I am pleased to have been awarded my Rudaí23 CPD Champion badge for completing all modules of the @Rudaí23 course and collecting all of the four category badges.
Things 19, 20 & 21 are complete...
And now for Thing 22... The final reflective practice of the course and alas the end of Rudaí 23. I thought I would be delighted 'doing' this final reflection, but now that I am actually doing it I am feeling somewhat lonely. Rudaí 23 has played a significant part in my evening routine over the past few months. I have used tools that I would never have considered using, tools that I hadn't heard of and indeed tools that I use in both my personal and professional life. I am thus both happy and despondent.
The task for Thing 22 is to reflect on Things 19, 20 and 21, so here goes. Podcasts are digital audio files available online. I choose to complete option 2 and produced a short podcast. Option 1 would have been a more engaged option but the fact that I hadn't created a podcast in the past meant that I choose this option. I have listened to a number of podcasts, I particularly enjoy 'Librarians Aloud' as its by librarians for librarians, or indeed for those interested in the profession. I also like the 'Adventures in library instruction' series of podcasts. The tools I used for this task were Audacity for recording and SoundCloud for hosting my recording. Both tools were very user friendly and free and I would definitely use both tool going forward; in fact I plan on recording and making available a series of library instruction podcasts for our library users.
Thing 20 covered library advocacy. We advocate our libraries through our mission statements, strategic plans and other library publications, but we can always do more. Thing 20 aimed to get us thinking about how we can contribute to library advocacy. I found this task both interesting and challenging. Yes, we have a mission statement along with a number of library publications but I must admit that I would have not considered such material advocacy as such. So this task really got me thinking, before the task the main way I considered advocacy was through marketing the library and promoting library activities. I was apprehensive to begin with in following the list of 9 exercises but pleased when I completed all 9 exercises provided. I believe that librarians need educating in the skills of advocacy, as library professionals we value libraries but how is that value measured outside of our sphere. We can measure the impact of our profession through engagement and impact. I hadn't regarded our physical space as a form of advocacy but in hindsight being fortunate enough to have a somewhat flagship building both within the college and beyond is testimony to such.
Thing 20 goes hand-in-hand with Thing 21; professional library associations are key to advocacy; encouraging campaigns, funding and developing national strategies and frameworks. Advocacy is just one of the many benefits of engaging with professional groups and organisation. Professional groups advocate the values and functions of librarians, raising our profile as professionals. They advise, campaign, and provide forums to communicate and collaborate. They provide courses and conferences as well as recognising the pursuit of continued professional development. Professional groups akin to the Library Association of Ireland (LAI) and the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) advise, influence and set standards.
It is evident that a group of people have more influence and power than an individual, so if we value our profession we should engage with like minded professionals by joining an associated group. Thing 21 genuinely made me reassess the value of joining professional groups. As an employee I am an institutional member of the LAI and up until now have been happy with the benefits of the membership but after this task I can appreciate the more far reaching benefits of renewing my individual membership.
Some final thoughts...
Rudaí 23 has been a compelling course of discovery from start to finish. The reflective practice tasks really helped me make meaning of the 23 things. It's easy to skim over some tools without truly understanding how to use them. The reflective practice tasks made me think about what I did; evaluating the advantages or disadvantages of the tools, as well as exploring the value of tools relevant to our profession and the impact of library professionals. In the main I have embraced the 23 Things for information skills provided through Rudaí 23.
I would like to thank the Rudaí 23 team for the enlightening course, the positive feedback and ongoing encouragement. Well done all, it’s been a pleasure!
Professional groups are important to individuals and organisations. Library Associations offer members the opportunity to raise their profile and establish professionalism. We are institutional members of the Library Association of Ireland (LAI) for years. I did in the past have a personal membership, but this has lapsed for sometime. This ‘thing’ has made me reconsider renewing my individual membership. Being a member provides a sense of community along with networking, collaboration and CPD opportunities. I particularly like the fact that you can join different sections and groups within the LAI; thus, making the membership more personal. Going forward I would like to apply for the Associateship of the Library Association of Ireland (ALAI) an award that signifies both academic success and practical experience in library and information studies.
The form is printed, I am going to fill it in this week and update my individual membership.
I found the tasks on critical thinking particularly challenging and stimulating. At no time had I considered PIM or indeed advocated Wikipedia, so I am pleased to have been given the opportunity to consider both. Whether we want to or not, we continuously contribute to a growing representation of who we are online, so no matter what we do online it's important that we know what kind of trail we're leaving and what the likely effects are. Librarians are good at sharing information and imparting knowledge, so I was at ease with Thing 17, sharing your work.
On paper the idea of Personal Information Management (PIM) seems like something that could really benefit my life. However, I really didn’t think I could fully engage with any of the tools I experimented with for this task. However, the more I thought about PIM the more I thought about using Evernote, it would mean less paper in my life and the search functionally seems very good; the more you add the more useful the tool would be. PIM is about finding, keeping, organizing, and maintaining information, it’s about managing privacy and the flow of information something that information professional do continually in their professional roles; I now need to do the same with my personal information.
My opinion of Wikipedia has changed since doing thing 15. I had never thought of editing a Wikipedia entry and to be honest I tend to avoid Wikipedia at all cost, that is until I completed the task. As an information professional I consider myself dependable in judging the relevance of information sources, considering; authority, accuracy and objectivity. I use the CRAAP Test for my own research purposes and when delivering information skills sessions in evaluating information. I would always discredit Wikipedia but from now on I will be advising students to use it as a general reference and I realise it is a great source for information, as with all information it is up to the reader/user to think critically about all the information they find and use. I really enjoyed using the ‘Citation Hunt’ tool to edit a citation and can see me using the tool in the future.
Overall, I consider myself careful about my digital footprint. I always think before I post a personal picture or information. I would never click on an email where I do not know the sender. My online banking is only performed over a secure network. As with several previous ‘Things’ my eyes have been opened much wider since this task. I will be taking added precautions to consciously reduce my digital footprint going forward. The terms and conditions are not something I would usually read in the main for apps or downloads, so no, I seldom give informed consent, especially as far as social media is concerned. I must add this to my new to do list, especially with the latest Facebook controversy. I am guilty of using a derivation of passwords. Unfortunately, I cannot see myself changing this behaviour, since so much of my daily routines performed online requiring passwords, it would be impossible to be too obscure with them.
Librarians offer people the ability to discover information, we are good at resource sharing and we work together to advance library services. Thing 17 gave me the opportunity to update and share work on ResearchGate, a tool for sharing research work, it helps get your research ‘out there’ as well as offering a place to network with peers. I didn’t try SlideShare, this is on my ‘to do’ list, to upload a presentation to share across my social networks, I have a LinkedIn account so it should be fairly straightforward.
For professional growth we need to get out of our comfort zone, and into our growth zone. I think I have achieved this with the tasks included in the critical thinking section, I have experimented with several new tools and tried something that I would never have considered doing only for Rudaĺ 23.
Exercise 1: Name three detrimental effects to a local community when a public library is closed.
Exercise 2: Find a Library Strategic Plan in Ireland or beyond for a library of any size. Identify three ways in which the strategic plan also advocates for the Library Service.
University of Manchester Library strategy.
Exercise 3: Name three ways in which you can demonstrate the impact and value of the library service that you work in or use.
Exercise 4: Identify three key people (name their role) outside of the library in the wider organisation/community that you need to network with in order to advance the development of the Library Service.
Exercise 5: Write down in 200 words or less an idea for Library Ireland Week for a library you work in or use.
Your Library - Your Search Engine
We know about information, we help people find what they want or need, we know lots of ways of searching for it, we know how to evaluate information, we care about quality, we have access resources beyond the free Web
Exercise 6: In your opinion what are the three best features of the My Library, By Right Campaign and why?
Exercise 7: In 200 words or less, describe a new area of librarianship that you are passionate about. How would you go about promoting it within the library that you work in and/or the wider library profession?
Research Support Ambassador
Librarians are perfect for this role, but we are rarely sought out by researchers. We need to increase the awareness and skill set of library staff to provide a high standard of researcher support. This can be done through a social media campaign with our library and the wider library profession; a coordinated marketing effort. Social media is one of best ways to engage with our users and our networks, spreading the word about our campaign, and encouraging the community to help spread the word.
Exercise 8: Choose an area of library practice that you feels requires debate.
Patron-driven model purchasing option for undergraduate students.
Exercise 9: Open up the ALA Frontline Advocacy Plan. Complete the plan for a real/fictional advocacy campaign.
1. What is your goal? (What are you trying to accomplish?)
2. What are your objectives? (Why is it important?)
3. What are your strategies? (the activities you’ll do to accomplish your goal)
4. What is your message? (15 words or less)
5. What data (or stories) support this message?
6. Who is your target audience?
7. Why should they care?
8. How are you going to reach them? What will be your best tools?
I have just edited my first Wikipedia entry. I used the ‘Citation Hunt’ tool and randomly choose an entry that required a citation. Well when I say random, I wanted to edit a science related entry, the reason for this being I had more confidence in finding a reliable source for such a citation. The citation I chose to fix by clicking on “I got this!” to go to Wikipedia and fix the snippet was:
In page Timeline of thermodynamics:
The citation I added is:
Hooke, Robert, Robert (1965). Micrographia. s.l.: Science Heritage. p. 12.
I am confident that this is a reliable source as I found the text that required the citation in Google books and read the page.
I downloaded Audacity and started recording a short know-how session on finding past GMIT exam papers in the library. I created an account in SoundCloud which I have to say was effortless and uploaded my recording …
Podcasts are available on any topic, they have a roll in scholarly communication, and they are easy to listen to, anytime, anyplace, anywhere on mobile and desktop. Podcasts allow you to listen to free audio files distributed though Really Simple Syndication (RSS) which is a very effective way of keeping up-to-date with your interests online. Podcasts are good for transmitting tips on learning, you can create a community with like-minded individuals. My aim now that I have been introduced to Podcasts is to deliver library instruction in bite-sized recordings.
Reflecting on Things 10, 11 and 12 in anticipation of earning the online networker badge will hopefully be straightforward enough as I frequently use these three ‘Things’.
I felt these three task were easy to complete, but it’s only easy when you know how! As previously indicated, for thing 10 I use Facebook and Twitter personally as well as professionally. My professional brand exists in the form of my LinkedIn profile, which I was happy to take the opportunity to update somewhat in conjunction with this task. As it happens I could spend more time updating my profile and should do, it’s on my to-do list! Collaborative tools made me feel at ease as I have used a number of them to collaborate. As with many of the tools, its deciding which is better, easier, faster; for me that was Teamwork.
Am I an online networker? Yes, I would put myself in this category. I promote my brand as well as communicate and collaborate online. I use Twitter to network professionally, communicating with colleagues and other like-minded professionals. I am conscious of my online presence and aware of how I conduct myself professionally online through my LinkedIn and Twitter profiles. I am confident that that there is a coherent connection between the two tools.
The tools for thing 12 focused on communicating and collaborating with others. I have used Teamwork, Google Hangouts, Skype for Business and Adobe Connect to collaborate with colleagues, in the past, based at other campus libraries as well as remote partners in other institutions and organisations. The joy of collaboration is many heads make light work, which I feel allows for seamless communication remotely. Teamwork is my preferred tool for this task. I am confident that I present an online persona that I am happy for other professionals to see.
I was comfortable using the majority of the tools mentioned in these three things. Although I did not take a look at Slack or Trello; I may in the future. I can confidentially declare I am in comfortable when communicating and collaborating remotely, or not.
Thing 17 for Rudái 23 is sharing your work. I joined ResearchGate, the social networking site for scientists and researchers a few years ago but had not engaged with the site at all. So for this task I added a research paper on Information Literacy I published sometime ago.
I found the task fairly straightforward as my profile was already created so I just added a research item; adding the data requested.
I also took the opportunity to add my profile picture and bio.
Digital collections allow institutions to put collections or a selection of materials in the spotlight. Thing 7 was not an easy task.... but here it is...
A Visual Exhibition of Learning Materials for Information Literacy Skills.
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