Friday, September 19, 2014

Besides books, why should I come to the library?

If you come to the library, you know the usual things we do:  show you where books and databases are; check books out to you; shelve books; tell you how to print something from your laptop; and tell you that “no, we don’t sell scantrons”.  But what you might not know are the other things associated with our job here at TCTC.

We are on a number of TCTC committees so that we are in touch with the Campus communities (Marla is President of Faculty Senate and on the Curriculum Committee).  Some of us teach (Sue and Alydia teach a COL 105 section each). Kultida goes to the Anderson campus weekly.  Jessica works the evening shift so she sees other people than the rest of us might.  Debby and Allison keep the branches running smoothly and make sure that the libraries there are friendly and inviting.  Claudia is the history keeper of the library. She has been here over 30 years so she can tell you anything about why something happens the way it does. This helps us know what is happening in the classrooms and in the offices.

Other things that we do because we care about you:
·         Glue sandals that broke so you can go to class.
·         Make sure there is tissue and hand sanitizer available.
·         Have candy!
·         Be available for student interviews.
·         Go to student graduations (no we don’t have to do that, we just like to do that because we support you).
·         Open our information literacy workshop computer lab to students that need to study in larger areas than the collaborative study rooms.
·         Have school supplies like staplers and paperclips available.
·         Have a supply of Band-Aids (currently I think it is Hello Kitty).
·         Maintain comfy seats.
·         Have a supply of pens.

The library cares about you even when you aren’t studying.  We strive to offer a responsive and open environment for not only your research projects but other kinds of social engagement.  We would love for you to come see us.  Remember the library is the heart of your research.
Blog by Marla Roberson

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

“I Didn’t Know We HAD THAT”!

 Today I spoke to our Veterinary Tech faculty.  They have several new instructors and a new department head as well, who asked if I could show all of them the resources in their discipline that the TCTC Library provides.  There is nothing I like better than speaking to a group of people who are amazed at what our library can do!  I only talked for 15 minutes and barely scratched the surface of what’s available, but during those 15 minutes at least five of these instructors said something like “I didn’t know we HAD THAT!”  I’m fairly certain that I will be working on integrating some kind of library use or research into their classes soon, and I’m happy to do it.
If you are an instructor, are you aware of all the resources the library purchases that can be part of your curriculum?  At the bottom of the library home page is a collection of “Subject Guides” that are very helpful:

We also have a “Specialized Subjects” page,  which has links to things you might not think library would provide, such as our Auto Repair database.

And from our Databases page, did you know you can read popular magazines online?  It’s available from General OneFile, a database of popular magazines.

So take some time to poke around a bit on your library’s web page – you may see something and say, “I didn’t know we HAD THAT!”

---Sue Andrus, Instruction Librarian

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Psychology eBooks

Through PASCAL (Partnership Among South Carolina Academic Libraries), the Library now has access to 336 eBooks in Psychology from Oxford University Press Scholarship Online (UPSO). The purchase was made possible with lottery funds and is a statewide one-time purchase including perpetual access. Some of these eBooks are Academic Motivation and the Culture of School in Childhood and Adolescence, Animal Innovation, The Cognitive Neuropsychiatry of Parkinson's Disease, Discovering the Musical Mind, Understanding Other Minds, and The Emotional Power of Music.

These titles can be accessed at

Friday, August 15, 2014

Learning a language is fun, free AND easy via the library

Mango Languages provides an engaging and immersive language and culture learning experience that students, staff, faculty, and alumni will love. Rich curricula and authentic content provide various educational levels for numerous languages.

·         Mango Conversations teaches through native-speaker dialogue, cultural insights, and critical thinking exercises. Memorable patterns and a conversation-based methodology empower learners to construct phrases and sentences on their own. English courses (ESL/ELL) feature navigation and phonetics in the user’s native language to make the learning easier.

·         TCTC offers 11 languages: Spanish (Latin American), French, Italian, German, Russian, Thai, Chinese (Mandarin), Irish, Japanese, Korean, Armenian, and ESL for Spanish Speakers.  The website is at
Mango Languages is a fun resource that serves everyone at TCTC: perfect for international studies, ESL/ELL, study abroad programs, student clubs, faculty/alumni associations, or any language enthusiast. Plus, Mango’s course content aligns with, and compliments foreign language curriculums, improving novice language fluency levels to intermediate and advanced.   There is even a Mango app.

Studies have shown that many companies take language skills into account when recruiting, with a third of companies recruiting people specifically for their language skills. Multilingual employees earn up to 20 percent more than their monolingual counterparts in certain jobs, while students who study foreign languages for four or more years outperform their classmates.

Friday, August 1, 2014


On Wednesday, July 30, 2014 a few members of the TCTC Library faculty/staff attended the USC Upstate Library’s Educator’s and Librarian Workshops Day! The workshop featured many great topics that we (as academics) must stay abreast of in order to effective in the classroom. The topics covered were as follows; copyright, plagiarism, digital citizenship & social media, emerging technology and apps, as well as public communication.

The copyright workshop was especially eye-opening because many educators are infringing on copyright laws in the classroom by showing films, listening to music or using photographs, works of art, etc. that are not licensed by their school. I would ask that we make ourselves aware of the intricacies of copyright laws before using such materials or seek out those who are purchasing for your department to ensure that you are not inadvertently breaking the law. Some instructors consider themselves as falling under the “Fair Use” umbrella, yet there are many instances were fair use does not apply. USC Upstate has an awesome workshop Libguide that may be helpful for those who choose to research copyright (or any of the other topics covered) at:

By, Alydia Sims

Monday, July 28, 2014

Natural Standard

The library has added a new database on its subscription list called Natural Standard. This is a database which is different from others that we already have in our collection in the sense that it is the first portal to books and articles in the area of integrative medicine. Integrative or integrated medicine is an area of medicine which combines alternative medicine with evidence-based medicine.

One nice feature of Natural Standard which makes it unique is that it employs a grading system to show expert opinions. For example, an article designates with A means it has a strong scientific evident. It has a statistically significant evidence of benefit from properly randomized trials (RCT), or evidence from one properly conducted RCT and one properly conducted meta-analysis, or evidence from multiple RCTs with a clear majority of the properly conducted trials showing statistically significant evidence of benefit and with supporting evidence in basic science, animal studies, or theory. B means good scientific evidence. This grade applies to situations in which a well designed randomized controlled trial reports negative results but stands in contrast to the positive efficacy results of multiple other less well designed trials or a well designed meta-analysis, while awaiting confirmatory evidence from an additional well designed randomized controlled trial. C means unclear or conflicting scientific evidence. D means fair negative scientific evidence. It also has a level called Lack of Evidence, which means the team of experts cannot evaluate the efficacy of the experiment due to lack of adequate available human data.

In short, Natural Standard is a good and reliable source of information on alternative and holistic medicine.

By Kultida Dunagin

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Weeding Project

During the 2013-2014 academic year the TCTC library has weeded 938 print and 1926 electronic books.

Some librarians are “savers”. Others are “tossers”. These terms refer to an individual’s propensity for keeping books (and now, electronic sources). In the dim, dark past (say, up to about the mid 1960’s) most libraries had to beg for materials and wouldn’t DREAM of getting rid of things no matter how out-of-date the information was, because then there wouldn’t be any books on the shelves. But in the early 1960’s as the Russians outdid us in the space race and governments began generously funding libraries practically everywhere, libraries filled their shelves up, and librarians were happy. They MIGHT have even gotten rid of a few things they didn’t need. This lasted until the mid-1980’s sometime. Funding dwindled as taxpayers expressed frustration and politicians made “no new taxes” promises.

The funding looked like this, in a totally unscientific graph of my own devising:

As you know, the mid-1980’s was a LONG TIME AGO. Unfortunately for many libraries, that’s when time seems to have stopped if the copyright date of the majority of the books on the shelves is any indicator. Many libraries still have a glut of books from 1960 through 1980. Obviously, some information doesn’t get old. The words in “Tom Sawyer” are still the same as they were when Mark Twain/Samuel Clemens wrote them. The same side still won, say, World War II, no matter what the copyright date of a history book might be, but as history is analyzed, new insights and information can be added. But other information goes out of date… some very quickly, other more