THE DISSEMINATOR ISSN:1208-2473
V.7, N.10 October 2000
An electronic newsletter from the Nova Scotia Provincial Library
3770 Kempt Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3K 4X8
(902) 424-2457; FAX (902) 424-0633
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IN THIS ISSUE
News from the Regions
Council of Regional Librarian Meeting
Learning Resources and Technology (LRT)
News from the Library and Information Technology Program, Nova Scotia
News from the School of Library and Information Studies, Dalhousie University
Nova Scotia Provincial Library News
Hot Tips and Updates
Where They Are Now
Reference on the Net
NEWS FROM THE REGIONS
Annapolis Valley Regional Library (AVRL)
The Fall in-service for AVRL branch staff was held on October 16. Eleven
branch managers took part in the Street Smart 9-5 workshop, presented by
Donna Hendy, Training and Development Consultant, Department of Education.
To find out more about the Street Smart Program, visit
http://www.crisisprevention.com/training/programs.htm#Street Smart From 9
Wolfville Branch Manager, Sharon Wendt, is taking a one-year leave of
absence. She and her husband are off to Colorado and will be enjoying some
time with their son, daughter-in-law and new grandson. Lisa Rice is Acting
Branch Manager in her absence. Sue Cranton from Technical Services has a
new baby girl and will be on leave until April. As a result of these
leaves, two new staff members have been welcomed - Mark McFadyen in
Wolfville and Sally MacDonald at HQ.
The official opening of the joint Kentville Library/Career Resource Centre
CAP site was held on September 30. Official ceremonies were held at the
Resource Centre with guest speakers Bernie Hart of the Technology & Science
Secretariat (TSS) and Graham Rich, Regional Community Access Program (CAP)
Co-ordinator. An Open House with refreshments was held at each of the two
Gaspereau Press hosted an author reading at the Wolfville Memorial Library
on October 15. Authors Susan Haley, Alison Smith, and JJ Steinfeld were
featured, each of them reading from new works.
Cape Breton Regional Library (CBRL)
The Third Annual Conversation Series, in conjunction with the Celtic
Colours International Festival, was a great success and attracted more than
120 people to the noon time sessions. Two presenters came from Scotland -
Alyth MacCormack and Roddy Campbell. Richard MacKinnon of the University
College of Cape Breton spoke on October 12 on the Architecture of the Cape
Breton Gaelic Settler. On October 13, more than 60 people came to hear Mr.
Murdock MacNeil, a local Gaelic storyteller, relate some first hand
accounts of his ancestors.
The adult programmes at the McConnell Library include a session on "Wills"
offered by Legal Aid, a "Spooky storytelling" session in time for
Halloween, and "Advice on buying or upgrading a computer." Check the web
page at http://www.cbrl.ns.ca for a complete listing.
The Cape Breton Regional Library with the assistance of the University
College of Cape Breton is hosting NSLA 2001. The committee consists of
Theresa MacDonald, Faye MacDougall, Lesley Brann, Lisa Mulak (CBRL) and
Mary Dobson, Laura Syms and Joe Wickens (UCCB). Suggestions for
topics/speakers are welcomed. Please contact any of the above committee
members if you would like to request a session topic.
As mentioned in the last issue, the Cape Breton Regional Library has held
Open Houses at all 13 of its library branches during the past year. The
last, and biggest, celebration was held on October 1, 2000 at the McConnell
Library. A highlight for the afternoon was the unveiling of a
commemorative piece of stained glass, commissioned by the 50th Anniversary
Committee, and is modelled on the Great Seal of Cape Breton. It hangs
proudly in the window overlooking Charlotte Street, the heart of Sydney's
downtown. Last month featured a black and white sketch of the logo, and
the photograph here shows the beautiful colours of the glass.
Colchester-East Hants Regional Library (CEHRL)
Celebrating 50 Gala
Colchester-East Hants Regional Library held its final gala in a year long
series of events celebrating 50 years of service on October 22nd. Staff
started the afternoon by gathering together outside for a group photograph;
smiles abounded despite the wind and drizzle! The Truro branch was
beautifully decorated with large red and gold gift bags filled with
brightly coloured autumn leaves. In the main reading room, the Truro
Concert Band played a variety of tunes from the last 50 years and
refreshments were served in the youth services section, with community
volunteers looking after the hot punch and light finger foods.
Greetings from the Town of Truro were brought by Councillor Brian Kinsman.
The guest speaker was Provincial Librarian, Elizabeth Armstrong, who
reminded the audience about the beginnings and growth of library service in
Nova Scotia and outlined the exciting activities in libraries today and the
challenges and opportunities ahead.
This programme was also a very special event for staff as the inaugural
staff recognition awards ceremony for those with 5 or more years of service
took place. Distinctive 5-year and 20-year pins had been commissioned from
a silversmith and for each recipient, initials and the year of attainment
had been engraved on the back. For each employee with 10 years of service,
the board placed a book with a special bookplate in the library's
collection, and employees with 15, 20, 25 or 30 years' service each
received a gift certificate from the store of their choice. Framed
certificates of appreciation were added to the gift bags that held the
other awards. Library Board Chair, Edith Patterson made the presentations
with the assistance of Ms. Armstrong and Councillor Kinsman.
The Mobile Library went live with on-line circulation in August. Staff
training and technical support helped everyone cope with the new procedures
and inevitable technical glitches.
Press releases, posters, schedules, and letters to patrons past and present
announced the arrival of on-line services, which, for the first time, gives
mobile library patrons access to the library's catalogue and those of other
libraries in the province. There is a new and improved schedule of stops
that offers a 3-week rotation, including some after-school, evening, and
Saturday visits to selected communities.
On the outside, the mobile library has a new look - on each side a
removable sign announces:
Colchester-East Hants Regional Library
Industry Canada's Community Access Program has provided a computer
workstation for the Stewiacke Branch. It joins the Gates computer and the
two computers supplied under the library's original automation project.
Stewiacke Town Days saw the Mobile Library used as a booth, with staff
selling discarded books (raising $52), giving tours of the mobile branch,
and telling stories to the children.
Cumberland Regional Library (CURL)
Automated circulation is up and running at the Cumberland Regional Library.
Many thanks go to Michael Purcell and Shirley MacLeod for their hard work
and patience over the past few months.
September welcomed the start of a new Reading Club in the Amherst branch,
starting with a discussion of Angela's Ashes. Other adult programmes
include an extremely popular "Decorating on a Shoestring" programme, for
which an additional session was added due to public interest.
Preschool children can now enjoy the weekly story time sessions with staff
member Dianna Lawless featuring stories, games and crafts.
Eastern Counties Regional Library (ECRL)
Libraries are special places as seen in this short note from Anne Leblanc
in the Drs. Coady and Tompkins Memorial Library:
"...I had a delightful visit with 40 students and five faculty members from
the Coady Institute as well as three grand-nieces of Dr. Coady...They came
in Sunday at noon; it was an hour that went all too quickly. They were
most interested in Dr. Coady's small private collection which we house
here, as well as a display of books and items which we have of Coady and
Tompkins. I noticed a number of them looking through the atlas to find
their home and others picked books relating to their own countries. Africa
and India were well represented. They were so appreciative and rather
surprised that we would open for them on a day that we are normally closed.
It was a privilege to host this visit!"
The Libr@ry Links project is well underway. A grant proposal to the
Canadian Rural Pilot Initiative has been accepted and will give the library
the extra funding needed to add an additional person to its outreach team
as well as purchase the equipment needed to establish these new services.
Permanent sites have been found in several small communities and local
library committees are engaged in site preparation. Orders will soon be in
for signage, laptops, etc.
NcompasS circulation and acquisitions modules are being used at
headquarters and in the branch libraries, and headquarters staff are now
working on the snags and glitches before the Libr@ry Links sites also come
Halifax Regional Library (HRL)
Keshen Goodman Public Library is Underway!
This October the Halifax Regional Library celebrated the launch of
construction of the new Keshen Goodman Public Library. Located at the
gateway to the Mainland Common Park in the Clayton Park area of Halifax,
the library will serve the needs of a rapidly growing community. The
25,000 square foot library will have a collection capacity of over 100,000
volumes, a family computer area, a computer training room, meeting rooms
and spacious reading areas for children and adults and a coffee café
arranged around a cosy fireplace.
The new library is entirely funded through a bequest from Marion Keshen in
memory of the Keshen Goodman family. Construction is expected to be
completed by spring 2001. Plans and interior design finishes of the Keshen
Goodman Public Library are on display at the Thomas Raddall Public Library.
For news and development on the Keshen Goodman Library Project check our
web site http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/Libraries/HCRL/HalifaxLibraryHome.html.
Links to Learning Project launches valuable resource during English as a
Second Language Week
The Links to Learning Project was launched this September at the Spring
Garden Road branch of the Halifax Regional Library. The project has
produced three resource lists of selected ESL materials available at the
Halifax Regional Library for children, young adults, and adults, and four
lists of ESL and related Internet sites for children, young adults, adults,
and teachers or tutors. Links to Learning was conducted by the
Intercultural Connections Association of Nova Scotia (ICANS), the Nova
Scotia Library Association (NSLA) and the Halifax Regional Library (HRL),
with generous funding from Metro United Way. These ESL lists can be used
by ESL learners, librarians, schools, resource centres, literacy groups,
immigrant service providers, and other related organizations.
There are approximately 2000 immigrants who arrive in Nova Scotia annually
and one of the most difficult barriers this population, known in this
article as Newcomers, face, is language. Often the quality of the lives of
these Newcomers is determined by their familiarity with the English
language. The Halifax Regional School system includes ESL teachers and
YMCA Immigrant Youth Support Workers. However, they are in place only in
those schools with a high portion of Newcomer children.
There are also five adult LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to
Canada) schools, but only landed immigrants qualify to attend these
schools. Therefore, there is a significant section of the Newcomer
community who will greatly benefit from access to ESL materials available
in our public libraries.
It is the hope that the seven Links to Learning lists will assist Newcomer
children, young adults and adults in their learning of the English language
and orientation to their new home. Copies of the ESL booklets will be sent
to local libraries, to schools, and to organizations which serve Newcomers
and those seeking to improve their level of literacy, and other agencies as
well as the other regional libraries in the province. For more
information, contact Paroo MacKinnon at ICANS at 453-6613.
Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library (PARL)
Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library has recently been awarded the
"LibraryNet Best Practices 2000 Award" for the Rural Access Site Project.
The award is issued annually by Industry Canada and LibraryNet.
Summer Reading Programme
PARL's Summer Reading Programme made a huge "splash" this year thanks to
the efforts and coordination by Steve MacLean and students Becky Alexander
and Andrea Currie. The Adopt a Library Literacy Programme, spearheaded by
RCMP Constable John Kennedy, provided many reading achievement prizes for
children participating. There were 557 children registered for the
programme and 8990 books were read over the summer.
New "Kids" Computers
New Glasgow Library now has two "kids" public access computers. These have
been installed in the children's area and are specifically designed for
very young children and their parents/caregivers. They are "jazzed up,"
have direct links to recommended sites, include several interactive books
and include scanners, and headphone jacks. The Trainer in New Glasgow has
been hired to specifically promote and market this service.
River John Library
The largest project for PARL is the new River John Library and Innovation
Centre. This new $320,000, 3000 square foot facility will be owned locally
by the River John Friends of the Library, then leased to the County
Council. The Friends have formed as a Non-Profit Society under Library
Board policies and entered into a 15 year lease agreement with the County.
This lease will pay the mortgage and the Friends have agreed to fundraise
$50,000. HRDC has agreed to contribute labour costs of about $90,000.
County Council has granted $65,000 for furniture and new books. CAP has
contributed $20,000 for equipment. Other sources of funding are being
sought to enhance all areas of the library.
The facility, located across the street from the current library, will
house a public library, technology area, community programme/meeting room,
and a community office. To date, the construction manager has been hired,
excavation has begun, and Linda Arsenault and Eric Stackhouse are busy
looking at paint and fabric swatches. Completion date is expected to be
March 2001. You can watch it live on the Internet at
Community Access Program (CAP)
Bernice Cameron has been hired as the Pictou County CAP Coordinator.
Bernice has a teaching background and has a strong interest in technology
access in rural areas. She works from PARL HQ in New Glasgow acting as a
support person for all CAP activities in the County. She also assists in
the coordination of the local Information Technology Action Group (ITAG).
HRDC has approved the hiring of 10 CAP trainers and provided a coordinator
position as well. Heather McKinnon has been hired as the public trainer
Coordinator. The trainers will assist people using the public access
equipment and software, maintain the site, and work on web based projects
selected by advisory committees or PARL staff. In return they will be
provided with a good work placement and a highly visible job. If all goes
well at the end of six months new trainers may be hired. Also, several of
the trainers will have laptops for off-site training.
Jolene Shaw has been hired as the LibraryNet project worker. Jolene has
worked on various other digitization projects, including "Nova Scotia's
Industrial Centre, 1916" and "Native Born: a short history of Pictou's
Black Community;" both can be found at: www.parl.ns.ca/genealogy.html.
Jolene and Fern MacDonald, reference staff member, are currently working on
a project involving all the war cenotaphs and related obituaries for the
area. Jolene has also completing a web site for the Adopt A Library
Literacy Programme which can be found at www.parl.ns.ca/adoptalibrary.
New Activities and Projects
PARL is currently re-designing its entire website. This will be the fourth
generation and is in response to comments and suggestions from the public.
The goal will be to make it more user friendly, interactive, and appealing.
The current IBM webserver is being replaced with a new IBM machine. This
is in preparation for the new website and will house more digital
Western Counties Regional Library (WCRL)
Library Card Month Yields Results
The message of Library Card Month - to register with the local branch of
the Western Counties Regional Library - was not lost on the 741 people who
received new library cards, or reactivated an expired one, during the month
Library Card Month, an awareness campaign sponsored by Cameron
Publications, has been held every September since 1998. Since it began,
2357 individuals have been introduced to, or have become reacquainted with,
their library. They have joined the ranks of over 17,000 in the
tri-counties who carry a free "passport to the world" - a world of
knowledge and adventure gained through books, magazines, videos, audio
books, CDs and the Internet.
A new service to members this year is being able to use your library card
from home, school, or work - wherever you have an Internet connection.
Through the library's home page you can: search the library catalogue;
request a book; ask a reference question; use the library's magazine
databases to find hundreds of entertaining and informative articles, and
use the library's collection of electronic resources to answer your
Along with receiving or updating a library card, participants of Library
Card Month were also eligible to win a one year subscription to their
county newspaper. The lucky winners are: Amber Gould from Yarmouth, winner
of The Vanguard; Allison Amero from Plympton, winner of The Digby Courier;
Ansley Stoddart from Clark's Harbour winner of The Coast Guard.
Along with the sponsorship of Cameron Publications Library Card Month is
supported by Tusket Sales & Service and CJLS.
Humourist at Library
Colleen Curran's flair for dramatic comedy, was evident when she read
excerpts from her books, Overnight Sensation and Something Drastic, at the
McKay Memorial Library on October 21. Colleen Curran is a Montrealer of
Irish heritage, and her life-long "French immersion" has given her the gift
of gab in both official languages. The genius for dramatic comedy so
apparent in her two hilarious novels also permeates the plays for which she
has become a well-known figure in Canadian theatre. Colleen also
participated in the 4th Biannual South Shore Festival of Writers at White
Point Beach Resort October 16 - 22. Her visit to the McKay Memorial
Library was sponsored by the South Shore Literacy Club and the Canada
Council for the Arts.
The Council of Regional Librarians Meeting
The Council of Regional Librarians met to deal with a full agenda on
October 16-17. The issues discussed included the designation of regional
libraries as CAP sites, the report of this year's Funding Formula Review
Committee, Friends of the Library groups, revised terms of reference for
the Council on Youth Services, orientation for new board members, and Web
Awareness. Eric Stackhouse presented a tour of Pictou County's new
community portal, and Trudy Amirault showed the group plans for new virtual
library services, part of their Smart Communities project. The group
agreed to proceed with a provincial partnership with CNIB to gain access to
the CNIB library collection and related services. Remote access to the
databases included in the provincial consortium will be set up so that a
cardholder from any regional library will be able to access the databases
from any regional library web site.
Learning Resources and Technology (LRT)
A Division of Program Branch in the Department of Education, Learning
Resources and Technology (LRT) provides video, computer, multimedia, and
distance education resources to schools. That is to say, Learning
Resources and Technology provides non-print resources to support the Nova
Scotia Public School Program. LRT also provides professional development
opportunities for educators at the district level. LRT and the Department
are partners in Canada's SchoolNet.
The award-winning website features a searchable database of
curriculum-related web sites, a bank on NcompasS that provides access to
LRT's collection of educational videotapes, software tutorials, information
about using multimedia resources, reviews of educational software, and
links to all sorts of professional development sites on the web.
Public libraries around the province have access to some videotape
programmes held at the Education Media Library; namely, those that are
produced by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) or by Learning
Resources and Technology itself. For further information, please call
(902)424-2440. Check out the website at http://lrt.ednet.ns.ca.
LRT Update on IEI-Schools Project
The Information Economy Initiative (IEI) is the single largest IT-related
initiative in Nova Scotia and has provided 6200 computers and accessories
to 181 secondary schools across the province. It is now in its third and
final year of implementation, and finishes in June 2001. This project is
significant because funding was also provided over three years for teacher
professional development, technical support and curriculum-related software.
In co-operation with the Department of Municipal Affairs, Nova Scotia
Geomatics Centre and the College of Geographic Services, the Department of
Education has provided participating schools with access to current GIS
(Geographic Information System) datasets from Nova Scotia communities for
use with the "ArcView" GIS software obtained through IEI. These datasets
included such topics as watersheds for science and geography research and
aerial photographs over several decades to allow history students to view
the changes over time in selected Nova Scotia sites, such as Port Hawkesbury.
This is just one of the exciting learning opportunities for public school
students which is possible now that there is a critical mass of information
technology in secondary schools. For more information on the IEI project,
please contact Michael Jeffrey at 424-2461 or by email at
[log in to unmask], or visit http://lrt.Ednet.ns.ca/IEI-Schools.
NEWS FROM THE LIBRARY AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (LIT) PROGRAM, NOVA SCOTIA
Focus on Instructors
The Halifax and Kingstec LIT Programs are privileged to have excellent
part-time instructors and this column will introduce some of them over the
next few months.
This month's featured instructor is Brent Robson. Brent entered the
Halifax LIT Program as a student in 1991. He managed to attend classes and
work at the Nova Scotia Provincial Library, Sackville Public Library and
Nova Scotia Records Management Unit at the same time. His hard work paid
off and he graduated at the top of the class in 1993. After graduation
Brent worked with the Province of Nova Scotia, setting up and running the
Nova Scotia Records Management Resource Centre which later included the
Information Technology and Management Resource Centre. Once the Resource
Centre was established he moved to the Nova Scotia Department of Justice,
Special Prosecution Service to work on the Westray Mine Case.
In 1997 the newly amalgamated Halifax Regional Municipality needed help in
setting up a corporate library and Brent accepted the position of
Information Analyst which he still holds. Last year Brent was finally able
to put his Bachelor of Education to good use teaching Records Management I
and II at Halifax Campus. Not one to shy away from a challenge he has
recently started teaching Records Management I over the web and, despite
some early trepidation, enjoys it immensely.
If you would like more information about LIT please contact Marlene
Mortimore at [log in to unmask] or visit the NSCC web site at
Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) Process
In other news, Marlene Mortimore, Instructor, Halifax Campus, is developing
a short, web-based course on "Preparing for PLAR" which will be available
in January 2001. PLAR stands for "prior learning assessment and
recognition" and refers to knowledge and skills acquired at work or through
other life experiences. Nova Scotia Community College grants credits for
such knowledge and skills and, although many library workers in the LIT
Program are eligible, some have found it difficult to complete the required
documentation without some guidance. The cost of the course will be
covered by the PLAR fee.
Gillian Webster attended a discussion/exploration of the PLAR process on
October 19 in Halifax. The Metro Council on Continuing Education presented
the workshop in partnership with the Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)
Centre, which focused on the advantages for employers, educational
institutions and learners of engaging in the PLA process. The Council is
an organization for people interested in adult learning. Member
organizations offer literacy instruction, computer training, English as a
Second Language, and university and community college continuing education.
For more information on the Council, email [log in to unmask] or
Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) focuses on the evaluation
of experiential learning as outlined above. For more information about
PLAR, contact the Coordinator of Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition,
Marie Desjardines - email: [log in to unmask]; phone: 491-6727; fax:
491-4828. General information about PLA and upcoming events can be found at
NEWS FROM THE SCHOOL OF LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (SLIS)
Business-to-Consumer (B2C) web sites
This month the focus of our column is research being done by Louise
Spiteri. She notes that a recent survey indicates that close to 75% of
Business-to-Consumer (B2C) web sites fail to provide consumers with
sufficient information with which to make an informed purchase.
Specifically, B2C tend to lack good information design, i.e., information
is not organized or presented in a way that allows consumers to locate
easily what they need. Using principles derived from classification and
cataloguing theory, this study will examine and evaluate (a) Internet
search engines/directories that facilitate access to B2C sites, and (b) the
informational design of a selection of B2C sites.
The findings from this study will provide an analysis of the current design
mechanisms used in the construction of Internet search directories like
Yahoo!, AltaVista, etc., as well as suggestions for improved search engine
design. The templates used to evaluate the B2C sites could be used by Web
designers in the construction, assessment, and maintenance of B2C sites.
Student assistants will conduct searches to find target populations of
search directories and B2C sites, and will assist in the evaluation of the
information structure of the B2C sites. This research activity should
serve to supplement the students' online searching and their understanding
and application of basic classification and cataloguing principles.
Scottish Practicums for SLIS Students
Every SLIS student takes part in a practicum designed to give the students
valuable real-world experience. In cooperation with the National Library
of Scotland (NLS) and, in particular, with the help of Kevin Halliwell at
the NLS, SLIS students Stuart Boon and Megan Butcher undertook their
practicums this past summer in Edinburgh, Scotland. As a legal deposit
library, the National Library of Scotland has existed since 1710. Its
collections, dating back to the 9th century, now comprise nearly 8 million
items held within the library's three Edinburgh buildings. At the NLS, the
students were able to experience everything from the acquisition of modern
texts and media to the conservation and preservation of ancient,
one-of-a-kind manuscripts. The students also had the opportunity to visit
other Scottish libraries in Glasgow, Dundee, and Aberdeen.
Outstanding Alumni Award
The Associated Alumni of Dalhousie University's School of Library and
Information Studies is pleased to announce that Marilyn Rennick, Class of
'76, is the first recipient of the Outstanding Alumni Award for the year
2000. The award was presented to Marilyn at a reception in Halifax,
October 13, 2000. Since graduating from Dalhousie in 1976, Marilyn Rennick
has held a variety of positions with the University of Ottawa. In her
current position as Government Information Specialist, her responsibilities
encompass collections development and bibliographic instruction. Earlier
in the day, Marilyn gave a public talk, "2004 - An Electronic Odyssey: The
Transition to Digital Government Information" at the Dalhousie School of
Library and Information Studies.
Future columns will highlight other projects ongoing at the School. For
further information about these or any other SLIS activities and programmes
contact the Director, Bertrum MacDonald, at [log in to unmask], (902)
494-2472 or visit the web site at: http://www.mgmt.dal.ca/slis.
NOVA SCOTIA PROVINCIAL LIBRARY NEWS
Reference Contacts Meeting
On October 20, the Provincial Library hosted a meeting of the Reference
Contacts Group. This group includes representatives from each region who
are involved in the delivery of reference service. The Group looked at
the databases that are included in the regional libraries consortium
license to see if they continue to meet the information needs of the staff
and the public. Trials are currently underway to evaluate additions to the
license. Penny Logan presented the new Medical Society of Nova Scotia web
site, whose address is http://www.doctorsns.com, and talked about the
Society's philosophy behind the site. The Society is committed to
providing access to consumer health information and working with regional
libraries will provide some very good promotional opportunities.
The beginning of October saw ECRL staff finish implementing the Circulation
module in a few branches. Training at CEHRL focused on placing holds on
books ordered through the acquisition module while PARL received their
introduction to automated acquisitions. Patrice Robitaille from DRA
visited the Nova Scotia Provincial Library and provided a brief of TAOS,
the future successor to the current MultiLis system.
Automation Training in November includes Acquisitions module training for
SSRL and CBRL. Cape Breton Regional Library staff will also be spending
some time on their Policy Management module.
Joanne McCarthy from Halifax Regional Library and Gillian Webster from Nova
Scotia Provincial Library visited the Yarmouth Headquarters of WCRL and
provided workshops on Genealogy and Job Searching on the Web to eight staff
on October 23. The new Gates computer lab was used, and the visitors were
impressed by the number of bookings made by the public already, noting that
there is a regular seniors' group session.
Similarly, Debbie Costelo from the Nova Scotia Community College Library
visited the Yarmouth Headquarters of WCRL and provided a workshop on The
Reference Interview to 11 staff on October 30.
Carol Morris and Frank Oram from Nova Scotia Provincial Library will visit
the Yarmouth Headquarters of WCRL and provide workshops on Business Sources
and Current Awareness to 14 staff on November 20.
HOT TIPS & UPDATES
NS Regional Libraries Designated Community Access Program (CAP) Sites
At their meeting on October 23, the Committee responsible for overseeing
the CAP management agreement between Industry Canada and Nova Scotia
accepted a proposal from the Council of Regional Librarians that would see
all regional library branches in the province designated as CAP sites.
This decision will see a strengthened partnership between libraries and the
Community Access Program and better integration of public access
opportunities for citizens across the province. Libraries will now be
eligible to participate in any programmes aimed at CAP sites, such as
delivery of government services. The Community Access Program comes to an
end on March 31, 2001. CAP designation for libraries greatly increases the
geographic range and economic sustainability of the program.
For further information, please contact Michael Colborne, [log in to unmask]
Teleconference - Interpreting and Applying Library Service Policies
Friday, November 17, 2000, from 4pm to 6pm, the Nova Scotia Provincial
Library will provide viewing of the teleconference The Public and Policies:
Interpreting and Applying Library Service Policies. During the
teleconference presenter Debra Wilcox Johnson, of Johnson & Johnson
Training Consultants, will examine, define and compare library service
policies. Debra Wilcox Johnson will explore the role of library staff in
influencing service policies, by analyzing policy development and
implementation, and customer service. Registration is on a first come
first serve basis, to a maximum of 50 people. Admission is free. For more
information please contact Bernadette Kennedy by phone (424-3791) or email
[log in to unmask]
Keep an eye out for upcoming teleconferences - Human values in a
Technological Age (to be aired January 19, 2001) and Agents, Bots and
Intelligent dots: The Technology Behind Electronic Document (to be aired
March 23, 2001).
WHERE THEY ARE NOW
This article continues our series of introducing some of the people who
work or have worked in the Nova Scotia regional public library system over
the years. This month we have two first-hand accounts, one from Terri
Tomchyshyn, who worked at Nova Scotia Provincial Library (NSPL) quite some
time ago, and the other from Michael Vandenburg, who also worked at NSPL,
but more recently. If you would like to see someone in profile (who works
or has worked in any capacity in the regional public library system),
please give us your suggestions! Contact Gillian Webster at
[log in to unmask] or phone: 902-424-2478.
Part I: RoweCom Canada came calling
Terri Tomchyshyn worked at NSPL between 1982-84 as the Regional Reference
Librarian with then Provincial Librarian Carin Somers, and the Canadian
Library Association Past-President Lorraine McQueen. She sent in the
"I enjoyed the job at NSPL because I was able to work with all the regional
librarians and libraries in the province. It gave me a whole new
appreciation for public libraries - particularly those in rural areas.
After leaving Nova Scotia, I worked at the Saskatoon Public Library as the
Legal Librarian, before moving onto Ottawa where I worked for the Canadian
Library Association as Director of Professional Development. I met and got
to know many of our best librarians and leaders around the country there.
I have worked in the federal government at Human Resources Development
Commission where I developed the Canadian Clearinghouse on Disability
Issues, and then moved on to the National Literacy Secretariat. These were
non-traditional type positions where my skills as a librarian were put to
use managing and organizing the information needs of specialized
programmes. RoweCom Canada came calling last fall and persuaded me to make
the leap to the "private sector." I am lucky now to be working from my
home office in hi-tech Kanata right next door to the Corel Centre, home of
the Ottawa Senators!
I realized that I have come full circle in my career. I am back, so to
speak, "working" in Nova Scotia as my sales territory encompasses Atlantic
Canada and the Ottawa Hull area. Most of the Nova Scotia regional
libraries are RoweCom Canada clients, as is the Nova Scotia Provincial
Library, so I have been re-acquainting myself with current library issues
in the province and with former colleagues who are now clients. What a
pleasure for me to be back! I am particularly looking forward to my first
NSLA Conference in over 15 years and enjoyed participating as a vendor at
APLA at St.FX last spring!
My husband, Brent Taylor, is a Maritimer so we do find ourselves in Nova
Scotia on holidays to visit his family with our two daughters 12 year old
Larissa and 7 year old Adriana. Brent is a high school teacher and this
year will be responsible for the school library after teaching English and
creative writing for the last couple of years. It seems his years of
working on the reference desk at St. Mary's University will come in handy
as he finishes his certification!
When I am not on the road, I sit on the board of directors of a local day
care centre that will be developing a fund raising campaign for a new
centre, and I am active in a women's business network that meets once a
month for breakfast.
Watch for my omnibus review of childrens' dictionaries in ALA's Reference
Books Bulletin inside Booklist. I am a member of ALA's Budget Analysis
Review Committee and chair the Literacy Assembly, and this year I have been
nominated to run for ALA Council. I believe ALL libraries can play a role
in literacy activities, be it in the development of library related
programming, rooms for tutoring, workplace literacy programmes, use of our
expertise in organizing information, knowledge of collection building, and
much more. If librarians don't concern themselves with literacy issues -
they will lose a huge opportunity to turn a large segment of the population
into avid readers and knowledgeable consumers of information as well as
creating new library users and supporters."
Feel free to contact Terri at [log in to unmask] or [log in to unmask]
Work Tel: 613.831.4511; Fax 613.831.1277.
Part II: The allure of The Philadelphia Free Library
Michael Vandenburg, who has taken up a position at the Philadelphia Free
Library, a system with 55 branches, sent in this first-hand report:
"One of the things that struck Mary Claire and I as soon as we got here was
how polite complete strangers were. It was the height of spring when we
arrived at the beginning of April, with magnolias blooming and flowers
sprouting everywhere. Anyway, every time I sneezed there would be a
chorus of "God bless you!" from all sides. The God part seemed a bit odd
to me until I realized that religion is more public here. Everything is,
and coming to work I noticed that people just speak their minds here, too.
I'm often struck by the similarities between my work in Nova Scotia and
here. The biggest difference between the library systems is the funding.
A friend from Halifax that Mary Claire and I met in Washington D.C. last
weekend pointed out that there's something a little contradictory about it.
I mean, we're supposed to have more socialist leanings in Canada and
provide more services for the public. However, one of the first things I
noticed here is that there's a seemingly unlimited amount of money for
public institutions like the library.
The thing they can't seem to get enough of is people. But in many other
regards, the situation here is quite a lot like that of Nova Scotia. The
libraries are working on practical ways to start integrating electronic
resources like websites into their catalog, and are bringing school
libraries into the mix.
I have a number of classes that I teach to library staff, showing them how
to use online databases and library software, and I do some time on our
helpdesk. It's an actual desk here that's staffed all day by people who
troubleshoot problems, fix them when they can, and forward them to
specialists when they can't. It seems pretty efficient at first glance,
but because of staff shortages, there's still big lapses of time before a
lot of problems get fixed.
Right now my involvement with the automation software is pretty limited,
and my attentions are focused on web development. I've got this great
project where I'm developing a web application that will allow staff to
create and edit training materials online. It's a lot of fun, and similar
to the extranet project that I was working with Rod Tucker on before I left
NSPL. In fact, I'm enjoying this web development so much that I may try to
make it my full time position here.
Mary Claire enjoys her position here as well. Her work environment is
quite a bit different than mine. She's in a smaller branch that is quite
close to our home, while I commute downtown to the Central branch. Her
branch was recently renovated, and has a lot of new furnishings and windows
in a dingy IT basement with a limited view. Mary Claire is the children's
librarian at her branch, and had a real surprise when she got here. It's
no rural NS high school library! She's swamped with kids all day, and is
constantly running to keep up.
The summer reading programme at her branch involved something like 750
children, and she only had a couple of teen helpers to keep them under
control. On the other hand, she's been able to do some really interesting
programming, like a traditional Japanese Kamishiba storytime complete with
origami instruction, and a teddybear picnic with scores of toddlers
marching around on the library lawn. The system has some great corporate
involvement here, with the giant drug company Smith Kline and Beacham
sponsoring a Science in the Summer programme that gets almost as many
children as the summer reading programme. I think that Mary Claire figures
that if she can survive here, that working in any other library system will
feel like a vacation! Just a note to anyone who needs the work, they're
dying for children's librarians here and can't seem to get enough of us
Anyone who wishes to get in contact with Michael, can e- mail him at
[log in to unmask]
REFERENCE ON THE NET
Here are some more reference questions referred to the Provincial Library
by the Regional Public Libraries. They were answered from resources found
on the Internet.
Q. What are the health effects of lead poisoning?
A. At the web site of The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and
Safety at http://www.ccohs.ca follow the links OSH Answers/Chemicals &
Materials/Chemical Profiles/Lead and finally click on "Health Effects of
Lead" which provides answers to this question.
Q. How do you treat logs to make them burn with coloured flames?
A. The keywords "logs colored flames" were entered at the Google search
engine site at http://www.google.com. Among the results were three useful
articles on how to do this:
"How To Color Fireplace Flames" at http://www.makestuff.com/flames.html
on the makestuff.com web site at http://www.makestuff.com.
"Colored Fire Products Brighten Winter Flames" by Jack Drewes on the
American Fireworks News site at http://www.fireworksnews.com/flames.htm.
"How You Can Color Fireplace Flames" on freewell.com: The Online Library of
Free Reports at http://www.freewell.com/freereports/household/58.html.
This month's Linked column features some resources which have been put on
the Internet specifically for the use of library staff. It was difficult
to narrow done the choices since there are a number of very good sites by
and for information professionals which have sprung up on the web.
LibraryNet:RéseauBiblio at http://www.schoolnet.ca/ln-rb is a bilingual
site which brings together information about libraries in Canada. It was
developed by Canadian librarians in cooperation with Industry Canada. The
site has links to The Internet Guide, a free Web-based course for library
staff from the University of Toronto and GRIF (Guide de ressources Internet
francophone) which is a French Internet guide. The "Links for Librarians"
section has resources on librarianship as well as on a large number of
other topics which are useful for reference. Other links are to Canadian
Libraries and Library Schools, Canadian Library Organizations, Provincial
Government Library Services, International Libraries. There is Information
on Funding and Promotion of libraries and Information on What Libraries Are
Doing Online including "Best Practices" an annual report begun in 1997 on
Innovative Internet use in Canadian public libraries. Another feature is a
newsletter, LibraryNet Monthly which you can subscribe to by e-mail or read
at the site and a searchable archive of issues going back to July 1998.
Library Reference Center at http://www.epnet.com/lrc.html is a database on
the EBSCO Publishing site which has indexing and abstracts for over 30
journals in the field of Library and Information Science. It can be
searched here for free.
LibrarySpot.com at http://www.libraryspot.com is a highly acclaimed site
which brings professional information for library staff and general
reference sites together. It is published by StartSpot Mediaworks, Inc. in
the Northwestern University/Evanston ResearchPark, Evanston, Ill. and is an
American-oriented site but there are lots of reference links which Canadian
library staff will find useful. The site provides a gateway to more than
5000 libraries around the world. The Librarian's Shelf near the bottom of
the main page has links to relevant resources for information
professionals. The site also Features a "Library Site of the Month" and a
"Reference Site of the Month."
Librarians' Resource Centre at
http://www.sla.org/chapter/ctor/toolbox/resource/index.html is produced by
the Toronto Chapter of the Special Libraries Association. The main page
has a search box at the top of it with clear search instructions. You can
use this to locate annotated reference sources which the site has links to.
If the frames version bothers you, you can click on "No Frames" near the
Search Box for the frameless version. The site also has links to sites
with professional development resources and internet/intranet web page
Innovative Internet Applications in Libraries at
http://www.wiltonlibrary.org/innovate.html is provided by Kathy Leeds,
Wilton Library Association, Wilton, Connecticut. It provides links to
examples of how libraries are making best use of the Internet. The links
are arranged by categories such as "Ages & Stages," "Book and Reading
Lists," "Local Databases," "Newsletters," "Tutorials/Guides" and "Virtual
Web sites which were featured in previous "Linked" columns are now arranged
by subject category on the Reference Services page of the Provincial
Library web site at http://www.library.ns.ca/provlib/brochure/refser.html.
If you have any suggestions about future topics for this column please
contact Carol Morris at [log in to unmask]
In this month's column, two books on the subject of fundraising for
libraries are featured. These items can be borrowed through regular
interlibrary loan channels. Please send requests via email to Dale
MacMillan at [log in to unmask]
Craft, Mary Anne. The funding game: rules for public library advocacy.
Lantham, Md, Scarecrow Press, 1999. [ Call # Prof 027.21 Cra ]
This book is a compilation of exemplary public library innovations, team
projects, partnerships, and marketing efforts in 30 U.S. public libraries
of various sizes. The author presents a number of concepts and methods for
recasting a library's funding advocacy efforts. By effective use of
examples, the author -Mary Anne Craft -shows that service, accountability
and community relations are the key issues in securing needed funds.
Steele, Victoria. Becoming a fundraiser: the principles and practice of
library development. 2nd edition. Chicago: American Library Association,
2000. [ Call #: Prof 025.11 Ste ]
The central theme of this revised edition is that raising funds will be
imperative to the growth and maintenance of first-rate libraries. This
book is intended as a one stop resource to give readers the tools needed to
bring development and fundraising skills up to a level necessary to lead
effective campaigns. The authors attempt to show the reader how to set
meaningful goals, build a winning development team, develop donor profiles
and prospects, communicate a library's mission and approach major donors
with confidence and specificity.
Credits go to:
Stuart Boon, School of Library and Information Studies, Dalhousie University
Sarah Hainsworth, Education Media Librarian, Learning Resources and Technology
Michael Jeffrey, Director, Learning Resources and Technology
Heidi Julien, School of Library and Information Studies, Dalhousie University
Marlene Mortimore, Library And Information Technology (LIT) Program, Nova
Scotia Community College
Terri Tomchyshyn, RoweCom Canada
Michael Vandenburg, Philadelphia Free Library, Philadelphia