Tag Archives: discussion forums

Reference Services Section Discussion Forum (RUSA)

Interested in leading a discussion about issues related to reference?  If yes, then consider submitting a proposal to the Discussion Forum Coordinating Committee of the Reference Services Section (RSS) of RUSA for ALA Midwinter in San Diego, CA. 

Submit a proposal, lead a discussion, see your name in print, and find your way to stardom!  Details are below.

See http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/rssdiscussionforum

Description: The RSS Discussion Forum Coordinating Committee solicits discussion topic proposals for discussion for ALA Midwinter 2011 in San Diego, CA.  The purpose of the discussion forum is to provide a venue for reference practitioners to introduce reference related topics of current importance, to promote discussion, and to encourage further exploration.


What to Include in the Proposal:

The following 5 elements need to be addressed and clearly stated in the proposal:

         A clear description of the discussion topic’s issues

         Rationale for convening a discussion on the topic

         Importance of the topic’s issues for reference librarians

         At least three sample discussion questions that may be used to facilitate group discussion

         Proposed strategies and structure to ensure a group discussion


The Potential Scope of Discussion Topics includes, but is not Limited to:

         Reference methods

         Reference and information technology

         Assessment of reference

         Management of reference

         Research in reference


The topic should be focused enough to be covered reasonably well within the allotted time. (For example “Everything about IM” would be too broad, while “Using IM to answer reference questions for Honors Students” might be just the right scope).


Expectations for Discussion Forum Conveners:

For the selected proposals, the proposal author(s) will serve as convener(s) and commit to:

         becoming up-to-date and familiar with the discussion topic;

         exploring possible discussion formats and selecting the appropriate format that allows for maximum discussion within the parameters and scope of the topic;

         drafting a summary of findings about the issue with a few key references to hand out at the discussion forum;

         facilitating a Discussion Forum at the ALA Midwinter Conference (in San Diego, C.A., January 7-11, 2011);

         maintaining communication with the Discussion Forum Coordinating Committee throughout the planning, program, and follow-up processes.


Discovery Systems: Solutions a User Could Love?

 The MARS Local Systems & Services committee is seeking panelists for its discussion forum at the 2010 ALA Annual meeting in Washington, DC on Sunday, June 27, 2010, 1:30-3:30pm. The discussion forum topic is “Discovery Systems: Solutions a User Could Love?” and will continue the conversation that began at our very successful Midwinter forum by the same name. You can view a listing of the Midwinter panelists and the discovery tools they implemented by visiting this public ALA Connect page: http://connect.ala.org/node/92049

Panelists are asked to describe their experiences implementing “next generation discovery tools” that attempt to provide access to disparate library collections from a single search box. Examples include Summon, Primo, WorldCat Local, and Encore; the system should be in production, and should have the ability to include resources beyond the catalog. We are interested in knowing why you made your choice, your implementation experience, what was gained, what surprises and challenges you may have encountered, and how your users have responded to the change.

Each panelist should plan to speak for no more than 20 minutes and participate in a general Q&A at the end of the session.

Please e-mail proposals to: Matt Lee (Reference Librarian, Minitex, Minneapolis, MN) at leems001@umn.edu

Proposals should include a title (including name of discovery system) and brief summary of the talk, as well as the names, positions and e-mail addresses of the presenters.

Deadline for proposals: April 30, 2010.

First Four-Star Woman General: WHIJEC asks “What does it mean to you?”

On November 14, 2008, Lt. General Ann E. Dunwoody became the first
woman to be promoted as a Four-Star General. In 1970, Anna May Hays,
was the first woman to be promoted as a general. WHIJEC asks “What
does it mean to you?”

The Women’s Heritage International Joint Exchange Competition
(WHIJEC)’s mission is to work with schools in U.S. and other
countries, to introduce young people to the contributions of women to
local, national and world history, which are still largely absent in
historical accounts, especially in the P20 educational system
(Kindergarten through Graduate school). Through bicultural
collaboration using the Internet and online technologies,
participating students can learn about Women’s Heritage, have
exchanges of country, culture, and language as well develop and hone
telecollaboration skills.

Recognizing the lack of historical accounts of women in history, we
are asking for you help and support. If you have a comment or a
reflection or personal story as a woman or about a woman, which you
would like to share with those interested in participating in the
WHIJEC, please visit and blog about it at http://www.ijeniei.ning.com.

If you have questions or would like to know more about the Women’s
Heritage International Joint Exchange Competition, please email

Also, in the coming weeks, we will have chats between students
different countries interested in participating in the WHIJEC. If you
are interested in joining us, please email

Thank you.

All the best.


Alfred Griffin, President
International Exchange Institute