Also last night … ILIG

11 02 2010

Also going on at CILIP last night was the International Library and Information Group (ILIG) AGM followed by ‘Meet the CILIP President, Biddy Fisher. The theme for Biddy’s talk was ‘2015: How Will Librarians Impact on the Millennium Development Goals?’  The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) — which range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS, to providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 — form a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all the world’s leading development institutions.

I was keen to go along to this, but my commitment to the Chartership and Beyond event took priority. I did manage to sneak in the back for the last half hour or so of an interesting talk with contributions from the audience. I know I want to be involved in everything, but the international library and information work really interests me. I met a really keen library school graduate who did the research for her dissertation in Malawi. She was so passionate about what she’s learnt and achieved and I’m very keen to read the article she has coming out which looks at one aspect of her dissertation.

As well as confirming my own interest, it also highlighted the importance of the work done by IFLA and other international information organisations. I’ll be seeing if  and how I can get involved with international activities and I know just the person to talk to… Maria Cotera! She has had experience of everything libraries and information!!

So an eye opening evening for me and more activities to get involved in.

Librarian Emma





Chartership and beyond…

11 02 2010

Last night I attended a Chartership and beyond event at CILIP as a volunteer of the Career Development Group. I have attended this event as a participant and now me, along with Alex Seymour make sure these events go smoothly. I received good guidance from Alex along with extensive notes on how to run one of these events, so hopefully I’m well versed to organise the next one!

These Chartership and beyond events are cohosted by a Candidate Support Officer from the CDG, on this occasion Franko Kowalczuk, and Michael Martin, qualifications guru from CILIP.

I’m pleased to be involved in helping to organise these events. As I’m going through the chartership process myself I wanted to chip in with my own experiences, but didn’t! What a sausage. I checked with Franko and Michael at the end and they said that would have been fine, so next time…..

Anyway, I was a bit rubbish at talking to people last night, but these events are a great opportunity to meet people looking to develop their careers and so to highlight the relevance of the Career Development Group! Also to share experiences of our careers so far…

All good. Hopefully I’ll be good at helping to organise the next one and feel more confident to contribute more!

Librarian Emma





Trip to Kingston Uni – part 2

6 02 2010

Continued from previous post… recounting my trip to Kingston uni libraries to see a pal and my mentor.  After my time at the Knights Park and Penrhyn Road LRC’s I then took the free uni bus up to the Kingston Hill campus where I was to visit the Nightingale Centre where Anna works.

Anna met me at the bus stop and we headed to the LRC cafe in the Nightingale Centre for a bit to eat.  I enjoyed a delicious sticky bit of home made brownie from there and had my packed lunch.  Anna and I participated in the same series of CPD25 Chartership workshops in 2007-08, so I was hoping to pick her brains a bit about how she did her portfolio, and it was also really nice just to catch up and see her again.  A couple summers ago she came to Brighton Uni when the IS staff at Kingston came to visit our IS department.

We left my bag in her office are and begun a tour of the library.  I was fascinated by the automatic book sorter machine that sorts books out however you programme it, so students deposit their books using the self-returns place and they all get cleverly sorted!

We then took a walk all arounf the LRC, the computer areas were pretty big so I asked about how noisy they get, answer is they do get noisy when it’s busy.

I liked the nice quiet study areas on one of the upper floors, I think this was where music students come as there were lots of CDs and records available to use, plus super snazzy Macs with piano type keyboards for compsing and recording music.   There was also a nice electric keyboard that students can use – have to get the power pack and headphones from the helpdesk.  Nearby was one of the best things I saw – the electronic rolling stacks!! I’d never seen/used these before, you just press the direcitonal button and the shelves neatly roll along… need to remember to check no-one’s down the aisle before you start pressing the buttons! It wouldn’t crush anyone though if there was due to sensors obviously…. I did enjoy playing with that, but like all automatic things, may be a bit tricky if it breaks or a part goes kaput.

One other thing I really liked was that all the study skills books  were kept together seperate from the rest of the stock.  I thought that was a good idea as currently that kind of stock is shelved in a couple of places at our library and it may be more convenient to have it all together near to our

enquiry desk perhaps… I’ll have a think and maybe see what others think about that! 

Kingston have self issue points and the Nightingale Centre is open 24 hours so these are essential.  They recently adopted a new method of processing reserved items so that students can still collect them even ‘after hours’, as previously staff would have to fetch reserved items from out the back.  Now, the books are made available to collect by the people who reserved them, but they are semi-disguised so that they’re not swiped off the sheld by others! This seemed a very good idea, they’ve only just started it so will be interesting if it works OK.

After seeing the whole LRC we sat down for a bit and talked Chartership, I felt greatly encouraged and enjoyed feeling more inspired to crack on with it as I’ve been neglecting it somewhat over the last year or so.

It was a very useful day, and I really enjoyed seeing around another Uni’s Information Services facilities, especially as Kingston is quite similar to us in that it’s a ‘new’ university, has multiple sites and a converged IT and Library service.  So thank you very much to Rachel and Anna for showing me round, I really appreciated it and got a lot out of it.

Librarian Sarah





Day in the life of a Librarian – it’s Thursday!

5 02 2010

Thursday is my late night, so I had a very nice morning in Hove, drinking coffee and writing a few notes on my Chartership whilst reading “Building your Portfolio: the CILIP Guide” .  Then we read in the paper that part of the West Pier in Brighton was being dismantled this morning so we went down to the seafront to take a look.  They’d removed the first part of the sunken bashed up old pier because there was unusually low tides which meant there was good access.  So we just saw a big pile of bits of pier on the beach and some wokrmen in diggers.

Back home and had a special treat – battered sausage and chips for lunch, mm hadn’t had that in ages.  Anyway, onto librarian related activities… headed to work for 2, and the phone rang as soon as I sat down.  It was the the Systems Librarian who then popped up and we had a chat about an issue to do with the catalogue and how information is displayed and whether it is clear enough for users of our external colleges and other non-Uni sites.  I still need to consider it and let her know any suggestions/opinions I may have.

It was time then to go to Reprographics and pick up the A3 posters that they did for us to promote the drop in sessions.  They look pretty good and I stuck a few up, and left some for colleagues to take and put up around the Schools so students hopefully see then on their way to lectures.  Following an email from a colleague I was jolted with the realisation I was meant to have ordered the promo pencils for the Information Services promotional week and I HADN’T DONE IT YET!!!! I meant to do it earlier in the week so I very rapidly dug out the email from the rep at the company and requested a repeat order asap, they were very efficient and replied straight away with the quote and I got that signed and sent off. Phew.  They’ll arrive in time too for the week beginning 22nd. Double phew.

By the time I’d finished with that it was dinner time, so I enjoyed my pasta and a few biccys from the tin in the staff room and headed to the enquiry desk for the evening session.  Continued to have a very productive sessions and got lots done, including sending my mentor meeting log to my mentor (bit of a toungetwister that is) and that was a miracle as the deadline was actually Friday! Wednesday night was the last night of 24 hour opening so I stuck a few posters up to remind the students that tonight we close at 2am instead of staying open all night… no one complained this time fortunately.  Last Summer when I worked at the end of the 24 hour opening some students got really annoyed we closed at 2 because they wanted to stay in the library ALL night, because that’s what they always do the night before an exam. Hmm, doesn’t seem a great idea to me.  They demanded the manager’s phone number and that we stay open all night.  wasn’t going to happen.  I pointed out that the posters had said exactly when it ended and had been up for the past 6 weeks, but they still claimed ‘no-one told them’. Oh well… Overall a productive and busy day, was very glad to head home at 9.  As we cycled home a three wheeler looked like it had broken down so we stopped and helped the old chap push it into a parking space at the side of the road.  Initially we rode past but then doubled back to see if he was OK as he could have been quite vulnerable,  but he was alright.  Got home and watched ‘Delia through the ages’ on i-player. Chocolate bread and butter pudding…mmmmmmm.

Librarian Sarah





Day trip to Kingston University: Part 1 Knights Park and Penrhyn Road campuses

3 02 2010

On Thursday 28th January I arranged to go to Kingston University to visit my Rachel my Chartership Mentor, who is a Senior Information Adviser on the Knights Park campus.  I thought I’d record here the events of my day out and include a few piccys that I took on my phone.

Rachel sent me very clear directions from the station, one of them was to walk past the tumbling phone boxes…didn’t know what that meant until I saw them. Nice.  I liked them.

Tumbling phone boxes in Kingston town centre So I headed past these and ten minutes later reached Knights Park campus.  I was a bit early but I enjoyed sitting in the lobby area watching the students come and go, and I overheard one student with her tutor receiving feedback on her portfolio which was interesting.  It made want to go to art school! There was also a very nice looking art shop, unfortunately I couldn’t go in, you just ask for what you want and the lady at the counter brings it to you! Bet nothing gets nicked that way. Anyway, back to library stuff.  Rachel came and met me and I then enjoyed a tour of the LRC.  It’s the library for Architecture, Art, Design, Fashion, Film, Photography and Surveying! I was impressed with their DVD collection, loads of great looking films on the shelves.

dvd collectionI think I’d be browsing it every Friday evening to find a good film for the weekend if I worked there! I liked looking at th eposters and signs used and think that their round ‘Silent’ signs were quite effective, so maybe we could consider some shaped signs back at Brighton…. SIlent Study round sign In their group study rooms they had swish flat screen TV’s that students can hook up their laptops to, which was nice and useful for presentation practice.  I liked the carousel of ‘recreational reading’ books and thought that was nice, occasionally we get asked at work if there are any fiction books in the library and sadly we say no… recreational reading books on a carousel It was interesting to visit another academic library and just see how things are done.  At Kingston all staff work on the main desk which doubles up enquires and issues/renewals etc which I think must help all members of staff to feel part of a big team? I like seeing the types of promotional materials used, and was impressed with the nice leaflets and signs, and also the very pretty leaflet tree as seen here.  leaflet treeWe then had a chat about my progress with my portfolio and agreed some deadlines, they will be challenging to meet but I do work better with deadlines so I’m hoping the next couple months will be very fruitful indeed!

After our chat and tour we headed over to another nearby campus – Penrhyn Road where there was another library to check out.  This was quite a biggy, several floors, nice coffee area and even a reading garden! I loved that… I’d like one please.  reading garden

I liked the swishy self issue machines, the blue lights were nice… I was told that at the Nightingale Centre where I was heading to next there was a machine that sorts the books automatically after they go into the self return area, now that I was looking forward to seeing (library nerd or what?).  You’ll see a picture of that in my next post!  so I enjoyed my tour, and the encouragement that I was on the right track, and just need to write up lots now.  Oh, and here’s a pic of the nice self issue machines….

self issue machine in library

So I then got the uni bus over to the Kingston Hill campus to meet Anna who works there (we met on the CPD25 Chartership Sessions back in 2007/08) and she chartered last year.  I’ll write about that in my next post…





Library day in the life – round 4, day 4

28 01 2010

Is it really Thursday already? Yowsers.

I’m still at work as it’s my #latenightlibrarian duty until 9pm. I got here circa 9.15 today to discover my colleague had done herself a mischief tripping over and landing quite heavily on her hand. She was first aided, but ended up having to go to A&E just be sure she was all ok and just bruised rather than broken. Still, made things a bit trying for her today!

So,  I was  bit grumpy this morning for no particular reason, which generally makes me even more grumpy, because I can’t rationalise it! Idiot! Anyway, I had the usual start to my day- emails. Emails, emails, emails, emails. I finally sorted out the journals stuff for GY327 and the lecturer seems pleased, this was the start of his reply:

‘Wow, you are super-efficient in the library.’

Loves it! So, journal articles have been requested. Great.

I then did some more preparing for the recording for BURST and went over to Watts where we have a sound studio. Phil (the sound engineer) and I set things up and did some testing, testing, checking the levels and all that and we were ready to go. My colleagues arrived and we had a discussion about safe computing. This will feature in IS for you Week. One of my colleagues, Robert Schifreen used to be a hacker, so knows all about safe computing!! Recording went well and was fun too.

We had a break for lunch, desk lunch for me again, (which I actually hate doing, but have done twice this week I think, naughty) this gave a bit of time to catch up on emails etc. I then went back over to Watts and loaded the recording onto a computer with Adobe Soundbooth on, I would have preferred Adobe Audition, but that isn’t on the computer I was using, nevermind. I made a start on the editing, which takes a bloody age! I really enjoyed it though. I used to do internet radio stuff back in the day and this was a reminder of how much I did enjoy it.

Anyway, bits of editing done and back to the office to try and organise more recording for BURST with our SUVP for Education and Equalities and our Director of IS. Still need to schedule these in, but the SUVP for EE seems keen which I’m pleased about.

Freaking out slightly about the lack of time we have, but we’ll get it done. Sarah and I will be out and about harrassing students for their views and ideas about IS. I’m looking forward to that :-)

So, I’m now on the enquiry desk and it’s been a fairly busy session. Things keep breaking, well a phone and the printer credit machine, I’ve had to do a few more walk arounds than normal to try and keep the noise levels down as we’ve had a few complaints about that. For the most part though, people seem to respect others are trying to work, but there’s always a rowdy few!!!

Tomorrow is set to be another busy day with more IS for you Week stuff, this time a photo competition to discuss and get moving on. Then an enquiry desk and then I’m off to a Career Development Group London and South East Committee meeting at UCL. Phew!

I’ve got chartership activities that need attention which will have to be this weekend I think. Rock and roll!

Ok, that’s the end for today, just half an hour to go for Late night librarian Emma.





Library Day in the Life – round 4

25 01 2010

So, this is part of the Library Day in the Life project. I haven’t done anything for it before and as I understand it this is round 4! You can find out more about how to join in from the Library Day in the Life wiki. It doesn’t have to be a blog post, there’s lots of Twitter #libday4 activity and photos and all. So have a look and participate however you like!

What’s happened today?
Well, having got up, stretched, showered and peppermint teaed I had my usual cycle to work arriving circa 8:45. I was changed and ready for library action by 9.00.

First activity was going through the emails. Lots of them from all sorts of people! Second activity was deciding what my priorities for the day were.

First off I had a look through the withdrawn titles to see if there were any I needed to replace or find alternatives for, fortunately this week there weren’t many for me! This was followed by checking through the fortnightly reserved titles for my subject area (environment – geography, geology, built environment and civil engineering) and ordered any extra copies or ebooks that were available. I then had a quick jaunt up to the third floor to retrieve a book and make sure that people were observing the new silent across the whole floor status up there. There were a couple of people on mobile phones, but they were ok to move to a different floor to finish their conversation. One thing I have noticed with this is that people want to talk to each other when they’re looking for books.

After that it was time for my enquiry desk session, 10.45 till 1. It was a fairly steady session with the majority of enquiries relating to room bookings. Our group study rooms are pretty busy at the moment so there were some disappointed people!  Others people couldn’t find books and wanted interlibrary loans and the like. There were also a few emails to reply to in the AskAldrich inbox.  I managed to get in some BNB action selecting some new titles and a brief squiz through some other publishers catalogues. This will continue tomorrow. A student also reported the ‘bad smell’ had returned downstairs in the computer poolroom and social zone. This caused the library to close yesterday, so we had the estates people in to try and sort it out. Turns out it’s a blocked pipe and they are trying to shift it all so the smell should go with that. Poo! Yuck!

Desk session done and time for some eating, checking my personal emails and having a quick look on Twitter and a scan of the blog posts brought to me through google reader and a look through emails from the lists I’m subscribed to, some interesting discussions from the new professionals, more about that another time.

Lunch was followed with a meeting with a couple of colleagues to discuss how we are going to do a photo/image competition on Community@brighton as part of our IS for you week coming up in February. There’s been lots of planning for this and there should be a good selection of activities throughout the week to help raise the profile of the department to staff and students. This deserves a post of its own so I’ll mention more about that another time.  This meeting was to see how we could use the technology of Community for the competition.

Back to the office to find more journal articles for a lecturer for a new module. Very comprehensive list give which is great, but I don’t think we’ll be able to get all of them! More work is needed on this and I’m hoping to finish it tomorrow. We already subscribe to a fair few and I’ve managed to find some others freely available online, but then there’s the ones that we can’t request through HESS, so I’m going to see if we can get them as photcopies to have in desk loan. Anyway, more work on that tomorrow. Also ordered some more books for the same module.

More email checking and getting ready for tomorrows task. I’ve written a list! Brilliant.

Now I’m just writing this from one of the engineering labs waiting for my boy to finish tinkering with his diesel engine and then I can go home! I think I’m getting a bit woozy from the diesel fumes! Will be nipping round to my friend Christopher Whales when I get home for the swoop to be returned to the fringe and who knows what!

Ok, well that rounds things up from me. Crikey, I sound really boring!!

Until tomorrow, when some more interesting things might have happened :-)

Librarian Emma.








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