Lynda.com Access @ Vol State

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Flyers posted at VSCC locations declare:

[blockquote author=”” link=”” target=”_blank”]Learn a new skill free! Do something today that will benefit your future. Full access to Lynda.com content will be available to VSCC students, staff, and faculty in: JANUARY 2016. [/blockquote]

What does this mean?

Lynda.com is the “gold standard” leader in online training content. Lynda.com offers 6,000 courses in 5 languages  + more than 110,000 tutorials with new content added weekly – available 24/7. Topics and courses offered by Lynda.com includes:

  • Developer Training + Tutorials (learn how to code, build web applications, program …)
  • Design Training + Tutorials (learn graphic design skills, Illustrator or InDesign, typography …)
  • Web Courses + Training (learn web design and user experience [UX] skills …)
  • Photography Courses + Classes (learn everything from gear to technique including lighting, photo editing …)
  • Business Courses + Training (learn Microsoft Office applications, project management, negotiation, leadership, and marketing …)
  • Education + Elearning (learn new classroom technologies and instructional techniques …)
  • 3D + Animation + Tutorials (learn how to build virtual worlds through animation and 3d modeling applications  …)
  • Video Training Tutorials (learn videography skills and applications such as iMovie and Final Cut Pro …)
  • Audio + Music Tutorials (learn how to record, mix, produce and sound engineer …)

With Vol State’s access to Lynda.com *you* will be able to learn the skills you need to be successful: in your VSCC classes, in your workplace, and in your life.

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Don’t forget –

Lynda.com will be available from the library’s website in JANUARY 2016!

Lynda.com is being made available at Vol State through a partnership between the Information Technology Department and Thigpen Library. The college subscription is funded by TAF.

One simple way to guarantee your feedback about the library is heard

Library Director, Sarah Smith, joins the blog today to share information about how the library staff responds to student feedback.

As the director of the Thigpen Library, I am always seeking ways to improve services and resources provided to Vol State students. So, I get really excited when students contribute their suggestions for the library, whether it’s through one of the library’s Tip Jars (located downstairs at the Reference Desk and upstairs at the Circulation Desk), verbally to a staff member, or in response to our informal surveys.

One of the two tip jars in the library. Photo credit: Librarian Mike Hitzelberger
One of the two tip jars in the library.
Photo credit: Librarian Mike Hitzelberger

I’m very excited to report that the library actively responds to student suggestions. For instance, one student commented about the need for computer station sanitation to prevent the spread of disease. Voilà! Students now have easy access to disinfecting wipes placed throughout the computer lab area so that they can sanitize their computer station before use.

We also respond to students’ need via observation. For example, we noticed that many students wanted to use the large reading tables for study, but also needed access to an outlet to charge their laptops at those tables. The library came up with what students have called a “genius” solution – attaching outlets (including USB charging ports) to the tables.

A group of students using the charging station while they study
A group of students using the charging station while they study

A request that has been received from a few of our students is for the library to stay open 24/7. Good news: we already are! The library’s online collections can be accessed by any Vol State student, staff, or faculty member 24/7, and these include millions of full text articles and more than 200,000 online books and videos. Additionally, our LibGuides provide instruction on the use of the library’s resources so that students can get the help they need to use library resources at any time.

As far as the physical building remaining open 24/7, there are many reasons why the idea is not feasible. I’ll name a few of the main reasons for not staying open for any 24 hour period on a regular basis: non-residential campus, security concerns, huge costs (at a minimum guess, $150,000 extra) to hire staff, and the Gallatin Campus itself officially closes at 11 pm. Perhaps the best evidence for not staying open 24/7 is the lack of demonstrated need for those hours: during our extended hours near exam times there are never more than a handful of people using the library between 10-11 pm; unfortunately, there are only a handful of students here at closing each night during our regular hours, too. I know that there will be a few students who will remain unsatisfied with this response and so I encourage these students to speak with me directly.

Sarah can be reached at 615-230-3412 or at Sarah.Smith@volstate.edu. 

Librarian Brigade

You’ve seen them wandering around the computer lab, stepping into the silent study room, and walking down the aisles between the bookshelves. Who are they? They’re the Librarian Brigade!

(Okay, maybe that’s not really what we’re called but wouldn’t that be a good name for a gang of librarian superheroes?!?)

We actually call this service Roving Reference. The idea behind it is to make sure that we are providing the best possible service to everyone in the library. We also want to make sure that the library is a comfortable and inviting place where you can get work done.

Why do we rove? Well, without getting too librarian nerdy on you, I’ll give a couple of reasons. First, we want to remove any barriers between us and any library users. Some library users are a little reluctant to ask for help (not you, of course, since you’re reading our fantastic library blog!). They think they may be interrupting us or bothering us, or they may just feel a little shy about asking someone a question. It can be a little intimidating to go up to a stranger and ask them questions about things you feel like you should know how to do. By leaving the desk and going to where the users are, we meet them in their space and remove some of that intimidation factor.

Another reason for roving is to help make sure that the library remains a great place to study and get work done. We have different noise level zones in the building, so when we rove, we make sure that the silent study room is actually silent and that any groups in the yellow zone on the second floor aren’t getting too excited about what they’re studying and disturbing others. Plus, if we find that a group of people is being a little noisier than they should be, we can direct them to a study room or give them a “gentle reminder” to be respectful to others.

A third reason for roving is to help anyone lost in the bookshelves. Sometimes it’s easy to get lost on the way to finding a resource, especially if you’re not familiar with the way items are shelved here at Thigpen. If a roving librarian sees someone who looks like he needs a little help, then we can step in and help her find what he’s looking for.

Finally, it also gives the librarians a little exercise, which never hurts anyone who sits at a computer for a good part of the workday!

So, the next time you see a librarian wandering around, you will know what she is doing.  And, if you ever think of a better name for our librarian superhero gang, leave us a comment here!