Friday, January 30, 2009

Information Literacy Series for faculty starts Tuesday 2/3

Are you tired of grading poorly researched papers? Have you found that your students aren’t making distinctions among sources? Are you fed up with grading papers from internet mills? If you’ve answered “yes” to any of these questions, then our First Tuesday Series on Information Literacy offer the workshops you need. After all, with information becoming accessible from more and more sources, your students’ time will shift from finding the information to evaluating and using the information effectively and ethically. Today, most employers complain that college graduates lack the kind of analytical skills their companies need in entry level positions, one reason MTSU is committed to “developing and implementing initiatives that promote information literacy in today’s rapidly changing technological environment.”(MTSU Academic Master Plan, 2007-17).

Wealth of Strategies, Tools, Resources

Recognizing the importance of this initiative, the Learning, Teaching & Innovative Technologies Center turned to experts on campus to design a practical, hands-on series of workshops that could give faculty strategies and options for preparing students to handle the research requirements in their courses and, ultimately, in the job market. This spring, Mary Ellen Pozzebon, Electronic Resources Librarian, Jason Vance, Information Literacy Librarian, and Kristen West, Instruction Librarian, will lead three workshops for the center’s First Tuesday Information Literacy Series:

1. Beyond the Research Paper: Developing Alternative Assignments to Teach Library Research, February 3, 11:40 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Peck Hall 106. This session will focus on strategies for incorporating library research assignments into courses. Participants will leave with a variety of assignments and examples that can be tied to specific learning outcomes.
2. When Wikipedia Fails: Teaching Students to Evaluate Information, March 3, 11:40-1pm, Peck Hall 106. Here, the focus is on teaching students to evaluate information sources they encounter during the undergraduate writing and research process. Strategies show you how to balance students’ increased access to online information with critical thinking about the item’s source, context, and quality.
3. Copy & Paste Plagiarism: Promoting the Ethical Use of Information among Undergraduate Students. April 7, 11;40-1:00 pm, Peck Hall 106. Session gives you pre-empting strategies in undergraduate writing assignments.

Take a Load Off

How can this series help MTSU faculty and students? According to Jason Vance, Walker Library’s new information literacy librarian, many instructors are simply unaware of the kind of support and services available from MTSU librarians. “Many don’t know, for example, that we are available to actually teach research skills to their classes, no matter the discipline. We can also help faculty build research components into their courses,” all which boost students’ critical thinking skills and their ability to form valid conclusions based on reliable information. In today’s competitive job market, students who are able to demonstrate research and analytical skills—knowing where to find good information, how to test it, how to apply it-- have the edge over those whose experience is limited to such popular sources as Wikipedia.

To register for one or all workshops in the First Tuesday Information Literacy Series, visit our web site at . You can also call the center at 494-7671.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Science Magazine online

Walker Library now subscribes to Science Online. The online site offers full access to Science magazine content from 1997 to present. The articles are available in PDF or HTML format with linked references and even additional online supplemental data.

The features of the site also include rss feeds and downloadable PowerPoint slides of articles to use in the classroom.

If you're on campus, you can go directly to to view current and past issue. If you're off campus, use this link instead, accessed from the Journal Locator. The library also subscribes to the print edition.

Books benefit student scholarship!!!!

Do you have books, CDs, DVDs, tapes, and records that you need to get rid of? Consider the AAUW/Murfreesboro for their annual Book Sale! The book sale, which benefits the Ruth Houston Memorial Scholarship for MTSU Students, will be held March 30-31 in the KUC, in front of Phillips Bookstore.

We can begin to take your donations now!

On campus donations can be dropped off at the Walker Library right inside the front door next to the Circulation Desk. We can even arrange curbside pickups there. Call /email Ann Funkhouser at 898-2538 or

Donations will be picked up on Fridays. Call /email Cathy Crabtree for pickup at 867-3963 or

The AAUW (American Association of University Women) has been advancing equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, and research. Since 1881, AAUW has been the nation's leading voice promoting education and equity for women and girls.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Watch the Inauguration here

Please join us here in the James E. Walker Library on Tuesday, January 20, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. to view this historic inauguration. We will have a large TV set up on the second floor balcony.

Presidential Inauguration

U.S. presidents are elected in early November, but their terms in office do not officially begin until January 20, or Inauguration Day. Inauguration ceremonies are deeply rooted in tradition, but presidents throughout history have added their own unique customs.

George Washington was inaugurated as the first president of the United States on April 30, 1789, in New York City. Washington's first inauguration took place at Federal Hall, where the first Congress was assembled. Washington, D.C., did not officially become the U.S. capital until 1801.

Inauguration Day was originally held on March 4 to give electors from each state nearly four months after Election Day to cast their ballots for president and to allow for travel in an era of slow transportation. However, in 1933, Congress ratified the 20th Amendment, which changed Inauguration Day from March 4 to January 20. This also changed the starting day for each congressional session from March 4 to January 3. The 20th Amendment is often referred to as the "Lame Duck Amendment," because it shortens the time when officials who are not re-elected (known as "lame ducks") remain in office.

Since 1937, almost every president has been inaugurated in a public ceremony on January 20. One exception to this rule occurs when January 20 falls on a Sunday. In this case, a brief private inauguration is conducted that day and a public ceremony is held the following day. The other exception occurs when a vice president is sworn in with a smaller ceremony immediately after the death, resignation or removal of a president. The inauguration of the president of the United States has come to be recognized by several time-honored traditions.

The Oath of Office

The focus of the inauguration ceremony, and the only part required by law, is the oath of office. Article II, Section 1, of the U.S. Constitution provides a 35-word oath of office for the president-elect's official swearing in. Every president in United States history has spoken the words prescribed by the Constitution: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." The U.S. Senate Web site says George Washington added the words "So help me God" to the end of the oath, as have all presidents since.

While tradition holds that the chief justice of the United States administers the presidential oath, it is not required by law. Upon the death of Warren Harding, his successor, Calvin Coolidge, took the oath of office from his father in 1923, who was a notary public and justice of the peace. Lyndon Baines Johnson, who took his oath of office following the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963, was sworn in by U.S. District Judge Sarah T. Hughes, the first and only woman to have administered the oath of office to a president.

Inauguration Speech

Since George Washington's first inauguration in 1789, every president has delivered an inauguration speech, although it is not a legal requirement. Washington's second inaugural address is the shortest on record, at 135 words. The longest inauguration speech was delivered by William Henry Harrison. It was 8,445 words long! Harrison gave this speech outdoors in the bitter cold on March 4, 1841. One month later, he died of pneumonia, which was believed to have been brought on by his exposure to the severe cold.

The president's inaugural message has been made available to Americans and the world via different modes of communication over time. Warren G. Harding was the first president to deliver his speech through loudspeakers. Calvin Coolidge's speech was the first delivered nationally on the radio and Harry S. Truman's the first broadcast on television. Bill Clinton's second inaugural address was the first one broadcast on the Internet.

Inaugural Parade

When George Washington left his home in Mount Vernon, Virginia, to attend his inauguration in New York City in 1789, militias along the way joined the procession. When he finally arrived in New York, local officials, dignitaries, soldiers of the Continental Army and congressmen accompanied him to Federal Hall for the swearing-in ceremony. Over time, this evolved into the Inauguration Day parade. Today, inaugural parades include military and marching bands and floats representing all aspects of American life.

Inaugural Ball

Although George Washington did have an informal ball after his inauguration, the first official Inaugural Ball was held in honor of James Madison in 1809. As more people wanted to share in the festivities, later inaugurals included multiple public balls throughout the capital and some in other cities. Bill Clinton's second inauguration set the present record with 14 official inaugural balls.

Inaugural Settings

George Washington's first inauguration was held outside, but holding the inaugural ceremony outdoors wasn't established as a tradition until 1829, when Andrew Jackson was inaugurated at an outdoor ceremony at the East Front of the U.S. Capitol (facing the Supreme Court). Since then, the ceremony has been held outdoors except in cases of extreme weather. In 1981, Ronald Reagan moved the inaugural ceremony from the Capitol's East Front to the West Front. The next presidents, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, were inaugurated at the West Front as well, which has more room to allow hundreds of thousands of spectators to witness the event from the National Mall. On those occasions when a president has died in office or resigned, the oath of office has typically been administered in more subdued settings. For example, upon the death of Franklin Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman took his oath of office in the Cabinet Room of the White House. Lyndon Johnson's oath of office was administered on the presidential airplane, Air Force One, following the death of John F. Kennedy. The Constitution does not specify where the oath of office must take place.

For Americans, Inauguration Day and its rich and storied traditions symbolize both the continuity and the renewal of the American political system.

Sources: The Library of Congress, The Joint Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, and CNN Student News

Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is Monday, January 19, 2009. The Library will be closed to observe the holiday. We will re-open at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, January 20. Join us then to view the Inauguration of Barack Obama at 10:30 a.m. on the second floor balcony.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a national holiday honoring the late civil rights leader. King dedicated his life to fulfilling his dream "that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal.'" Four decades after his death, King's vision continues to provide hope and inspiration to the nation.

In the Early Years

Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia. In 1944, at the age of 15, King entered Morehouse College in Atlanta. He graduated in 1948 with a B.A. in Sociology. That fall, he attended Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania. After graduating from Crozer with a Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1951, he began his doctoral studies in Theology at Boston University. He married Coretta Scott on June 18, 1953. Two years later, in June of 1955, he received his PhD.

As a Civil Rights Leader

King returned to the South to become the pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. It was there, in 1955, that he launched what became the national civil rights movement by mobilizing the black community in a 13-month boycott of the city's buses. The non-violent demonstration was ignited by a seamstress named Rosa Parks, who refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white passenger. Courts later ruled that bus segregation was unconstitutional.

By the late 1950s, King had become a national figure. In 1957, he helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which encouraged the use of non-violent civil disobedience to win civil rights for African-Americans. The movement began to see results between the years of 1960 and 1965, when legislation was passed to end racial segregation in public facilities and expand voting rights.

In August 1963, an interracial crowd of more than 250,000 people attended the March on Washington, during which Dr. King made his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. Just one year after the March on Washington, King, at the age of 35, became the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize to date.

King's Death

In April 1968, King traveled to Memphis, Tennessee to support the city's striking garbage workers, who were demanding a raise and better working conditions. A sniper shot King as he stood on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis on April 4, 1968. He died later that day. In March 1969, James Earl Ray pleaded guilty to King's murder and was sentenced to ninety-nine years in the Tennessee State Penitentiary. He died in 1998.

Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday

Four days after King's assassination, U.S. Rep. John Conyers from Michigan proposed a law making King's birthday a national holiday. On August 2, 1983, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a law to make Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday a national legal holiday on the third Monday in January, beginning in 1986. The U.S. Senate approved the bill, and on November 2, 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed it into law. The first observance of Dr. King's birthday as a legal national holiday was on January 20, 1986.

Courtesy of CNN Student News

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Website problems --database access

We are currently experiencing difficulties with our web server which has disrupted normal access to our article databases.

Please use this temporary page to access our databases:

If you have access questions, you may call us at 898-2817 or contact us through the Live Help box on the right (when online). We apologize for the inconvenience.

Express Print Station

Need to print something really quick? No computer available?

Go to the Library's EXPRESS PRINT STATION. There you can print WORD, EXCEL, POWERPOINT and PDF documents directly from your flash drive. Just insert your flash drive, select the document you want to print using the touch screen and then watch it print!

There is no internet connection on these machines. All prints are 2-sided. Don’t forget to remove your flash drive when finished!

The Express Print Station is located on the 1st floor next to the Circulation Desk.

Brought to you by The Student Government Association, The Provost’s Office, Academic Affairs, your Technology Access Fees, The Jones College of Business
and Walker Library.

Friday, January 9, 2009

EXL Class

Need a class to take in the Spring? Consider this…

EXL 2010: Service Learning Practicum: Re-visioning The Walker Library

CRN: 15249

What is it?
A class in the library where you do a project, learn skills, get practical experience

Why take a course in the Library?
Earn 1 hour class credit
Get research and analysis skills
Flexible class schedule
Class meets on campus and online
Work with other students and individually

What will I be doing?
Review what services the Walker Library currently offers
Review library services offered at other institutions
Lead research projects to assess library services and facilities
Recommend practical changes to services offered to the MTSU community

Register for EXL 2010: Service Learning Practicum: Re-visioning The Walker Library

Registration Deadline: January 22

For more info contact:
Amy York 898-2535,

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Practice PPST and Praxis II online

Prospective teachers can now study for the Praxis I (PPST) and Praxis II exam online through the Library's subscription to LearningExpress Library. This subscribed service now offers essential practice for three of the most widely taken Content Knowledge tests: Early Childhood, Elementary Education, and Middle School. Two complete online practice exams are offered for each content area and for the PPST. The tests duplicate the format, content, timing, and scoring of the official exams. Questions cover authentic category content and immediate online scoring is available.

Access LearningExpress from the "Databases A-Z" list on the Research Gateway, or use the "Education" subject guide from the dropdown menu at the top left of the library homepage. You will need to create a free personal account the first time you use the service.