Decolonizing the Library Catalog

In 2016 the Musqueam First Nation, on whose unceded traditional territory Langara is located, gave Langara a Musqueam name that means house of teachings. As part of Langara’s commitment to strengthen the connections between the Musqueam people and the College, our librarians began thinking about ways the library can better participate in decolonization by acknowledging the history of colonization and resituating the traditions and values of indigenous peoples outside of a colonial ideology. Similarly, across Canada, librarians have begun wrestling with a colonial legacy that exists in our collections and catalogs.

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Open Champions

We’re starting a new series here on Library Central called Open Champions. An Open Champion is someone who advocates for Open sources at Langara. Open sources include Open Access (OA) and Open Educational Resources (OER). They are publicly accessible, free to use resources that can make course materials more affordable for students without compromising the quality of the resource. Instructors can also modify and adapt OER to meet their specific needs. We’ll be posting about Langara’s Open Champions over the next few months. Continue reading

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Copyright start-of-semester reminder

September has officially arrived and with it a new school year. A friendly reminder that members of the Langara community are required to adhere to the Canadian Copyright Act and the College’s copyright policies.

Fair dealing and educational exceptions in the Act afford students and instructors a suite of special allowances for educational purposes. These are outlined on Langara’s copyright website and the Copyright Office’s new Brightspace/D2L tutorial, Copyright for Instructors


Have questions about copyright? Continue reading

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Reminder to Book Library Instruction – Fall 2018

While we still have one more month of glorious summer, many of us are already looking forward to course planning in September. If your assignments require research and citations, you should consider adding library instruction to your syllabus this fall.

If you have used library tutorials in the past, thanks for the continued support! This summer, we have been working to improve some of our processes to make sending previous marks easier for instructors and library staff:

  • Tutorial due dates: We ask you to carefully consider the due date for your tutorial(s) and make dates firm. Granting extensions can only be requested by instructors and if an extension is required, it will only be available to the entire class (not individual students).
  • Marks reporting: For student convenience, we keep marks they receive on library tutorials recorded and are able to forward the mark to future classes. We have a new process this term where students must give permission to share the mark within the Brightspace environment. Detailed instructions can be found here: https://langara.ca/library/research-help/tutorials-login.html
  • Do you accept previous marks? If you would rather your students take an online tutorial fresh, please let us know and we can disable students’ ability to forward previous marks.

The full catalogue of library instruction can be found after the break:

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Library Services Spring 2018 Semester Report

The Spring 2018 Semester Report is now available. Catch up on a busy semester at the Library, including such highlights as:
Alli and students

Librarian Alli Sullivan chats with students at this year’s Scholarship Cafe.

  • A record number of instructional sessions
  • The official launch of The LaIR at the Scholarship Cafe
  • The debut of the Copyright for Creators online tutorial
  • Award-winning culinary skills on display at the Langara Cooks event
  • Activities and engagement as part of Open Education Week and Freedom to Read Week
  • And much more!

All semester and annual reports are available on Library Central, tagged Library Reports.

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More Complicated than Theft: Current Trends in Plagiarism Prevention Education

The Student Conduct and Judicial Affairs Annual Report from 2017 marked an astounding increase in the number of reported cases of plagiarism at Langara College, up to 495 total incidents (up from 286 in 2016) (Ross, 2018). Since 2013, the Langara Library has offered the online library tutorial titled Avoiding Plagiarism, a video-based tutorial delivered through Brightspace that offers students some basic information about plagiarism and introduces the concepts of citation. Many of Langara’s students will be asked to complete this tutorial at some point in their studies, and a perfect score on the comprehension quizzes in the tutorial is not an uncommon result.

So where are we going wrong?

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Is It Just Me, or Is That Molehill Getting Bigger? Using Collaboration & Automation to Manage Growth

By Alli Sullivan, Teaching & Learning Librarian

When a student takes one of our three online library tutorials, we at the library will save their mark in their library record. That way, if the students is assigned the same tutorial in a subsequent term, we can simply forward their mark to the next instructor.

Simple, right? Not always.

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Update on Canadian Copyright Act review

In February’s Academic Innovation Newsletter, you read about the launch of the federally mandated Statutory Review of the Copyright Act, led by the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology.

During the yearlong review, the Committee is hearing from multiple stakeholders to understand what works, and does not work, in Canadian copyright since the 2012 Copyright Modernization Act (Bill C-11).  The 2012 Act saw the addition of ‘education’, ‘satire’, and ‘parody’ as accepted purposes under fair dealing. Fair dealing, technological protection measures, and Indigenous knowledge in Canada’s Copyright Act are among the review’s potential topics of discussion.

Recommended changes from the review could greatly affect how education institutions access copyright-protected material, particularly if the Committee recommends fair dealing be restricted, which industries such as publishing are endorsing. Continue reading

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Library Instruction for Summer 2018 – Reminder and Announcements!

Happy end of term!

As we wind down Spring and turn our thoughts to Summer, now is the perfect time to consider adding library instruction into your curriculum!

If you have added the online library tutorials in your courses in the past, please be advised of these changes to the way that we book classes and forward marks:

  • Due to a growing number of extension requests for tutorials, we ask you to carefully consider the due dates for the tutorials quizzes and to make these dates firm. We will no longer grant extensions for individual students. If you absolutely need the due date to be extended, we will only grant an extension to the entire class.
  • To ease workload on both the library and instructors, we will be implementing a new procedure for students to have their marks from previous terms forwarded to current classes. This summer, we are piloting a procedure that will ask student to give permission to forward marks inside the Brightspace environment (no longer using the form on the library website). This new method allows instructors to receive a single spreadsheet of student marks after the due date on the quizzes has passed that contains all student marks (you will no longer get an individual email for every student). Detailed instructions on this new procedure are forthcoming.

If you have students complete research assignments, adding library instruction to your curriculum helps students find scholarly resources, evaluate things they find, and introduces students to principles around avoiding plagiarism. Below the break, find our full catalogue of offerings.

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Skeletons in the Collection

This February, Langara Library added a human skeleton anatomy model to its collection and joined the growing ranks of public and academic libraries lending not just books and videos, but also “stuff”. These non-traditional collections are sometimes popularly referred to as The Library of Things. Like many other Thing Libraries, Langara acquired these non-traditional materials in response to local needs.

The library first heard from an instructor who wanted registered massage therapy students to have access to human bone models for practice and learning outside the lab. Ideally bone models that students could borrow and take home with them. When librarians reached out to other departments, we discovered that anthropology, biology and kinesiology students might have similar needs. Continue reading

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