Emerging Technologies Section (ETS)

Chanitra Bishop, Editor

ETS Helps to Make Inaugural Midwinter “Deep Dives” a Success
ETS helped to launch the inaugural round of “Deep Dives” – small, half-day professional development workshops – at this year’s Midwinter meeting in Boston.  The program, “We Are All User Experience Librarians: Creating Change from the Trenches” aimed to provide attendees with an introduction to why user experience design matters in libraries, what it is, and how librarians can take simple, sustainable steps to implement it.  The sold-out session heard from Heidi Steiner Burkhardt [University of Michigan], Pete Coco [Boston Public Library], Deirdre Costello [EBSCO], Courtney McDonald Greene [Indiana University] and Lauren McKeen [Northwestern University] about creating user-centered content, developing a content management strategy, simple ways to begin doing usability testing, and how to do “flash” – quick, inexpensive – ethnographic research on library users, as well as receiving a capsule introduction to user experience design.  Talks were accompanied by audience-participation exercises that allowed attendees to begin thinking about how to practically apply the concepts and strategies discussed in their own libraries, and they concluded with a lively Q&A period.

The session received uniformly positive evaluations, and the User Experience Design Committee hopes to expand in into a pre-conference to be held at Annual 2017 in Chicago.  Slides, tweets, and other media from the Deep Dive are available at: http://bit.ly/1P4OPz6

ETS updates, changes and call for volunteers!
Updated Bylaws have been posted to the ETS website. Our handbook, forms and policies & procedures are currently undergoing revision.

The ETS Executive Committee recently approved the merger of two committees (Products & Services and Local Systems & Services) to form a new committee: Services for Systems & Discovery.

 The charge for the Services for Systems & Discovery committee is ‘To create, collect, analyze, evaluate and disseminate information and materials on the development, and implementation of a variety of products, both locally and vendor created;  coordinate the concerns of individuals or organizations involved in selecting, acquiring, and evaluating electronic reference products and services; and to gather and share with the library profession information on new technologies and ethical issues relating to such systems and services. These services and products can include provision of electronic reference services; document delivery; expert systems; locally developed databases; public access catalogs; non-bibliographic databases, discovery systems.’

Check out the list of all committees for the Emerging Technologies Section (ETS).  Please email Courtney Greene McDonald (Vice-chair) or Donna Scanlon (Chair) if you have any questions about any of our committees.  Visit our website to learn more about ETS and to volunteer.

If you plan to attend the Annual conference in Orlando, join us at our All Committee Meeting on Sunday, June 26th from 10:30-11:30am for an opportunity to meet ETS members and have your questions answered!  Watch the ALA Conference Schedule for room information.

ETS at Annual

Saturday, June 25th

  • 3-4pm – Promoting Subject Specialists & Enhancing Visibility of Library Reference (ETS/MERS)

Sunday, June 26th

  • 1-2:30pm – Emerging Technologies Librarians: Changing Roles for Changing Times (ETS) Join us and our speakers as they share their thoughts in areas such as the day in the life of Emerging Technologies Librarians, the trends in job descriptions, tips for successfully juggling competing priorities, and advice and strategies for keeping up.  Our speakers:  Beth Boatright, most recently chair of our Hot Topics Committee, Business Librarian and Emerging Technologies Coordinator at Indiana University/Purdue University, Fort Wayne (IUPFW), and a 2015 Emerging Leader; Tara  Radniecki, author of the paper, ” Study on Emerging Technologies Librarians: How a new library position and its competencies are evolving to meet the technology and information needs of libraries and their patrons”  (http://library.ifla.org/134/1/152-radniecki-en.pdf).

Are you working in an emerging technology role at a public library (past or present)?  Would you be interested in participating in our panel?  If so, please contact Debbie Bezanson with your interest or with any questions you might have.

  • 3-4pm – Beyond Metrics: Data-Drivers in Library Decision-Making (ETS/Hot Topics)
  • 4:30-5:30 – “Fact or Fiction: What Virtual Reference Training Works and What Holds Promise” (ETS/Virtual Reference). Is your library currently training staff on virtual reference services? Are you looking for ideas on how to approach training or make your training efficient? This program allows the librarian to learn about current training programs, the ideal methods of assessment, and identify best training practices. As a topic that will interest all types of libraries, librarians are encouraged to share their experiences and acquire helpful tips from others.