2015 Presentations

From the Cloud to the Reading Room: Mediating User Experience of Archival Collections in Research - Barry Houlihan

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Barry Houlihan, NUI Galway

“Learning through encountering is a widening facet for archive collections and their users at present. Through teaching, independent research, online publication and exhibition of material as well of the digitised artefact, the integration of unique collections into the learning space is affording new opportunities and possibilities for projecting the archive to a new and widening user base. This is part of the commitment in developing user experience of learning through engagement in an embedded manner with unique archival collections.

From subject areas of theatre, literature, Northern Ireland conflict and society, the geography and culture of the West of Ireland, among others, this talk will explore the changing presence of archives as and in research from undergraduate to postgraduate and academic research and teaching, through digital and traditional means. Shifting methods of engagement, through cataloguing standards and access to finding aids, key-word cataloguing, digital access, linked-collections for research, outreach and advocacy, are all facilitating greater awareness of collections among researchers but also an awareness of the strategies and benefits of archival usage in research through various media. With such increasing volumes of material, data and modes of access, a greater emphasis must also come in mediating that deluge for the user.

Recent developments has seen the archives and archive service of the Hardiman Library become research partners with academic teaching, projects and planning but with the archivist as mediator between information content and user engagement. These interventions are key to ensuring relevancy of archives in research, at a time where we are witnessing a redefining of engagement Libraries and their services among users. Archive literacy, being the skillset of the researcher when encountering, navigating and utilising the collection content in varying media and format is also undergoing a radical change. This paper will address these current questions and issues and highlight the work of information professionals as curators of unique collections and the role of mediation between researcher and object.

Barry Houlihan is an archivist at the James Hardiman Library at National University of Ireland, Galway, where he has catalogued the archives of Professor Kevin Boyle, Human Rights Academic, Lawyer and Activist; the archive of Druid Theatre Company; the Galway Arts Festival, and others. He is a Project group member of the Abbey Theatre Digitisation Project. Barry’s interests include promoting new ways of engagement with archives, archives in research and digital access to collections. He is also currently working on a Phd focusing on the memory and archival record of theatre, politics and society in the 1960s and 1970s.”

“From UFOs to UDCs: building research collections into future?” - Crónán Ó Doibhlin

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Crónán Ó Doibhlin,

“The idea of Unique and Distinct Collections (UDCs) has been a developing concept within research libraries over a number of years, resulting in the publication of reports on Special Collections in the US and Canada by OCLC, and most recently in 2014 by RLUK (Unique and Distinctive Collections: Opportunities for Research Libraries).

These reports provide new evidence and a new context for the development and transformation of the special collections, archives and related collections held by university and research libraries in a mature and simultaneously mutating information economy.

The term, unique and distinctive collection, therefore, is not applied merely to rename what was formerly classified as Special Collections materials. The use of this concept signifies a strategic shift in the definition and in the role of some of the most important research collections within the university and research sector, a shift which also provides the rationale for increased investment, innovation and an expanded role for the libraries in community engagement, and in the development of sustainable research support infrastructures within the university.

This paper will examine the current context of UDCs, their role nationally and the potential opportunities that exist for holding institutions within the particular context of the research environment in Ireland. It will examine the opportunity for innovative practice and staff development in maximising the potential of these collections, and the potential for national collaboration in collection building, planning and collaboration. In addition, this paper will explore the ways in which UDC’s provide a new paradigm of strategic challenges for research libraries and universities which will require investment in resources and expertise should we wish to effectively support the institutional mission, and nurture leadership that is required to ensure that these significant source collections continue to thrive into the future.

“Crónán Ó Doibhlin is the Head of Research Head of Research Collections & Communications at UCC Library, where he is a member of UCC Library’s Senior Management Team and the Information Services Management Team at UCC. His current core responsibilities relate to leading the development, organisation and management of Special Collections and Archives at UCC, the development of Digital Projects, Institutional Repository services, Exhibitions, and Communications including External Relations, and supporting the University Librarian in his work with the Alumni Development Office, and Collection Acquisition.

He has also represented UCC Library on a number of national committees including CONUL Committees for Collaborative Storage and Collection Management, and currently serves on the CONUL Digital Services and Infrastructure Sub-Committee.

A Guide Not A Sage: Respect Not Fear for Undergraduates Using Special Collections - Elaine Harrington

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Elaine Harrington, University College Cork

Prior to three years ago undergraduate engagement with UCC Library’s Special Collections was infrequent. However since then a culture shift has occurred as lecturers have deliberately engaged with Special Collections’ material with specific methodologies or for specific purposes. Prof. Pádraig Ó Macháin (Modern Irish) created three research-focused hands-on approach modules dealing with manuscript material and the mechanisms for manuscript research for 2nd and 3rd year undergraduates. These students are familiar with the printed book but less so with handwritten manuscript items. Dr Edel Semple (English) co-ordinates a problem-based enquiry module for 1st year undergraduates which focuses on the short story. These students use UCC Library’s short story collections to create magazines with entries on ‘the future of the short story’ and ‘a day in the life of a writer.’ CIT’s Crawford College of Art & Design 1st year Fine Art and Contemporary Applied Art students visit Special Collections through Cork PAL to view UDCs as physical objects. As the physical objects have a presence that no reproduction or digitised object can approach viewing and interacting with the items informs their artistic endeavours. When each group visits Special Collections librarian and lecturer work together to show the students procedures particular for Special Collections, non-Dewey classification schemes and items important for that module’s focus. There are difficulties for library staff and users alike which must be managed when such groups come to Special Collections. Library staff must know what resources users seek and how best to direct the user without interfering in the research process itself as the library staff members are guides not sages. Users may find the level of care and procedures required intimidating unless they realise the reasons for which these procedures exist. This paper explores the type and level of engagement required from module creation to assignment submission.

Elaine Harrington is Special Collections Assistant Librarian in UCC Library. This role includes managing and developing a team of three library staff through to collection management for reference, early printed books and unique & distinctive collections. In addition Elaine facilitates user engagement with these collections by liaising with academic staff and other institutions. As Elaine previously worked in UCC Library’s Customer Services, InterLibrary Loan and Health Sciences branch library she is very much focused on how users engage with the library, its services and collections. She is an active member of the LAI’s Rare Books & Special Collections Group and CONUL’s Collections, Preservation & Conservation Sub-Committee.

Robot Hunter, or, precisely what I thought I wouldn't be doing when I became a librarian - Joseph Greene

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Joseph Greene, University College Dublin.

Web robots have become an enormous problem and must be considered when collecting and analysing web usage statistics. This is particularly problematic for institutional repositories, as the major platforms (DSpace and EPrints) have only basic robot detection and filtration capabilities for their native statistics packages. These systems, as well as a DSpace extension, the University of Minho StatisticsAddOn, will be described along with general information about web robots such as definition, usefulness and behaviour. Work is currently being done by COUNTER and IRUS-UK in this area. Their work will be discussed in the context of its applicability in Ireland.

Joseph received an MLIS in 2005 from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He worked in East Baton Rouge Parish Libraries for three years before moving to Ireland and working with the Irish Viritual Research Library and Archive (IVRLA) at University College Dublin. Joseph became UCD’s systems librarian in 2008. He completed a diploma in project management in 2009 and has been responsible for the UCD institutional repository since 2008.

A new typology for library buildings in the 21st century: trends and post-occupancy evaluation - Karen Latimer

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Karen Latimer, Queen’s University Belfast.

“The impact of electronic resources and the changes in information provision have had a significant impact on the design of library spaces in the 21st century. Contrary to some doom-laden predictions, however, the demise of the physical library has not come about and libraries have embraced technology rather than been ousted by it. Indeed the relationship between electronic resources, print material, library users and architecture has sparked off a new interest in library design. The need to create attractive and welcoming spaces for the digital library, spaces that are conducive to learning, and staff workspaces that are fit for purpose is a major challenge for any of us looking at library spaces – large or small. Needs of users have now become paramount and there has been a clear move away from designing library spaces to house collections to ones that foster creating connections between users and resources, users and each other, and users and library staff. This talk will look at recent trends in the design of libraries and library spaces and the impact on design of technological advances, the shifting balance between print and electronic collections, and social and pedagogical change.
A further focus of the talk will be on post-occupancy evaluation. As library staff become less concerned about metrics for shelving stock and concentrate more on how spaces are used and user reaction to new spaces, it becomes increasingly important to identify what works and what doesn’t. A key element in establishing which aspects of design have been successful and which less so is post-occupancy evaluation (POE). This talk will touch on recent work being carried out on POE by such bodies as IFLA and LIBER and how information generated from evaluation exercises can be used to solve problems, help decision-making and feed back into future planning programmes.

Karen Latimer started her career by working as a library building consultant on an extension and renovation project at the University of Houston, where she also worked with a community group on the design for their new public library. For much of her career she was the subject librarian for architecture and planning at Queen’s University, Belfast and is now the Medical & AFBI Librarian there. She chairs the UK Designing Libraries Advisory Board, is the UK representative on the LIBER Architecture Group and is past Chair of the Standing Committee of the IFLA Library Buildings & Equipment Section. Karen is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP), and has published and presented papers on a range of library topics. She is also an honorary member of the Royal Society of Ulster Architects and was awarded an OBE in 2007 for services to architectural heritage in Northern Ireland.

Resource Description and Access. Analysis and findings of a survey regarding implementation of RDA in CONUL member libraries - Marie G. Cullen

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Marie G. Cullen, Maynooth University.

“In April 2013, Resource Description and Access (RDA) became the new standard for resource description and access replacing the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules II (AACRII) standard. RDA is a content standard designed for a digital world and builds on AACRII.
In 2012 and 2013, EURIG (The European RDA Interest Group) surveyed its members regarding their plans for the implementation of RDA. The findings of these surveys provided a snapshot of EURIG members’ plans for RDA implementation and feedback from those institutions that had begun to apply RDA. No such survey had been carried out in Ireland. Between November 2014 and January 2015 the 26 CONUL member libraries were surveyed with regard to their plans for the implementation of RDA and details of staff training and support with which they had engaged. This paper presents a summary of the findings of the survey and based on the findings looks at the opportunities for knowledge sharing and collaboration.
This research is supported by a bursary from the Cataloguing and Metadata Group of the Library Association of Ireland.

“Marie G. Cullen (ALAI, PGDHE, MLIS) is an Assistant Librarian at Maynooth University Library since 2008. She has previously worked in the Mercer Library at the Royal College Surgeons in Ireland. A member of the Library Association of Ireland (LAI) since 2008 and a member of the Academic and Special Libraries Section (A&SL) Committee since 2009, she was Honorary Secretary of the A&SL from June 2011 to July 2014. Marie was awarded Associateship of the LAI in March 2013.
Marie has presented at INULS and QQML and has co-authored a number of articles which have been published in An Leabharlann The Irish Library and Sconul Focus. These are available at http://eprints.nuim.ie/
Professional interests include continuing professional development, special collections, the role of new technologies and social media in libraries and information literacy training and development. @CullenMarieG

The Clarke Studios Collection in TCD Library: A study in collaboration - Marta Bustillo, Tim Keefe

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Marta Bustillo, Tim Keefe, Trinity College Dublin.

“This paper will discuss the Clarke Stained Glass Studios Collection, a collaborative project between the Library at Trinity College Dublin and the Digital Repository of Ireland. The project is digitising, cataloguing and making accessible to researchers and the wider public the business archives and the designs for stained glass windows of the Clarke Stained Glass Studios, held in the Manuscripts & Archives Research Library at Trinity College Dublin. The collection will be available both through the Digital Collections site at Trinity College Dublin, and through the Digital Repository of Ireland.
The paper will explore the relevance of a research-collection based approach to digitisation of library materials; the value of a digitisation project of this kind for teachers, researchers and the general public; the challenges facing such projects; and how these can be resolved through effective collaborations with internal and external partners. The challenges include issues such as the management of the copyright and orphan works workflow; deciding on an appropriate level of description for the digitised materials; metadata mapping; and promoting the collection to the right audience. The strategies to face those challenges include collaboration with library cataloguers, subject librarians and academics; tapping on the expertise of associated projects such as the DRI; and organising research symposia to promote the digital collection internally and externally. The literature on digital collections projects in university libraries will be reviewed in order to provide an international context to our case study.

Dr. Marta Bustillo is Assistant Librarian in the Digital Resources and Imaging Services Department in Trinity College Library, working as Metadata Cataloguer for the Clarke Studios Digitisation Project. Marta has a Ph.D. in Art History from Trinity College Dublin, and an M.A. in Information and Library Management from Northumbria University. She has managed digitisation projects at the library of the National College of Art and Design in Dublin and the Fleet Library at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Rhode Island.
Tim Keefe is a recent transplant to Ireland from the United States and is the head of the Digital Resources and Imaging Services (DRIS) Department at Trinity College Dublin.

Revolutionary and Evolutionary Innovation - Marshall Breeding

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Marshall Breeding.

Marshall Breeding is an independent consultant, speaker, and author. He is the creator and editor of Library Technology Guides and the libraries.org online directory of libraries on the Web. His monthly column Systems Librarian appears in Computers in Libraries; he is the Editor for Smart Libraries Newsletter published by the American Library Association, and has authored the annual Library Systems Report published by Library Journal from 2002-2013 and by American Libraries since 2014. He has authored nine issues of ALA’s Library Technology Reports, and has written many other articles and book chapters. Marshall has edited or authored seven books, including Cloud Computing for Libraries published by in 2012 by Neal-Schuman, now part of ALA TechSource. He regularly teaches workshops and gives presentations at library conferences on a wide range of topics.

He has been an invited speaker for many library conferences and workshops throughout the United States and internationally. He has spoken in throughout the United States and in Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, China, Singapore, India, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Israel, Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Colombia, Chile, Mexico, and Argentina.

Marshall Breeding held a variety of positions for the Vanderbilt University Libraries in Nashville, TN from 1985 through May 2012, including as Director for Innovative Technologies and Research as the Executive Director the Vanderbilt Television News Archive.

Breeding was the 2010 recipient of the LITA LITA/Library Hi Tech Award for Outstanding Communication for Continuing Education in Library and Information Science.

Read his Guideposts blog on Library Technology Guides at:

Going, going, gone - Can legal deposit save us from the digital black hole? - Margaret Flood, Arlene Healy

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Margaret Flood, Arlene Healy, Trinity College Dublin.

The internet has evolved beyond recognition since its advent in 1980s; fundamentally changing the way we live, work and communicate. However its pervasiveness is mirrored by the transient nature of much of the content and the consequent loss of collective memory has been described as the digital black hole. Historically nations have relied on national libraries and other legal deposit libraries, to collect preserve and provide ongoing access to the intellectual, cultural and social outputs of their country, and in an increasingly digital world restricting legal deposit to publications in print has put the national record at risk. Over the last decade countries across the world have extended legal deposit provisions in their legislation to cover non-print formats. This presentation focuses on the experience of the UK, as a case study, from new legislation in 2003 through the experience of implementation in 2013 to where we are today. Challenges, viewed through the lens of an academic library, include defining what is national in a digital world; balancing the interests of multiple stakeholders; technical challenges to implement robust collection, preservation and access systems within legal constraints; dealing with multiple and rapidly evolving formats; the sheer scale and cost of collecting and preserving content and providing ongoing access to it. Two years on from UK implementation of the legislation how successful have the legal deposit libraries been in this endeavour, what does the future look like and what lessons might be applicable to the Irish digital environment?

“Margaret Flood heads the Collection Management Division of Trinity College Library. She has been actively engaged with the British Library and UK legal deposit libraries since 2003 in the planning to bring non-print legal deposit from legislation to implementation and ultimately business as usual. She represents TCD on a number of key committees including the Legal Deposit Implementation Group and Joint Committee for Legal Deposit which draws its representation from the publishing and library communities. She chairs the TCD internal Steering Group responsible for coordination of the implementation of UK Non-Print Legal Deposit within TCD. Margaret also chairs the CONUL Regulatory Affairs Sub-Committee which includes legal deposit in its remit. On behalf of CONUL the Sub-Committee responded to public the two public consultations initiated by the Copyright Review Committee including detailed submissions on the urgency of legislating for digital legal deposit for Ireland
Arlene Healy is Sub-librarian of the Digital Systems and Services (Readers’ Services Division) in Trinity College Library, Dublin, where she is a member of the Leadership Team.

Seeing Through “Learner’s Eyes” – using student evaluation of teaching at UCD Library - Michelle Dalton

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Michelle Dalton, University College Dublin.

“Student evaluation of teaching (SET) is one of Brookfield’s (2002) Four Lenses of Critical Reflection (2002). When combined with peer observation, relevant theoretical literature and self-reflection, it can provide a useful channel for gathering feedback on the value and effectiveness of teaching. This paper discusses the design and development of a feedback collection tool for information literacy sessions at UCD Library, whilst raising some of the key questions involved in the process including:
Why do we need student feedback and what can we learn from it?
Qualitative or quantitative data – which is more valuable?
What about student self-reporting and self-rating?
Satisfaction ratings as a proxy for evaluating the quality of teaching – what do they really tell us?
How can format – paper-based or online – influence the quantity and quality of responses?
Informed by this underlying theoretical context, the paper also discusses the use of the tool in practice. The feedback form has now been implemented by the UCD College Liaison Librarian team over a full academic year, yielding useful data and insight that have helped to inform future practice. The paper concludes by highlighting some of the emerging themes from this data, outlining how it might potentially be used to improve the effectiveness of teaching and learning in information literacy.”

Michelle Dalton is the Liaison Librarian for the College of Human Sciences in UCD Library, and also has experience working in corporate, medical and special libraries. She has published a number of articles in peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of Academic Librarianship, the Journal of Information Literacy and Library & Information Research, and is editor and co-founder of the Irish library blog Libfocus.com. Follow her on twitter @mishdalton.

Evaluating Automated Sentiment Analysis of Library Survey Respondent feedback - Peter Corrigan

Presented at the CONUL Conference, July 2015, Athlone, Ireland by Peter Corrigan NUI Galway.

Open-ended respondent comments are a valuable complement to the regular quantitative findings provided by many surveys. While reading every comment provides insight for the investigator, rigorous, systematic analysis and summarization of extensive qualitative feedback is a time-consuming task.

Recent advances in sentiment analysis, harnessing natural language processing, text analysis, computational linguistics and deep learning promises a rich seam of possibilities for automation of a range of hitherto, human-only tasks. Third-party APIs conveniently expose the necessary computing power, algorithms and data via a well-defined interface to allow us explore these possibilities.

This brief talk will describe the application of state-of-the-art sentiment analysis via third party API to over 5000 LibQUAL+ comments from five separate LibQUAL+ surveys performed on the James Hardiman Library between 2010 and 2015. Calculation of document level sentiment for each comment will allow for the calculation of a per survey overall sentiment score. Keyword-level sentiment will be examined to see how it might allow for the identification and ranking of particular points of user-grievance. The potential for keyword-level sentiment analysis to measure the effectiveness of library staff mitigation initiatives will be explored. Custom software developed for this talk to leverage the APIs and optimised for LibQUAL+ comments will be available on Github.

Peter Corrigan is currently Head of Organisational Development and Performance at the James Hardiman Library in NUI Galway. Peter commenced his library career in UCD Engineering Library as an Assistant Librarian. He left academia to work in industry before re-joining UCD, in the Medical Library in the mid-1980’s. He later returned to industry to work in the pharmaceutical and software sectors. He came to NUI Galway in 1993 as a sub-librarian in charge of Library Systems and assumed his current role in 2009. Peter credits curiosity and his passion for technology’s ability to transcend drudgery for keeping him ever-tantalised and excited about modern librarianship.