Thursday, October 19, 2017

Librarians Encourage Reconciliation Through KAIROS Blanket Exercises

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Photo: http://www.holytrinitytoronto.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/blankets-672x372.jpg
Even before the release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action, University of Alberta Libraries have been implementing ways to reconcile with Canada’s dark past and to move forward by creating positive, meaningful relationships with the Indigenous community. This is reinforced by the University’s 2016-2017 strategic plan “For the Public Good”, where we are all encouraged to “Foster learning opportunities across our campuses that enable student, staff, and faculty participation in reconciliation” (p. 10).

As a MĂ©tis person and educator, reconciliation is something that is near and dear to my heart. In fact, I have started working with RISE (Reconciliation in Solidarity Edmonton) to gain more understanding of my own family’s past in light of everything that has happened between Canada and Indigenous people. Through this journey, I am often faced with the question of: “how do you encourage reconciliation?” and “what is the most effective way to educate students about Indigenous history?” This is where I came across the KAIROS Blanket Exercise.

So, what is a Blanket Exercise?

I’ve been asked this questions many times. Whether it’s a family member at a holiday meal or a friendly conversation in the coffee line up, I always say the same thing. It’s a way to educate people on a topic that not everyone is fully aware of -- a way to present Canadian history from an Indigenous perspective.

This is a perspective that has been muted throughout history. In fact, remembering my elementary school days, I don’t recall learning much about Indigenous culture. To be honest, I think we spent more time talking about pirates than Indigenous Peoples. My own family history was muted as well. We were actively told to hide our true identity as a survival mechanism. This left me and my generation grossly unaware of the struggles that Indigenous Peoples have dealt with for more than 150 years.

The KAIROS Blanket Exercise is an excellent tool for building a more accurate image of how Canada came to be what it is now. Through an interactive script that engages all participants, it takes participants through time prior to any European settlers setting foot on Turtle Island. By immersing yourself into the activity, every participant feels the impacts that the Canadian government continues to have on Indigenous Peoples.

Now, what does this have to do with the library?

This is a tough, but wonderful question. Librarians are not all about books and databases. I see librarians as educators, activists, and helpers. Most important, libraries are a place of community. So, if a student and/or faculty member walks into the library I instinctively want to help.

This is what happened with EDU 211: Aboriginal Education and Contexts for Professional and Personal Engagement. A friendly conversation about library services evolved into a personal conversation about my involvement with RISE and my role in facilitating Blanket Exercises. It was the perfect combination of relationships and willingness to try new things in the classroom. Since that initial conversation, librarians gathered to help!

We gathered together in the Education Kiva room to share the exercise with 60 students and future educators. Since this initial Blanket Exercise, I have been asked to facilitate more within the Education community.

I am extremely grateful and humbled by the experience and being able to share my story with the students. By sharing these moments with the University community, I hope that this will help to inform future generations of instructors and students. 

Hiy hiy.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Sleep for Success Exhibit: On Now

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Did you know that over 30% of students at the UofA do not get an adequate amount of sleep? This deficit can result in poor grades, cognitive deficits, and poor physical and psychological health. Sleep, like good nutrition and exercise, is considered one of the foundations necessary for a happy, healthy life. For many post-secondary students, sleep is a major self-care challenge and a potential obstacle to success. Yuluan Wang and Vineet Prasad, graduate students with the Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, are on a mission to make the UofA a sleep-healthy campus.

Earlier this year, Yuluan and Vineet were awarded a Heroes for Health grant for their proposal to raise awareness of the effects of sleep on health. As a part of this initiative they have created an eClass course called Dream Big, Sleep Tight, where members of the UofA community can learn about the perils of sleep deficiency and how to combat it.

To help promote this course and the overall importance of sleep, Yuluan and Vineet have put together an exciting new exhibit at the John W. Scott Health Sciences Library. Exploring everything from hidden sources of caffeine to gadgets that can help and harm sleep this exhibit has plenty of solutions to help you catch the Zzzs you need to help you succeed. The Sleep for Success Exhibit will be hosted at the Scott Library from October 16 until November 19, 2017.


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

David Sulz Awarded Excellence in Learning Support

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“David has been a catalyst for my learning. I wish every grad student on campus could benefit from his presence or their own subject librarian during their learning journey...” - Yichuan Wang, Ph.D. student in Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology, one of the Award nominators.

University of Alberta Librarian David Sulz is known for his enthusiasm for learning and inspiring that in others. He listens to students, creates a safe environment, and is an active learning partner.

David Sulz and Yichuan Wang


Recently, he was recognized for these qualities and awarded the UAlberta Excellence in Learning Support. This award is specifically designed to recognize members of the University community whose role does not involve teaching, but who nonetheless directly and significantly contribute to the student learning experience.

Those who nominated David for his excellence in learning support were graduate students, colleagues, and professors. Each mentioned David’s enthusiasm for learning and his role as a connector of students. He creates a very fun and safe space for struggle with idea formation and an atmosphere where the struggle is embraced as an exciting growth opportunity. His joyful personality, life wisdom, and listening skills make him an active catalyst for learning and great conversation partner.

He uses alternative techniques to engage students and researchers to think differently about their subject and get excited about their learning. Whether he’s suggesting mind maps or encouraging students to explain their research in a sentence or two to a group of high school students touring the library, David makes learning fun.

Congratulations David!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Celebrate Edmonton Music: Wikipedia Edit-a-thon

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Friday, October 27, 11am-3pm @ MacEwan University Library, Multi-Purpose Room

Join librarians from MacEwan University and the University of Alberta for a Wikipedia edit-a-thon celebrating the music of Edmonton. Organized in coordination with the Canada 150: Music and Belonging Project, and in conjunction with Open Access Week, this edit-a-thon invites anyone interested in contributing to information on Edmonton music, editing Wikipedia, and open access to join us for this short, informal event.

Admission is free and no previous Wikipedia editing experience is required.

Location
John L. Haar Library (multipurpose room 7-269)
MacEwan University City Centre Campus
10700 104 Avenue Northwest
Edmonton, AB T5J 4S2

Schedule
11am-12pm: Part One: Wikipedia Basics

12pm-1pm: Lunch

1pm-3pm: Part Two: Hands-on editing of Edmonton music articles

Register on Eventbrite by Tuesday, October 18.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Archives Move to the New RCRF Begins

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The University of Alberta Archives has begun its move to our new high-density storage facility, the RCRF (Research and Collections Resource Facility).

The archives move involves the packing and moving of 31,477 boxes of materials or 1028 book carts. The move is expected to take 2 months. During the move, the archives collection is unavailable. For more information, please contact Archives (archives@ualberta.ca).

Friday, October 6, 2017

Library Updates: You asked, we listened!

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In response to student feedback through the Student Library Advisory Committee (SLAC) and informal channels, look for the following changes in Libraries this fall:
  • Introduction of food-free zones in some silent study spaces at Cameron, Rutherford, and Augustana. 
  • Loan periods for laptops & cameras have increased to 48 hours.
  • Addition of lockable cell-phone charging stations at most library locations. 
What hasn’t changed? We’re here to help! Need help with using the library, getting started on an assignment, searching for info, creating your bibliography…? Don’t hesitate to Ask Us!

Have a wonderful Fall Term!!

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Library Hacks: Holds

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Welcome to Library Hacks, a monthly segment where we give you tips on using the library.

This month learn about about HOLDS. 



What are holds?
Holds are a service the library provides to make library materials easier to access by delivering them to alternative library locations.

Why would you place a hold? 
The holds shelf at the J.W. Scott Health Sciences Library

There are a couple of reasons you would place a hold. Firstly, if an item is checked out to someone else, placing a hold on it tells the library system you want to use the material next. When you place a hold on checked out material, the person who has it checked out will not be able to renew it. If they have had it checked out past two-weeks they will get a recall notice, explaining the item has to be returned.

Another reason you would place a hold, is if material is at a different library location. The University of Alberta Libraries is a part of the the NEOS Library Consortium and therefore the library catalogue includes the collection of many libraries that are not on campus. Placing a hold brings the book to campus, to a library that is most convenient for you to retrieve it from.

How do you place a hold?
You can place holds in the library catalogue in the item record. When you click on the "place hold" button the catalogue will prompt you for your CCID and password. It will then ask you to choose a pick-up location.

The holds shelf at the Cameron Library
How long will the hold take to arrive?
It depends! Firstly, where was the material coming from? Materials that coming from another campus library, the Book and Record Depository (BARD) or somewhere in the city, typically take about 1-2 business days to arrive.  Secondly, was the material ON SHELF when you placed the hold? Material that is checked out will show a due date in the "location" area of the holdings information. If the material is checked out it could take quite a bit longer for the book to come in.


How do books get to where they need to go?
The holds shelf at the HT Coutts Library
Items placed on hold are retrieved by library staff on weekday mornings. Staff then put the holds into blue bins that get transported by our delivery truck drivers. The same delivery drivers drop-off bins they picked up at other locations. Library staff sort and place the holds on the hold shelf in alphabetical order by last name. When library staff check the materials in, the library system sends you an email telling you the hold is available for you to pick up.

You will find your holds on the hold shelf the library you selected as your pick-up location. You have five days to pick up your holds before we return them to their home location, or move them onwards to the next hold in line.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Meet the Dogs (and Cats!) in the Library

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Dog lovers rejoice! Dogs in the Library is back in session and we’re introducing an exciting new program for campus cat lovers. UAlberta Libraries is once again partnering with CAAWLS for Dogs in the Library. Together we're also piloting the new feline-centric Cats in the Library. As a sneak preview, meet a couple of the dogs and one of the cats you might see around our libraries.

Hi, my name is Percy. I’m an 8 year old Labrador Retriever-mix who’s spent the summer running, swimming, indulging in my favourite snacks (peanut butter and carrots, if you’re curious) and taking long naps. When I’m a really good boy my family will let me watch my favourite movie - Homeward Bound.

I’m looking forward to making some return visits to the library where I hope to get a few armpit scratches (I love a good armpit scratch!) and show everyone who’s a good boy… Don’t be shy in telling me if you think I am!



Hey everyone! Presley’s the name and drooling is my game. My descendants are from Newfoundland, but I was born in Saskatchewan nine years ago… Gosh, has it been that long... I still feel like a pup! Except when my mom plays fetch... Then I let the other dog I live with have all the glory.

Don’t let my size fool you (150 lbs), I’m just a big softy who loves getting plenty of hugs and kisses. I’m kind of like Dug, the dog from Up... I love that movie! This is the best time of year; the apple tree in my yard is full of apples that I can snack on and I get to visit the libraries again.


Wow… I like the looks of that Presley guy, and Percy has great taste in movies… Oops, sorry... I got distracted. I’m Gus the cat. It’s my first time working at the library and I’m super excited. Are there any birds at the library? I love birdwatching almost as much as I love my kibble and sleeping. Sometimes for a treat my family lets me eat wet food… A little slice of heaven. I’m also a sucker for cardboard boxes and big dogs.

Here’s hoping for lots of cuddles and no baths or showers when I visit this fall!


Excited to meet these guys and their many friends? Here are the dates and times where you can indulge in some canine, or feline, love.
Dogs in the Library
  • Cameron Library:  September 26, 12:30pm
  • Rutherford Library:  October 4, 2:00pm
  • Scott Library: October 5, 12:30pm
  • Coutts Library: October 12,  12:30pm
  • Cameron Library: October 25, 12:30pm
  • Coutts Library: November 1, 12:00pm
  • Rutherford Library:  November 1, 2:00pm
  • Scott Library: November 8, 12:30pm
  • Rutherford Library: November 22, 2:00pm
  • Coutts Library: November 28,  12:30pm
  • Cameron Library: November 30, 12:30pm
  • Scott Library: December 12, 12:30pm
  • Rutherford Library: December 13, 2:00pm 
Cats in the Library
  • Cameron Library: October 19, 12:30pm
  • Cameron Library: November 14, 12:30pm

Augustana students, never fear, Hutch the library dog will be keeping his usual hours at the Augustana campus library.

We encourage everyone to share their dog and cat selfies on Facebook and Instagram: #CAAWLS, #dogsinthelibrary, and #uofalibraries. We’d also love to see them in our Twitter feed, @uofalibraries.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Science Literacy Week 2017

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Join us at Cameron Library from September 18 to 21, where we will host a number of presentations, demos, and displays showcasing the diverse scientific research conducted by students and staff at the University of Alberta and by partners from across Edmonton local!



From paleontology and zoology, molecular gastronomy and board games, to robotics and makerspaces, the breadth of knowledge and research in science is amazing! Science Literacy Week gives students and staff the opportunity to get up close and personal with science and learn from those who are passionately engaged about their research and work.
Here's a sneak peak into some of the events this year!

Get Closer - Animal VisitGet to meet, learn about, and maybe even touch some of the smaller animals that live at the Edmonton Valley Zoo.
Fun with Let's Talk Science!Make your hair stand on ends with awesome experiments bought to you by Let's Talk Science!
Dino LabLearn about U of A's own Jurassic Park, the Dino Lab!
Liquid N-Ice CreamDrop by Cameron Library and grab some super chilled ice cream brought to you by CHEMSA!

Check out our University of Alberta Libraries' Science Literacy Week 2017 website for a list of planned events for the week.


Science Literacy Week 2016 Science Literacy Week 2016
In 2016, Cameron Library hosted one of the most successful Science Literacy Weeks in Canada, with a whopping 19+ events! This year, we have partnered with WISEST and many others to bring you even more exciting and informative events from the University and surrounding communities.

Let's break our own record! Put on your lab coat, find your best beaker, and come join us! Everyone is welcome!
(And don't forget to share on your experiences on social media with #scilit17 and #ualberta!)

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Simple Fix for Cringeworthy Crown Copyright

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There’s a provision in Canada’s Copyright Act that makes University of Alberta Copyright Librarian, Amanda Wakaruk, cringe. The clause (section 12 of the Act), states that:
Without prejudice to any rights or privileges of the Crown, where any work is, or has been, prepared or published by or under the direction or control of Her Majesty or any government department, the copyright in the work shall, subject to any agreement with the author, belong to Her Majesty and in that case shall continue for the remainder of the calendar year of the first publication of the work and for a period of fifty years following the end of that calendar year.
After multiple years of experiencing difficulty gaining permission for institutions like the U of A Libraries to digitally harvest and distribute publicly accessible government documents for research and study, Wakaruk has channelled her observations and angst about Crown Copyright into a House of Commons e-petition, sponsored by Saskatoon West MP, Sheri Benson. 

The premise of the petition - that information created and published by a government should be accessible to its people - is not unusual. In the United States, federal government publications have been in the public domain since the 1890s. And although the United Kingdom has retained its Crown Copyright provision, the provision has been updated and the country allows broad use and sharing of most public government publications under the terms of an Open Government Licence. Canada’s equivalent federal licence is more restrictive and applied inconsistently across government agencies. 

In Canada, Crown Copyright remains a significant barrier for institutions and individuals who need to use and reuse Canadian parliamentary proceedings, government reports, press releases, and statistical publications. Researchers and librarians are frustrated by the inconsistent interpretation of section 12 by government employees and by having to ask for permission to use these works in ways that should be not only allowed but encouraged in a liberal democracy.

The solution to fix Crown Copyright is simple: the petition calls for the addition of a clause (12.1) that removes copyright protection for government works once they’ve been made publicly available.

Wakaruk sees an important role for librarians in critiquing government information policy and how it affects the public good, and she’s not alone. Her petition is being supported by organizations and individuals from across Canada, and had gained over 1000 signatures at the time of this post.


For more information about Crown Copyright, and to view the e-Petition, which closes on September 23, visit www.fixcrowncopyright.ca.

More information about Amanda’s work on this issue can be found here: https://sites.google.com/a/ualberta.ca/wakaruk/presentations.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Scientific Experiments in Streaming Video

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Have you ever read a description of a scientific experiment and wished that you could visualize how it’s performed? Now you can! UAlberta Libraries subscribes to the complete contents of JoVE, a peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes experimental methods in video format. Launched ten years ago as the Journal of Visualized Experiments, JoVE has published over 7,000 high-quality videos demonstrating experiments from laboratories at the world’s leading research institutions, including the University of Alberta.

JoVE Video Journal contains cutting-edge experiments, accompanied by detailed text protocols. Collections include Biology, Developmental Biology, Genetics, Neuroscience, Medicine, Cancer Research, Immunology and Infection, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Engineering, Bioengineering, Behaviour, and Environment.

JoVE Science Education videos allow educators and students to better teach and learn key concepts and fundamental techniques at the undergraduate course level. These simple, easy-to-understand video demonstrations cover a wide range of STEM subjects including Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Psychology, Clinical Medicine and Engineering.

Visit
 JoVE today for a new perspective on lab experiments.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Five Things to Know About University of Alberta Libraries

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We have a library for that!
We have ten libraries covering all fields of study:
* Augustana Campus Library (Camrose)
* Bibliothèque Saint-Jean (Campus Saint-Jean)
* Bruce Peel Special Collections & Archives
* Cameron (Science and Technology)
* H.T. Coutts (Education and Physical Education)
* John W. Scott (Health Sciences)
* John A. Weir (Law)
* Rutherford (Humanities and Social Sciences)
* Winspear (Business)
* Book and Record Depository (BARD)*

Feel free to visit and use any of these libraries, no matter your field of study. 

*Please note that BARD is no longer accessible to the public. To access an item housed at BARD, place a hold on it and have it sent to the NEOS library of your choice. 


Your ONECard is your library card 
How long can you borrow books? What are your borrowing privileges? Find out here

To avoid fines:
* Read your email notification of due dates
* Renew books online with My Account
* Return recalled books by their due date

Your ONECard can also be used to borrow materials from Edmonton Public Library by registering for the free L-PASS program. You can also use your ONECard to get a TAL Card to borrow from libraries across the province, including Camrose!


Search our collections online 
The University of Alberta Libraries is Canada's second largest research library, with a print and electronic collection exceeding 4.7 million titles and over 8.7 million volumes. In addition to using your ONECard to borrow books, as a member of the U of A community you can use your CCID and password to access more than 110,000 scholarly ejournals, over 1.3 million ebooks, and over 1,700 online databases to help you succeed with academic research projects. And if we don’t have what you need, request it via interlibrary loan.

Browse our guides for information by subject, or start your search at www.library.ualberta.ca.

You can also borrow laptops and other electronic devices. Visit our equipment lending guide for more information. 



We have space for you 
We have great spaces and technology for you to get your work done, including:
* Designated common, quiet and silent areas, which have everything from individual carrels and comfortable soft seating to silent, technology free zones and large quiet reading rooms
* Late night study hours in Cameron, Rutherford, and Augustana Libraries
* Over 50 study and practice presentation rooms, varied in size and setup, that are bookable online
* Over 700 Windows and over 100 Mac workstations, equipped with a wide range of browsers and office productivity software
* Charging lockers that offer a secure option to power up your cell phone

Our spaces are open to everyone!

Ask us for help!
Feel free to come to any of our libraries to get research assistance at our service desks. Our staff can help you find what you need and teach you to use our resources. Can’t make it in person?  Chat, text, email, or call us.

We have librarian experts for every field of study. If you need in-depth assistance for a major project make an appointment with a librarian.

Questions? Ask us!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Join the 2017/2018 Student Library Advisory Committee

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You can make a difference on campus and share your voice with the UAlberta Libraries! We're looking for new members for SLAC, our Student Library Advisory Committee.

If selected, you will work collaboratively with your peers and library staff to enhance and improve library services to better meet the evolving needs of undergraduate and graduate students, now and in the future.


Previous committee members have played an active role in helping the Libraries make key decisions related to its technology lending pilot program, Course Textbook Initiative, communication efforts with students, new furniture purchases, and web site usability.

For more information about SLAC's mandate, membership, and expectations, and to submit your application, go to http://library.ualberta.ca/slac/

Deadline for application: September 17, 2017

Questions? Contact one of the Co-Chairs: Angie Mandeville at afm1@ualberta.ca or Lindsay Johnston at lindsay.johnston@ualberta.ca

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Borrow Textbooks from the Library

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You can save money this academic year by borrowing your textbooks from the library!

Be mindful that reserve textbooks are meant to be shared with your peers. In order for as many students as possible to use these textbooks, they are made available in Library Reserve Collections and may be borrowed for 2 hours during library hours.

The aim of the Course Textbook Initiative is to increase student access to textbooks and offset student costs. The U of A Libraries allocates funds annually to purchase selected course textbooks. To make the most of these funds, we have some buying parameters that we follow:

1. Textbook is REQUIRED for the course (not recommended or optional).

2. Cost is $50 or higher.

Interested in finding out if your course textbook is available to borrow? Search the Reserve Collections.

Any questions about this service, please Ask Us! Email: textbook@ualberta.ca

Textbook not available?

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Re-discover Academic Journals with BrowZine

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In this age of straight-forward Google searches and online shopping, we often forget the power of browsing. 

Companies, streaming services and, yes, even libraries are struggling to replicate browsing experiences in the virtual world to reveal their products and content. Within academia in particular, the evermore digital nature of scholarly communication, causes the unfortunate side-effect that we seldom 'browse' the library shelves or flip through complete journals anymore. This is where the BrowZine, a mobile and web-based application, comes in. 

BrowZine, is a "journal engagement platform" by library technology company Third Iron that provides the simple service of enabling library users to 'browse' journal content that the libraries subscribes to.

You can download the free apps for several types of mobile platforms or you can access a web-based version on a desktop or laptop. After quickly creating an account with your university email account you can start to fill your virtual shelves with the journals relevant to your field. You can browse by subject matter or input names of specific journals. As journals update content overtime, the BrowZine app notifies you. You can then skim the titles of the articles and save any you wish to read later.

BrowZine also takes you directly to the article PDF version (if the publisher provides one) so you can read it within the app, essentially recreating the 'flipping through a journal' experience. BrowZine will be of most use to faculty and grad students trying to keep up with research publications in specific fields of study. 

Browzine In Action

A snapshot of my BrowZine shelf for
Communication journals.
As grad student embarking on my first major literature review process for my research, I tested BrowZine for a few weeks to see if it might help with the discovery research within my area of interest.  I took a moment and investigated in the Journal Citation Reports JCR database, which journals in my field of study were the most cited or had the highest impact factor and added these journals to my 'shelf' in BrowZine.

Over the course of several weeks, whenever I had a free moment,  I skimmed through my journals in BrowZine.

In a two-week period, I found:

  • 8 research articles that I will be including in my literature review, 
  • 4 articles using relatable research methods,
  • and several others that I passed on to other fellow grad students. 

I also have a long list of interesting articles unrelated to my research that I want to return to when time permits.

My little trial of BrowZine has proven to me that browsing really does expose you to new ideas and avenues of research you never considered. BrowZine also keeps you abreast of the bigger picture of what is happening in your field by revealing the full contents of specific journal issues, allowing you to see trends in a broader sense.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Bruce Peel Library Receives Design Award

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Mounties on the Cover (UAL, 2017) won an Award of Excellence from the annual UCDA Design Competition in the exhibition publication category. Lara Minja from Lime Design created a beautiful publication and curator Al Lund selected a delightful array of book covers for the exhibition and catalogue layout. 

Copies of the exhibition catalogue can be purchased through University of Alberta Press, Indigo, Amazon, or in person in the Peel library.

If you did not get an opportunity to see the exhibition, you are always welcome to submit a Retrieval Request Form to have a look. Simply request selections from the exhibition of the RCMP Book Collection of S/Sgt. Al Lund to view in our reading room.

Patrons are also encouraged to look at catalogued material from the RCMP Book Collection of S/Sgt. Al Lund, which can be searched by typing "RCMP Book Collection" in the library catalogue.

We look forward to your visit!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Shoah Foundation Visual History Archive

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Shoah: (noun) a modern Hebrew term used since the 1940s to describe the Holocaust. The mass murder of Jews under the German Nazi regime during 1941–5.
Steven Spielberg presented with the Ambassador for Humanity
award by President Obama in 2014 - USC Shoah Foundation
The University of Alberta Libraries now offer access to the Shoah Foundation Visual History Archive, the world’s largest archive of audiovisual testimonies of survivors and witnesses to genocide. The USC Shoah Foundation was founded by Steven Spielberg in 1994 after he began filming Schindler’s List. Spielberg began interviewing survivors and the interview structure came from his desire to tell a complete life story. Survivors would be asked to start with their background history, then their experiences during the war, and then describe how their lives unfolded in the aftermath.

52,000 interviews were conducted between 1994-1999. The collection was then transferred to USC who will preserve in perpetuity. The collection has grown to capture the testimony of people who have survived mass violence.

The collection, which began as a repository of Holocaust and World War II testimony, has grown to include 52,000 testimonies from the 1937 Nanjing Massacre in China, the 1994 Rwandan Tutsi Genocide, the Cambodian Genocide of 1975-1979, the Guatemalan Genocide of 1978-96, and the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923. Testimonies were collected in 62 countries and 41 languages.

This includes experiences such as:

  • Jewish Survivor
  • Political Prisoner
  • Rescuer and Aid Provider
  • War Crimes Trial Participant
  • Jehovah’s Witness Survivor
  • Sinti and Roma Survivor
  • Liberator
  • WWII Survivor
  • Non-Jewish Forced Laborer
  • Eugenic Policies Survivor 
  • Homosexual Survivor 

Given the diversity and deeply insightful content of the Shoah Foundation’s archive, the testimonies have the potential to support research, teaching and learning in many disciplines. If you wish to learn more about this new collection, please contact your Subject Librarian.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Launch of ERA A+V

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We are excited to announce the launch of ERA A+V, a new media-streaming repository that provides online access to audiovisual materials in support of teaching, learning, and research at the University of Alberta.

The platform is developed, hosted, and managed by UAlberta Libraries. While browsing ERA A+V, you’ll notice that you can easily create playlists and embed videos into other websites. The service provides powerful multimedia streaming functionality and allows for CCID protection of files. Additionally, audiovisual content from ERA A+V can be further restricted to certain audiences (e.g. a specific class), which helps instructors abide by copyright restrictions.

“ERA A+V provides many opportunities for researchers to easily share their audio and video content,” explains Sean Luyk, ERA A+V Service Manager and Music Librarian. “With the launch of this platform, the University community has the ability to host its own digital audiovisual content in a secure environment built for the needs of the academic community, in support of the increasing use of media content in research and teaching .”

Umar Qasim, Digital Preservation Officer and ERA A+V Technical Manager, adds, “At the libraries, we are very focused on the preservation of digital materials for long-term access. Ongoing efforts and resources are required to ensure the longevity of digital information. ERA A+V is an initiative that will help ensure that audio-visual content from the University will be accessible for many years to come, and is properly managed and curated. ”

How long is long term exactly? Could be 10 years, 100 years or even more.

Two engaging collections that you can already browse (make sure to log in to access all content) are:


If you would like to add your audiovisual recordings to ERA A+V,  please fill out our form. We can’t wait to hear from you and hear about your audio-visual projects.

What’s next for ERA A+V? The UofA Libraries are currently in the process of depositing the 50 year archive (1967-present) of recordings of performances at the UofA’s illustrious Convocation Hall.

Check out the ERA A+V description page on the Libraries website for more information and to learn about our our service policies.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Instructors: Have you tried our Reading List Service yet?

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Instructors, are you taking advantage of the libraries' reserve service? Its a practical and useful service for busy instructors and students alike.

How do you get started?

Send the library your course reading list and we will provide you with durable links to online articles and ebooks. You can use these links in eClass and on course websites so your students will have easy access to class readings. Some ebooks may only be accessed by a limited number of people at a time but when you use this service, we raise user limits on e-books for course readings.

Also, at your request, we will add print items to the library reserve room of your choice that students may borrow for short term loans.

The library already has many required textbooks available in our reserve rooms through a partnership with the Bookstore.  If your course text needs to be added, please include it in your request.

And, as always, Ask Us if you have questions!

Friday, August 4, 2017

University of Alberta Libraries Staff Picks - Summer Reads!

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Ok students, staff, faculty.... put down your textbooks, your research or whatever you are working on. Seriously, summer is in full swing and now is the time to enjoy some leisure reading before fall term begins. You know you want to! You've earned it! We even asked library staff to share their favourite summer reads and compiled a list.

There is a little bit for every taste on this list, including thrillers, mysteries, romance, graphic novels, non-fiction and poetry. Most of these books can be found in our collection, and if you decide you want to check it out, just click on the book cover to get a direct link to the book's record in the library catalogue so you can find it in the stacks! We also included the submitting staff members comments, to give you a sense of what they are about.

We highly encourage you to explore many of great reads in our collection. You could also stop by Coutts Library and borrow one of their lawn chairs and enjoy the sun while you read. You will thank yourself when things get busy come fall!



Lab Girl  by Hope Jahren
An entertaining memoir of a prominent woman scientist that reads like a good story and expresses a wonderful passion for plant life.
Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake  by  Anna Quindlen
Pulitzer prize journalist and novelist reflects on her career, family life and her view life's later years to come.



Alone Against the North: An Expedition into the Unknown  by  Adam Shoalts
Allows you to experience the thrills and challenges of modern day exploration, and to appreciate the beauty of the Canadian north.


A Wanted Man  by  Lee Child
The Eyre Affair  by  Jasper Fforde
Simultaneously silly and smart!
Wyrd Sisters  by  Pratchett, Terry
Funny and good character development... pick any book in the Discworld series.
The Handmaid's Tale  by  Margaret Atwood
It is very relevant to today, particularly the extreme evangelical republican party, and the new TV Series.
Memory and Dream  by  Charles de Lint
A Canadian author who writes modern mythology fiction very influenced by Native American Coyote myths and European faerie tales.



Big Little Lies  by  Liane Moriarty
There's a mystery at the centre of it that makes you want to keep reading
Where'd You Go, Bernadette?  by  Maria Semple
It's a quirky read, and I love the way it's written through notes, letters, and emails.
Hostage  by  Guy Delisle
Exciting, terrifying, agonizing, incredible art . . . a Delisle masterpiece!
In a Dark, Dark Wood  by  Ruth Ware
Summer is wedding season. Friends, Nora and Clare haven't seen each other in  ten years, until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s staggette "hen" arrives. The past & secrets start coming out. Things start going very wrong...

Eileen  by Ottessa Moshfegh
In Fine Style: the Dancehall Art of Wilfred Limonious  by  Christopher Bateman
A fascinating read about Limonious & Jamaica’s 80s/90s dancehall culture, with rich visually appealing artwork.


The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian  by  Sherman Alexie
The honest way it portrays reservation life and the struggle to overcome barriers.
Voyager (Outlander #3)  by  Diana Gabaldon
Catch up with the 3rd book in Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series before it premiers on September 10th.
What is Not Yours Is Not Yours  by  Helen Oyeyemi
Beautiful writing with bits of magic and whimsy. It's a book of short stories [though they all connect, in some way], so you get a variety of wonderful stories.



Keeper'n Me  by  Richard Wagamese
The best part about this book is how it is told in two voices: one of the elder and one of the city-raised boy.  The dry sense of humour makes it fun to read too.
The Circle  by  Dave Eggers
Fans of the show "Black Mirror" will love this. A consipiracy/thriller centred around a Google/Apple-esque company. I also saw some parallels with elements of scientology and the culture of denunciation in communist regimes. A real page-turner and a great summer read.

You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life  by  Jen Sincero
It's self-help for people too punk rock for self help books.
So You've Been Publicly Shamed  by  Jon Ronson
Looks at an interesting facet of social media. Also, a fascinating peek into another aspect of Zimbardo's prison study.



Saga  by  Brian K Vaughan
The Art! The story!

Paper Girls  by  Vaughan, Brian K.
The art work could tell a story on it's own.
Indigenous Writes  by  Chelsea Vowel
Chelsea Vowel discusses Indigenous issues in a direct voice with excellent examples. A great introduction to Indigenous issues in Canada, should be required reading!


New American Best Friend  by  Olivia Gatwood
A rising star on the American poetry scene. Olivia Gatwood is an amazing talent whose work is raw, enlightening and beautiful. Poetry is also great short reading for summer vacations.



Midnight, Texas  by  Charlaine Harris
If you are missing Charlaine Harris' characters from Bon Temps, this is the next best thing. 
Cutting for Stone  by  Verghese, A. (Abraham), 1955-
Serious but beautifully detailed and written. 
Sense and Sensibility  by  Jane Austen
Jane's wit, humour, and poignant prose help you to remember the importance of self-reflection and give a window into life in regency England. “Sometimes one is guided by what they say of themselves, and very frequently by what other people say of them, without giving oneself time to deliberate and judge."