Wednesday, December 09, 2009

What do you wish the library had?

Have a suggestion of a book, DVD, or other item you think the library should have?

Use our new online request form to make a suggestion.

We will respond to your request and order any item we do not already own or that is not already available through Miami University Libraries or OhioLINK. Thanks!

New Materials Added in October and November

The October and November new materials list is now available. We added 106 books, DVDs, and other items over those months, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

Have a suggestion of something to order? Use our online request form, email one of our staff members or drop by the library with your request. Thanks!


Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Blackboard Embedded Librarians in Your Course

Dear Faculty:

Would you like to collaborate with a Blackboard Embedded Librarian next semester, Spring 2010? Have you been toying with the idea, just to see what difference it might make to your students’ research efforts? Have you heard colleagues talking about this online approach to delivering library services and resources that are customized for the courses you teach?

The Gardner-Harvey Librarians have been building research tools and planning for Spring Semester 2010 with you and your students in mind. Before you close your office door for the semester on Friday December 18, 2009, please let John Burke and Beth Tumbleson know of your interest.

To recap the Pilot Program from a year ago, Gardner-Harvey librarians worked with instructors teaching upper and lower division courses across the disciplines. The purpose of the program is to develop information literacy skills in students, whether enrolled in traditional, off-campus, hybrid, or online courses. Once you express interest, we will send you a two page overview of options to determine your needs and schedule an appointment to discuss assignments and your curricular goals in terms of student research. Once you enroll the librarian as a course builder or instructor, content will be added next to the assignment, on the Embedded Librarian page, or wherever appropriate. Then students have direct access to research assistance from a librarian familiar with the course and Miami University Libraries’ collections.

Common research strategies and concepts addressed in prior semesters have included:
• a short list of the most relevant databases and online collections
a list of appropriate subject terms
help narrowing a topic
guidance finding statistics
assistance citing sources using RefWorks and other tools
methods of evaluating Websites
identifying scholarly sources.

If you think your students would benefit from such a faculty-librarian collaboration within Blackboard, please reply to this e-mail and provide the information requested below:

To Complete and Return by December 18, 2010
Courses: Section, Time/Day, & Location

Best regards,

Beth Tumbleson, Assistant Director
John Burke, Director

Saturday, November 07, 2009

New Materials Added in July, August, and September

The July, August, September new materials list is now available. We added 172 books, DVDs, and other items over those months, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

Have a suggestion of something to order? Use our online request form, email one of our staff members or drop by the library with your request. Thanks!


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Clickers now available!

A cooperative effort of the Educational Technology Center, the Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Gardner-Harvey Library is now making an expanded collection of Turning Point clickers available to the campus.

Three sets of clickers (personal response systems) may now be checked out from the Library. Each set contains 30 clickers and a receiver. They may be checked out for 3 hours at one time. Please stop by the library at any time we are open to access the clickers or contact us at 727-3222 to reserve a set for a given class period.

Not sure what clickers are? See this brief overview of clickers from EDUCAUSE (It’s a bit dated, but still a good overview of the process.)

The CTL will sponsor a lunchtime conversation with Janet Hurn on December 2 from 12:00-1:00 in Room 136/137 JHN to share examples of how clickers are used in the classroom.

Need more information? Andrea Han is happy to provide one-on-one training and consultation on the clickers.

We greatly appreciate the work done by Technology Services to install Turning Point software in all of the mediated classrooms. Now it is easy to just set up the receiver and click away.

Andrea Han, Educational Technology Coordinator,
Ellenmarie Wahlrab, Center for Teaching and Learning Co-Coordinator,
John Burke, Library Director,

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

It's National Information Literacy Awareness Month!

President Obama has declared October as National Information Literacy Awareness Month, and the Gardner-Harvey Library has some useful sources to help you increase your awareness.

The Information Literacy Instruction page on our website details our efforts to teach information literacy skills to individuals and classes. One useful area of the page is the link to research guides, which features these helpful items:

The CRAAP Test, which you can use to help you evaluate the information you find.
The Research Project Calculator, which will help you plan your research project and consider the necessary steps and strategies.
The Developing a Research Topic Brainstorming Chart, which helps you turn your topic into a more specific and efficiently-searched statement.

We hope these will be of use to you or your students. What do you find frustrating about the research process? This video shows some common complaints among college students. We'd like to hear yours and help you solve those frustrations.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Textbooks for Fall: where we stand

The Textbooks on Reserve program at the library has recently been updated. We have (starting in the summer and working through the first tow weeks of fall) added 24 new editions of existing textbooks and added 14 new books (either for existing courses or new courses). It is always a little tricky for us to get new books on our shelves right at the beginning of the semester, and we are grateful to the MUM Bookstore and to faculty members for assisting us to make this possible.

We now have books for 94 courses offered at Middletown that the library has purchased, and textbooks on hand for at least 17 other courses provided by individual faculty members or departments. The full list is available here.

We've already had 79 checkouts of these items in the first two weeks of class. If you can help further spread the word that the textbooks are available, that would be most helpful. If you want to correct information on our list, please let us know. If you have suggestions on other courses we should consider buying textbooks for, be sure to contact me.

We thank you for your use and support of this program!

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Kindle is here!

As promised in our Fall 2009 library newsletter, we now have two Kindle readers available for you to check out. You can read about the particulars of borrowing them and the current list of books available on them here. In sum, these devices check out for a week at a time, have 12 preloaded books, and offer a lightweight, enjoyable reading experience.

We are really curious to see what you think of them. Consider checking one out today. We are also maintaining a waiting list for them -- please contact the library to get your name on it.

The web site is all new!

That's right! We switched over to our new web design today. We designed the site to better integrate with the changes to the University Libraries' site and to continue our abilities to better serve you with information resources and information on our services.

Take note of the blue tabs at the top of the page. Each will lead you to a particular type of information and a suggested group of databases and other resources to help you find what you need. Research resources, service information, and other library-related facts make up the three columns below the tab areas. The upper right corner links to the various methods you can use to contact us. And the News and Notes area will feature blog posts and tweets.

The Gardner-Harvey Library staff is extremely grateful to Beth Gray who did the design and HTML programming work needed to make these changes. She also ran a usability testing program for the older site during the summer. This was all done as part of a practicum Beth is completing with the Kent State University School of Library and Information Science toward her Master of Library and Information Science degree.

Is there something you can't find on the new site that you used to use on the old one? Has our work to correctly link documents on the page oft gang aglee? If so, please contact us forthwith so that we can help you navigate and/or fix the issues with the site. We hope you will enjoy this fresh interface to information!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Wellness Book Discussion Comes to GHL

Munch a Good Lunch @Your Library!

The Gardner-Harvey Library and the Miami Middletown Wellness Committee invite all health-minded individuals to join us for a book discussion of:

In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan (2008)
Thursday September 24, 2009, 12 Noon - 1 PM
Library, Main Level in the big blue chairs

In his latest book, Pollan critics the Western diet, the nutritionists' focus on foods' "chemical constituents", and the food industry's goal to produce a profit. He contends it is better to "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants." In the following pages, he elaborates on this simple wellness formula and points to cultural traditions and common sense as a guide to eating well.

Pick up a copy and prepare for a lively discussion facilitated by Ruth Orth and Beth Tumbleson.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Gardner-Harvey Blog RSS Feed in Twitter

The Gardner-Harvey Library News Blog is now connected to Twitter via RSS feed! If you prefer keeping up with tweets rather than blog posts, you can follow us entirely at!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Think Before Googling

Researchers in quest of information, data, articles, topic overviews, and more are often tempted to turn to their favorite search engine... The key to successful searching of Google or any other search engine lies in taking the time to think. A well designed search string does wonders for removing the irrelevant or questionable. Then more critical thinking must be applied in scanning the results. As Howard Rheingold writes in "Crap Detection 101", June 30, 2009:

"Unless a great many people learn the basics of online crap detection and begin applying their critical faculties en masse and very soon, I fear for the future of the Internet as a useful source of credible news, medical advice, financial information, educational resources, scholarly and scientific research. Some critics argue that a tsunami of hogwash has already rendered the Web useless. I disagree. We are indeed inundated by online noise pollution, but the problem is soluble. The good stuff is out there if you know how to find and verify it. Basic information literacy, widely distributed, is the best protection for the knowledge commons: A sufficient portion of critical consumers among the online population can become a strong defense against the noise-death of the Internet.

The first thing we all need to know about information online is how to detect crap, a technical term I use for information tainted by ignorance, inept communication, or deliberate deception. Learning to be a critical consumer of Webinfo is not rocket science. It's not even algebra. Becoming acquainted with the fundamentals of web credibility testing is easier than learning the multiplication tables. The hard part, as always, is the exercise of flabby think-for-yourself muscles. "

See the complete post for helpful detection strategies of content found on the Internet. By the way, these "detection strategies" are often referred to as information literacy skills, which librarians are pleased to reveal upon request. Contact one of the Gardner-Harvey librarians for a research consultation or classroom instruction soon.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Tweet tweet! GHL is now on Twitter!

Attention all social-networkers: GHL has joined Twitter! Follow our tweets posted under the name "askghl."

What is Twitter, some of you may ask? Ellyssa Kroski explains in the Online Education Database blog, iLibrarian:

What is it
Twitter is a free communication and social networking tool which allows you to convey short messages of up to 140 characters to your circle of friends via the Twitter website, SMS, email, IM, or other Twitter client. Messages appear not only within your profile on Twitter, but are sent to your community of followers who have signed up to receive your updates. Often referred to as microblogging, this new phenomenon has caught on with over 300,000 users on Twitter alone including Barack Obama and John Edwards. Twitter recently made the cut as one of Time’s Best 50 Websites of 2007. Librarians are using it to communicate at conferences and events and to keep up with developments in the field, and libraries have begun using it to promote their services."

How to use it
Check out some of these great how-to guides which will have you twittering in no time:

The 12 Minute Definitive Guide to Twitter
WebJunction: Mobile Instant Messaging Meets Social Networking: Twitter - A Beginner’s Guide, Part 2
Newbie’s guide to Twitter
David Lee King: Twtter Explained for Librarians, or 10 ways to use Twitter

David Free: Welcome To The Twitterverse
David Lee King: Twitter, part 2: the “fluff

Read more of Ellyssa's post at:

Happy Twittering! :o)

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

June New Materials

The June new materials list is now available. We added 68 books, DVDs, and other items over the last month, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

We added a total of 1228 items to the collection this year. A few more of the items ordered this year are still working their way in, but many of that total have arrived. We hope that we'll be able to pursue a similar amount of items next year (depending on how the budget ends up).

You can find our current and previous new materials lists on the left hand side of our web site under "Faculty" or "Students", and then "New Materials Lists."

Have a suggestion of something to order? Email one of our staff members or drop by the library. Thanks!


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Save Ohio's Public Libraries!

The current funding situation for Ohio's public libraries is in a fairly distressing state as our public servants strive to balance the budget. Serious reductions in state funding could close branches within library systems or even entire library systems. I encourage you to inform yourself on the issue and, if you are so moved, act to assist our public library colleagues. The Save Ohio Libraries site provides much useful information.

"Libraries will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no libraries." - Anne Herbert

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The secrets of Google Scholar

Have you used Google Scholar ( ? Here are a few tips to make your research life a little easier:

Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations.

Keep in mind that you have access to many of these same materials in full-text through the Miami University Library system! Setting your preferences using the directions below will help you see if a given resource in Google Scholar is available through the libraries:

•Use “Scholar Preferences” --> Library Links --> enter “OhioLINK” and check the box

When you see an article in your Google Scholar search results, you may find out if the library has full-text access to the article by clicking the “Find it with OLinks” or “OhioLINK OLinks” links.

Netbooks are here!

The Library has added seven Acer Aspire One netbooks to our one-day loan laptops on reserve. The netbooks are small and lightweight (with 8.9" screens, weighing just over 2 pounds), yet powerful and capable of your web-browsing and document-creating needs (a fairly large keyboard, 6 hours of battery time, and includes the full Microsoft Office application suite).

Check one out today to enjoy easy, go-anywhere access to coursework. Netbooks, like our other laptops, check out through the time the library closes on the next day we are open. Check out a netbook on Tuesday at 10:30am, and it's due back on Wednesday at 7:00pm (our summer hours) or 9:00pm (when school starts back in August).

The Library now has 12 laptops available for students and 8 laptops for faculty and staff to check out.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

April/May New Materials

The April/May new materials list is now available. We added 358 books, DVDs, and other items over the last month, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

More orders from this year are still appearing as we enter June. I will post an update for the academic year on our acquisitions with the July new materials list.

You can find our current and previous new materials lists on the left hand side of our web site under "Faculty" or "Students", and then "New Materials Lists."

Have a suggestion of something to order? Email one of our staff members or drop by the library. Thanks!


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Information Literacy Workshop, June 17, 2009

MUM Faculty and Staff are invited to participate in a Wednesday morning workshop from 9 am to 12 noon with brunch at the Gardner-Harvey Library, which will be facilitated by Sarah Frye and Beth Tumbleson. Participants will review the results from Project Information Literacy Progress Report which targets where students struggle with course-related research. We will discuss ACRL national standards and individual solutions to providing instruction in information literacy. Finally, attendees will have the opportunity to rework an assignment to incorporate one such information literacy skill. This strengthens student academic achievement.

Watch "Prometeus the Media Revolution", Part I, 5 minutes to review changes in the information world over the centuries.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Everything's working now - search at will!

Library databases and services are fully working again. Both on-campus and off-campus access are restored.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Library servers down Tues. evening - alternate route

Miami University Libraries servers will be down this evening from about 6pm until 5:30am due to an electrical outage. The Gardner-Harvey Library website will not be affected by the outage.

If you need to access our databases and electronic resources during the server outage, many of them are available through remote access at OhioLINK. Go to to login and then choose your database or resource using the alphabetical or subject-oriented lists of resources.

The OhioLINK Central Catalog will also be operating while the Miami catalog is down: access it at

The Gardner-Harvey Library closes at 5:00pm tonight and does not reopen until 8:00am on Wednesday morning. If you have any difficulties in between those times, please email us at

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Beth's Beach Bag of Books

Are you headed for the beach this summer? Lake shore or seaside? Even if you remain seated by a stream in Ohio, you may still linger over leisure reading. Here are the titles I plan to stuff in my summer“beach bag”. It’s an eclectic mix of fiction and nonfiction by winners of the Pulitzer Prize of Fiction, authors of New York Time best-sellers, world class authors, and the spiritually attuned.

Jiles, Paulette. The Color of Lightening. William Morrow. 2009.

McCall Smith, Alexander. Tea Time for the Traditionally Built. Pantheon Books. 2009.

Robinson, Marilynne. Home. Farrar, Staus, & Giroux. 2008.

Strout, Elizabeth. Olive Kittredge. Random House. 2008.

Taylor, Barbara Brown. An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith. HarperOne, 2009.

Summer Offerings @ Your Library

Spring semester exams conclude the year, but don’t let that stop you from visiting the Gardner-Harvey Library throughout the summer months. Academic libraries have much to offer all year long. Job-seekers may want internet access to check job postings online and rework resumes using Microsoft Office. Readers may want to browse for good reads in the New Books collection which includes fiction and non-fiction. Film fanatics may want to scan the latest DVDs added to the IMC collection. And then there is the STAR Lounge for Wii gamers and presenters who wish to practice in private. So come by the library Monday-Thursday 8 AM to 7 PM and Friday 8 AM to 5 PM. The library staff will be on hand to guide you through the information universe.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Public scanner available in the library!

The library has just purchased (and Technology Services has installed) a scanner in the library for anyone to use. It's located on the wall with the copiers and printers, just before you get to the STAR Lounge.

It does a great job with photos, documents, and other items (even cell phones - I tried it 8-) ). You can save scans in a variety of file formats, including PDF.

There is no charge for the service, and we're happy to help you get your scanning done.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Extended open hours on Saturday

The library is open for extended hours this coming Saturday, May 2, from 11:00-5:00 if you need help or a quiet place to study. Our IM reference service will also be up and operating during this time.

Good luck on finals!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

February/March New Materials

The February/March new materials list is now available. We added 210 books, DVDs, and other items over the last month, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

I expect that April will be a big month for new items as well - many books and DVDs are appearing in the back room each day and heading out to the shelves.

You can find our current and previous new materials lists on the left hand side of our web site under "New Materials Lists."

Have a suggestion of something to order? Email one of our staff members or drop by the library. Thanks!


Monday, April 06, 2009

Celebrate @ Your Library!

National Library Week, April 12-18, 2009

The Gardner-Harvey Library invites you to celebrate National Library Week with us. We will hold a Wednesday Wii Tournament On April 15 for all-comers in the STAR Lounge throughout the day. Prizes will be awarded to the 3 top bowlers. We will also run a Quotations Quiz to identify the author/speaker of a number of quotes from Monday, April 13 to Thursday, April 16 at noon. Prizes will be awarded to 3 winners. Throughout the week, we will offer lifesavers, bookmarks, and pens for those who visit the Miami University Middletown Library. Join in the fun and find a good read while you are here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

EJC is back!

The good folks at OhioLINK have notified us that the Electronic Journal Center (EJC) is now up and running with all publishers' journals included. As you work through our databases and click on the Find It! link, full-text articles that are located in the EJC will now click through correctly (please let us know if you see any remaining issues). You may also search the EJC directly. Thank you so much for your patience with this situation.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

GHL Librarians Go West

While some head south to bask on sunny beaches, the Gardner-Harvey Librarians will be heading west over spring break! Destination: Seattle to attend the Association of College and Research Libraries biennial meeting over four days. Why would they travel so far? "To Push the Edge: Explore, Engage, Extend!" Naturally they will return with wild, wild west ideas to implement right here at Miami University Middletown. Watch and see.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

New Playaway Titles Added

Now is the time to see our new list of Playaway digital audio devices! We have added 41 more titles to our collection, taking us toward 212 titles in the collection.

Read more on what these devices are and how they work, or take a look at the new list (just click on the titles for a summary of the digital audio book and to request us to hold one for you).

Monday, February 16, 2009

EJC Restoration Update

From the good folks at OhioLINK:

While content in the Electronic Journal Center remains unavailable, OhioLINK is working diligently to provide access to the same content on each publisher's Web site. Available publishers’ sites are listed here and we continue to update this list as needed. Project Muse has been added to the list today and their content is now available. Links to the listed publisher sites work for both on and off campus users.

Over the weekend OhioLINK staff were able to restore EJC content from 2008-2009 for most publishers, except Elsevier, Springer and Blackwell. We continue to work to restore the remaining EJC content as quickly as possible, but do not have all the reload processes in place yet nor the experience to provide a useful time line for full EJC restoration. We hope to be able to share a schedule in the near future.

Since we have a growing body of available content, we restored the alphabetical title links on the EJC home page. These links show only those journals that are currently available, for other journals or issues please continue to visit the publishers’ sites.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

New materials for December/January

The December/January new materials list is now available. We added 61 books, DVDs, and other items over the last month, thanks to the impressive efforts of our faculty selectors and the library staff.

You can find our current and previous new materials lists on the left hand side of our web site under "New Materials Lists."

Have a suggestion of something to order? Email one of our staff members or drop by the library. Thanks!


Monday, February 09, 2009

The Ways the Publishing World Is Changing

How knowledge is organized is often overlooked or assumed, but it is foundational in terms of storing and retrieving knowledge and information throughout the centuries. This has been the challenge libraries and "keepers of the book" have faced since ancient times. (Yes, valuable books were once chained.)

We benefit from understanding how information comes to be published and how much or little editing is done before it becomes available to the public. Then we are in a better position to evaluate its worth.

Currently the world of writing, information, and publishing is undergoing upheaval. Historically we have come from handwritten scrolls, to the Gutenberg printing press, to the wide distribution of printed materials by publishers, and now self-publishing online through Web sites, wikis, and blogs. Creators of content need no longer wait for the journal editor or publishing house agent to approve, edit, and publish their work. See this thought-provoking article in Time Magazine to learn more about the ways the world of publishing is changing.
Grossman, L., & Sachs, A. (2009, February 2). Books Unbound. Time, 173(3), 71. Retrieved February 7, 2009, from MAS Ultra - School Edition database.

Electronic Journal Center problems

Important Message to the OhioLINK community of students, faculty, and staff:

Beginning Wednesday afternoon, February 4, the OhioLINK computer disk storage system suffered a widespread, and supposedly not possible, multiple component failure affecting all major services with the exception of the OhioLINK Library Catalog. We have restored all services except the Electronic Journal Center (EJC). Restoration of the EJC remains under vigorous analysis, but unfortunately we know that any solution will not be immediate. In light of this, we are taking immediate steps to provide alternative access to the resources of the EJC through the various Web sites of the EJC journal publishers.

As noted on this page, we have immediate access to many EJC publisher sites and are working to expand access to the rest as quickly as possible. While the EJC is down, we will continue to improve this site to direct you to the proper publishers. We will also work to adjust our systems that link article citations to full text in the EJC by redirecting links to the publisher sites. We are examining every possibility to keep you connected to resources you need and to improve that connectivity as quickly as possible, while the EJC is not available.

We will keep you up to date through this Web page and the “New at OhioLINK” announcements at
Your local library will also always know the latest news.

The OhioLINK staff is sincerely sorry for this significant disruption in services. We remain committed, as we have since 1992, to providing high quality information resources on a consistent and reliable basis to the Ohio higher education community.


Tom Sanville, Executive Director,
February 8, 2009

Monday, January 12, 2009

Textbooks on Reserve: Ready for Spring!

The library's collection of Textbooks on Reserve (TOR) has been revamped for Spring 2009 courses. You can see the full list of books that we have on reserve here. We provide the main texts for 87 Miami courses, in addition to the many textbooks and additional readings placed on reserve individually by faculty members..

Last fall, the TOR program was heavily used, with 341 individuals checking out a book from the collection during the semester. The ten most popular textbooks checked out by students at MUM are the following (based on lifetime checkouts):

- New perspectives on Microsoft Office 2007 : first course (CIT 154)

Remember that the textbooks are available for two hour checkout during the day, but may also be taken home overnight if checked out within two hours of the time we close that day.