News & Notes

By: mille234 on: December 07, 2010 1:37 pm | mille234

Laws Hall, the former site of the Farmer School of Business, will soon be the new home of a library for Business, Engineering, Science and Technology. The library will house print materials, a combined reference/circulation desk, group study rooms, a collaborative instruction room and an information commons area complete with new and emerging technologies for student use.

The College of Arts and Science and the Armstrong Institute for Interactive Media Studies will occupy some of the second and third floors.

Energy efficiency is a priority in the project, the university is replacing windows, adding insulation and improving heating, air conditioning and lighting throughout the building.

The new library is set to open in Fall 2011.

By: mille234 on: December 07, 2010 1:39 pm | mille234

Kimberly Tully has joined the Libraries as the new Special Collections librarian. She previously held the position of Special Collections Librarian (Rare Book and Printed Materials) in Historical Collections at the Harvard Business School's Baker Library. She also held positions as the English Short-Title Catalog (ESTC) Cataloger at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC and as curatorial assistant in the Department of Printed Books and Bindings at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York City.

Kim holds a BA in English from the University of Pennsylvania, a MLS from the University of Illinois: Urbana-Champaign and a MA in European history from the University of Notre Dame.

In her new position as Special Collections Librarian, she will be processing manuscript collections, cataloging rare materials, creating exhibits and giving class presentations.

By: mille234 on: December 07, 2010 1:43 pm | mille234

In a recent survey, focusing on satisfaction of library services, the Libraries ranked high in service, physical space and accessibility of online resources.

LibQUAL is a user opinion survey offered by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) that libraries use to assess service quality. In 2003 and 2007, the Miami Libraries used the LibQUAL instrument to track and understand patron expectations and satisfaction. Last fall, a shorter version of the survey, LibQUAL +® Lite, was administered. A sample size of 4,059 people was used, which included a mix of undergraduate and graduate students and full-time faculty. Comments were also collected in addition to the data.

Echoing previous years, the Libraries ranked high in service. The survey found that patrons are very satisfied with staff and librarians who are “consistently courteous” and have a great “willingness to help users”.

Patrons view the Libraries as comfortable and inviting despite the fact that they feel there is not enough study space. The survey indicated that our users are satisfied with the quality of the space. In addition, 63.49% of the LibQUAL+® Lite survey participants physically visit the Libraries at least once a week.

MU users are very satisfied that the Libraries’ electronic resources are accessible to them even when they are out of our buildings or are off campus. Patrons commented on struggling with finding information through our online resources, but some of this was due to the launch of a new library website around the time of the survey. We are continuing to look at out catalog and website and make improvements.

Overall, the Libraries scored well on the survey and did well among comparable and benchmark institutions. Library staff is currently putting measures into place to improve and communicate changes to our services and facilities as a result of the survey.

By: mille234 on: December 07, 2010 1:44 pm | mille234

Like other units at Miami and libraries at many other colleges and universities, the Miami University Libraries are contending with a difficult budgetary environment. At the time of writing, Miami has reduced its annual budget by $20 million and is currently planning additional reductions in excess of $40 million.

The Libraries continue to serve our students and faculty, although with significant reductions of staff (around 20%). Over the past year, we have looked for ways to realize efficiencies by combining service points and even eliminating and reducing some services. While some of these changes have been transparent to our clientele, others have been noticeable.

The most prominent adjustment has been eliminating overnight hours in King Library on Friday and Saturday; the Libraries now close at 10 p.m. Although these late weekend hours were the least heavily used hours, the Libraries have heard a significant outcry from individual students and from Miami’s Associated Student Government. Unfortunately, budget cuts have real consequences.

Although we have sustained relatively small cuts to books and journals to date, additional cuts appear likely for the Libraries and for our statewide consortium, OhioLINK, which provides us with access to many e-journals and research databases.

Thankfully, the MU Libraries do not do it alone. We are grateful to each of you who serve as advocates for library funding and as our donors. Your generosity has helped the Miami University Libraries to weather the budgetary storm and forestalled more dramatic reductions.

I look forward to continuing to work with you so that we can continue to provide Miami’s students and faculty with the library services and resources they deserve.

Again, thank you,
Judith A. Sessions
Dean and University Librarian

By: wallerjl on: November 29, 2010 2:45 pm | wallerjl @@jenniferwaller

Through December 31, 2010 Miami University students, faculty, and staff have access to a trial version of The International Studies Encyclopedia (use the proxied link here if you're off campus). Access the encyclopedia's content through the "Table of Contents" link on the left side of the page.

Published in association with the International Studies Association (ISA), this resource provides instant access to the most up-to-date resources in international studies. The encyclopedia allows full access to 400+ fully-searchable peer reviewed essays, links to archives, datasets, cases, pedagogical aids, a live discussion forum, and other relevant materials.

Between now and December 31 I would greatly appreciate any feedback you have about this resource. I’m looking for informal evaluations, although reasons why it works well (or doesn’t work well) are most useful. Please send feedback about The International Studies Encyclopedia to Jen Waller, International Studies Librarian, at

By: micheljp on: November 23, 2010 9:46 am | micheljp @jpmichel

The Dalai Lama's visit was a wonderful event in the history of Miam University. If you were unable to attend the talks you can now watch them on the web!. Check them out!
By: hartsea on: November 22, 2010 9:55 am | hartsea

The 2010 National Book Awards were recently announced. You can go to the National Book Foundation's website to learn about the winners, watch videos of the ceremony, and read interviews with winners and finalists.

The Fiction winner this year is The Lord of Misrule by Jaimy Gordon, a book that Miami University Libraries has recently ordered. We also have several of her other novels, including Bogeywoman: A Novel (King Library Second Floor PS3557.O668 B64 1999), She Drove without Stopping: A Novel (King Library Second Floor PS3557.O668 S54 1990), and Shamp of the City-Solo: A Novel (SW Depository PS3557.O668 S52 1980x).

Terrance Hayes won the Poetry Award for his fourth collection of poems, Lighthead. We have this book in our collection on the second floor of King (PS3558.A8378 L54 2010).

The winner who has been getting the most buzz this year is Patti Smith for her non-fiction work Just Kids, which is available at our Music Library (ML420.S672 A3 2010). We also have several of her poetry collections at King Library, including The Coral Sea (PS3569.M53787 C67 1996) and Auguries of Innocence (PS3569.M53787 A94 2005). The Los Angeles Times has a nice write up about her win here.

By: tzoce_2 on: November 15, 2010 6:22 pm | tzoce_2

The 3rd Social Justice Read-In will take place this Wednesday, November 17th from 2 to 4pm in King Library Room 320. Everyone is welcome to read or listen to others read. Readers can bring their favorite book or pick one from the display at the Read-In. A set of posters from the Student Action Center will be on display as well.
To learn more about this event or to register to read, visit the Read-In's website at:

The Read-In is part of the seventh annual Human Rights and Social Justice program at Miami University. A complete list of events on campus is available at:

By: micheljp on: November 09, 2010 2:34 pm | micheljp @jpmichel

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.

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 their promotion documents

This workshop is designed to be informative for all disciplines at Miami, and will be jointly led by a Humanities Librarian and a Science Librarian!

Where: King 110
When: November 16th from noon-1:00pm

Register here

By: hartsea on: October 23, 2010 7:04 pm | hartsea

Indiana University just launched a new interface for their Victorian Women Writers Project website, which has made it much easier to navigate. This website began in 1995 and is primarily concerned with the exposure of lesser-known British women writers of the 19th century. The collection represents an array of genres - poetry, novels, children's books, political pamphlets, religious tracts, histories, and more. You will find some more well-known names like Harriet Martineau, Edith Nesbit, and Lady Jane Wilde, but also many other Victorian women. Each entry includes valuable bibliographic information, as well as the texts themselves. You can browse by either author, title, or year. There's also options to do more advanced searches.

It's very fun to browse through authors and titles to see what kinds of entries come up. For instance, who doesn't want to read a text called Anarchism and Violence, written by Louisa Sarah Bevington in 1896, or The Inheritance of Evil, Or, the Consequence of Marrying a Deceased Wife’s Sister, written by Felicia Skene in 1849!