LOEX 2011

I was lucky enough to go to the LOEX conference for for instructional librarians in Fort Worth a few weeks ago–yes, this is a belated post.  It was also my first library conference. Due to financial reasons, I haven’t been able to attend a conference until now. To attend this one, I applied for a staff grant and my library also paid part of the cost.


Libraries are not different/special/better than other sources of information such as Wikipedia.
–Before instruction sessions, students sometimes fill out a form that directs them to go to a library resource AND Wikipedia and look for synonyms for their topic, to use as possible keywords.

“Popular vs. scholarly” doesn’t cut it anymore.  Have you taught your students transferable skills, or will they be flummoxed when a database changes its interface completely (ex: Lexis-Nexis).

Library instructors at UT Chattanooga refresh their curriculum every 2 years. (impressive!)

–Most students are not going to have access to expensive databases once they graduate, so they’re likely to return to Google and Wikipedia for information. Therefore, they should be taught how to use these resources in a good way.
Information literacy: ability to obtain  & use information for specific need.  Transliteracy: tools used for this purpose–Print vs. databases vs. Wikipedia, etc.

Slideshare presentation


Quick techniques for instant assessment: minute paper, classroom opinion poll (using PollEverywhere), background knowledge probe, and direct paraphrases.  We also took several polls during the session using PollEverywhere.

Macro-assessment, which demonstrates the accountability of an entire instructional program, and classroom assessment, which takes place during individual sessions.

–The speaker also collected our e-mail addresses and any other questions we had after the presentation, and sent a follow-up email after the conference addressing these questions.

Have students make library orientation videos to demonstrate their understanding of the library’s resources and services.

— This technique can  be used during a 50 minute one shot. The instructor quickly puts students into groups, explains the assignment, and hands each group a Flip camera and a list of 4-5 questions on one area of the library. Students have 20-25 minutes to find the answers to the questions and create a brief orientation video that answers the questions. The speaker had a great Prezi with links to sample videos created by students.

Another idea: Use Windows Movie Maker to create a brief video of some of the library services for students to watch at the beginning of the session.

I really hope I can try both ideas at my library.
LOEX 2012 is in Colombus, Ohio.  Definitely not within driving distance like this one was, but I hope I can go.  Now that I know what I’ve been missing, it’s going to be difficult to keep me away. *grin*

–Getting to see how other people do things. I got lots of great ideas, not only from the sessions, but just from talking to other people.
–Meeting  such a variety of other instruction librarians: veterans, newbies, Boomers,  Millenials and Gen X-ers;  faculty and non-faculty; Canadians, Texans, and other; introverts, extroverts, and  iPad-wielding hipsters.

It made me wish I’d started attending conferences earlier in my career (this was my first, ever).   I’m on a fairly tight budget and up to now I couldn’t understand why so many people would pay hundreds out of their own pockets to attend a conference but now I sort of get it.

Some LOEX tweets are below:

Loex Conference tweets

LOEX tweets


4 thoughts on “LOEX 2011

  1. Thanks for the LOEX round-up and your presentation this morning!

    If you want to go to Columbus, you’d better start saving. If you’ve received one staff development grant, you are not supposed to receive another for at least two years. And no way is the library gonna pay the full cost for one person to go. Maybe you can explore some other funding sources?

    Maybe it’s a generational thing (or the result of having worked so many years for governmental agencies), but I have always believed one should pay for one’s own professional development. After all, it’s not really fair for an organization to pay for it and then have the employee turn around and leave the organization, using that new-found knowledge someplace else. I figure if my employer is giving me the time off from my regular duties to attend, that’s enough reimbursement.

    I started attending the state and regional conferences in my first profession as an undergrad, served on a panel at one, and was very involved in the student branch. The conferences directly and conclusively led to my first job post-degree – I was ASKED by the hiring manager to apply for the job because he knew me and knew what I could do from those conferences.

  2. Hi,

    Sorry for not responding to this sooner. I enjoyed doing the presentation.
    I’d have loved to start going to conferences sooner, but besides money there were other reasons I can’t go into here. Good for you for getting started early, though. As for the workplace–if they can and want to help with conference costs, great–but I don’t expect it, either. I felt fortunate to go.

  3. Well, if you go to Columbus next year, I’ll help cover your desk shifts!

  4. Thanks! I hope I’m able to take you up on that!

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