News & Notes

By: johnsoeo on: March 29, 2013 11:28 am | johnsoeo

The libraries have started trial access to a web based software called SimplyMap. It comes with both a large variety of census and business data and all the shape files to create an impressive array of maps.

The program is very simple to use and can in a few minutes create maps that will give student's research papers an extra edge. Humanities, Business and Marketing students will probably find the program especially useful as well as anyone interested in mapping.

Files can also be downloaded for use in image processing tools like Photoshop as well as GIS software such as ArcMap.

The trial will last until April 30.

or if off campus:

A short video on how to use SimplyMap:

By: micheljp on: March 27, 2013 2:05 pm | micheljp @jpmichel

We’re redesigning the 1st floor of King Library! The plan is to revamp the Information Desk and a few other areas. What would you like to see added or changed on the 1st floor? Give us your input at

By: hartsea on: March 25, 2013 1:35 pm | hartsea

The influential African writer Chinua Achebe has died at the age of 82.  He is most famous for the classic work Things Fall Apart.  We have several copies of this book on the second floor of King.  You can check the call number PR9387.9.A3 T5.

If you'd like to hear more about his life and the significance of his work, check out a couple of these links: What's the Word: The African NovelPOSTSCRIPT: CHINUA ACHEBE, 1930-2013, Chinua Achebe's Biography and Style and Chinua Achebe: David and Marianna Fisher University Professor and Professor of Africana Studies.

Here are some of his other works, in case you'd like to read more by him:

There was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra.  King Library (2nd floor) | PR9387.9.A3 Z468 2012

Arrow of GodKing Library (2nd floor) | PR9387.9.A3 A77 1965

Morning Yet on Creation Day: Essays. King Library (2nd floor) | PR9340.5 .A3 1975

Home and Exile.  King Library (2nd floor) | PR9387.9.A3 Z467 2000

Girls at War and Other Stories. King Library (2nd floor) | PR6051.C5 G57 1977

By: messnekr on: March 20, 2013 8:53 am | messnekr

The Howe Writing Center and University Libraries are pleased to announce we now offer Howe’s writing consultant services in the Business, Engineering, Science and Technology Library in Laws Hall. Located on the main floor, the writing desk will be open a limited number of hours to start, but we hope that providing this service on the east side of campus will encourage students in the technical disciplines to make use of Howe’s services with their class assignments. (As always, students working in any discipline can make use of any of Howe’s locations.) The writing desk at B.E.S.T. will be open Mondays 3-5pm, Tuesdays 4-7pm, and Wednesdays 4-6pm. You can make an appointment on the Howe Writing Center web site, or drop-ins are welcome when the consultant is available.

By: hartsea on: March 20, 2013 9:43 am | hartsea

The Women’s Read-in is in its 7th year at the Miami University Libraries. It is co-sponsored by the Women's Center and is held in honor of Women's History Month. All members of the University and Oxford communities are encouraged to participate and attend.

The theme this year is Women Bridging Cultures and features two themed hours:

12-1 “Speaking from my experience”

1-2 Muslim Women

The event this year will be held on Thursday March 28th from 11:00am-3:00pm in King Library 320.

You can register here to read/perform work by your favorite female artist or drop by to listen and enjoy refreshments.

Need some help choosing what to read? Check out our page on the Diversity guide for some inspiration!

We hope to see you there!
By: hartsea on: March 18, 2013 10:39 am | hartsea


As you may know, there's currently a writing contest going on here at Miami University.  It's called the Armstrong Student Center Great Seal Writing Contest.  The deadline is April 2nd.  Part of the essay requirement is to talk about the following ideas: "In your Miami experience, what wisdom have you gained from the University’s heritage that you would like to pass on? In other words, what values, beliefs, and experiences connect 'Old Miami' and 'New Miami'?" 

To help you think about how to answer these questions, the Howe Writing Center and the Miami University Libraries are sponsoring a "Writing Your Way Into Miami History Workshop".

 The workshop will be held in King Library 320 on the following dates and times:

Tues, March 19,  6-7 pm

Wed, March 27, 6-7 pm 

Please consider coming to one of these nights.  You can bring a draft of your essay, or just come to get ideas and tips for how to write it.  Some of the topics to be addressed during the workshop will be:

  • Knowing your audience for the contest
  • Glimpses of Miami history, “Old Miami, New Miami”
  • Idea generation for your contest entry
  • Draft feedback

We also have a guide to Miami History that you might find helpful.  Some of the links on this guide include the digital Miami Student, the Frank Snyder photo collection, and the Miami University Archives.

By: tullykk on: February 19, 2013 10:20 am | tullykk

Miami University Libraries will be celebrating Black History Month with its 24th Annual African American Read-In on Wednesday, February 20th between 11 and 2 in the Howe Writing Center, located on the first floor of King Library.  Participants in the Read-In often read poetry and fictional prose, but many choose to read from non-fiction sources, such as memoirs, historical documents, and speeches.  It's a great opportunity to highlight the struggles and triumphs that define the African American experience.  Miami's Special Collections department houses many items, both print and manuscript, that help to illuminate African American history for us today.  Among the materials related to African American history in our collections are print and manuscript sources on slavery and the abolition movement, the Civil War, and the civil rights movement.

In addition to print slave narratives and anti-slavery pamphlets and periodicals, one of the highlights of our Miscellanea Collection is a letter, dated December 19, 1831, from Catharine Sedgwick to Lydia Maria Child in reply to Child's query of why Sedwick was not an abolitionist.  Both women were established novelists and Child would later publish An Appeal in Favor of Those Americans Called Africans (1833) and edit Harriet Ann Jacobs' Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861), two landmark abolitionist works.  Catharine Sedgwick had been raised by Elizabeth Freeman, a former slave who in a famous legal case was able to gain her freedom through the Massachusetts courts in 1781.

Though our history collections are generally stronger for the nineteenth century and earlier, some of our most interesting twentieth century materials are related to African Americans' struggle for civil rights.  Among these resources are several pamphlets published by the Communist Party promoting racial equality, promotional literature for the Urban League of New York, and publications of other important civil rights organizations like the Southern Regional Council and the NAACP.  One of my favorites is the NAACP's 1963 publication of the speeches of the leaders of that year's March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, including Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous "I Have a Dream" speech.

This semester students in Dr. Nishani Frazier's History 206, the research and methods class, are studying African American history and the class visited Special Collections to view many of the materials described above.  It's always a pleasure to talk to students about the resources available to them in Special Collections and even more rewarding when the students return to use the collection for their research.

Kimberly Tully
Special Collections Librarian

By: hartsea on: February 18, 2013 9:48 am | hartsea

Do you know the difference between an impact factor and an Eigenfactor? Do you know how to find out which journals in your field are considered the most influential? If not, then you might want to come to an upcoming workshop called "Journal Citation Reports and Other Tools for Preparing Your Dossier". This workshop is designed for faculty and graduate students who want to learn more about the citation tools available to help them. We'll cover the basics of Journal Citation Reports, discuss the useful tools in Web of Science, and realizing that not all journals are covered in JCR and WoS, we’ll also cover tools such as SciMago, Publish or Perish, Google Scholar, and WorldCat Identities. We will also explore new altmetric tools like ImpactStory and Mendeley.

By the end of the session we hope you’ll have gained:

• Awareness of the different tools available

• Understanding of the value of these different citation analysis tools

• Ability to select the best tool for any given task

• Understanding of vocabulary like impact factors

• Skills to gather citation information and include them in your promotion documents

This workshop is designed to be informative for all disciplines at Miami, including those in the Humanities, Social Sciences, and the Sciences.

Lunch will be provided!

Where: King 110

When: February 27th from noon-1:30pm

The agenda for this workshop is as follows. If you can only attend a certain portion of the workshop, that is fine, but please register!

12p-12:30p -- Journal Citation Reports, Eigenfactor, SciMago

12:30-12:35p -- Break/Practice

12:35-12:55p -- Google Scholar, Publish/Perish, WorldCat, Ulrich

12:55-1p -- Break

1p-1:20p -- Altmetrics overview, Altmetrics tools (ImpactStory, Mendeley)

1:20 + time for practice, consultation, questions

Register here:

By: alfordem on: February 11, 2013 3:11 pm | alfordem

As Presidents’ Day approaches, celebrate and honor some former leaders of the United States. Check out the various maps, guides, and histories of some nearby presidential sites and memorials. The five places listed below are each within five hours from Miami University and would make perfect day or weekend trips. Under each site listed is a link to the official website, along with a link to a print publication located in Government Information, King Library, Ground Floor.

So pack the car, fill up the gas tank, and stop by to check out some literature on your next road trip destination!


Fort Benjamin Harrison (Indianapolis, IN)

A history of Fort Benjamin Harrison, 1903-1982


Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site (Larue, KY)

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site, Kentucky: official map and guide


Lincoln Boyhood: National Memorial (Lincoln City, IN)

Lincoln Boyhood: National Memorial, Indiana


James A. Garfield National Historic Site (Mentor, OH)

James A. Garfield National Historic Site, Ohio


William Howard Taft National Historic Site (Cincinnati, OH)

Brick walks: William Howard Taft National Historic Site: Cincinnati, Ohio


William Howard Taft National Historic Site (less than one hour away!)

By: tullykk on: February 07, 2013 3:47 pm | tullykk

Miami University Libraries and the Howe Center for Writing Excellence celebrate National Black History Month with the 24th Annual African American Read-In on Wednesday, February 20th. The Read-In encourages the celebration of all aspects of the African American experience, including the reading of selections from all literary genres, the display of artistic works, music and dance performances, and more! Come join us & share some of your own work or anything that recognizes the talent, contribution, or experience of African Americans. Refreshments will be provided so please pass the word & join us Wednesday, February 20th between 11am & 2pm, first floor King Library, Howe Writing Center for a multi-faceted Read-In!

For more information, registration, and if you’d like some ideas on things to read, please visit:

Registration is not necessary, but highly encouraged. If you are choosing to share something other than a reading, please let us know your A/V needs when you register. And as always, we welcome those who choose to come, listen, and enjoy.

Please register here: