CUA LIS makes its mark at ASIST and VAASL conferences

Last week was a busy week for me – I attended the annual meeting of the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIST) in Montreal Sunday-Tuesday and then the fall conference of the Virginia Association of School Librarians (VAASL) in Williamsburg Thursday and Friday. CUA was well-represented at both.

At ASIST, I got to catch up on the leading edge research being done in our field, which included a poster from Drs. Sue Yeon Syn and Sung Un Kim, “The Impact of Source Credibility on Young Adults’ Health Information Activities on Facebook: Preliminary Findings.” Their research on social networking systems is helping us understand how young adults perceive the credibility of various information sources, how their information activities differ by those information sources, and how young adults’ perception of credibility impacts their information activities.

At VAASL, Dr. Kim, along with our two students, Amy Chenaille and Laura Walters, represented the CUA Department of Library and Information Science. I had a chance to meet with our alums and learn first-hand of the great work they are doing. Two of our alums made presentations. Lanelle Hilling (MSLS 2001) provided step-by-step guidance on creating  instructional videos for library resources at Marshall Middle School in The Plains, Virginia. Her presentation showed how straightforward it can be. But what was really impressive was how she gets students to make the videos. Student-made videos have an authenticity that engages other students. At T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Beth Ebenstein Mulch (MSLS 2011) promotes reading and the library with tools as advanced as Facebook and Twitter, and as basic as laminated cards that teachers post on their door to show what they are currently reading. One thing that caught my attention: They take the library to the cafeteria for lunch during exams, bringing books and a laptop. Students can check out books there or request a book, which they can pick up at lunch the next day. Beth credited her success to working with her colleagues and the teachers. Our adjunct faculty member and practicum coordinator, Nancy Silcox, gave a presentation on her new biography, “Samuel Wilbert Tucker: The Story of a Civil Rights Trailblazer and the 1939 Alexandria Library Sit-In.”

It was inspiring to see the great things our CUA alums and faculty are doing. Thank you for sharing and giving back to our community.

–Bill
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Bill Kules, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Chair
Department of Library and Information Science

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