" /> The Dewey Library Blog: August 2008 Archives

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August 31, 2008

Take Time to Learn About the Library Now

Librarians and staff at Dewey offer many instruction sessions to help you make better use of library resources. We recommend taking one or more classes early in the semester, before time to finish important assignments and research is at a premium. Here are the workshops offered this week at Dewey:


  • 2:00 pm: Conducting Research from Home

  • 10:00 am: Introdution to Research Databases

  • 2:00 pm: Social Welfare Research Seminar

  • 4:30 pm: Orientation Tour

  • 3:30 pm: Minerva,UA Libraries' Online Catalog

  • 4:30 pm: Orientation Tour

  • 10:00am: Orientation Tour
  • If you would like to sign up for one of these classes, drop by the Reference Desk, call 442-3691, or register online.

    August 28, 2008

    Look What We Did While You Were Away!

    We were busy here at Dewey Library during the summer break. We have expanded our Information Commons area and we now provide ITS consultant help.

    The University at Albany Information Commons consists of the three University Libraries and Information Technology Services (ITS) working together to bring you the latest and greatest hardware and software. The Information Commons area provides a location with convenient access to both important research resources (provided by the libraries) and critical software and technology (provided by ITS).

    What has changed at Dewey over the summer is that we have consolidated into our building the ITS User Room that used to be in the basement of Draper Hall. Downstairs at Dewey, we've added 16 new computers and additional tables and seating. We also have put computers in the study area that is located in the peristyle across from the classroom.

    All the new computers downstairs have the ITS supplied software that has previously only been available on the main floor at Dewey and at other locations on campus. This software includes the full Microsoft Office suite, DreamWeaver, PhotoShop, SPSS, and a wide variety of other programs.

    ITS consultants will be available upstairs in Dewey Library to answer your technology questions. They can be found by the upstairs printer during the following hours:
    Monday through Thursdays 2pm -8pm
    Fridays 2pm – 5pm
    Sundays 2pm – 6pm

    Reference librarians will continue to be available to answer questions about research and library materials according to the fall reference schedule.

    Our goal is to continually provide better service for you. We hope this partnership will make the use of library and ITS resources more convenient for you and that we will be better able to provide you with the assistance you need to use those resources.

    Blog post created by Judith O. Mueller

    August 27, 2008

    Save Time Later -- Attend a Workshop Now

    Each Semester Dewey Graduate Library offers an array of workshops for new and returning students. These workshops are designed to help students become acclimated to the library and its print and online resources. Students who are specializing in Information Science, Criminal Justice and Social Welfare may wish to take an instruction session that is specifically geared to their discipline. However, all students will find classes on research databases, Minerva, the online catalog and conducting research from home useful.

    Take a look at our schedule of classes. You can register online, in person at the Dewey Reference Desk or call us at 442-3691. All of these sessions are free. Students often comment that they find the classes “helpful time savers.��? After all, if you already know how to use our information resources, you won’t have to spend valuable research time trying to figure out how to access an article.

    For more information about Dewey Library’s instructional offerings, email Dewclass@uamail.albany.edu or call the reference desk at 442-3691.

    Blog post created by Deborah Bernnard

    August 24, 2008

    Welcome to the Library -- Let Us Show You Around!

    Greenings and a hearty welcome to new members of the downtown campus community! The Dewey Library staff looks forward to helping with your research and studies throughout your time at our campus. Also, welcome back to the returning students and faculty – we’ve made a few changes at the Dewey Library to provide more services and resources – we invite you to look at some summer blog postings about new e-books and databases .

    The Dewey Library offers Orientation Tours during the beginning of the semester for anyone who is new to the campus or who would like a refresher on what Dewey has to offer. This week the Orientation Tours will be held: Tuesday, August 26 at 11:00am and Thursday, August 28 at 3:30pm.

    To sign up for a tour, drop by the reference desk, call us at 442-3691, or register online. While you’re there take a look at our full instruction schedule.

    Regardless of whether you take a tour, feel free to stop by the reference desk, introduce yourself and get to know our friendly staff We’re happy to answer questions and want to help you learn your way around our library and it's (sometimes confusing) collection of resources. We’re glad you’re here, and we’re here to help!

    August 19, 2008

    New Ebscohost 2.0 interface

    Used by many researchers for its competence and comprehensiveness, EBSCO’s Academic Search Premiere was recently re-released as EBSCO’s Academic Search Premier 2.0. Fear not however, all the content coverage that drew so many people to Academic Search Premier 1.0 remains; it’s just that much easier to access with the 2.0 version. For a brief tutorial and screen shots, expand this posting.

    Below is a screen shot of the Academic Search Premier page as accessed from the University Libraries “Databases and Indexes��? link.

    ebsco 1aa.jpg

    From this point there is relatively little change to how one uses Academic Search. Using the terms “males��? and “arthritis��? as an example, enter your search terms in the appropriate field choosing an corresponding field ( subject, etc) and, sorting them by any number of limiters (Full-text, scholarly articles, etc.) yields search results that look something like this:

    ebsco 2aa.jpg

    You can view the abstracts for articles by placing your cursor over the magnifying glass at the end of the article title:

    ebsco 3aa.jpg

    From here you can go directly to the citation for that article – available in virtually any format:

    ebsco 4ab.jpg

    If the article is available in full-text format you have the option of reading it on your computer screen, saving it to your computer or a portable device, or emailing the article (and citation) to yourself.
    Another research time-saving feature is the folder option in Academic Search Premier 2.0. You can either send all the articles returned in a search to your folder by clicking on “Add��? button on the upper-right hand corner of the search results, or do so individually by clicking on the title of an article. In either case items sent to your folder allow you to, in “Folder View��? keep a running list of the items you plan on using for your research.

    ebsco 5aa.jpg

    Be aware however that unless you create a free account with EBSCO, your folders content disappears when you exit out of EBSCO.

    There are numerous other new features in the 2.0 version of Academic Search Premier. The visual search option lets you trace your research visually, providing relative sub-topics and related terms to broaden or narrow your research as needed. With an EBSCO account you can receive email alerts when articles matching your search terms are available in EBSCO.

    Keep in mind however that in the end any database, whether the 1.0 or 2.0 version is only as good as its users understanding of its capabilities. If you have any questions about Academic Search Premier 2.0, or want to point out a feature you find useful in your research, we encourage you to contact a librarian!

    Blog post created by Michael V. Daly

    August 11, 2008

    New Book by Information Studies Professor

    In this hurried modern world, students these days are often more concerned about ‘passing the test’ than actually learning. Computerized social networking groups, blogs, and other online entertainment have changed the way we socialize, the internet has changed the way we gather information, and instant messaging and email challenge our concept of space and time. As a result, now more than ever, the village in the expression “It takes a village to raise a child��? has become a global village.

    A new book co-authored by University at Albany professor Joette Stefl-Mabry, Knowledge Communities: Bringing the Village into the Classroom, discusses how the local and global community should become a bigger part of the classroom. In this modern world, feeling connected to and belonging to larger groups has changed dramatically. Children are no longer participating in family dinners or even playing outdoors with their neighbors. Now children spend more time with and feel a sense of belonging to their online communities. With this change in how children relate to the world the authors’ state the need “to create schools that maximize the students’ ability to interact with the world around them.��?

    The authors advocate the need to create ‘Knowledge Communities��? as a way to organize the world. These knowledge communities are comprised of “people in diverse positions who collectively help members of an enterprise shape their future.��? By bringing the world into the classroom, students can see how they are a part of this larger global village. The authors’ state that we need “to be proactive and not reactive��? to the changes in society that shape how students see their world. This book is invaluable to those interested in preparing students to become

    Co-author Joette Stefl-Mabry is an Assistant Professor with the College of Computing and Information, Department of Information Studies as well as an Assistant Research Professor with the School of Education’s Department of Educational Theory and Practice at the University at Albany. This book can be found in both the Main Library as well as Dewey Library with the Call Number of LB 2833.82 S8415 2006. For now, in Dewey Library it can be found on the New Book Shelf near the Reference Desk.

    Blog post created by Judith O. Mueller

    August 7, 2008

    Scopus is here!

    The University Libraries are proud to announce the availability of Scopus, a database focused on scholarly publications in the sciences and social sciences. The unique and powerful ability gained from using Scopus is the ability to not only find relevant articles on your topic, but to determine the scholarly value of your results.

    While the search interface functions like many other databases-- enter any combination of search terms and fields (author, title, abstract, etc), the results from those searches are where Scopus differentiates itself. Users can sort results by clicking on the “Documents,��? “Authors,��? “Date, “Source Title��? or "Cited By��? tabs. In addition to offering quick access to abstracts and some full-text articles, Scopus also allows users to track articles that have cited each item in your result list. If, for example, you’re deciding between including two articles in your research, looking at the far right hand column, “Cites��? of the search returns, lets you see the number of times an article has been cited. Clicking on that number brings up those very articles. Such functions have been used for promotion and tenure decisions (Scopus also offers several tools to analyze an institution’s, publication’s, or author’s scholarly output and influence – contact a Reference Librarian for further information.)

    The very user-friendly and accessible format lets casual searchers and beginning researchers becomes more familiar with how scholarly thought has progressed from one article to succeeding publications. Setting up an account lets users utilize the “citation tracker��? feature, where users may receive updates when newly published articles cite a chosen article or author. All results and analyses can be exported to any number of end-user external programs – including Excel, RefWorks and EndNote.

    There’s a lot to do and see in Scopus, so it’s nice that there is a thoroughly researched, well-presented and readable “Help��? function. You can find it as a running header throughout your searches in the top right hand corner of every page. Clicking on the help icon brings up answers to almost every question one might have about Scopus.

    Scopus is accessible through the Databases and Indexes link on the University Libraries main web page. If you need help using Scopus or any other resource, feel free to drop by the reference desk or call us at 442-3691 to make an appointment, or Ask a Librarian!

    Blog post created by Michael V. Daly

    August 5, 2008

    Goodbye, Mike!


    The Dewey Library bids farewell to Michael V. Daly, Sunday Reference Associate. In addition to manning the Reference Desk on Sunday afternoons, Mike has been a prodigious contributor to the blog. His final posting will appear later this week. We wish Mike continued success in all of his endeavors.