News from the Field

David Free

Crowdsourced Yiddish translation project

An innovative new project is seeking Yiddish speakers to help create an archive of journals and newspapers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Two archival repositories—the Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives at Cornell University and the Modern Records Centre at the University of Warwick in the United Kingdom—are jointly digitizing more than 1,500 digitized pages from journals and newspapers originally written for working-class Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe.

The project organizers are relying on individuals’ help to translate the publications, which include The Polish Yidel and Hashulamith newspapers and The Ladies’ Garment Worker, journal of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers Union and covers the period 1910 to 1918. Participants in the project simply register, select a journal, and type translations into a text box. Perfect translations are not required; an overall sense of the documents and the content is more important.

After pages are digitized and translated, they are available—free and completely searchable—on the project’s wiki at

Assessment in Action program facilitators, applications

Three designer/facilitators have been selected for the upcoming ACRL program Assessment in Action: Academic Libraries and Student Success (AiA), made possible by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. They are April Cunningham (library instruction coordinator at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, California), Carrie Donovan (head of teaching and learning for the Indiana University Libraries in Bloomington, Indiana), and Libby Miles (associate professor of writing and rhetoric in the Harrington School of Communication and Media at the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, Rhode Island).

Three hundred institutions of all types will be selected to participate in the AiA learning community. Each participating institution will identify a team consisting of a librarian and at least two additional team members as determined by the campus (e.g., faculty member, student affairs representative, institutional researchers, or academic administrator).

The librarian team leaders will participate in a one-year professional development program that includes team-based activities carried out on their campuses. Applications from prospective institutional teams are due by Friday, March 8, at 5 p.m. Central. Complete details on AiA are available on the program homepage at

Virginia Farm Bureau News online

The Library of Virginia and the Virginia Farm Bureau have combined resources to create an online version of the Virginia Farm Bureau News, providing images and full-text searching capability for issues dating back to 1941, the first year of the title’s publication. The current edition of the database offers access to issues through 1999. The project is freely accessible online at

ProQuest revives Statistical Abstract of the United States

ProQuest has published the 2013 edition of the Statistical Abstract of the United States, rescuing one of researchers’ most valued reference tools—the premier collection of statistics on the United States and its people.

The ProQuest Statistical Abstract is available in new online and print editions. The print edition—published in cooperation with Bernan Publishing—strongly resembles past editions. Roughly 99 percent of the tables in the 2012 edition are republished in the new edition, fully updated if new data has been issued this year. New tables have been added on such topics as same-sex households, student loan debt, “under-water” mortgages, and trade with China. Additionally, the Pro-Quest version includes updated introductory sections, bibliographic documentation, and a back-of-the book index.

Gale grows National Geographic Virtual Library

Gale, part of Cengage Learning, has announced the launch of National Geographic: People, Animals, and the World, a new multimedia resource in its National Geographic Virtual Library (NGVL) product line.

This new resource joins National Geographic Magazine Archive, 1888-1994 and National Geographic Magazine Archive, 1995-Current, bringing the total number of available NGVL resources to three. These resources will be used by students, teachers, undergraduates, faculty, and anyone with an interest in the natural world.

National Geographic: People, Animals, and the World includes a variety of content such as full-text books on travel, science and technology, history, the environment and animals; videos covering such topics as the Islamic world, alternative energy, and even the lifestyle of beluga whales; more than 650 maps; 600 downloadable National Geographic images; and the National Geographic Traveler magazine from 2010-present.

For more information, visit

Index to 19th Century American Art Periodicals

EBSCO has added a new art history resource to its database collection. Index to 19th Century American Art Periodicals, a bibliographic index formerly available via First Search from OCLC, is now available via EB-SCOhost. As the only index to 42 art journals published in the United States during the 19th century, Index to 19th Century American Art Periodicals is a valuable resource for art history research as well as a valuable source of information on popular culture and industry. Index to 19th Century American Art Periodicals includes more than 26,000 records covering American art from 1800 to 1899. The resource covers all facets of American art during this time period and is ideal for researchers studying artists, illustrators, painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, architecture and design, exhibitions and sales, decoration, and collecting. Complete details are available at

Research Agenda for Women and Gender Studies Librarianship revision

The ACRL Women and Gender Studies Section (WGSS) announces the launch of its revised Research Agenda for Women and Gender Studies Librarianship. First published in 2004, this newly updated version includes literature reviews which will be particularly helpful to the new researcher. The committee identified all the research that had been done on women and gender studies librarianship, broke it into categories, summarized it, and used the existing research to identify new questions for further research. The agenda is intended to stimulate the thinking of library school students and new librarians in the field who are looking for research projects and to promote the expansion of the body of information available in the area of women and gender studies librarianship.

Because women and gender studies is a broad interdisciplinary area, many of the issues at stake in organizing and accessing its information are applicable to other areas. Most of the categories, such as database coverage, discovery and subject access, information-seeking behavior, collection development and evaluation, scholarly communication, and information literacy, apply to all subject areas and the questions underlying each could serve as useful models for other ACRL sections.

The research agenda is available at

College & Research Libraries to transition to online-only publishing model

College & Research Libraries (C&RL), the official scholarly research journal of ACRL, will adopt an online-only publication model beginning in January 2014. The November 2013 issue will be the final print issue of the journal.

This shift in publication model is the result of thoughtful study undertaken with input from a survey of the ACRL membership by the Board of Directors, Budget & Finance Committee, C&RL Editorial Board, Publications Coordinating Committee, and other stakeholder groups to balance the ways readers prefer to engage with ACRL publications with the financial realities of the changing scholarly publishing landscape. The membership survey informed discussions about the final decision to invest resources in the online platform rather than sustain print.

“The Board’s decision to transition to an online-only format is an acknowledgement of the academic reader’s preference for the e-journal format—and our members support this action,” said ACRL President Steven J. Bell of Temple University. “With this move, ACRL will be able to better direct the resources needed to keep our flagship publication the most prestigious, versatile, and consulted scholarly journal for academic librarianship. Under the leadership of new C&RL editor Scott Walter, the Board is confident we will achieve this goal.”

Hosted through High Wire Press, a division of the Stanford University Libraries, C&RLs online presence provides a variety of robust features. Online readers have the ability to comment on articles, share contents through social media, and perform basic and advanced searches across C&RL and other ACRL serials. A variety of RSS feeds and e-mail alerts provide notification of the availability of newly posted preprint and issues contents.

Articles are freely available to read online or download as PDF files. The mobile-optimized version of C&RL online allows readers to read and interact with articles from their smart phones, tablets, and other mobile devices.

“The transition to a purely digital publication platform presents an exciting opportunity for College & Research Libraries,” added Scott Walter, C&RL editor and university librarian at DePaul University. “In addition to maintaining our commitment to publishing the highest-quality research in our field, we will be able to enhance the connections between research reported in C&RL and other research and research-based continuing education programs provided through ACRL. We will work with a wider range of ACRL members to explore the potential that C&RL has to anchor a broader portal promoting access to basic and applied scholarship in academic and research libraries.”

Published since 1939, C&RL enacted an open access policy in April 2011. The full backfiles of the publication are being made available online thanks to the digitization efforts of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

C&RL contents are freely available at

New ACRL publications

ACRL announces the release of two new publications: 2011 Academic Library Trends and Statistics and Pay It Forward: Mentoring New Information Professionals. 2011 Academic Library Trends and Statistics is the latest in a series of annual publications that describe the collections, staffing, expenditures, and service activities of academic libraries in all Carnegie classifications.

The 2011 survey includes data from 1,514 academic libraries in six major categories including Collections; Expenditures; Electronic Resources; Personnel and Public Services; Ph.D.s Granted, Faculty, Student Enrollment; and Faculty Rank, Status, and Tenure for Librarians.

The three-volume set includes Associate of Arts institutions, Master’s Colleges and Universities/Baccalaureate Colleges, and Research/Doctoral-granting Institutions. The individual volumes for Associates Colleges, Masters/Baccalaureate and Doctoral-Granting institutions are also available for purchase through the ALA Online Store and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

The fourth installment in ACRL’s Active Guides series, Pay it Forward: Mentoring New Information Professionals by Mary Ann Mavrinac and Kim Sytmest, is also available. Pay It Forward provides a unique perspective on mentoring by examining aspects of the relationship from the points of view of both mentor and mentee. Mavrinac and Sytmest describe the benefits of mentoring to each participant, and the profession as a whole, in forming a mentoring partnership.

Pay it Forward: Mentoring New Information Professionals is available for purchase through the ALA Online Store, Amazon, and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

Tech Bits..

Brought to you by the ACRL ULS Technology in University Libraries Committee

Looking for a new way to excite students about the library? Try This social network uses video to create conversations through quick, 15-second status updates. Tout easily integrates with Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest, and lets us talk to our students beyond pictures and text. A reply feature even lets people participate in Tout video conversations. There are Android, iOS, and Windows apps available and an API allows developers to create widgets, and Web apps. Tout even has a forum and blog to help with questions. Try recording a brief introduction to the newly renovated cafe in your library or start a Dance Dare competition. Opening Week activities at the library are perfect opportunities for status updates. The chances for creativity are wide open.

—Nicole Sump-Crethar, Oklahoma State University


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