You know what would make me a more pro-active, effective librarian? If I had access to the syllabi, assignments and reading lists of the classes in the Communication Studies department. You know what would be even cooler? If I had the ability to e-mail all the students in a class to let them know I was available to help. If I could put a link to a course-specific subject guide specially made for them into their Blackboard/WebCT/CTools site.
Wouldn't it be great if I had all that access? If I had that kind of access, I wouldn't need to rely on faculty to pass along messages from me or add links to library resources...
Oh wait. I do have the access!
This semester, CTools (an implementation of Sakai) unveiled the 'Librarian' role. If a faculty member adds me to their CTools site in this role, I have the permissions to edit the class site I need to connect students with the help and resources they need for their classes.
Every COMM class has a CTools site - each of those sites has at minimum the syllabus, and most have all of the assignments and readings students are required to do right there. Here's what I can do:
- I can read the syllabus to get an idea of what each class covers.
- I can see all the assignments my students are going to be graded on.
- I can create course-specific subject guides (example, example, example) that identify the best resources for a class's focus, scope and subject matter.
- I can plan librarian with a latte sessions that fall in the days before assignment deadlines.
- I can put a link to the aforementioned subject guides in the CTools site (see screenshot).
- I can put in a link to our library's chat reference service.
- I can e-mail students when a librarian with a latte session happens.