News from the Field

ACRL 2023 Call for Proposals

ACRL invites proposals for the ACRL 2023 Conference to be held March 15-18, 2023, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Higher education has changed dramatically over the last few years. Academic libraries are addressing an increased emphasis on remote learning, rising calls for social justice, and an acknowledged need for flexibility that supports a sustainable work-life balance. At ACRL 2023, explore these issues and more around the theme of “Forging the Future.”

Through its Core Commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, and dedication to open and equitable scholarship, ACRL strives to develop an inclusive conference program that will provide opportunities to underrepresented groups that have been historically marginalized or excluded due to race, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, economic background, age, and/or disability. The association also seeks participants from all types of libraries, positions, and experiences, including nonlibrary faculty, staff, and administrators. Individuals are encouraged to address how their proposed sessions and their personal and professional experiences will advance these goals, promote equity and inclusion, and broaden the perspectives of conference attendees.

ACRL 2023 features seven session formats to suit a wide range of presentation and learning styles. Contributed paper, panel session, and workshop proposals are due June 3, 2022. Lightning talk, poster session, roundtable discussion, and virtual conference presentations are due October 13, 2022. Complete details about ACRL 2023, including the full Call for Proposals and link to the submission form, are available on the conference website at https://acrl2023.us2.pathable.com/. Conference registration opens in September 2022.

NHA launches What Are You Going to Do with That? podcast

The National Humanities Alliance recently launched What Are You Going to Do with That? a podcast exploring everyday folks’ decisions to study the humanities as undergraduates and their pathways to fulfilling careers. The first season, which includes seven episodes and is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and additional services, features a diverse group of young professionals with humanities backgrounds reflecting on how they’ve applied the knowledge and skills they gained in a variety of industries. Each episode is organized around a broader theme in the individual’s story that applies across disciplines and industries, such as “Take On Complex Problems” and “Turn Your Passion Into a Career.” While faculty may find the podcast helpful in their efforts to articulate career pathways, the podcast is aimed primarily at students, as well as those who advise them, including parents, academic advisors, career counseling staff, and high school teachers and guidance counselors. Learn more at www.studythehumanities.org/podcast.

Michigan State Libraries award faculty OER grants

The Michigan State University (MSU) Libraries Open Educational Resources (OER) Advisory Committee has awarded a third round of grants totaling $28,500 to nine MSU faculty. The announcement was made by Dean of Libraries and Interim Associate Provost for Teaching and Learning Innovation Joseph A. Salem Jr., who said the awards are designed to support the goals of the OER program, which aims to help instructors reduce costs for students, improve access to required texts, and increase student success.

MSU Open Educational Resources and Student Success Librarian Regina Gong said the awards will help MSU faculty invest in and continue important work to make education affordable, equitable, and accessible for students. The full list of faculty members (and faculty member teams) who were awarded grants is available at https://blogs.lib.msu.edu/news-msu-libraries/2022/mar/msu-libraries-award-28500-msu-faculty-help-instructors-reduce-costs.

New from ACRL—The Rise of AI

ACRL announces the publication of The Rise of AI: Implications and Applications of Artificial Intelligence in Academic Libraries, book number 78 in the Publications in Librarianship series, edited by Sandy Hervieux and Amanda Wheatley. This book collects projects, collaborations, and future uses from academic librarians who have begun to embrace artificial intelligence (AI) in their work.

Librarians are uniquely positioned to rise to the challenge that AI presents to the field. Libraries and their like have existed for millennia. They progress with society, altering and adapting their services to meet the information needs of their communities.

In three parts—User Services, Collections and Discovery, and Toward Future Applications—The Rise of AI explores:

  • machine translation;
  • creating incubation spaces;
  • robotics;
  • combining information literacy initiatives with AI literacy;
  • fostering partnerships with other on-campus groups;
  • integrating AI technology into collections to enhance discoverability;
  • using AI to refine metadata for images, articles, and theses; and
  • machine learning.

Chapters introduce implications and applications of AI in academic libraries and hopes to provoke conversations and inspire new ways of engaging with the technology. As the discussion surrounding ethics, bias, and privacy in AI continues to grow, librarians will be called to make informed decisions and position themselves as leaders in this discourse.

The Rise of AI: Implications and Applications of Artificial Intelligence in Academic Libraries is available for purchase in print and as an ebook through the ALA Online Store, in print through Amazon.com, and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

MIT Press, Harvard Law School Library launch law textbook series

The MIT Press and Harvard Law School Library have announced the launch of the Open Casebook series. Leveraging free and open texts created and updated by distinguished legal scholars, the series offers high-quality yet affordable printed textbooks for use in law teaching across the country, tied to online access to the works and legal opinions under open licenses. The first book in the series is Torts! by Jonathan Zittrain, George Bemis Professor of International Law at Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and Jordi Weinstock, Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School. Torts! serves as primary text for a first-year law school torts course. Taken together, the cases within the book show differing approaches to the problems of defining legal harm and applying those definitions to a messy world.

The Open Casebook series leverages free and open texts created by distinguished legal scholars on Harvard’s H2O platform. Created by Harvard Law School’s Library Innovation Lab, H2O facilitates the building, sharing, and remixing of open-access digital textbooks, with cases drawn from the Lab’s companion Caselaw Access Project, which scanned and made freely available access to all American case law. Authors can create their own original books with H2O, finding and adapting existing texts to refine and build upon one another’s work. Learn more and access titles at http://www.opencasebook.org.

ACRL releases Teaching Business Information Literacy

ACRL announces the publication of Teaching Business Information Literacy, edited by Genifer Snipes, Marlinda Karo, Ash E. Faulkner, and Lauren Reiter. This prescriptive book features more than 40 practical, classroom-proven lesson plans for one-shot, embedded, and credit-bearing library classes.

Business is currently one of the most popular degree programs among both graduate and undergraduate students, and nonbusiness programs, including engineering, design, and pure sciences—all interested in innovation, commercialization, and marketing—are increasingly integrating business training into their curriculum in the name of interdisciplinarity and improved job placement. There is a sustained and growing need for libraries to effectively support business information literacy.

At the same time, the resources, research techniques, and assignments that business students need to master often have little in common with a traditional research paper. Teaching Business Information Literacy provides guidance to new business specialists, generalists, and subject librarians in other disciplines being asked to teach business research classes for the first time in nine thorough sections. Chapters cover such crucial topics as competitive intelligence, market research, financial analysis, ethics, intellectual property, accounting and auditing, supply chain management, job searching, and more. Each one guides you through the background of the topic and activity being taught, pre-class planning and preparation, a step-by-step lesson plan, how to adapt the activity for other institutional contexts, and learning outcomes. Additional supporting materials, such as slide decks, worksheets, and game boards, are freely available in the ACRL Sandbox (http://sandbox.acrl.org) and findable with the tag “#bizinfolit.”

Teaching Business Information Literacy is available for purchase in print and as an ebook through the ALA Online Store; in print through Amazon.com; and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

Gale Primary Sources release new archives dedicated to underrepresented histories

Gale, part of Cengage Group, is supporting academic initiatives in diversity, equity, and inclusion with the release of six new archives on the Gale Primary Sources platform. These archives explore the stories of LGBTQ+ communities worldwide, women, Native Americans, and other underrepresented communities. Gale Primary Sources provide librarians, students, and scholars with historical context on controversial issues from a wide range of perspectives underscoring how the past has shaped today’s political and civil rights movements across the globe.

With the steady increase in misinformation on campus about diversity, social justice and political issues, these archives change the conversation by providing access to original historical primary sources that enable researchers and students to compare resources and make key connections. These latest archives from Gale promote open dialogue and teach critical thinking skills that inspire change and cross-cultural awareness. For more information, visit www.gale.com/primary-sources/frontlist.

ACRL membership funding for BIPOC library workers

During these unprecedented times since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, heightened social awareness of systemic racism, oppression, and institutional violence, and economic recession—all of which disproportionately impact communities of color—the ACRL Board of Directors has approved funding for one year of ALA and ACRL membership for up to 25 library workers who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). This membership amounts to an annual savings ranging from $123 to $219 per membership for the recipient. The application deadline is May 1, 2022, awardees will be notified by June 1, 2022, and the free membership will begin on July 1, 2022. More details are available on ACRL Insider at https://acrl.ala.org/acrlinsider/acrl-membership-funding-for-bipoc-library-workers-2/.

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