaan, Paul Ashwell, Dan Grace, Pete Smith, Bea Turpin, Sheffield Hallam University

Strand: Research Support

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Since the emergence of funder mandates for Research Data Management and Open Access, there has been a clear trend toward consolidation and expansion of support for researchers in academic libraries. Following the recent creation of a dedicated Library Research Support team at Sheffield Hallam University, team members set out on a research project of their own to engage with the information practices and support needs of their researchers in order to develop a critical evidence-based approach to future work. The methodology included a series of semi-structured interviews with practising researchers in a wide range of disciplines and at varying stages of their career. Topics explored are researchers' information practices, their generic support needs and their perceptions of the library's and other stakeholders' roles in meeting these needs.

We are particularly interested in the meshing of our researchers' needs and practices with our team's established priorities. The latter are based on external and internal requirements, and informed by suggestions from the literature as well as emerging practice at other HE institutions. Our project aims to engage our researchers with the Library; inform our service offer by identifying new and innovative methods of support that meet the specific needs of researchers at a modern university that prides itself of its applied research; refine criteria by which we might understand our impact; and develop insights that may be useful to the wider community of practice.

 

Session 4

Title: Using collections based learning to inspire widening participation: the Durham experience

Presenter(s): Sarah Price, Durham University

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Durham University Library has long offered workshops for schools using the collections held in the libraries, archive and museums as the base for inspiring and engaging activities.  Last year we worked with nearly 22,000 children and over the past five years we have engaged with 50% of schools in the North East.  Although the service was initially set up to meet school demand for knowledge transfer there has been an increasing recognition and acceptance that our school engagement work has a positive impact on widening participation and our figures are now included in the University’s Fair Access statement.  The notion that introducing children to the HE sector at an early age breaks down perceptions of it being exclusive and forbidding before they are solidified has been backed by numerous pieces of research and was a key recommendation in the National Strategy for Access and Student Success (BIS, 2014) report which informed the development of the new OFFA Guidance that was issued in January 2016.

This paper will explore the underpinning pedagogy of the schools education programme and will include simple activities that demonstrate how collections can be used to encourage the development of skills that can assist in raising both attainment and aspiration levels.  It will also consider how a new evaluation framework has been developed to monitor how the sessions meet the demands of the teachers, correlate with the new ACE Quality Principles as well as testing attitudinal change to Higher Education.

 

PARALLEL SESSIONS (5-9), 11:45am:

Session 5

Title: Coffee, Cake and Biscuits, cultivating engagement and inspiring cultural change through innovation

Presenter(s): Elizabeth Hartley, Callum Pownall & Joshua Sendall, Lancaster University

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

The excellence of an academic library is increasingly measured in terms of student satisfaction: how we fare on the NSS, LibQual surveys, mentions on Twitter. When we think about enhancing the student experience, we often look to our users and focus on how we can improve their experience by improving our existing resources and services. However, to remain relevant we must look beyond existing processes and seek out new opportunities to engage with our users. What better way to do this than harnessing the unlocked potential of the Library team; to value our colleagues first and foremost and cultivate creativity?

In order to remain user-focused Lancaster University Library has decided to take a transformative approach towards embedding innovation into our culture. Central to this vision is the formation of an Innovation Group.

We will present our experiences in forming this group to demonstrate how introducing innovative practice can enhance the student experience by changing the working culture of the library.

We will discuss why the Innovation Group was formed from all grades and teams across the library, and demonstrate how a flat hierarchical structure has enabled us to foster a truly inclusive ethos of collaboration.

Finally, we will review our achievements so far: how we have brought about positive changes in the user experience; empowered team members; and significantly, witnessed a wider shift in staff engagement and participation.

 

Session 6

Title: Reconceptualising information and digital literacy in a fluid digital world

Presenter(s): Liam Bullingham, Caterina Sciamanna, Cat Bazela, University of Sheffield

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Workshop

Abstract:

Our inspirational libraries blend digital tools with information literacies, creating outstanding sites of transformative learning for academia, employment and for active citizenship.

Vision statement | Information and Digital Literacy Group, The University of Sheffield Library

Following the recent formation of the Library Learning Services Unit and the release of the Library Strategic Plan, our approach to and conceptualisation of information and digital literacy has been refined. Following the formation of a vision statement, the strategy is now emerging. Our information and digital literacy offer builds upon on Jisc’s ‘Developing Digital Literacies’ model (2014) but was adopted to reflect local priorities within a fluid digital world. It also incorporates changing digital literacy practices such as how Belshaw (2012) frames copyright as a civic element of digital literacy. Integral to this is work is the improvement of our referencing tutorials, providing new web-based resources and updated versions of online tutorials in the Library’s Information Skills Resource.

This workshop will present our emerging strategy and then use referencing management software teaching as a case study. Library staff have achieved success by implementing a team reflection process to identify where improvements could be made to the ’Introduction to EndNote’ teaching session for the Doctoral Development Plan programme. We moved the focus away from teaching a software programme to fostering the key skills that underpin the learning. Delegates will be invited to collaboratively design a lesson plan, in which they develop an innovative approach to teaching reference management software.

Jisc (2014). Developing digital literacies [online], available: https://www.jisc.ac.uk/guides/developing-digital-literacies [accessed 20 May 2016].

Belshaw, D. (2012) The essential elements of digital literacies: Doug Belshaw at TEDxWarwick [online], available: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8yQPoTcZ78 [accessed 10 Nov 2015].

 

Session 7

Title: Getting new professionals into Open Access

Presenter(s): Jennifer Bayjoo, Leeds Beckett University

Strand: Research Support

Workshop: Presentation

Abstract:

Collaboration between current and future library professionals is key in providing research support to institutions and researchers. After qualifying as a librarian last year, I began working in the Leeds Beckett Library Research Support team – and quickly realised that the little I had learned about Open Access barely reflected the practical nature of providing support and training to researchers, collaborating with Academic Librarians and investigating new OA tools.

Building on a presentation I will be delivering at the New Library Professional Network’s OPEN event in June entitled Open Access in Practice, I would like to discuss what we can do for the next generation of Research Support Librarians. I will explore the current inconsistencies between Library and Information Management degree programmes; collaboration between institutions and workplaces is needed to provide more cohesive and comprehensive education. Furthermore, current teaching is largely theoretical and, whilst having a good working knowledge of the key players and politics of OA is important, the practical nature of library roles in this field is quite different.

Therefore, I will offer suggestions for new professionals and students on where they can learn about these roles and prepare themselves – which would be especially useful to those looking to apply for jobs. If we are going to continue our innovation in the area of research support, then we need to collaborate to develop passionate and prepared librarians.

 

Session 8

Title: “A New Manchester Alphabet”: an exercise in collaboration

Presenter(s): Louise Clennell, Manchester Metropolitan University Special Collections

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

This presentation will show how one small book from our Special Collections has been the catalyst for an ambitious programme of work engaging our students, local schools and communities.

‘A New Manchester Alphabet’ is a book of illustrated poems produced by students at Manchester Metropolitan University. It was inspired by ‘A Manchester Alphabet’, an

A-Z of illustrated poems published in 1906, which became the focus of a project to enhance the learning experience and increase engagement. Poetry and illustration students revisited the Edwardian Manchester depicted in the original alphabet and created an A-Z of contemporary Manchester. Both alphabets were published in a new book in December 2015.

The accessibility and adaptability of our project attracted interest from academics and organisations working locally, regionally and nationally. This has proved invaluable in enabling us to extend the reach and impact of the project and maximise our resources. In partnership with Heritage England, we worked with eight primary schools on a project that culminated in an exhibition at the People’s History Museum. This will become a case study for exploring local history creatively in the classroom. We have begun an online project to gather information about the people and places in the original alphabet. We will be part of a number of high profile festivals and events this year including the Manchester Histories Festival and Manchester City of Science. By working collaboratively, we have exceeded our initial aims and created a project that continues to grow, despite having only a very modest budget.

 

Session 9

Title: Is there a statistically significant relationship between library resource accesses and student attainment at the Open University, a distance learning institution?

Presenter(s): Anne Gambles & Kirsty Baker, The Open University

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

The Open University has a focus on improving student retention and attainment and so it is important that the impact that OU library content and services plays is understood. Higher Education libraries across the world have analysed library usage data to show strong correlations with student retention and final results. But do these correlations also exist for the Open University, a distance learning institution? Most OU students rarely or never visit the physical University Library, they access library services and resources online instead and study and assessment patterns can differ from those of traditional universities. While there is huge potential in the amount and range of Open University library data available, the challenges are to identify an appropriate model for the OU, build data and statistical analysis skills in the library and ultimately, to ensure students’ engagement with the library is visible in key data measures. The Open University Library Data Project is working with academics in the Institute of Educational Technology to investigate the relationship between library resource accesses and student achievement. An early pilot study with three level 1 modules has found a link between the number of resource accesses and the module grades achieved by students. Students who gained a Distinction accessed library resources up to twice as many times as those who gained a Pass. Students who Failed accessed library resources only a third as many times as those who Passed. This presentation will outline the OU Library Data Project’s methodology and progress to date.

 

PARALLEL SESSIONS (10-14), 1.30pm:

Session 10

Title: The Digital Magpie: the academic reading patterns of undergraduate students

Presenter(s): Roy Vickers, Janet Savage, Shona Forbes, University of Salford

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Engagement with the Library is essential in delivering a successful student experience. A previous Library Impact Project found that students who use the Library more tend to achieve better academic results. However, analytics from library systems indicate declining book borrowing and electronic resource usage. Are students really reading less?  Student academic reading patterns have adapted to the increase in digital resources. As a result they may be “reading smarter’’. Feedback indicates they expect to find and use information quickly, synthesizing information from a variety of sources.

As part of a commitment to improve retention and completion figures, the Library has initiated a Reading Behaviours project at the University of Salford, focused on the reading habits of undergraduate students. It explores what motivates their academic reading; whether reading patterns vary according to purpose or source, academic discipline, status, or age and what this means for our role in helping students to find resources. In light of findings, how should we tailor classroom training, e-learning and collaboration with academics to support the student journey?

Several key issues have emerged during this project:

  • Synthesizing information for an academic purpose
  • Embedding information literacy as a flexible learning habit
  • Supporting students as they adapt to new learning contexts

This presentation shows how the project links academic literacy to information literacy, considers the importance of the student journey, and the requirement to support inclusive teaching.  A new proposed blended learning package to support academic reading will be discussed at conference.

 

Session 11

Title: Open Journals for open learning: academics and library working together to develop students’ scholarly communications

Presenter(s): Cath Dishman & Pat Clarke, Liverpool John Moores University

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Open Journals System (OJS) is an online journal management and publishing system that has been developed with the purpose of making open access publishing a viable option for more journals. Library Services at LJMU set up a pilot scheme, working with academics and students, to test the software and determine what is needed to offer an Open Journal Service. From this Links to Health and Social Care was born.

Links to Health and Social Care is based in the School of Nursing and Allied Health and provides students with the opportunity to turn their best assignments into articles to be published in an online open access journal. The team from the School have worked closely with the Library from the journals inception through to the production of the first issue. The editorial team comprises of academic and library staff as well as students. Students engaging in the journal both as authors and editors will develop an array of qualities and skills to enhance their professional development.

In this joint presentation we will discuss our experience of setting up a new journal using OJS. We will talk about the practicalities of starting a new journal and technical issues to consider when using a system like OJS. We will highlight the positives and share our lessons learned.

 

Session 12

Title: Using games to introduce postgraduate researchers to the Library

Presenter(s): Karen Crinnion + tbc, Newcastle University

Strand: Research Support

Format: Workshop

Abstract:

We think that this workshop relates to 2 strands – research support and learning & teaching and links the two together.  As part of the postgraduate research welcome for science, agriculture and engineering students (SAgE) the liaison team has time allocated to give a welcome/induction talk.  In the academic year 2015/16 the team decided to make the welcome session more interactive and fun, building on a game theme which we previously employed for undergraduate students.  The aim of the session is to introduce the SAgE liaison team and promote the library workshops for researchers.  Rather than using a standard presentation format, we briefly introduce ourselves and then divide the students into groups, around 3 tables forming a library ‘carousel’.  Students move around the tables and take part in 3 different games to give them a taste of some of the information/digital literacy topics that the library will introduce to them in the workshops.  These are: referencing, naming information sources and evaluating information sources.  Students are timed for each session, lasting no more than 5 minutes.  Prizes are given at each table.

The sessions are lively interactive affairs with students discussing (and often disagreeing) about which information sources are appropriate for different scenarios.  This introduces the information literacy theme while encouraging students to engage with the library’s aims in terms of learning and teaching.  The interactive element is the main advantage of this format.  Many of our PGR cohort are international or mature students and we hope this starts them thinking about the research skills they will develop during their time at the university.

 

Session 13

Title: Who are you and how do you make me feel? How we are developing audiences at the John Rylands Library, The University of Manchester Library

Presenter(s): Yvette Jeal & Laura Jewkes, University of Manchester

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

The John Rylands Library houses special collections used by researchers worldwide and our wonderful neo gothic building welcomes nearly 200,000 public visitors a year.

Unlike many institutions we are very happy with the healthy visitor numbers we attract, but need to understand why people visit (who are they?) , what we can do to improve the quality of their experiences and how we can engage with them to improve our own practice and their experience.

In the last 18 months, the Library has invested significantly in market research to better understand our audiences – what are their perceptions and motivations? We have designed a programme of improvements including to the building, our services, our marketing and our collegial approach to working. We will talk about some of these in our presentation bringing out themes related to vision and values (both at team and high level), how this work has enabled us to challenge ourselves and others and how this work is shaping our services and re-enforcing our identity.

This paper will share some of the practical tools we used to profile and map our audiences including ‘Spectrum’ segmentation, Ansoff’s Matrix and journey mapping. This analysis provided us with a strategic overview of our ‘core’, ‘developmental’ and ‘keep warm’ audiences. It will also explain how we collaborated internally and externally to establish our identity, key messages and engagement goals and how we are working to use these to put our audiences and collections at the heart of what we do.

 

Session 14

Title: How Sparkly are your treasures? Demonstrating the impact of Special Collections

Presenter(s): Alison Cullingford, University of Bradford

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

In tough and turbulent times for library services in higher education, it is imperative that special collections, individually and collectively, are able to demonstrate their impact.  Such services can be seen as expensive or irrelevant, and are at risk of being judged by outdated perceptions or measured via inappropriate comparisons.  Those of who work in such services know that with some investment and support, special collections can offer a unique selling point, unique experiences etc.  It is however often tricky to convey this: traditional measures focus on inputs and outputs, rather than outcomes and impact.  How do we convey these messages and show that we are achieving our goals?

During 2016, Alison Cullingford, Special Collections Librarian at the University of Bradford, has investigated this question from an organisational and sector perspective.  The latter was a significant part of her research for the revised edition of the Special Collections Handbook; the former came out of the need to develop KPIs to support the service’s Forward Plan.   Alison will share her discoveries and conclusions, and encourage discussion among delegates about their practice and ideas.  Alison’s presentation will include the Research Libraries UK work on the impact of unique and distinctive collections and how the Archive Accreditation Scheme and Higher Education Archives Programme can assist services in this area.

 

PARALLEL SESSIONS (15-19), 2.15pm:

Session 15

Title: The Teaching Excellence Framework: an opportunity for libraries to make an impact?

Presenter(s): Emma Thompson, University of Liverpool

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Workshop

Abstract:

TEF is coming, and will shine a spotlight on learning and teaching in universities. The Higher Education White Paper has told us more about what we can expect, but how can libraries innovate and collaborate to make a positive contribution to the success of their institutions within the framework? In this workshop, we will focus on the implications and opportunities of the White Paper and TEF for libraries. Participants will audit their current position, using a SWOT analysis, and identify key areas for development and enhancement, as well as key stakeholders and partners. By sharing experience and ideas we will develop new ideas and begin planning to enhance the impact our libraries have on the success of our students and our institutions.

 

Session 16

Title: At your service: taking the Library out of the Library. Developing a pop-up library service

Presenter(s): Bob Frost, UCLan

Strand: Learning & Teaching

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Our research focuses on the design and implementation of a pop-up library service which can operate across the University Campus.  Pop-up services have become increasingly popular, although they are more usually shops or marketing opportunities.  Pop up libraries have traditionally focussed on book exchanges in public spaces. (Davis et al., 2015). We needed to employ the basic structure of the pop-up, but apply it to our electronic resource provision.  We looked to create an appealing environment that was portable, attractive and suitable for purpose. 

Our aim was to demonstrate that the library was not constrained by the walls of the Library building.  We wanted to reach students by meeting them in their spaces.  We focused on demonstrating our online resources, emphasising their availability anytime, anyplace. 

Our project links to the Learning and Teaching strand, especially that of enhancing the student experience.  The busiest sessions saw traffic of 40+ students in an hour.  We believe that we reached those who may not have come into the library building and showed them the added value that librarians could bring to discovering and using the huge and growing range on online resources.

Bibliography

Davis, A, Rice, C, Spagnolo, D, Struck, J, & Bull, S 2015, 'Exploring pop-up libraries in practice', Australian Library Journal, 64, 2, p. 94-104, Scopus®, EBSCOhost, viewed 19 April 2016.

 

Session 17

Title:  Inspiring collaboration: creative methods of co-teaching and embedding information skills within the curriculum

Presenter(s): Zoe Johnson, University of Huddersfield

Strand: Research Support

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Working closely with academics, support staff and students to embed approaches to information literacy has ensured the librarian is an integral part of the Drama department’s teaching team at Huddersfield.

Adopting an action research approach that built on interviews with academic staff (Johnson and Walsh, 2013 http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/18825/ ), focus groups with final year students and theoretical research, the teaching team are developing inspirational ways to encourage students to become independent researchers.

The main focus is to inspire wider reading and research amongst students to complement the department’s “practice as research” approach. The issue as to whether information literacy should be subject-specific and adapted to suit the curriculum is discussed.

Exploring methods of peer learning in reading, embedding IL sessions within assessed work, and strong communication routes between lecturer, academic skills and the Library underpins this study. This presentation will share progress so far and ideas on how to continue developing information literacy through collaborative action research.

 

Session 18

Title: Partnership and Impact with Special Collections and Archives

Presenter(s): Emily Parsons & Valerie Stevenson, Liverpool John Moores University

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

Each year the Special Collections and Archives team at LJMU aim to run around four activities to meet the university’s core aims. These include civic engagement and supporting research excellence: this presentation will outline two examples using unique and distinctive collections to enhance partnerships and contribute to research impact.

In 2015 an exhibition was curated by Kirkby Gallery using the Willy Russell Archive at LJMU.  The aim was to celebrate Russell’s roots in Knowsley and engage with local people who might not normally visit a gallery or archive. Willy Russell: Behind the Scenes ran from September 2015 to January 2016 and showcased over 200 items from the archive, alongside material borrowed directly from Willy Russell and local theatres. Emily Parsons will look at the collaboration between the archive and the gallery, the challenges in reaching new audiences, and the legacy of the project for future partnership projects.

The Femorabilia collection of comics and magazines held by LJMU Special Collections and Archives consists of around 2000 girls’ comics, annuals and women’s magazines. In 2015 two student interns worked with academic and library staff to produce a range of materials which support teaching and public engagement with the archive. The potential for a REF impact case study was recognised early on by the lead researcher. Val Stevenson will provide an overview of the outreach activities using the archive, demonstrating how these are converted into evidence of impact for inclusion in a Cultural Studies case study for REF 2021.

 

Session 19

Title: School’s not out! Embedding real university experience in 6th form projects

Presenter(s): Sara Hastings, University of Hull

Strand: Academic Libraries & Community

Format: Presentation

Abstract:

The University of Hull has traditionally engaged with local schools and colleges to encourage applications to the University. This has largely been through routes such as ‘ACE weeks’ for children in Year 9, providing an opportunity to visit the University and talk to current students about their experience. The Library has typically offered tours of the building, particularly since 2014 when the extensively refurbished Brynmor Jones Library was officially opened. 

More recently, additional ways to formalise our involvement have been sought in an effort to connect further with local 6th form colleges and provide a ‘taster’ of what University life could be like. In December 2014 we were approached by the University’s Schools and Colleges Liaison Service to collaborate with them on a visit from Year 13 students from Queen Elizabeth’s High School, Gainsborough. These students were undertaking an Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) in addition to their A levels and wanted to spend a day in an academic library researching their chosen topics.

The success of this visit and subsequent visits from other 6th form colleges has contributed to a far greater collaboration and relationship between the Library and Schools and Colleges Liaison. Going forward we will also be contributing to both residential and non-residential summer schools in July 2016.

This presentation will map the journey we have made over the last two years to embed 6th form visits into our ‘business as usual’ work; what activities we have developed with them; and how we have made these a success.