Category: Reference

Research Therapy: Finding Images Online

finding images infographicUsing images can greatly enhance your research paper, poster, or presentation.  However it can be confusing to know exactly where to find images and if you need permission to legally use it.

Please note that the use of images found in print or online may be protected by copyright. Some require permission under certain circumstances, and some may even cost a fee. To be safe always attribute the source of the image.

A great starting point to learn more about this topic is the Finding and Using Images guide. It has been created for the purpose of helping you find and use images for educational purposes. Here you will find information to understand resources available to help find images using websites and library databases, copyright information, and how to cite images in MLA and APA format:

Watch this video to learn more about Creative Commons licenses and where/how to search for these types of images within search engines such as Google Image, Flickr, and Wikimedia Commons.  – Jamie Johnson

Resource Guide: Data

Data imageData is an increasingly a popular topic for scholars and researchers. Moreover, data literacy is a new necessity for many institutions of education and employers. When to use them? Where to find them? What best to do with them? How to cite them? The Oviatt Library has a resource guide to help answer these questions: http://library.csun.edu/Guides/Data

Click on each various tab to guide you through either open datasets for different subjects if you are looking to find data for your research; learn to cite data; try creating an infographic with data; share data you have gathered; and manage the data so they will be preserved for future scholars.

- Charissa Jefferson

Research Therapy: Let the Library Help during Finals Week

Finals Are You Stressed ComicHow the Library Can Help ComicThere’s no need to worry, the Oviatt Library can help! The Oviatt is open 24/7 from Monday to Friday during finals week. We know that none of you would wait until the last minute to do your research, but just in case you did and you’re struggling, you can get help from a Librarian 24/7. Come see a librarian at the reference desk in the Learning Commons. During finals week from Monday to Thursday there will be a librarian at the desk from 8am to 9pm, on Friday from 8am to 4:45pm. You can also contact us online, via chat or email as well as text messaging, check out our Ask a Librarian page. You can also get help online with oour subject and course guides, including a guide for Citing Your Sources.

The Learning Resource Center is located on the 3rd floor of the library in the East wing; they offer tutoring, help with paper writing and citations. Check out their webpage for more information and be aware that their Writing Center closes Wednesday May 14th so make sure to call ASAP to make an appointment.

If you just need a place to study, don’t forget that you can reserve group and individual study rooms in the library. You can reserve these rooms in advance online, using our online booking system.

In case you need a break we have special events happening every day of Finals week. We’ll be handing out pillows all week along with special events like: arts & crafts, comedy movies, nap time and therapy dogs. Check out the flyer for dates and times of these events.

For more suggestions on how to de-stress, check out Pinterest page for tips on relaxation, motivational memes and cute photos of animals.

Just remember to keep calm and carry on and if you can’t do that, then scream, dance, or shake it out!!! http://youtu.be/WbN0nX61rIs

-Laurie Borchard

Business Resources at the Oviatt

The new business librarian at the Oviatt, Charissa Jefferson, liaises to the David Nazarian College of Business and Economics. She is responsible for developing the library collection for business subjects and is willing to take your suggestions! Simply fill out the purchase recommendation form: http://library.csun.edu/Services/PurchaseRecommendation

Over the 2013-214 academic year, the business collection has increased in electronic resources, although there are still print books bought. So remember the books on the shelves are only a small part of the larger collection that tells the story of the business collection at the Oviatt. Find these new and wonderful sources from the Library Catalog or the Books and Media tab from OneSearch.

Charissa has created short videos for faculty and students that highlight her consultation services on research projects as well as her willingness to share her knowledge and expertise with the campus community.

Video for Students: please click on the image below to view the video.

Video for Faculty: please click on the image below to view the video. 

- Charissa Jefferson

Browsing the Oviatt Collection Section by Section

stacksHi Matadors!

Today I wanted to discuss how we organize the library book collection. We often receive questions from students wanting to browse certain collections, such as:

“Where is the poetry section?” or “Where are the art books?”

This seemingly simple question is often difficult to answer because of how we organize the books. Unlike the public library or bookstore the collection is organized using the Library of Congress (LOC) Classification. All materials inside the library have call numbers beginning with a letter or two, then is followed by a set of numbers.  The letters at the beginning represent the subject area.

So in order to browse, you would need to know what subject area it would fall under. For instance, if you are searching for poetry you will need to start in the Language and Literature section of the library (P – PZ). This section is located on the third floor of the library and is pretty extensive covering almost a third of that floor – shelves 3 through 20.

Of course not all of these books are poetry but include fiction, plays, drama, essays, literary criticism, diaries, letters and so on.  Unfortunately, all poetry books are not grouped together in one section; however, they’re divided into regions of author’s nationality or language. American, English, Russian, or Spanish poetry are grouped together in different sections.  You would have to know which country you wanted to browse then look up the call number range. But be careful – you might be missing out on some great resources this way. For instance, if a book is checked out you have no way of knowing if you are only browsing through the stacks.

When browsing the collection it is best to come up with a plan.  First, try utilizing the library catalog. This may be a simpler task than sifting through hundreds of books on a shelf and will also provide some helpful information such as content, summary and/or subject terms. Once you find a book, you can head up to that section of the library. We also have thousands of electronic books that would only be accessible through the catalog.  If you cannot find materials this way and still want to physically browse the shelves take a look at the below classification outline.

If you would like help browsing the collection you could always Ask a Librarian! at the reference desk, via text or live chat.

Here is an outline of the Library of Congress Classification:

  1. A.    General Works
  2. B.    Philosophy, Psychology, Religion
  3. C.    Auxiliary Sciences of History
  4. D.    World History and History of Europe Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand
  5. E.    History of the Americas (North America)
  6. F.    History of the Americas (United States local history, Latin America)
  7. G.    Geography, Anthropology, Recreation
  8. H.    Social Sciences
  9. J.     Political Science
  10. K.    Law
  11. L.    Education
  12. M.   Music
  13. N.    Fine Arts
  14. P.    Language and Literature
  15. Q.    Science
  16. R.    Medicine
  17. S.    Agriculture
  18. T.    Technology
  19. U.    Military Science
  20. V.    Naval Science
  21. W.   Bibliography, library science

A full description of the classification system is available from the Library of Congress.

-       Jamie Johnson  jamie.johnson@csun.edu

Research Therapy: How To Find Statistical Data

Do you need to back your research up with statistics? The Oviatt Library provides access to several statistical databases, as well as online guides to help you find exactly what you need. There are also a lot of resources freely available on the web.

This short video shows you how to find our collection of statistical resources, as well as how to search some of them. 

Research Therapy on Statistics

For more information, check out our Finding Statistics and Finding Statistics by Zip Code guides.

-Isabelle Ramos

Web of Science now available at the Oviatt Library

Web of ScienceThe Web of Science database is now accessible through the Oviatt Library’s current database collection. Often referred to as the most interdisciplinary and comprehensive subscription-based citation resource, the Web of Science extracts citation information from articles in more than 10,000 journals from a wide variety of disciplines. Quite commonly, Web of Science users are able to forgo searching for citation information in numerous different databases only to find, analyze and share scientific and citation information easily with this very unique research tool. Here are just some of the Web of Science’s features:

  • Find a citation count for an article;
  • Determine which journal articles have cited a particular work;
  • Find current articles on a topic;
  • Create a citation map for an article which illustrates the connections between citing authors, institutions and fields of study;
  • Provide a citation analysis report for an author;
  • Determine the most highly cited works for an author;
  • Determine the most highly cited articles for a journal;
  • Identify top researchers in a field;
  • Eliminate self-citations from a citation count.

Disciplines that publish heavily in journal literature such as the sciences are better covered in the Web of Science than other subject areas such as business and education. In these instances we recommend referring to the Oviatt’s Searching Cited References Guide. Or for more information contact us at Ask A Librarian.

–         Coleen Martin

Daily, Weekly, Gazette: Where to Find Hot-Off-The-Press News or Cooled Off Stories

Newspapers, newspapers everywhere and not an article for me!

Have to find a newspaper article for an assignment? Want to use a newspaper as a primary source to understand how an event was reported on when it happened? Have you used up your free New York Times articles, but still want to read the news? The Oviatt Library can help you.

This video explains three ways to access the Library’s newspaper subscriptions online: through OneSearch, the News & Current Issues databases, and through a Journal title search.

OneSearch

On a related note: you might take a look at the Research
Therapy session The Info-Cycle for more information on how news contributes to human knowledge.

- Anna Fidgeon

Meet the Librarians of the Oviatt

Susanna Eng-Ziskin

First-Year Experience Librarian, Susanna Eng-Ziskin

Meet Susanna Eng-Ziskin the First-Year Experience Librarian here at the
Oviatt. She is the library liaison for U100, so some of you may have already
met this upbeat, funny librarian.  Read below to learn more about where she’s from, her favorites, and why she became a librarian.

Where are you originally from?

My family is Swedish, and so I was born in a small town in Sweden, and spent my life moving around with my family. Growing up, we lived in Sweden, England, NY, Ohio, the Netherlands, and Brazil. Moving around a lot, and not always speaking the language where I lived, was simultaneously a difficult and rewarding experience. At a young age I was exposed to lots of different people, cultures, and languages, and for that I am extremely grateful.

What do you like/admire most about CSUN students?

I find most of our students to be remarkably down to earth, genuine people. I
love working with them, either in a classroom setting, or one on one at the
reference desk.

What’s your favorite book or your top 5?

My list is constantly in flux. If I had to pick a favorite it would be Jane
Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. I find myself re-reading it every few years
and always finding something new in it. Other favorites (in no particular
order) include, but are not limited to:

Geek Love, by Katherine Dunn

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, by Seth Grahame-Smith

Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon

Sandman Slim, by Richard Kadrey

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, by Christopher Moore

What songs would you include on the soundtrack of your life?

I feel the Earth Move, by Carole King

http://youtu.be/wR4tc1C-NrE

Celebrate, by Mika

Ain’t That A Kick in the Head, by Dean Martin

Ice, Ice, Baby (It’s terrible, but it’s my go to karaoke song)

Why did you become a librarian?

I worked in my college library, first as a student employee in the circulation
department, and then as a full time evening supervisor. I loved working in a
library and helping connect students and faculty with the information they
needed. I had a great boss who encouraged me to apply for graduate school to
become a librarian, which I didn’t even realize was necessary at the time.

What do you wish every student knew about the library or librarians?

Students are never interrupting us when they come to get help at the Reference
Desk. If it looks like we’re involved in a deep discussion with our colleagues,
please interrupt us. We’re out there specifically to help you!

What’s your favorite quote?

“Do. Or do not. There is no try.” Yoda (Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back)

Is there a specific class that you really enjoy doing library instruction for?

University 100. I love working with Freshmen and I get to see the U100 students
twice in the same semester, so I feel like I can have a greater impact that
way, and get to know the students better.

If you could meet anyone living or dead who would it be?

I’d really like to go back and meet my great grandmother in her prime. She died
when I was really young, and by the time I knew her, dementia had taken over.
From all accounts, though, she was a thoroughly modern woman, far ahead of her time. I would have loved to have known her. Or maybe Paul Newman – he was rad.

If you could learn any skill what would it be?

I’d love to be able to whistle properly.

If you could be any fictional character who would it be?

Elizabeth Bennett (Pride & Prejudice).

- Laurie Borchard

Research Therapy: Keeping Those References in Line

You’re almost there! You dominated that test, you perfected your presentation, you’ve written a gazillion pages. But, one thing looms:

works cited page

You have options! Let me introduce 5 free tools that will help you keep your citations organized as well as generate your citations for you. But remember: each of these citation tools are only meant to HELP you. If the computer makes a mistake, you’re the one getting marked down for it. Use the Oviatt Library’s Cite Your Sources page thoughtfully—for proofreading and more.

Save this record

 

http://library.csun.edu/

zotero

 

http://www.zotero.org/

mendeley

 

http://www.mendeley.com/

Endnote Basic

 

http://www.myendnoteweb.com/

EasyBib

 

http://easybib.com/

Research Therapy video screenshot

If you would like to get more acquainted with any of these tools, there are plenty of tutorials on YouTube as well as courtesy of The University of Texas Libraries.

If you’d like some human interaction to go along with your citations, just ask a librarian.

- Anna Fidgeon

 

Two New Tutorials Are Here To Help with Finding Books

Hi matadors! We hope your semester is moving along wonderfully. Today we have two brand new video tutorials to debut. As your research may be well underway we present some basics of how to navigate through the library catalog. The ability to find books is a necessary skill for many of your research papers. First is How to find a Book, using the Library Catalog and OneSearch. The second is how to find books on Course Reserve. Hope they help you and good luck with your research!

Using the Library Catalog to find books

Searching Course Reserves to find books

~Jamie Johnson jamie.johnson@csun.edu

The Learning Commons Offers a Variety of Resources and Services

If you haven’t visited our new Learning Commons yet – and even if you have – you might not be aware of all of the resources and services the Commons provides. In addition to our newly renovated Ask A Librarian desk, (where librarians provide help in finding information almost every hour the Library is open) there is also a new IT desk that can assist with questions about wireless access and other connectivity issues. Our Learning Commons Technology Office provides assistance to those wishing to check out iPads and laptops for use within and outside of the Library. Eleven new group study rooms within the Commons enable students to collaborate many hours of the day. These rooms are busy! Group study rooms can be reserved up to two weeks in advance through LibCal our online reservation system on the Library’s homepage. (Many more group study rooms are available on the upper floors of the Library and can be reserved online as well.) Students, staff and faculty will find access to both PC and Apple desktop computing as well as to wireless printing. Color printing is available also. And, if you need to charge any of your devices, the Commons offers many charging stations which can be useful to know about especially between classes. Of course, as many members of our campus community have already found, you can always pick up a cup of coffee or snack at the Freudian Sip coffeehouse in our lobby. We will continue to add new features to all of these resources and services. Feel free to check back for updates and for more information please see the Learning Commons video below.

 

- Coleen Martin

The Copyright Conundrum and the Need for Open Access

Open Access logo 2013

I. Intro: Until the Elephant Vanishes

“Yeah, yeah, yeah / There’s a hole in my life.” – The Police

To mark the 6th Annual Open Access Week (cf. OA FAQs) I would like to discuss the very large elephant in the room:  copyright. It’s everywhere and impacts almost everything we do.  Everyone, from authors to users to publishers, has got a stake in copyright, too, yet few people will agree on whether it, in its current incarnation (70 years + life of an author), is entirely positive or negative.

Copyright has long been touted as the sine-qua-non incentive for authors, artists, musicians and scholars to create new and lasting cultural materials.  Without its protections, the reasoning goes, authors will not be inspired to create new things and culture will diminish as a result. This de facto monopolization of creative works — potentially lasting for more than a century — is further justified by publishers as necessary for their artists to make a living, even as the very same businesses tout the tenets of free markets, competition and Draconian cost-cutting measures.

Such is the copyright conundrum until the law changes.

II. The Hoarding of Dragons: Denying our Own Culture to Ourselves

So what happens when copyright protection becomes too long or too restrictive? What happens when the public domain (i.e. works that all can use freely) is purposefully shrunk? What happens when publishers and corporations – by far the largest owners of copyright – sit on works like dragons hoarding treasure?  

What happens when we cannot access our own culture?

The clearest answer can be seen in the following graph, taken from a study conducted by Paul Heald at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.  This chart shows how publishers and copyright owners are not, contrary to their reasoning, fostering culture and creativity, but are instead stifling it:

New Editions from Amazon by Decade

New editions of previously printed books are but a small aspect of creative culture, this is true. However, the implication of this study is that publishers are less likely to be publishing new versions of out-of-print books between the 1920s and 1990s (a period of 70-80 years) unless it is financially viable. There are currently more new books available of works originally published in the 1910s than there are in the 2000s, and just as many books in the decade of the 1910s as there are from the 20s through the 80s. As some have suggested, the 20th Century has fallen into a black hole.

While it is understood that publishers are businesses and must act in ways that ensure a healthy bottom-line, it has also been a tendency of publishers to stifle the publication of works that might actually be valuable to smaller, though less-profitable, audiences.  Furthermore, if after 10 years 50% of copyrighted works have no market value (after 43 years it’s 90%; 65 years it’s 99%), leaving their rights in the hands of publishers to reprint them based on market forces is a sure recipe for letting them sit untouched.

The growing hole in our accessible culture, as evidenced above, subsequently puts more pressure on the institutions that exist to help preserve such materials for the sake of creating new knowledge: i.e. the non-profit universities, libraries, archives, historical societies, et al. If publishers are unwilling to reprint older editions of works due to the risk of copyright infringement, memory institutions like ours are forced to spend more time, effort and money on ensuring that they remain accessible to all.

III. The digitization, democratization (& monetization) of culture

The next logical step to ensure access and preservation has been to digitize these works and, when permitted, place them online. The added value of the digitization process allows more people to access more information than ever before. It has the potential to level the playing field for those with disabilities or poor access to institutions of learning. People have touted this as the great democratization of information and culture. In some ways this is correct, provided that it’s available where you live and you have at least some money to afford an internet connection.

The dream of this universally accessible library with everything stored within it for all is an ancient one, spanning back to the famed library of Alexandria. Some contemporary projects such as the Internet Archive, Wikipedia, Google Books, the HathiTrust, Public Library of Science, Library of Congress are attempting to realize these ambitions.  But the dream is not attainable.

Publishers have dominated this digital content with the creation of online journal databases since the 1980s and 1990s.  The monetization of past content in these online journals — much of it scholarly in nature & most of it transferred in terms of copyright to the publishers — has served to close off complete accessibility to all but the richest of organizations.  Libraries usually provide this content to their users at no cost and so the actual expense of these resources usually remains invisible to their users. But as recently as 2012, Harvard university, one of the richest universities in the world with an endowment of approximately $30 billion, has expressed concern that current price gouging of database aggregators is “fiscally unsustainable”.

If Harvard’s hurting, we’re all hurting.

IV. The United Colors of Open Access & “No Whammies, please!”

One of the proposed solutions to this growing amount of inaccessible content is the open access movement.   Open access comes in many colors, including Gold (Journals that fund publishing via Article Processing Charges [APCs] to authors), Green (usually institutional repositories holding pre-prints or post-prints of research), and the lesser-known Platinum (benefactor or organization pays APCs).

Open access allows users to access content in perpetuity without having to worry about whether the works can or can’t be used.  Copyright restrictions still will generally apply (i.e. you can’t wholesale copy and paste the work and then try to resell it), but for the sake of academic disciplines, scholars allow their work to be read and re-used. This increases the likelihood of their being cited, and further increases their impact factor.

As seen in the graph below, from a 2004 (Brody & Harnad) and 2005 (Hajjem et al.) study, open access was found to increase the amount of citations of one’s work:

Open Access increases citations chart

Other studies confirm these results as well.

Overall, open access has the ability to improve scholarly communication, but from an economic point of view access is not profitable for publishing companies. Publishers, acting as the middle-men in this case, want to restrict access as a way to increase revenues. Generally, this is a reasonable economic approach. In the face of demand, restricting supplies can help to increase prices and profitability.

However, in the case of publicly funded research it becomes absurd. Publicly-funded institutions are essentially providing the space and resources for research only to be forced to buy such research back when the results are published. A “double whammy”, so to speak.

Some may say that these institutions can afford it or that the publishers provide the types of services (i.e. editing, formatting and peer-review procedures) other cannot, but this misses the point. What we have is essentially a publishing industry subsidized by the public.  As for providing peer-reviewing procedures (one of the publishing industry’s main justifications for their practices), it should be remembered that publishers also do not pay peer-reviewers.

OA is seen as the best antidote to these unfair practices.

V. CSUN’s place in the Open Access Movement – Internationally, Regionally and Locally

CSUN is part of the growing OA movement in several ways. First, internationally, due to President Harrison, CSUN is now a signatory of the Berlin Declaration on Open Access, an international agreement now entering its 10th year implemented by the Max Planck Society.

CSUN Oviatt Library Dean Mark Stover is also helping with supporting the California State California Taxpayer Access to Publicly Funded Research Act (AB 609) a bill designed to mandate the public access of state-funded research.

Tell Senators to Vote image

AB 609 would allow Californians access to the scholarship that has been locked away in databases behind expensive pay walls.  No longer would we be denied access to our own culture that was funded by us in the first place.

Finally, CSUN’s Faculty Senate will be voting on a campus-wide resolution calling for CSUN faculty to publish their work in open access venues, or archiving such work in CSUN ScholarWorks. As for ScholarWorks, it has doubled in size in ten months. It will double in size again by June 2014 to 6000, making it one of the more sizable repositories within the United States. When we reach 10,000 items we will likely be one of the top 50 or 60 institutional repositories in the US, as tracked by the Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR). For now ScholarWorks will continue to grow and help the cause of open access for the foreseeable future.

VI. Conclusion: Atlas shrugs or shrugging Atlas?

It remains to be seen if works from the 20th century will become more accessible again in our lifetime.  As long as libraries exist and do not discard books that are out of print, our works can be recovered and preserved. Google Books and the HathiTrust Massive Digital Libraries (MDLs) are still digitizing copyrighted works, including contested orphan works. Perhaps these initiatives will help to alleviate some of the problems associated with the hole in our culture, provided that the publishers are cooperative. However, the tendency of the Author’s Guild to litigate in the cases against both Google and the HathiTrust suggests otherwise.

Yet, new content is necessarily based on old findings. Innovation does not arrive without a reliance on past models. As Newton famously stated, “If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” Unfortunately, given the current copyright situation, it is the giants who are standing on our shoulders.

Open access can at least provide us with some much needed relief.

Andrew Weiss

 

Research Therapy: Types of Information Sources

It’s the beginning of the semester and most of your instructors have probably given you your research assignments. Maybe it’s a presentation, or a paper or an annotated bibliography? It’s time to begin searching for sources to support your research, but before you begin your search you should have an understanding of the different types of information sources that will be most useful for your research topic. http://youtu.be/iPCte4BmWTQ Another valuable type of resource is government documents. They offer a lot of primary sources and secondary sources as well. Some examples include: • census data • congressional hearings and court transcripts • maps (current and historical) • patents, trademarks and copyrights • statistics regarding education, health, environment, transportation and more • consumer information and statistics Check out our online guides to government resources: general guide to Government Publications at the Oviatt Library and a list of all our Government Publication Subject Guides. Now that you know the different types of sources available to you, take another look at your research topic or question and decide which kind of source you need to support your research. To help you decide which sources would be best, think about the currency of your topic and the type of evidence you need to support your ideas. The following table is an example of different types of research and the appropriate sources.

Current events & trends
Newspapers, news websites, magazines
Case studies, ethnographic research, longitudinal studies
Scholarly journals & books
Statistics and legal documents
Government documents and websites
Topic overviews & definitions
Reference & books
In-depth analysis on a topic
Scholarly journals & books


– Laurie Borchard

Research Therapy: Finding an Article From a Citation Using OneSearch

Do citations look like this to you:

nonsense citation with random characters and wingdings

and somehow you are expected to find that article and read it before your next class? So you just copy and paste the whole thing into the library website and come up with nothing. Then, you start to wonder why your professor lied to you and said it was available at the library? You begin to question this whole college thing and reconsider running away with the circus.

STOP THERE!

Watch this video to learn where to go to break the citation code and how to find an article from a citation using the Oviatt’s electronic databases:

 article citation in onesearch research therapy video

 Putting a whole citation into OneSearch makes it sad. All it wants is the title of the article, which in many citation styles, comes before the title of the journal. You can use the rest of the citation as a reference to make sure the article you are accessing is exactly the article you were looking for in the first place, and not a similarly titled one.

APA citation

Be sure to bookmark some of these online resources for citation help:

Cite Your Sources: detailed guides for APA and MLA style citations along with help for other styles.

Research Therapy: Citing Your Sources: an explanation on why, when & how you should cite. Includes help on citing unusual resources, such as Twitter, blogs, maps and more.

Citation Managers: Comparison of Features: this guide from UW- Madison Libraries explains your options for citation managers that will help you organize and keep track of your sources as well as help you decipher the components.

Like always, librarians are here for you. Just ask.

- Anna Fidgeon

Meet the Librarians of the Oviatt

Have you been on the 3rd floor of the library recently and noticed the inspirational Rocky Balboa poster in an office window? Well that office belongs to Laurie Borchard, one of the Digital Learning Initiatives Librarian. Learn more about her favorite books, why she became a librarian, and just how far her obsession with Rocky goes.

Laurie Borchard

Laurie Borchard, Digital Learning Initiatives Librarian

Where are you originally from?

I am from a really small town in southern Minnesota called New Richland, with a population of 1,200.

What do you admire most about CSUN students?

I encounter so many students who are really enthusiastic about their education and the determination with which they apply to their studies is truly inspiring.

What’s your favorite book or your top 5?

Favorite book of all time is The Brothers Karamasov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Honorable mentions:     The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
My Antonia by Willa Cather
The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
Stones from the River by Ursula Hegi
Love Medicine by Louise Erdrich

What songs would you include on the soundtrack of your life?

Eye of the Tiger by Survivor

Gonna Fly Now from Rocky Soundtrack

No Easy Way Out by Robert Tepper

Hearts on Fire by John Cafferty

Why did you become a librarian?

I took a research methods class as an undergraduate that was taught by a librarian. She made research interesting, fun, and the more I learned about librarianship the more appealing it sounded. I really enjoy working with students and I find myself constantly learning from them. I also love that my job is so multi-faceted, I get to work with students and faculty, as well as develop projects and initiatives on my own.

What do you wish every student knew about the library or librarians?

I hope that students know that a library is not just about books and that librarians do not spend their day putting books on the shelf and shushing students. The library is a place for students to come to get the information and help they need to do their research, as well as a place to study and collaborate with fellow students. The Oviatt Library is currently undergoing renovations to turn the first floor into a Learning Commons. The changes are really exciting, we are getting new furniture, study rooms with monitors students can hook their devices up to, a brand new Freudian Sip in the lobby, and finally more power outlets!! For more info, check out our blog The Transforming Library.

What’s your favorite quote?

“It is not the brains that matter most, but that which guides them…the character, the heart, generous qualities, progressive ideas.”
―Fyodor Dostoyevsky

 If you could meet anyone living or dead who would it be?

Björk

 If you could learn any skill what would it be?

I wish I could speak another language fluently, preferably Spanish or German, or maybe someday both!

What are some of your current projects that you are working on?

Along with my colleague Anna Fidgeon, we have developed the video series Research Therapy; we cover topics relating to finding articles and books, evaluating resources, topic exploration and more. Check out our YouTube playlist here, along with the videos we also create a blog post that expands on the information provided in the video, check out our posts on the Cited at the Oviatt blog.

- Laurie Borchard

Beach Reads

Book on Beach

Beach Reads http://www.flickr.com/photos/frostis/8081062616/

Looking for something fun to read this summer?  Browse the Bestsellers Collection and the Reading Room on the second floor!  Here are some top picks to keep you blissfully transported on vacation.

DivergentIf you liked The Hunger Games, you will love Divergent by Veronica Roth. Tough-as-nails heroine Tris learns who she is and what she’s made of in a dystopian future Chicago.  The fast-paced cinematic action continues in the sequel, Insurgent – but you’ll have to wait until October for Allegiant, the final book in the trilogy. In the Bestsellers collection on Oviatt’s second floor, call numbers PZ7.R7375 Di 2011 and PZ7.R7375 Ins 2012

Private BerlinThe latest mystery from the always-popular James Patterson is Private Berlin, a grisly thriller.  In the Bestsellers collection on Oviatt’s second floor, call number PS3566.A822 P763 2013

The RookIf you’re looking for both a mystery and a heroine in an alternate world, try The Rook by Daniel O’Malley.  Publishers Weekly says, “Dry wit, surprising reversals of fortune, and a clever if offbeat plot make this a winner. Dr. Who fans will find a lot to like.” In the Bestsellers collection on Oviatt’s second floor, call number PR9619.4.O52 R66 2012

Sophie KinsellaFor a summer read that’s light as chiffon, try the latest from Sophie Kinsella (author of Confessions of a Shopaholic).  I’ve Got Your Number  starts with a lost engagement ring and a cell phone mix up, telling much of the story in text messages and footnoted quips.  A fine romance, perfect for a lazy day of sunbathing.  In the Bestsellers collection on Oviatt’s second floor, call number PR6073.I246 I93 2012

 – Laura Wimberley

It’s Summertime and the Reading is– at the TCC!

Summer is here and some of the best reading can be found in the Oviatt Library’s Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC).  What’s better than buying a book?  Checking one out for free!  It doesn’t get much better than that. 

Book trio

You can re-visit classics of yore (“A Wrinkle in Time,” “The Little Prince”), or catch up on some contemporary “must reads” (“Twilight,” “The Hunger Games”).  Perhaps a childhood favorite?  We even have some graphic novels. TCC’s collection has something for everyone, including a wide variety of picture books perfect for the younger set or even for you.  Stop in and check out, “Pete the Cat,” the “Elephant & Piggie” series, or even “Officer Buckle and Gloria” – books so entertaining that you’ll want to read them again and again (and enjoy their playful artwork).  We also have a great selection of books on CD to keep you entertained on those long, cross country drives.  Imagine having the complete “Harry Potter” series read to you as you navigate the highways and byways!

Silly or serious, fact or fiction, we’ve got your number and it’s unlimited.  What could be finer than sitting poolside or seaside, sipping cool lemonade, wearing shorts, shades and flip flops while taking in the antics of “Huckleberry Finn” or “Ramona the Pest”?  And don’t forget about, “Al Capone Does my Shirts” (we thought you’d be intrigued).  If you have a current CSUN ID card, you hold the passport to a myriad of destinations.

Let reading transport you.  For fun, excitement, adventure, or just a mental scenic getaway, you don’t have to go very far, come to the TCC – it’s the start of any great vacation.

- Mara Houdyshell

Research Therapy: Finding Book and Film Reviews Using Library Databases

A book or film review is a valuable tool for providing a brief summary, content description, and contemporary reactions.  Usually appearing shortly after a book is published or a film is released, reviews can be found in various magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals. The library has many databases that you can use to locate book or film reviews – Here are some of my favorites along with some search strategies specific for each database!

Search Strategy: Helpful Tips to Remember!

    • To find a review you will need to know the title, author, and year of publication.
    • It is important to remember that reviews generally appear near the date of publication up to several years after. Any later and you might be looking at a literary criticism.  Check the inside of the book or the library catalog for the publication date.
    • All of the recommended databases will allow you to specifically limit your search for book or film reviews. Make sure to check “Book Review”, “Review”, or “Entertainment Review” in the refine your search option area.
    • Make sure you are using a database that covers the year the book or film was published or released.
    • If you are having difficulties finding a review remember, of the thousands of books published each year only a small percentage are actually reviewed. It is possible that the book was not reviewed or you may have to search multiple databases to find a review.

For a more complete list of databases & coverage dates, use the following guide:
Using Library Databases to Find Book and Film Reviews

Also, view our new Research Therapy video for more tips and a tutorial on how to use some of these databases!

Good Luck with your research!

~Jamie Johnson   jamie.johnson@csun.edu

Secret Google Tips

Google imageYou probably use Google all day, every day.  Google’s default search is powerful enough to easily get you good results most of the time.  But did you know there are ways to use Google to get precisely what you want?

Google Scholar searches as broadly as possible for academic research.  It’s a good choice for very specific or obscure topics. You can even use Google Scholar to access CSUN subscription content

Another option for authoritative websites is searching by a specific domain, like .com, .edu, or .gov. Just add site:.edu to your search terms to look only at results from educational institutions, or site:.gov to your terms to search only US government websites.

For example, if you search for crime statistics, you’ll get a mix of police departments, newspaper reports, Wikipedia, and real estate websites, which might not be reliable, precise, or current. But if you search for crime statistics site:.gov, your very first result will be the official FBI Uniform Crime Statistics – the most detailed, comprehensive reliable source for crime statistics in the US.

Did you know Google has a reverse image search?  Maybe you’ve found the perfect image for a presentation, but you don’t know the photographer to cite. Start at Google Image Search, then click on the camera icon to the right of the search bar.  You can upload a picture or paste in an image URL, and Google will display pages that include matching images.

If you’re taking a course in Education or Child & Adolescent Development, you might want to find webpages by reading level – basic, intermediate, or advanced.

Google reading level

More options are available at google.com/advanced_search.  You can limit your results by language, country, date last updated, and more.

For more help using Google, ask a librarian!

- Laura Wimberley

Meet the Librarians of the Oviatt

Music & Media Librarian, Lindsay Hansen

Music & Media Librarian, Lindsay Hansen

Meet Lindsay Hansen, the Music & Media Librarian here at the Oviatt.  She’s been at CSUN for almost seven years. Not only is she passionate about helping students, but she also has been known to breakout in freestyle dance.

Where are you originally from?
Bloomington, MN, home of the Mall of America

What do you admire most about CSUN students?
 They juggle a lot more challenges than I did in college—they are working full-time jobs, commuting long distances, and might be the first in their family to go to college.

What’s your favorite book?
 Pink Slip by Rita Ciresi

What songs would you include on the soundtrack of your life?
Take Me Home Tonight  by Eddie Money

 Why did you become a librarian?
After trying other fields, I thought it would be a good way to help music students and faculty find what they need and conduct better research.  Librarianship is the perfect way to match my love for music (without performing) with my love for research.

What do you wish every student knew about the library or librarians?
That we will stop at nothing to find an answer or help. If I don’t know the answer to something, I’ll find it.

What’s your favorite quote?
Seid bereit, immer bereit!  It is an East German expression that means “be prepared, always prepared.”

Is there a specific class that you really enjoy doing library instruction for?
Any of the music classes, especially music history and the research seminar for grad students.

If you could meet anyone living or dead who would it be?
Probably Frédéric Chopin, my favorite composer.

What are your research interests?
East German popular music, German primary resources available in the United States, and the information-seeking behavior of Germanists.

  -Laurie Borchard

Come Visit the Newly Renovated TCC!

TCCHave you ever heard the story of the Ugly Duckling who turns into a beautiful swan?* The Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC) has recently undergone a similar transformation.  It has traded in its older furniture for a more modern look and function. The TCC now has moveable tables, chairs, and white boards which create a dynamic work space. Students can rearrange the study area to suit their needs and create an environment that truly belongs to them; it also allows for both individual and group study. And that’s not all! The TCC also added a “study bar” suitable for use with laptops and easy access to the electrical outlets.  In our reading area, we have new lounge chairs with back screens for privacy and small tables for your coffee, laptops, and (of course) books. When you exit the elevator to access the TCC, you will encounter the TCC New Item Display. Our display area went from a repurposed desk to bookcases that serve to highlight our collection. The TCC study area has also been repainted; the new lively yellow “Baby Chick” wall color will brighten up your day. All improvements have been made possible by the Students’ Campus Quality Fee.

So what do the students think? They love it! They say that the new paint color wakes them up in the morning and keeps them energized. One student said “It is brighter and that makes the environment seem more welcoming.” “I really like the new furniture. It is moveable for study groups! I also like the study bar! Thank you” says another. Other feedback we received: “The area looks clean and organized. I can imagine coming down here to study and work with a group.”

Matadors are discovering and talking about the new TCC. Hopefully library patrons continue to discover the TCC. We’re glad to be serving and satisfying the needs of our students.

*If you haven’t read the story come to the TCC, we have it here!

- Gabriel Castaneda

gabriel.castaneda@csun.edu

Discover Hugo Award Winners at the Oviatt

Hugo AwardEscape to other worlds by diving into some of the best contemporary writing – this year’s Hugo Award nominees.  

The nominees available at the Oviatt are:

For more geeky reads, check out Oviatt’s collection of graphic novels, science fiction, and fantasy.

And scifi fans won’t want to miss our exhibit Fantastic and Strange: Reflections of Self in Science Fiction Literature, on view on the second floor in the Tseng Gallery until July 26.

- Laura Wimberley

Research Therapy: Finding Fiction Books at the Library Is Easy

Need a break from academic reading and looking for some fun books?

Well you don’t have to go very far to check out the Oviatt Library’s fiction collection. We have a variety of fiction books to fulfill your reading needs. Watch the new Research Therapy video session to learn where you can find them!

fiction books video

In addition, here is a quick guide of the different locations you can find our fiction books:

Image of Books on the Garden Floor of the Oviatt Library
For Young Adult and Children’s fiction visit the Teacher’s Curricular Center (TCC).
Image of Books on the Main Floor of the Oviatt Library
Try looking in the Bestsellers Collection for popular fiction – just next to the reference desk.
Image of Books on the Second Floor of the Oviatt Library
The Bob and Maureen Gohstand Leisure Reading Room located off the Tseng Gallery in the West Wing houses a variety of fiction literature.
Image of Books on the Third Floor of the Oviatt Library
Try browsing the Language and Literature section. These fiction books will be shelved with other literature such as essays, drama, poetry and literary criticism. Generally speaking, English-language fiction can be found in the PR and PS sections on shelves. PR for English fiction and PS for American fiction.

 Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey.

Thank you.

- Anna Fidgeon

  - Jamie Johnson

Research Therapy: Need help coming up with a topic for your research paper or project?

Our new session of Research Therapy gives you ideas on where to look for topic ideas, how to narrow your topic, as well as a couple of online library resources that are a great place to begin your research. 

Topic Exploration image for video

Concept Mapping

Concept mapping is a great way to expand on a general topic; it also helps you to think about the different aspects of your topic. Here’s a template for a basic concept map. Here’s another concept map when you’re trying to identify the who, what, when, where, why or how of a topic.

As mentioned in the video keep in mind the different angles you could take on a topic:

  • Geographical → where
  • Sociological → who
  • Psychological → why
  • Historical → when

Library Databases

After you pick a general topic it’s a good idea to do some general background resources. Oviatt Library has several different online reference resources such as encyclopedias, dictionaries, biographical resources and more. The databases mentioned in the video are Opposing Viewpoints in Context and Credo Reference.  We also have a list of online reference resources listed under the Find Articles by Subject page, as well as an organized list of our databases by subject.  We also have a general Research Strategies guide to help you along with the research process.

 -Laurie Borchard        laurie.borchard@csun.edu

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

NIH/NLM Grant Awarded to the Oviatt Library

The Oviatt Library has been awarded a grant by the National Institutes of Health(NIH)/National Library of Medicine (NLM). This grant helped us purchase a new database, Anatomy.TV (also known as Primal Pictures Interactive Anatomy(OVID)), a new video collection, Health and Society in Video (Alexander Press) as well as purchasing recommended electronic and print books relating to issues in women’s health, and gender differences research. The title of the grant is Women’s Health Resources and Gender Research Differences: Outreach at California State University Northridge. We are adding records in our library catalog for all items the grant purchases. In addition, the very first catalog record we provide is for the website our grant is promoting Women’s Health Resources.

women's health resources catalog record

You may also connect with the site through Women’s Health Resources in WorldCat. We will share more about our new resources provided by the grant’s funding in future blog posts.

- Marcia Henry

Research Therapy: Women’s Health Resources

The Oviatt Library has partnered with the National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health for this special session of Research Therapy. For more information see ‘Cited at the Oviatt’ blog post 3/6/2013.

Surely you’ve been faced with a women’s health question that needs answering—either in your own life or for a project. Of course, you should ask your doctor if you have a particular ailment that needs attention, but sometimes you want to get some preliminary information online that is free of ads and written by trustworthy health care experts. Or maybe you want to write your final paper on the emotional impact of high school bullying on lesbians, but you know Googling “lesbian teenagers” is probably not going to get you the results you need for a school paper.

So where to start? Take a look at Women’s Health Resources—an online portal to women’s health and wellness information and research funded by the National Institutes of Health. This video will give you a tour:

Research Therapy

The information and research found on Women’s Health Resources comes from a number of valuable NIH and NLM collections. Learn more below about three in particular: ClinicalTrials.gov, MedlinePlus, and PubMed.

medicine bottle

At ClinicalTrials.gov, you can see the status of clinical trials as well as data from finished studies.

What is a clinical study?  A clinical study involves research using human volunteers (also called participants) that is intended to add to medical knowledge.  There are two main types of clinical studies: clinical trials and observational studies.  ClinicalTrials.gov includes both interventional and observational studies
http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/about-studies/learn#WhatIs

Image courtesy CDC Public Health Image Library / Amanda Mills

Medline Plus image - Woman

MedlinePlus offers objective up-to-date health information in easy-to-understand language.  Get background information on diseases, conditions, wellness, drugs, treatments, and more.

 Image courtesy CDC Public Health Image Library / Amanda Mills

Graham Stain

Pubmed is a collection of citations from biomedical research in journals, books and more.  Connect to CSUN resources (so you can read the full articles) by accessing Pubmed from the Oviatt Library website.

http://library.csun.edu/xerxes/databases/database/CAL03160
Image courtesy CDC Public Health Image Library / Dr. Libero Ajello

The Oviatt Library also has plenty of women’s health material for your research needs. We offer subject databases and resource guides in both Health Sciences and Gender and Women’s Studies.

If you are using Google or another search engine to find online resources on women’s health, make sure you check out our session of Research Therapy all about website evaluation. You wouldn’t ask just anyone on the street for health information, so don’t accept it from just anywhere on the internet!

Whether it’s for yourself, a research project, or “a friend”, if you need help finding health information or Women’s Health Resources, contact the following librarians:

Lynn Lampert: lynn.lampert@csun.edu

Marcia Henry: marcia.henry@csun.edu

Anna Fidgeon: annaliese.fidgeon@csun.edu

- Anna Fidgeon

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

The Science of Sex & Gender: Free Online Courses from the NIH & FDA

If you are a researcher in medical or health sciences, you probably already know that illness and treatment can have different consequences depending on a person’s gender. But maybe you want to learn more about how to incorporate gender differences into your research. Watch this video to learn more about the free online courses you can take at The Science of Sex and Gender in Human Health website, developed by the NIH and FDA.

Science of Sex and Gender

This video was funded by The National Institutes of Health/National Library of Medicine as part of the Women’s Health Resources and Gender Differences: Outreach at California State University, Northridge project. If you have questions about the grant or The Science of Sex and Gender Online Course, please contact the following librarians:

Lynn Lampert- http://library.csun.edu/llampert

Marcia Henry- http://library.csun.edu/mhenry

Anna Fidgeon- http://library.csun.edu/afidgeon

- Anna Fidgeon

Meet the Librarians at the Oviatt

Meet one of our Reference Librarians, Laura Wimberley. She’s been with the Oviatt team since 2011 and really enjoys working with students. Read more about her personal interests and why she became a librarian . . .

Laura Wimberley

Where are you originally from?

I grew up in Wilmington, Delaware (just outside of Philadelphia), but I’ve lived all over the country since then, in Ohio, Oregon, Colorado, and California.

What do you like/admire most about CSUN students?

I really appreciate how CSUN students are willing to admit when they don’t know something and ask questions.  That’s the only way to learn!

What’s your favorite book or your top 5?

Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman is an epic love song to America. Whitman was an abolitionist, a proto-feminist, and arguably the first out gay public figure in American life.  Leaves of Grass is his masterwork; its spirituality and landscape imagery are just beautiful.

What songs would you include on the soundtrack of your life?

My absolute lifetime top five albums:

Paul Simon, Graceland

Indigo Girls, Indigo Girls

The Strokes, Is This It

The Postal Service, Give Up

The New Pornographers, Twin Cinema

Why did you become a librarian?

As I was wrapping up my doctorate in political science, I realized that even though I loved uncovering new information, I didn’t love the long, isolated process of social science research.  Being a librarian gets me all of the fun of discovery with more opportunities to share that process and try out different directions.

What do you wish every student knew about the library or librarians?

We really like answering your questions – the more obscure, the better!  Never be afraid that your question is a hassle.

What is your favorite quote?

“The perfect is the enemy of the good.” – Voltaire

It’s a call to act and to accept that your flawed best is still better than nothing: it’s encouraging.

If you could learn any skill what would it be?

I’m hoping to learn American Sign Language soon.  The similarities yet differences between ASL and spoken English fascinate me, and I would love to be able to offer better help to CSUN’s Deaf community.

If you could be any fictional character who would it be?

This is a tough question!  The most fascinating characters often have the unhappiest lives, so I don’t want to be everyone I love reading about.  If I got to be fictional, I’d definitely want to be able to work magic, so I’ll go with Hermione Granger (not a real stretch for me as a personality, either).

What are some of your current projects that you are working on?

I’m part of the usability team for Oviatt’s website. Please let us know about your experience with our new website design.  We want to hear your feedback!

- Laurie Borchard

 

Research Therapy: You Don’t Have to Come to the Library to Get a Library Book

You know you don’t have to come into the library to get your hands on some books, right? And if you’ve ever checked out a book from the library, only to find it doesn’t have any information you need, you should try looking at Google Books first.

The Oviatt has hundreds of e-books available, straight off of the website. Even if the book you want isn’t available electronically, you can still use Google Books to take a peek at the content. You might save yourself a trip! Watch this video to learn more:

ebooks video image

We want your feedback! What do you think of Research Therapy? What would you like to see in future episodes? Please, fill out our survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/J9QWNY8

- Anna Fidgeon

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

Need Help Using OneSearch?

Just in case you’re confused about our new search tool on the library’s homepage, we’ve created a short video showing you how it works and how you can narrow your results in order to get exactly what you need. We also have a OneSearch FAQ.

When you do a search your results are broken down into two different tabs, one is labeled Articles and one labeled Books & Media. The Articles tab are items that you would normally find in our online databases and the Books & Media tab are what you would find in our library catalog. The image below describes the types of resources found in both.

trouble with OneSearch Image
OneSearch is a powerful tool and we’re pretty excited about it. However, if you’re looking for specific types of resources you might want to check out our other discovery tools.

Just beginning your research?          OneSearch

Want different types of resources in various formats?           OneSearch

Looking for a textbook?          Course Reserves or Library Catalog

Looking for a specific article?          OneSearch

Books by a specific author?          Library Catalog

Is your topic a little complicated?          Find Articles by Subject

Are you looking for archival sources?          Special Collections and Archives FAD

Still not sure where to go?          Ask a Librarian

-Laurie Borchard

Northridge Academy High School Students Visit the Oviatt

NAHS studentsThe Oviatt Library’s outreach programming with LAUSD offers many local high school students with the opportunity to borrow books and receive reference assistance from our librarians concerning their assignments. This not only helps them to be successful with their high school research papers but it also helps to acclimate them to the Library and campus and prepares them for college-level expectations.

The Oviatt Library has a special working relationship with Northridge Academy High School (NAHS) in this regard. Located on our campus its teachers and teacher librarian work closely with Oviatt librarians to coordinate Library instruction sessions which will support these students to be successful with their research and coursework. Each spring our librarians visit NAHS and instruct students in finding books and trustworthy articles in our databases. We also talk about the importance of citing their sources and direct them in creating proper MLA citations. Discussing the importance of utilizing Library resources for their assignments instead of going straight to Google is also addressed. Students closer to graduation are guided in more advance research techniques.

After the initial Library instruction at their school, NAHS students visit the Oviatt and put into practice what they learned by retrieving credible articles and emailing these articles and MLA citations to themselves. For many of these students it is the first time they have visited an academic Library. These visits often embody a sense of excitement and accomplishment as they experience the research process in a college setting alongside university students. Beginning this week and continuing through March approximately 800 NAHS ninth, tenth and eleventh-grade students will visit the Oviatt for Library instruction sessions. We are excited for these NAHS student visits and look forward to supporting them in their research process!

- Coleen Martin

The Oviatt’s New Discovery Tool OneSearch Is Here

OneSearch ImageYou may have noticed the Library’s new website design. We are excited about its modern look and the way it streamlines finding Library information and resources. One of the new aspects of the website is OneSearch, our new resource discovery tool that searches all of the Library’s subject areas at once. Yes, I said at once. That means when you enter your search terms into the OneSearch search box you will be searching more than one million books, media, and approximately 150 databases. The beauty of this discovery tool is you can narrow your results using custom designed facets. In layman’s terms, that means you can narrow your results to sort through the scholarly articles, full-text records, book reviews and more. Results can be narrowed to specific date ranges, books or journal titles. Searches can be made for authors and subjects as well. For those of you who like to know how the tool ‘runs under the hood,’ all of the Oviatt databases have been pre-indexed by OneSearch and you as a researcher search its index. Because it is a unified index the results are much more consistent than multi-search tools that simply search several databases at once. We invite you to give it a try!

- Coleen Martin

The Oviatt Helps CSUN Shine Brighter at this Year’s Faculty Retreat

CSUN flag

CSUN flag by alumnus Michael O'Meara

The Oviatt Library is looking forward to this year’s CSUN Faculty Retreat “Illuminating Pathways to Success” which will be held on campus January 14 and 15. Faculty members will have the opportunity to attend presentations and workshops to support an active start to the New Year and semester. The Oviatt is pleased to host several sessions at the event in order to share relevant resources and services with faculty members in an effort to meet the needs of specific classes as well as their research.

 The presentation “Scholar Spotlight: The Path to Open Access” presented by Andrew Weiss and Elizabeth Altman will focus on Scholar Spotlight, an ongoing program to gather and digitally preserve the scholarship and creative works of CSUN faculty and staff. Andrew and Elizabeth will demonstrate the impact the initial pilot for the program has had on those who participated. They will also focus on how ScholarWorks, CSUN’s institutional repository, can function as the heart of sustainable access and digital preservation through open-access (OA) journal publication. OA is currently mandated by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and other Federal grant funders but could also help the Library and CSUN reduce costs significantly. Finally, they will explain how all faculty can participate in and benefit from the open access movement.

 Also not to miss are three Oviatt Library poster sessions Moving Online? Let the Library Come with You presented by Anna Fidgeon, Laurie Borchard and Danielle Skaggs; EndNote Web for Students – KIN 200: Foundations of Kinesiology Experiences Information Management to Improve Research and Citing Skills presented by Marcia Henry, Nick Galli and Erica Cosby; and Digital Darwinism: A Brief Survival Guide to Personal Information Management presented by Stephen Kutay. For more information and presentation times see the Faculty Retreat Program. Hope to see you there!

- Coleen Martin

Oviatt Library Offers EndNote Web, a Personal Citation Management Database

It’s getting very close to the holidays. I am the Health Sciences Librarian here at Oviatt Library and I want to present you with a special gift which can help you organize your information on the literature you are reading for your classes. It can help you cite scholarly articles,  newspapers, magazine articles, videos, books, book chapters and websites you find to do your assignments.  It allows you to share your collected references with your fellow students and professors if they too have signed up for their own free EndNote Web account. The best way to share this information on EndNote Web is to direct you to our EndNoteWeb video tutorials

EndNote Web

Today I am briefly describing how EndNote Web will work with our EbscoHost databases which has indexes, abstracts and full-text for just about all academic departments in this University.  There is an easy to use Export button. Select the bibliographic information you want to send to EndNote Web and select the Export button.

Cinahl example for Endnote

If you have not already logged into your EndNote Web account, a log in screen will appear, and the information in the EbscoHost database should prompt EndNote Web to open an appropriate template identifying what type of publication, the example here, a book chapter, and populate the fields with the necessary information. 

Endnote Web

The important thing to understand about EndNote Web is that it is your personal database and you can edit information as necessary.  You do NOT want to rely on the Library databases to export with 100% accuracy. EndNote web  is a big help in capturing  a lot of essential information with links back to the article for you to resume your research.  Take time to check your information before writing your paper and make needed corrections. Then you can get a lot of help for different style guides for all disciplines, APA 6th, MLA, Chicago, JAMA, American Sociological Association and dozens more through EndNote Web.  

The Library public computer stations  have the  EndNote Web Cite While You Write plug in which will help you with in-text citing as well as the list of references in the style you select.

endnote web

i.e. Will insert in-text citation and the full reference in order required by the style you asked it to do (Gill & Kamphoff, 2010)

But always remember to double-check the accuracy of the citations EndNote Web generates. While it can help you to organize your research materials and citations, it is not always accurate. Of course, if you have questions, please visit us at the reference desk!

- Marcia Henry

Reference Services: What can we do for you?

librarian with glasses and books

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

As we head into the last few weeks of the Fall semester, many CSUN students will undoubtedly be working on final assignments and papers. Those papers often require the use of outside resources, which may include newspaper and magazine articles, books, scholarly/academic journal articles, films, and interviews, among others.

If you’re trying to find research for your topic, but are coming up empty, don’t forget to ask for help! A good rule of thumb is that if you’ve been searching for a solid 30 minutes and are stuck, that’s a really good time to stop and reevaluate what you’re doing. A librarian can help you narrow your topic, guide you towards the best resources for your assignment, and show you where to find guides for your citations. You can get help in the following ways.

 The Reference Desk: Your best bet is to come to the Oviatt, if you can, and talk to a librarian in person at the Reference Desk. Just walk through the lobby and past the coffee cart, and you’re right there in the Reference Room. You’ll see a big wooden desk, and there will be 1 or 2 librarians sitting there, waiting for you and your research questions. It’s staffed most of the hours that the library is open. You can also call and talk to someone at the Reference Desk – (818) 677-2285

Make an appointment with a Librarian: Did you know that we have Librarians who work with specific majors and fields? You can make an appointment with your subject area Librarian for a lengthier consultation than you can get at the Reference Desk. Don’t know who your librarian is? Try this page: http://library.csun.edu/About/SubjectSpecialists. Because we’re not always sitting in our offices, you’ll probably have better luck setting up an appointment with us by email, rather than by phone.

girl on cell phone

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Text A Librarian: Store this number in your contacts, and the next time you have a quick question, just text it to us: (818) 900-2965.

Ask Us!: You can also access our LibAnswers FAQ. Just type in your question at the top of the page in the “Ask Us Anything” box. If it matches a question in our FAQ we’ll direct you to the answer. If it’s not in our FAQ, we’ll redirect you to a form where you can email us your question. We’ll get back to you with an answer as soon as possible. Often, during the week, we respond within an hour, if not 15 minutes.

Live Chat: We know that students often do their research at times when the Library is closed, and we are unable to answer any questions. But you can log into our QuestionPoint Live Chat service 24/7, 365 days a year. No webcams are needed – unlike FaceTime or Skype, this chat service is done strictly through the keyboard. You won’t usually be chatting with a CSUN librarian, but they will know you’re a CSUN student and which databases and resources you have access to.

Research Therapy: Check out our series of short videos explaining different aspects of the research process – it’s Research Therapy! Finally, you can see all your options for getting in touch with a Reference Librarian on our Ask A Librarian page.

Good luck with your final projects and papers! Hope to see you at the Reference Desk!

- Susanna Eng-Ziskin

Watch Stage Performance Videos with Two New Databases

Theatre on Video

The Critic, by Richard Brinsley Sheridan, directed by Don Taylor, performed by Sir John Gielgud, Nigel Hawthorne & Rosemary Leach

‘Talking about music is like dancing about architecture’ may be one of the most common adages acknowledging the value of experiencing art for interpretation. For many, witnessing a performance is key to seeing how everything fits together. While reading a play is one level of understanding a work, this may not be enough to support mastery of the craft. But seeing a piece unfold can be instrumental in discovering its multiple layers and sometimes this requires viewing many different performances of the same work. Two of the Oviatt Library’s latest resources, which have been funded by the Campus Quality Fee, make experiencing Opera and Theatre performances much more accessible. Students, staff and faculty can now log in to Library resources through Databases A-Z to find them. While some performances may be found on YouTube, the quality of the videos in these databases is generally higher and includes permission to cite them as academic sources. In addition to viewing the performances directly from the databases, these videos can also be shared with classes through Moodle. So put your dancing shoes aside as the adage suggests and enjoy the convenience of Opera and Theatre performances directly from your computer. 

Opera in Video - Collection of the most important opera performances, captured on video through staged productions, interviews, and documentaries. Selections represent the world’s best performers, conductors, and opera houses and are based on a work’s importance to the operatic canon.

 Theatre in Video - Collection of more than 250 definitive performances of the world’s leading plays, together with more than 100 film documentaries, online in streaming video, representing hundreds of leading playwrights, actors and directors.

- Coleen Martin and Lindsay Hansen

Spend Some Time this Thanksgiving with Oviatt Resources

Thanksgiving

Faith Goble 2010

Happy Thanksgiving, Matadors! The Oviatt Library will be closed this Thursday and Friday in honor of the holiday, so check out some books and movies to enjoy over the long weekend. If you’ll be travelling and want some distractions, browse the best sellers collection in the reference room for the latest mysteries, romance, and other fun fiction.

Thanksgiving is all about tradition.  Read about its history of the holiday in Thanksgiving: The Biography of an American Holiday (GT4975 .B33 2009) and Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War (F68 .P44 2006).  Both books are available for check out on the second floor.

For the traditional feast, try the ebook Take Control of Thanksgiving Dinner. It has all the basic recipes plus vegetarian alternatives, and solutions to last minute crises. Great for first-time chefs.

 If you’re dreading the big family gathering, watch Ang Lee’s film The Ice Storm (PN1997 .I347 2008 in the Music & Media library).  The all-star cast’s depiction of family dissolution during Thanksgiving 1973 might resonate.

 We’ll reopen at 11AM on Saturday.  Enjoy the break!

 – Laura Wimberley

Research Therapy: Citing Your Sources

The sixth installment of Research Therapy gives you a brief overview of why you need to cite, when you should cite and how you should cite.

Do you have a research paper or project coming up and your instructor wants a specific number of sources? Knowing when and how to cite your sources can be a little confusing. The most important thing that you need to know is that you need to cite anything you use that doesn’t originate from you. Not only should you do this when you’re writing a paper or working on a research project, but also when creating a presentation or a website. You should cite tweets, blog posts, images, podcasts, and YouTube videos, basically anything you use that you did not create yourself.

citing image

Citation Styles
Different academic disciplines have different citation styles, it’s important that you know what style your instructor wants you to use. Here’s some examples of the different styles.

citation chart

Citing Special Resources?
Here’s a list of resources and guides for citing less common sources.
Government Documents
Business Resources : a comprehensive guide from Harvard Business School on citing various types of sources, including reports, interviews, and legal cases (just to name a few).
• This guide from Boise State gives examples of citing images, Twitter, Facebook, blog posts, maps, and videos.

Need More Help?
For additional help on creating citations using various styles check out Oviatt Library’s Citing Your Sources guide. For a quick how-to on creating an annotated bibliography, check out session three of the Research Therapy video series.
Still confused, about plagiarism? Check out this online tutorial created by UCLA students.

-Laurie Borchard

laurie.borchard@csun.edu

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

The Teacher Curriculum Center: The Best Kept Secret – and It’s Not Just for Teachers!

Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC)Come to the Teacher Curriculum Center (TCC)! While the department’s name may sound intellectual and stuffy, it is actually a friendly place- and space –for all students to research, study, and create. It is an open work area for aspiring teachers, future business bigwigs, or perhaps a mechanical engineer.

Among its many offerings, the TCC houses materials for those working with children, grades K-12. Its collection includes a variety of items: instructional kits, games, CDs. DVDs, puppets and lesson plans. It also features a collection of over 5,000 children’s and young adult books. If you are looking for Rainbow Fish, Hop on Pop, Harry Potter, or The Hunger Games, they are all available for check out.

But wait, there is more! Many are not aware that the TCC is a fantastic multi-use area that allows for individual or group study, bulletin board construction, and poster presentation creation. It has a die-cut machine which can be used to cut out letters, numbers, animals, and geometric shapes to add spark to your artistic designs. The three large white boards can be used for a wide variety of purposes: working out mathematical formulas or diagramming flowcharts. Students needing to practice the dance steps for their Children’s Music class can do so in the TCC. Need to rehearse your speech for your public speaking course? The TCC is the place for you.

The TCC is located on the Garden Level of the Oviatt library (enter through the library’s main entrance). Come and check it out!

- Mara Houdyshell

Research Therapy: What is a Scholarly Article?

Have you ever wondered exactly what is a scholarly article? And how can you tell if an article you’ve found is scholarly? Watch the following short video and read the information below to answer these questions and more!

Why Can’t I Find Scholarly Sources on My Topic?
If you’re having trouble finding scholarly sources on your topic, you may be running into one of these problems:
Not enough time has passed: it takes time to conduct research, write the scholarly article, and then get it published. If your topic concerns an event that happened recently (in the last year for example), there may not be anything scholarly published on it yet. The Fix: find scholarly articles on broader themes related to your topic. For example, if you wanted to write about the 2012 presidential election, you could find scholarly articles on past presidential elections dealing with aspects that relate to the current election.
Need to try another database: you may be looking in a database that doesn’t have many scholarly articles, or it may not have many articles from the subject area your topic falls in. The Fix: try using a subject-specific database or one of the other resources in the Finding Scholarly Articles section below.
The topic hasn’t been researched: since scholarly articles are the results of research being done by professors and other experts in the field, there may not be scholarly articles on your topic if someone hasn’t yet undertaken the research, found an angle of interest to the field, or found a measurable way to test it. The Fix: find scholarly articles on broader themes related to your topic. For example, if you need a scholarly article for your speech on how to tie a tie, you probably won’t find scholarly articles explaining how to tie a tie, but you may find articles on how men’s neckwear has evolved through history.
Can Books be Scholarly?
Usually when we talk about scholarly sources, we’re talking about scholarly articles. However, books can be scholarly as well. One factor to look at for books is the publisher. Books from university presses (such as University of California Press or Harvard University Press) are more likely to be scholarly, but you should also check that there are references cited in the text and listed at the end and that the language of the book is scholarly.
Is It Peer-Reviewed?
Many scholarly articles are peer-reviewed, which is when the journal’s editor has other researchers in the field review the article before it is published. They evaluate the content and procedures used and recommend whether the article should be published as is, revised, or rejected. Peer-reviewed journals are also known as refereed journals.
To check if the article is peer-reviewed, you can
• Check the About or Focus/Scope section of the journal’s webpage. Many journals will say if they are peer-reviewed on these pages.
• Look the journal up in Ulrich’s to see if it is peer-reviewed. For more information on how to do this, watch the Is This Journal Peer Reviewed? tutorial.
Finding Scholarly Articles
To find scholarly articles, try:
JSTOR or Project Muse, which consist entirely of articles from scholarly journals. JSTOR covers most disciplines while Project Muse focuses on humanities, arts, and social sciences.
• Selecting the Scholarly or Peer Reviewed check box available in many general and subject-specific databases, such as General OneFile or PsycInfo.
• Using Google Scholar instead of Google. You can set up Google Scholar so you can access CSUN resources from off campus.

- Danielle Skaggs

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

Research Therapy: Be a Search Boss

We admit it. Searching a library catalog or database is not always as straightforward as Google. And sometimes, searching Google is frustrating because you get so many questionable results. So how can you find that really great article for your paper? This video will show you some tactics to help get you on your way to being a Super Searcher!

I’m finding too much! I can’t find enough!
If you are overloaded or underloaded with search results, you might want to rethink your search strategy by brainstorming broader or narrower concepts. For example, if your topic for a 5-page paper is gay rights, do you think you could cover everything ever about gay rights in so few pages? If so, you should give me some writing lessons.

searchstrategy image gay marriage
Most likely, with a topic as broad as gay rights, you probably want to focus on something a little more narrow under the umbrella of gay rights, such as gay marriage. If you still feel like there’s still too much on your topic to cover, you might focus in even more. For example, you could specifically look at Prop 8.

Question your assignment
One way to think about your topic is to form it into a question you can answer with your research. This can also help you focus your topic. Here are some examples:

searchstrategy image ask yourself

It might seem frustrating when you have to keep adjusting your search, but that’s exactly what research is, it’s re-searching until you find what you’re looking for. If you feel really stuck, be sure to Ask A Librarian for help.

- Anna Fidgeon

annaliese.fidgeon@csun.edu

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

The Oviatt Marks Open Access Week

Open AccessInternational Open Access Week:

Today marks the beginning of the 6th annual Open Access Week “celebration.” Starting on October 22 and ending on October 28, the week will be filled with various awareness-raising events across the country and the world to publicize and explain what Open Access does.  At the Oviatt Library we are also raising awareness of Open Access Week by highlighting it in this blog, providing FAQs about Open Access Week and ScholarWorks, by showcasing our Open Access initiative Scholar Spotlight, and by providing a Twitter feed of important information and issues related to Open Access, Copyright and the state of academic publishing.

But why? What’s all the fuss about Open Access? Why should any of us really be that concerned about it?

Generally speaking, as academics, scholars and former students par excellence, we faculty members have been extremely successful in our research. We have been able to make a career of turning curiosity into a virtue and translating our internal visions into reality through our scholarship and creative works. As exemplars of lifelong learning, we are fortunate to have the freedom and institutional encouragement to go wherever our intellect and curiosity take us.

However, on the opposite side of that coin we have also, as part of the RTP process, felt the external push to publish and share our work regardless of the costs. Therein lies the rub.

One of the main casualties of this mix of external and internal motivation has been the relinquishing of copyright control of the very work we create. I am as guilty of this as anyone. While recently signing the copyright agreement with a publisher of an upcoming peer-reviewed journal article, I felt the tension of internal motivation to share my work and the external push to avoid jeopardizing its publication at all costs.

I was of course elated to have my work accepted by a well-respected journal in my field. At the same time, it was dampened by the realization that my work was now, once I signed over my copyrights, no longer in my control. Despite all the effort I took to devise my study, write the draft, and revise it according to uncompensated peer-reviewers, I was still required to relinquish my rights of ownership to the work. All the effort was mine and the peer-reviewers. Yet the publisher reaped the financial and intellectual property rewards, while I was left with a citation for my PIF and a free copy of the article (which I could NOT post online or distribute without their permission).

This is not an isolated event. Tenure track faculty are especially vulnerable to these practices because RTP values publication to such an extent that we are often afraid to jeopardize the publication process. We all want to have long and prosperous careers in our chosen disciplines. Publishing is one of the requirements for this. But at the same time, is this not a ruinous situation in the long-run when the very work and ideas that we generate (often funded by public institutions) becomes the property of proprietary interests?

The result of this one-sided relationship has been immense increases in the cost of accessing the intellectual output of whole segments of academia.  The Oviatt library, for example, is currently unable to provide access to CSUN’s own locally edited and published journal The California Geographer because the database company that hosts it, namely EBSCO, has increased prices to the point that we cannot afford top-tier access. The California Geographer is part of this top-tier access. There is truly a problem when a publicly-funded university is unable to access the very scholarship created by its own faculty, partly because a publisher is exploiting policies created by the university itself.

Below are two charts that show the stark contrasts: on one hand journal prices rose 114%, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 31%, while library expenditures in American Research Libraries dropped from 3.7% of a total university expenditures to just below 2%.

Open Access Chart 1

source: http://www.library.ucsf.edu/help/scholpub/journalcosts

Open Access Second Chart

source: http://www.arl.org/stats/annualsurveys/eg/index.shtml

Obviously this spells trouble. These trends are unsustainable, even to the Harvards and Princetons of the world. That is why Open Access has been presented as an antidote to the currently ruinous and dysfunctional academic publishing environment.

On a positive note, more and more publishers are starting to cooperate with the Open Access Movement. Major research institutions such as Harvard and Princeton have each developed mandates to ensure Open Access for the scholarship created by their faculty. Many disciplines, especially in Biology, Physics, and Mathematics, have embraced Open Access as the publishing model of the future.

Finally several Federal grant providers, including the NSF and NIH, have also begun to mandate Open Access for all publications stemming from their funding. The result is that Open Access is here to stay and will help to ensure that publicly funded scholarship remains accessible to the public.

- Andrew Weiss

Top Five Tips for Making it Through Midterms

 

girl studying

Awen Photography, 2009

#1 Read effectively. Reading scholarly work is different from reading fiction. In fiction, you want to savor each part of the book, but in scholarly work you want to extract the most important parts of the argument.  As you read, jot down questions and connections to other readings.

#2 Go to your instructor’s office hours.  The whole point of exams is to get you to review and remember all of the course content, so don’t ask, “Will this be on the midterm?” (Profs hate that.)  Instead, ask substantive questions about the material – what’s the difference between these two important, similar concepts? How does this theory apply to a specific case?   

Another option is to visit the Learning Resource Center in Bayramian Hall.  You can get feedback on your writing in any subject, or tutoring in Biology, Chemistry, Physical Science, Mathematics, Physics, Philosophy, and Economics.

#3  Stay focused.  Lots of students believe that they’re great at multitasking.  They’re nearly all wrong.  Try studying for 20 solid minutes of focus followed by a 5 minute break – you’ll be more productive than if you tried to do three things at once.

If you really need music to block out noise around you, try something without distracting lyrics. I like Explosions in the Sky.

#4 Drink water.  One study suggests that staying hydrated enhances your performance on exams. (And it’ll help balance out all the caffeine you’re drinking.)

#5 Get some sleepSleeping after studying makes it easier to retain all the information you’ve crammed into your brain.

Good luck!

- Laura Wimberley

Research Therapy Takes on the Annotated Bibliography

It’s that time of the semester – papers and other types of research are being assigned. Today we explore a research assignment you might not be familiar with: the annotated bibliography.

Annotations – More Information
Need a little more guidance on what to include in your annotation? The following table provides examples of descriptive and evaluative information you can include in your annotation. You can include both types of information in your annotation.

annotated bib chart

The Oviatt Library also has full sample annotated bibliographies (MLA or APA) and citation guides (MLA or APA) available to help you. We also carry the Chicago Manual of Style Online.

-Danielle Skaggs

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

“Drop In, Take Ten” Empowers Women in Science and Engineering at the Oviatt Library

women in scienceIt’s no secret, women’s professional progress in science, technology, engineering and mathematics has developed much more slowly when compared to the inroads that have been made in other careers such as medicine, business and law. Many social and environmental factors contribute to the disparity of women in these scientific fields and a peer-reviewed based report1 identifies recommendations in three major areas to counteract this phenomenon.

  • Cultivate girls’ achievements, interest, and persistence in science and engineering
  • Create college environments that support women in science and engineering
  • Counteract bias

You are invited to the Jack and Florence Ferman Presentation Room at the Oviatt Library on October 9 for a Women in Science and Engineering “Drop In, Take, Ten” Event to empower women to consider careers in the sciences. Please attend if you have an interest in such careers or in supporting more women in these fields. Professional engineers and scientists will speak one-on-one with students about their personal experiences and provide ‘real world’ examples about working within these disciplines. Meet and network with representatives from scientific and professional organizations from 3-5 p.m. There will also be an opportunity for candid conversations with industry professionals during speed mentoring sessions that will take place from 4-6 p.m. More information about the event can be found at “Drop In, Take Ten.” Hope to see you there!

 – Coleen Martin

1 American Association of University Women (AAUM) Report

Welcome Back to Research Therapy!

So you’re going to cite a website in that paper? If you want to impress your professors with a great bibliography, you need to to evaluate your sources carefully. Watch this short video and read below to learn what you should know about researching using the web.

What qualities should your web source have?
As a scholar-in-training, you are learning to decipher good information from the lousy in order to have an informed understanding of a topic. If you’re going to use a web source for your project, it should have these qualities:
Authoritative- the information comes from a qualified source
Unbiased- the information is balanced and shows both sides in a non-persuasive manner
Current- the information is up-to-date for your particular topic
Accurate- the information reported is verifiable and opinions are distinct from fact
Ask yourself these questions to determine if your source is right for your needs:

authoritativepic
But what about domains?
Let’s take a look at what common domains mean, and why you might want look beyond where it was registered to determine if the information you’re getting suits your research needs.
Domainimage
Now that you’re equipped to evaluate the website you want to use, you can handle these issues. Know who is posting this information online and why. Make sure you’re getting your information from experts. Provide a balanced view of your topic. And, be sure you’re capable of understanding and synthesizing the information. It takes time to learn this stuff! Be a little skeptical and you’re already on your way.
Still don’t get it? You can always Ask A Librarian for help.

- Anna Fidgeon

annaliese.fidgeon@csun.edu

 Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

New Message in a Minute Video Released About Library Lectures

The Oviatt Library has created a video series called Message in a Minute for Faculty to let faculty know about Library resources and services. With seven videos produces thus far, and with more than 3,400 hits to view the videos, many faculty members, as well as other interested viewers of the Library’s YouTube channel, have been able to learn about new and longstanding resources due to this series. To date, the topics of these brief videos include: Course Reserves, Interlibrary Loan, Librarian Help Through Moodle, Searching Cited References, The Place To Be (Library Tour) and one about our new streaming video service, Video Furnace. Our latest Message in a Minute video released talks about the benefits of Library lectures and tells the story of how one student was able to succeed with his research assignment through faculty and Library intervention. Please take a look at this latest video below and feel free to browse the other videos at the Library’s YouTube channel. Tutorials and other interesting and fun clips about the Library and its resources and services can be found there as well.

Message in a Minute for Faculty: Library Lectures

Survey Monkey Link for Library Lectures

- Coleen Martin

 

Have You Checked Out Music & Media?

carrels2Even if you’re not a music or CTVA major, Music & Media has something to offer you! With your library card (CSUN ID), you can check out books, scores, DVDs, CDs, and more.

Looking for a place to spread out with your homework? We have open study space and plenty of power strips for to plug in your laptop. Want to take a break and watch Young Adult  or The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? Take a movie home or watch in one of our carrels.

Spending a lot of time in your car? Why not learn a new language or listen to a book? To find an audiobook, search by keyword or title and limit to Sound Recordings.

Teaching yourself to play guitar? Check out a book like Easy Soloing for Jazz Guitar and you’ll be playing in no time.

Found a great recording that is only available on LP? Listen to it on our record player and if you want to, you can transfer one or more tracks to an MP3 file or CD.

Music & Media has a lot to offer the CSUN community. Please stop by and if you need help finding anything, ask a friendly student at the counter or ask a librarian.

- Lindsay Hansen

Introducing New Video Series: Research Therapy

Welcome Matadors! The Oviatt Library would like to introduce our new Fall video series Research Therapy. Every couple of weeks we will release a short 2-3 minute instructional video. The purpose of these videos is to provide you with tips and tricks that we think you might find helpful throughout the semester. Some of the topics include: how to find books, evaluating websites, using Google Scholar and citing your sources. The first video in this series is “How to Find Books on the Shelf.” We realize that our Library is pretty large and it can be confusing for new users. The focus of this video is how to take the call number of the book and find it on the shelf.  For more videos and tutorials please visit our Tutorials and How-to’s page.

We hope you find this video helpful as you navigate through your first couple of weeks of the Fall semester.

How to Find a Book on the Shelf

-Laurie Borchard

laurie.borchard@csun.edu

 Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

The Library is Here to Help and Happy First Week of Classes

Reference deskWelcome back Matadors! This school year promises to be an exciting time filled with academic challenges and intellectual growth. During this first week of the fall semester, we at the Library wish you luck in finding all of your classes and in forging meaningful relationships with your peers and your professors throughout the year. We will have additional librarians at the reference desk most of this week, so if you have a question, don’t hesitate to come see us. There will also be an Information Technology table in the Library lobby to help assist you with any of your connectivity issues or questions. But support won’t be limited to the inside of the Library building. We will also have a special Ask Us! Booth on the west side of the Library near Magnolia Walk. Librarians and staff will be there on Monday, August 27 and Tuesday, Ask Us! boothAugust 28 from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m. to answer your questions about finding specific buildings or classrooms and to provide information about the Library as well. In fact, we will be giving away highlighters, pens, notepads and other school supplies while they last so be sure to stop by, say hello and get your free giveaway items. Happy new school year to all!

- Coleen Martin

Campus Orientation Welcomes New Faculty at the Library

In addition to the many new students who will be descending upon campus in the upcoming days and weeks, more than 50 new faculty members will be joining the CSUN academic community for the 2012-2013 school year. In fact, the campus New Faculty Orientation will be held on August 21 and 22 in the Library’s Jack & Florence Ferman Presentation Room. Coordinated by Faculty Development, a program of the CIELO Center, the two-day orientation will provide faculty not only with basic campus information to help orientate them in their new setting but also provide them with quite a few sessions to support a smooth transition. Faculty attending the event will have the opportunity to meet other new faculty members and CSUN campus leaders. Current technologies utilized on campus and within the classroom will be discussed as well as many opportunities to explore the nuances of connecting with students and faculty. We at the Library are especially excited about the event. Library Subject Specialists will be present and take new faculty members on a tour of the Library. Of course, these are just highlights of the event since so much more will be shared. However, it promises to be two days filled with ideas and support for creating an amazing first year on campus and within the Library. Welcome to all new CSUN faculty!NFO invite

- Coleen Martin

The Library Prepares to Welcome New Students

Matty the Matador in front of LibraryThe new academic year is quickly approaching and everyone it seems is preparing to welcome our new in-coming freshmen in particular. The Oviatt also has many special activities planned for new students within the next several weeks. As in past years, the Library is grateful to be included in the Office of Student Development’s coordinated Service Fair. We’ll have a strong presence at these promotional booths this year as well. Our librarians will be on hand at a dozen of these events to answer questions and distribute Library information. Many giveaway items such as pens, notepads and highlighters will be available to new students. We hope this opportunity to meet and interact with us will help to ease the transition from high school to our campus and Library. The Service Fair days, hours and locations vary but many run within the next several weeks between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. inside the Matador Bookstore Complex. Stop by to see us if you have the time and say hi even if you are not a first-time freshman.

Within the upcoming weeks, the Library will also be hosting our annual Ask Us! Booths. During the first two days of the new semester we’ll be situated for several hours each day on the west side of the Library along Magnolia Walk. Library staff and faculty will be on hand to provide directional information to those new to campus. We’ll also answer other campus and Library related questions that can sometimes arise while rushing to navigate a new academic schedule. So look for us there as well!

- Coleen Martin

The Library Remembers Two Very Special People

Peter Prager

The Library suffered two losses within the last two weeks, one deeply personal and the other literary but both impactful in meaningful ways. Peter Prager was a wonderful friend and colleague to many here at the Oviatt. He passed away last week after a recent, serious change in his health. As former Special Assistant to Library Dean Emeritus, Sue Curzon, Peter collaborated with just about everyone in the building during his many years working within the Library. Always collegial and professional, Peter could be counted on for a positive and kind word for those lucky enough to be in his presence. His knack for engaging others in lively conversation always brightened the day. Peter also had a sense of humor that endeared him to many as well. We will miss Peter and his warm and caring demeanor and are grateful for the privilege it has been to share in his professional life. The Oviatt is a better place because Peter was a part of our Library family.

diamond symbol

Gore Vidal

This week also marked the passing of literary giant Gore Vidal. Author of 24 novels, five plays, two memoirs and several volumes of essays Mr. Vidal was known for his acerbic wit and satirical observations. Usually controversial and never conventional, he took great pleasure in being a public figure. But it’s his works that speak best for him. A prolific writer, Mr. Vidal found his greatest success with historical novels, specifically his American Chronicles: Washington, D.C. (1967), Burr (1973), 1876 (1976), Lincoln (1984), Empire (1987), Hollywood (1990) and The Golden Age (2000). However, he was also a master writer of essays with his collection The Second American Revolution which won him the National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism in 1982. You may want to take a look at the Oviatt Library’s Gore Vidal Pinterest board which includes an interview, famous quotes and information about his writings.

- Coleen Martin

The Oviatt’s E-Reference Titles Provide Easy Access to Reliable Reference Info

Grove Art

It used to be you had to come into the Library if you needed to use a reference book such as an encyclopedia or specialized dictionary for your research. But not anymore. While we still carry a plethora of print reference books and house them readily on our shelves, the Oviatt has amassed an impressive collection of reference e-books which makes finding quick, factual information a snap. With more than 350 titles accessible online, our reliable, library-subscribed reference e-books (Wikipedia step aside) can be accessed from anywhere. Take a moment and visualize yourself doing academic research at the beach thank you very much. Check out our Research Strategies Reference Sources page and discover the wide range of encyclopedias, dictionaries, directories, handbooks and almanacs that are available electronically. These reference e-titles can be searched by subject, title or by browsing more than a dozen of our Most Frequently Used Electronic Reference Books. Within these online books you will find encyclopedias in the disciplines of art, philosophy, literature and law just to name a few. Of course, there are also many general information based reference sources and even an entire page that links to government reference data. Who knew that finding government reference sources and statistics on a myriad of topics could be orchestrated from one Library reference webpage? So while we’d really love to see you here in person at the Library whenever possible, we’d also like to invite you to take advantage of our many reference e-books and other reliable online information the next time you have a reference research need.

- Coleen Martin

Watch Movies Anywhere with Films on Demand

Mummies

Select to watch Mummies: Perfect Study Specimens

You may not mind paying $12 at your local movie theater to see that latest flick but did you know you can log in to Oviatt Library resources and watch a film for free and learn something new at the same time? Our Films on Demand multidisciplinary streaming video service provides CSUN students, staff and faculty with access to more than 5,000 digital and educational titles. The beauty of the service is that the films within this database collection can be watched from any computer with your CSUN User ID and Password. Some faculty members have embedded Films on Demand movie links into course pages on Moodle to provide easy access for their students. But the collection can also be accessed from Databases A-Z on the Library’s homepage.

Films can be as short as 10 minutes to an hour long. One faculty member reported being “thrilled” with the selection of titles the database carries within her discipline. She found one video that was even more poignant than the film she had been showing regularly to her classes. The subjects covered are varied but are within a wide-range of disciplines that include anthropology, health & medicine and music & dance just to name a few. Overall, the collection carries films in the areas of humanities, education and the sciences. A Special Collections section within the database also provides access to films from a variety of well-known series such as the American Experience, Frontline and Tedtalks. The videos can be watched in their entirety or segment by segment which is handy if you only want to find or watch a particular part of a film.

So the next time you’re inclined to see a movie or want to share one with your class or peers, we invite you to look for one within the Films on Demand collection. You just might be pleasantly surprised by what you discover. For other Oviatt Library streaming video databases you may want to check out Great Speeches, Ethnographic Video Online and Counseling and Therapy in Video.

 

 – Coleen Martin

San Fernando Valley History and Images Can Be Discovered Online Through a One-of-a-Kind Collection

first building at CSUNOne the unique collections within the Oviatt Library is the San Fernando Valley History Digital Library. This image database contains many rarely seen historically significant documents, manuscripts, photographs and graphic materials from public and private collections. What makes this such a fascinating collection is the fact that it documents the socio-economic changes and cultural evolution of our valley – the San Fernando Valley – from the early 19th century through the end of the 20th century. Bill ClintonWithin its vast amount of materials and photographs, it contains this gem above which features the first building under construction on the CSUN campus in 1956 when it was formerly known as San Fernando Valley State College. Recognize the CSUN visitor who spoke at the first-year anniversary commemorating the 1994 Northridge earthquake? President Bill Clinton praised local, state and federal authorities for their recovery efforts. An image of a partially collapsed parking structure is seen in his background.

gas station at Devonshire and BalboaMany other regional, non-campus historical photographs and documents are also available within the digital library including an image of the service station and coffee shop at Devonshire and Balboa which was taken in the 1930s. The gas station at this corner looks very different today! Need a ride to Los Angeles?  Check out the first taxi service from the San Fernando Valley to Los Angeles and Hollywood in 1915. The passengers in the photo are taking Thompson’s Auto Stage from Calabasas for a day of shopping in Los Angeles. first taxi service in the ValleyBut you get the idea by now . . . the San Fernando Valley History Digital Library is a treasure-trove of materials for research purposes and has the ability to quell the imagination of curiosity seekers as well. Additional related Oviatt Library digital collections include our Online Archive of California and L.A. as Subject. Other online collections can also be found at the Oviatt Library Digital Archives.

- Coleen Martin

Happy 4th of July!

flag with border

Libraries and the sharing of knowledge have always coveted a special place within the value system of many of our founding fathers. Several of them held a unique reverence, in particular, for books. It can be said that the establishment of Benjamin Franklin’s Philadelphia Library in 1731 underscores Franklin’s belief of their importance for those living in a free society. Working with a philosophical association named Junto, Franklin and other intellectuals of the day developed the mission for the library. They chose a Latin phrase or motto which roughly translates “To support the common good is divine.”  

 Thomas Jefferson also played an instrumental role in the fostering and sharing of information within the development of the Library of Congress.  His commitment for preserving and providing access to information at an early stage in our country’s history reveals the American values of the freedom of thought and the freedom to disseminate information, two characteristics of our society that lie within the fundamentals of our Independence. We at the Oviatt wish everyone a Happy 4th of July!

Library Hours for the week of the 4th of July are:

  • Monday, July 2, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 3, 8 a.m.-7 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 4, Closed
  • Thursday, July 5, 8 a.m.-7 p.m.
  • Friday, July 6, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday, July 7, 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
  • Sunday, July 8, Closed

 – Coleen Martin

The Library Welcomes EOP Bridge Students

EOP Bridge 2012

The Oviatt Library and CSUN’s Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) work together each year to help prepare CSUN Bridge students for academic experiences and expectations at the college level. As a team, the Library and the EOP encourage and empower students to utilize Library and campus resources and services so they can be successful during their years here and beyond.

A four-story academic Library can be an intimidating place to maneuver for the first time. However, during the last four years our librarians have provided 75 Library tours for 1,424 EOP students and 28 Library lectures for 704 EOP students to support them during their transition from high school to our university. The tours and lectures help to instill students with the confidence and ability necessary to navigate our physical resources and we find they also help to ease feelings of apprehension which can be a common experience when students first arrive.

EOP Bridge 2012 #4During the tours, librarians guide students in locating Course Reserve and Interlibrary Loan services, our 170-seat Computer Lab which provides them with a place to research their assignments and type papers, information about obtaining research help from our team of 28 librarians and much more. These EOP tours and lectures begin in the summer. However, for many EOP students, the collaboration continues throughout the academic year with several follow up Library lectures to continue to provide them with the opportunity to acquire the skills needed to navigate scholarly online resources and services successfully.

During the Library lectures, Oviatt librarians work with students to identify the types of sources needed for their research, the specialized databases which will carry the information they are seeking, and the ways in which they can properly cite their papers. Several hundred EOP Bridge students will be visiting the Library within the coming weeks to begin their academic journey. We at the Oviatt Library say welcome to all 2012 EOP Bridge students!

-Coleen Martin

Summer Fun To Be Found in Southern California

It’s that time of year many of us are thinking about summer travel plans and considering what is around the corner for fun during break. While trips to other U.S. cities and abroad always have their appeal, there are also countless reasons to remain local and discover Southern California’s traveled and less traveled coastlines, hiking trails of magnificent beauty or L.A. sights aside from nature. The Library has many resources for planning day trips as well as full-fledged vacations in Southern California. Below is a list of places and/or activities with corresponding Library call numbers. Several titles are suggested within each category but each section in the Library will have more books on the topic than are listed here for starters. Links to other online information are also included.

  • Beaches and Family Fun – second floor, stack 19, call number area F867.

 Beaches and Parks book coverBeaches and Parks in Southern California by Steve Scholl – This guidebook provides details about experiencing Southern California beaches county by county.

Santa Monica Beach by Ernest Marquez – A pictorial book, it showcases historic images of this well known and loved beach.

Kidding Around Los Angeles by Judy Cash. In this title, the author describes the sights and events in Los Angeles that are interesting to young people. Cash includes details about beaches, museums, parks and sporting and cultural events.

More information about local beaches can be found at the Department of Beaches and Harbors.

  • Biking – second floor, stack 26, call number area GV1045.

Mountain Biking in Southern California by Mark A. Ross and Brad L. Fine. Specifics about the many biking trails in the southern part of our state are included in this guidebook.

Mountain Biking the San Gabriel Mountains’ Best Trails, with Angeles National Forest and Mt. Pinos by Mike Troy. As the title suggests, this book describes interesting and noteworthy biking trails in our local mountains.

  • Deserts and Mountains – second floor, stack 19, call number area F867.

hiking coverCalifornia Desert Byway: Backcountry Drives for the Whole Family by Tony Huegel. This title provides information for planning family outings to Southern California Desert destinations.

California-Nevada Roads Less Traveled by Don W. Martin. This guidebook provides informaton on visiting California desert sites, north and south, that are less crowded.

More information about California deserts can be found at Californiadesert.gov.

  • Hiking – second floor, stack 25, call number area GV199.

Hiking Southern California by Ron Adkison. Southern California’s greatest hiking adventures are described in this guidebook.

 101 Hikes in Southern California by Jerry Schad. This title explores hiking trails within our local mountains, seashores and deserts.

You may also want to take a look at the California Department of Parks and Recreation Hiking information for Southern California.

-Coleen Martin

Remembering Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury

Photo by Alan Light

It has been a week since Ray Bradbury passed. But the author of The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451, with his more than 500 novels, short stories and plays, will continue to inspire and captivate readers. We are all familiar with his works (check out the more than 100 titles in the Oviatt’s catalog) that have been translated into 36 languages and that several of his stories have been made into movies. But his commercial success cannot overshadow the honors he achieved along the way. In 2000, he was awarded the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters and in 2004 President George W. Bush presented him with the National Medal of Arts. He even has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Summarizing his accomplishments in this manner however cannot capture his true contributions to our culture. Gerald Jonas of the New York Times wrote “Bradbury was the writer most responsible for bringing modern science fiction into the literary mainstream. His name would appear near the top of any list of major science-fiction writers of the 20th century, beside those of Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Robert A. Heinlein and the Polish author Stanislaw Lem.”

Stories about how the “man” Ray Bradbury impacted and inspired writers and readers all over also continue to be shared within social media, offices, libraries and homes – everywhere people connect to talk about what is important to them. Newbery and Carnegie Medal winning author Neil Gaiman wrote about Bradbury on his blog and in a piece for the The Guardian about the impact Bradbury had, not only on himself but within the craft as well. Writer Mark Evanier blogged about early personal memories of Bradbury when he was just a novice writer as a kind of In Memoriam. But perhaps the best way to capture Bradbury’s impact and passing can be through the pondering of his own words.

“Death doesn’t exist. It never did, it never will. But we’ve drawn so many pictures of it, so many years, trying to pin it down, comprehend it, we’ve got to thinking of it as an entity, strangely alive and greedy. All it is, however, is a stopped watch, a loss, an end, a darkness. Nothing.” – Ray Bradbury, Something Wicked this Way Comes.

Thank you for your imagination, inspiration and for all of the stories Mr. Bradbury.

-Coleen Martin

Summer Reading Picks

So many books so little time. Summer presents us with an opportunity to kick off our shoes, sip lemonade and most of all – read. With so many good books waiting to be discovered at the end of an academic year that’s been packed with required reading and other campus commitments, it can be a challenge as to know where to start. But several of us at the Library have been comparing notes about good reads and we thought to share.

chango's fire

Chango’s Fire by Ernesto Quinonez

. . . In his searing portrait of a community at the tipping point, Quinonez ably illuminates the sordid politics of gentrification and the unexpected places new immigrants turn to for social and spiritual support. His exploration of the often misunderstood Santeria–the title references the religion’s trickster god, Chango–proves especially fascinating.Frank Sennett, Booklist. Recommended by librarian Jennie Quinonez-Skinner.

the forgotten waltz

The Forgotten Waltz by Anne Enright

“This stunning novel by a Booker Prize winner . . . Offers up its brilliance by way of astonishingly effective storytelling.”Booklist, starred review. The book description calls The Forgotten Waltz a haunting story of desire: a recollection of the bewildering speed of attraction and the irreparable slip into longing. It is a finalist for the 2012 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. Recommended by librarian Christina Mayberry.

how to be a chicana role model

How to be a Chicana Role Model by Michele Serros

Serros’s work has been called “wonderfully comical and wise” (San Francisco Chronicle) and “pulsating with the exuberance of an unmistakably original poetic talent” (Entertainment Weekly). How to be a Chicana Role Model is the fiercely funny tale of a Chicana writer who’s trying to find a way to embrace two very different cultures–without losing touch with who she is.Book description. Recommended by librarian Jennie Quinonez-Skinner.

in the garden of beasts

In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin by Erik Larson

Erik Larson has been widely acclaimed as a master of narrative non-fiction, and in his new book, the bestselling author of Devil in the White City turns his hand to a remarkable story set during Hitler’s rise to power.Book description. “Erik Larson tackles this outstanding period of history as fully and compellingly as he portrayed the events in his bestseller, Devil in the White City. With each page, more horrors are revealed, making it impossible to put down. In the Garden of Beasts reads like the true thriller it is.”BookReporter.com. Recommended by librarian Lynn Lampert.

kindred

Kindred by Octavia Butler

“This powerful novel about a modern black woman transported back in time to a slave plantation in the antebellum South is the perfect introduction to Butler’s work and perspectives for those not usually enamored of science fiction . . . A harrowing, haunting story.”—John Marshall, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Recommended by librarian Jennie Quinonez-Skinner.

little bee

Little Bee by Chris Cleave

Little Bee will blow you away…. In restrained, diamond-hard prose, Cleave alternates between these two characters’ points of view as he pulls the threads of their dark — but often funny — story tight. What unfolds between them… is both surprising and inevitable, thoroughly satisfying if also heart-rending.”—Washington Post. Recommended by librarian Coleen Martin.

The Magic of Blood

The Magic of Blood by Dagoberto Gilb

Acclaimed Chicano writer Gilb’s collection of short stories set in the American Southwest won the PEN Ernest Hemingway Foundation Award. —Publishers Weekly. The book description calls The Magic of Blood . . . Fresh, funny, relentless, and beautifully crafted, his writing possesses that rare Chekhovian ability to perfectly capture the nuances of ordinary life and make it resonate with unexpected meaning. Recommended by librarian Jennie Quinonez-Skinner.

reamde

REAMDE: A Novel by Neal Stephenson

“Neal Stephenson has guts, a killer story, and—for the first time since Cryptonomicon—a thriller I can thoroughly recommend to any reader….With REAMDE we have a very smart page-turner—a global chess game expertly played.” —Mental_Floss. “[REAMDE] is, without a doubt, one of the smartest, fastest-moving, and most consistently enjoyable novels of the year, a book with the rare distinction of being one this reviewer wishes he had written.”—Irish Examiner. Recommended by librarian Laura Wimberley.

silver sparrow

Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones

Its book description highlights the significance of the opening line, “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist,” which unveils a breathtaking story about a man’s deception, a family’s complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle. “Populating this absorbing novel is a vivid cast of characters . . . Jones writes dialogue that is realistic and sparkling, with an intuitive sense of how much to reveal and when . . . One of literature’s most intriguing extended families.”—The Washington Post. Recommended by librarian Coleen Martin.

still alice

Still Alice: A Novel by Lisa Genova

Still Alice is a compelling debut novel about a 50-year-old woman’s sudden descent into early onset Alzheimer’s disease, written by first-time author Lisa Genova, who holds a Ph. D in neuroscience from Harvard University.—Book description. “This book is as important as it is impressive, and will grace the lives of those affected by this dread disease for generations to come.”—Phil Bolsta, author of Sixty Seconds. Recommended by librarian Marcia Henry.

unorthodox

Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots by Deborah Feldman

In this arresting memoir about growing up in—and ultimately escaping from—a strict Hasidic community, Feldman reveals what life is like trapped within a religious sect that values silence and suffering over individual freedoms.—Book description. “Eloquent, appealing, and just emotional enough . . . No doubt girls all over Brooklyn are buying this book, hiding it under their mattresses, reading it after lights out—and contemplating, perhaps for the first time, their own escape.”—HuffingtonPost.com. Recommended by librarian Lynn Lampert.

Other summer reading recommendations can be found at the Oviatt’s Pinterest boards, librarian Jennie Quinonez-Skinner’s Pinterest board, L.A. Times Summer Reading Guide and some interesting nonfiction titles can be found at Zocolo Public Square. Perhaps you have a book you’d like to share. Feel free to let us know the latest title that’s drawn you in and why we all might want to read it.

-Coleen Martin

Library Summer Hours and Finding Places To Eat on Campus

students studying in Library

With the summer season upon us we thought you might want to know the Library Hours Schedule for the next several months. Please check it out and plan to visit us and take in our cool and comfortable study and research space. We will be open many Saturdays throughout the summer and up until 7 p.m. on several weekdays. Librarians will be at the reference desk during most hours we are open to answer any questions you may have. Feel free to stop in for research support, to take advantage of our comfortable study lounges or to just say hello. If you are not able to stop in, you can always find help through LibAnswers, a resource that provides instant answers to common questions. Our Ask A Librarian service can also be useful for locating information for other specific questions.

Finally, you may find some of your regular campus eating places closed for the summer. However, there will be several coffee houses, restaurants and convenience stores open for those of us still on campus. Hours vary but are posted at the University Corporation campus dining and location information page.

-Coleen Martin

Congratulations Graduates!

 Graduation - Harry HellenbrandMore than 9,200 CSUN students will participate in commencement ceremonies and walk the steps of the Oviatt Library and the lawn at Manzanita Hall this week to have formal degrees bestowed upon them within the presence of family, friends, academic peers and mentors. We at the Oviatt Library say congratulations to all graduating seniors on your distinguished accomplishment. You’ve not only worked hard but we’re certain you and many family members have sacrificed to make the dream of a college education a reality. It has been an honor to share this path with you in the Library and witness your experiences of intellectual discovery. Sometimes this has meant supporting you in finding credible sources for a university-level research paper; assisting you in creating an accurate citation in MLA style; guiding you to find a course on Moodle; or perhaps just listening to your intellectual quandary which you usually resolved by yourself. And we appreciated your gratitude . . . thanking us for helping you along the way. So here’s a wish for the class of 2012: May you always continue to create situations in life for intellectual discovery and be present to the appreciation and sense of accomplishment you experience as you receive your degree. 

 This week CSUN graduates will have the opportunity to hear from several inspirational and accomplished speakers. Dr. Harry Hellenbrand, CSUN Interim President will be speaking at the Honors Convocation on Monday evening and Rebecca Mieliwocki, National Teacher of the Year will be speaking at the College of Education’s Commencement on Thursday evening. Please see the Commencement and Honors Convocation  page for more details.

 Many other inspirational speakers have shared their words of wisdom throughout the years during the commencement season and we thought to share a sampling of their quotes. The following are tweeted quotes from President Obama’s address at Barnard College. These and more can be found at the Huffington Post.  

“Don’t accept someone else’s construction of the way things ought to be. It’s up to you…”

 “As tough as things have been, I think you are tougher.”

 “My last piece of advice is this simple…Persevere. Because nothing worthwhile is easy.”

Steve Jobs delivered inspirational words at Stanford University’s 2005 Commencent Ceremony

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition … Stay hungry, Stay foolish.”

Comedian Steven Colbert had the graduates laughing at the 2006 Knox College Commencement Speech

“I have two last pieces of advice. First, being pre-approved for a credit card does not mean you have to apply for it. And lastly, the best career advice I can give you is to get your own TV show. It pays well, the hours are good, and you are famous. And eventually some very nice people will give you a doctorate in fine arts for doing jack squat.”

Colbert also shared more serious advice.

“Cynicism is a self-imposed blindness, a rejection of the world because we are afraid it will hurt us or be disappointed in us. Cynics always say no … for as long as you have the strength to, say yes.”

 More inspirational words of wisdom can be found at Time Magazine’s Top 10 Commencement Speeches

 Congratulations to all CSUN 2012 graduates.

 – Coleen Martin

Library Outreach Round Up for the Year

With the spring semester coming to a close soon we thought it would be fun to look back at the ways in which the Oviatt Library has been busy with outreach all year working with students, staff, faculty and the community. The beginning of the 2011-2012 academic year brought in a wave of new students and opportunities to introduce them to the campus and Library resources and services. Approximately 1,500 CSUN students attended 16 Library sponsored booths and learned how the Library can assist them to be successful with their research and in their classes. Many students were not only happy to receive useful information but also with the many Library vendor donated giveaway items such as highlighters, notepads, pens, water bottles, reusable grocery bags and more. CSUN parents were also involved with Library activities when approximately 80 parents attended Library tours during last fall’s campus Parent Day festivities. Parents were introduced to the many ways their students can gain research support and were able to ask librarians questions about the many Library services and resources available to their students.

Northridge Middle School Students Visiting the LibraryLocal non-CSUN students have benefited from Library involvement as well. Numerous Library tours and lectures for elementary, middle and high school students opened up the opportunity for approximately 1,800 students to learn about what the Library has to offer and what might be possible for them as future CSUN students. Many of the students were not aware of the 150 databases available for research or how they could get help from a librarian when not in the Library. Students from Granada Hills Charter High School (which recently won the National Academic Decathlon for the second year in a row) and Northridge Academy High School attended 43 Library lectures which supported their successful research and evaluation of online sources. These visits to the Library also help to acclimate them to campus as many of these students will become CSUN students after high school.

There’s also been a lot happening with the Oviatt Library community online. The Library has been having fun on Pinterest the online pinboard. Check us out if you have not already done so. The Library Fun board will likely bring a smile to your face with its clever images and sayings while the Digital Archives Pin of the Day board highlights significant historical digital images not to be seen elsewhere. Much of the material in this collection is associated with local history and it’s interesting to see which new archived resource is featured each day. The Library has also been busy with Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. We recently reached our 1,000th follower on Twitter who was delighted to receive a prize package celebrating that achievement. Finally, several Message in a Minute videos were released for faculty to keep them updated about our resources and services. If you haven’t seen them yet you can take a look at our YouTube channel. You don’t need to be a faculty member to appreciate their information and spirit but their topics range from Searching Cited References, Interlibrary Loan and Video Furnace. While you are there you may want to check out our Xtranormal videos as well. These animated videos have been a fun way to keep students and those using the Oviatt Library informed about changes such as Library hours and services.

Well, it’s been quite an active year at the Library. What’s been your experience during these last two semesters? Have you visited the Library in person, perhaps checked us out on our Pinterest pinboards;  YouTube; or followed us on Twitter?

-Coleen Martin