Monday, April 7, 2014

Weeding the Old and Planting the New

The Tri-County Technical College Pendleton Campus Library has gone through a “weeding” process in which books that are out of date are discarded from our catalog and placed on a ‘free’ book cart in the library lobby. Similar to pulling weeds from a flower bed, it is an essential part of our mission to provide our students, faculty and staff with the best resources available. As a result, we have also added many new books to the collection within the past week. A few of the titles added to our collection are as follows: The Divergent series, reference titles on Mythology, Michelangelo, and Military vehicles. Feel free to stop by the library to check out one of our new titles or to take advantage of the free discarded titles. Additionally, we are always willing to accept book requests for purchase.  Your input is valued!

By, Alydia Sims

Friday, April 4, 2014

Library Book Displays

All three campus libraries change book displays at least once a month.  We like you to see the variety of print information that we have available for you to check out and read.  Jessica Scott creates a brochure every month to highlight some of our collection. This month Jessica focuses on Earth Day. If you would like a copy of the actual brochure, stop by the library and ask for one.  Also remember that April is Poetry month.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Chatting Answers

The library at TCTC offers a chat feature for students, who would like to submit their reference questions online.  Often, as we answer questions submitted by students, we go to an EBSCO database and search for information.  These searches, once complete, can be easily shared with students.  EBSCO offers a drop-down menu on the top right section of the hit list called "share".  From this drop-down box, a permalink can be found that can be sent to the student through our online chat feature.  If the student is on campus, they will easily be able to access the results of our search.  If they are not on campus, the proxy prefix for the college must also be provided.  The image below is a screen shot of an EBSCO search for "Things Fall Apart".  Students appreciate the immediate access to the search results, through the provision of this permalink.  It is a great way to remotely help students with research!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Library Jargon

It is common knowledge that library jargon can sometime be an impediment to public service and user access to information. But who would think that interpretations of some of them can be both amusing and at time embarrassing. The other day a student asked me; “What is Stacks-Calculating?” It took me a few seconds to realize that he meant ‘Stacks-Circulating’. He probably was baffled by the idea of something called ‘Stacks’ be combined with ‘Circulating’, which is not possible. ‘Stacks’ and ‘Calculating’ makes more sense. Hence, the question was worded that way.

Why the library world uses the term ‘stacks’ is a mystery to me also. Would it be easier for everybody to understand without an extensive explanation if we use ‘shelves’? Not only that, do we know how this term has been used? For example, Urban Dictionary defines ‘Stacks’ as an obscured place to have sex. “Take him to the stack”’ implies that “sexual actions are desired between an employee and a non-employee, usually a patron, in a public library.” A regular user of Urban Dictionary gives the meaning of ‘Stacks’ as “a section of the library that is rarely used, such as the history section. It is an ideal location for sex”. I think if we use the term ‘Shelves’ instead, it would discourage anybody from coming up with such a ‘disrespectful’ interpretation. It would be quite difficult to picture somebody performs such activities on a shelf.

By Kultida Dunagin

Friday, February 21, 2014

Access to e-Books

The University of California Press provides free access to over 700 titles of its e-Book collection to the general public.  The books in this collection were published from 1982-2004.  Topics covered include art, science, history, music, religion, and fiction.  Accessing these titles is easy.  Simply go to the following URL:  From this site, you can browse by author, title, or subject.  Select the “Browse Public” option and you will receive immediate access to the e-Books!

Friday, February 7, 2014

A Friendly Face

I attended a webinar yesterday on the topic of how college libraries influence student’s first year experiences. The webinar format isn’t my favorite way of interacting with people, but when several people gather to attend the webinar together there is often an exchange of ideas during and after the session. One of the other attendees at yesterday’s webinar was a new instructor in our Comprehensive Studies Department, who used to be a TCTC student. I recognized him as a former student when he started working here at the beginning of fall semester, because he’d been in the library seemingly every day back then.

One concept that the webinar touched on was that students may not realize that besides knowing how to find academic information for assignments, the librarians know a lot about how the college itself functions. A study of first year college students found that they have contact with their parents an average of 13.4 times per week – just under twice a day. Often, these contacts occur when students need guidance about “how the college functions” – where they should go for financial aid assistance, what to do if their academic advisor isn’t available, when to schedule classes for next semester, etc., etc., etc. Many of our students are the first in their families to attend college, and their parents might not know the answers to these questions.

After the webinar, the new instructor/former student said that when he was here as a student, he’d realized that not only were the librarians friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable, they were also THERE ALL THE TIME. Think about this: There is not much employee turnover at an academic library. If students can make a connection with a librarian early in their first year, that person is likely to be available to them for the remainder of their attendance at that college. Librarians are an untapped resource for many first year experience programs, but here at TCTC we are taking an active role in the integration of library skills and personnel in our Learning Communities. And with the required library workshops in all 100-level English classes, our students have the opportunity to connect with a friendly face that can help with much more than just research assignments.

By, Sue Andrus

Monday, February 3, 2014

Learning Communities

At Tri-County Technical College, Learning Communities (LCs) are being offered on a regular basis in many different formats. As faculty/staff, we need to promote these opportunities for successfully learning whenever possible. LCs offer an environment in which students learn on a deeper level are more socially engaged, as well as more apt to persist through college and beyond. The types of LCs offered at TCTC are thematic (emphasizing a particular topic or theme,) integrated (an academic course infused with COL 105 principles,) or linked (one or more academic course linked with COL 105 or two or linked academic course embedded with COL 105 principles). Recent studies have shown that while all LCs afford our students the opportunity for increased collegial success; linked LCs appear to allow for student success as well as persistence. Those interested in LCs should contact Amoena Norcross (646-1365 or Make your students aware of these advantages so that they are able to take full advantage of what LCs have to offer!

Written by Alydia Sims